Cultural Percussionist

Junior Walker Day

Autry DeWalt Mixon Jr. (June 14, 1931 – November 23, 1995), known by the stage name Junior Walker, styled as Jr. Walker, was an American musician. His group, Jr. Walker & The All Stars, were signed to Motown‘s Soul label in the 1960s, and became one of the company’s signature acts.

Walker was born Autry DeWalt Mixon Jr. in Blytheville, Arkansas, and grew up in South Bend, Indiana. His saxophone style was the anchor for the band’s overall sound. The other original members of the group were drummer Tony Washington, guitarist Willie Woods, and keyboardist Vic Thomas.

His career started when he developed his own band in the mid-1950s as the “Jumping Jacks.” His longtime friend Billy Nicks (1935–2017) (drummer) formed his own team, the “Rhythm Rockers.” Periodically, Nicks would sit in on Jumping Jack’s shows, and Walker would sit in on the Rhythm Rockers shows.

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