Carlton Jackson Passing

A beloved pillar of Oregon music passed away unexpectedly early in July, just days after he celebrated his 60th birthday. 

Drummer, teacher, radio host, bandleader and an essential and conscientious heartbeat of Portland’s music community, Carlton Jackson was a kind and thoughtful presence.

Jackson hosted The Message, a KMHD radio program since 2009 and before that, hosted a show on KBOO. Inducted into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame in 2008 and deeply rooted in the experiences of the Black community of North Portland, he shared his life experiences through music and words via his performances and his weekly radio programs.

Read Don Campbell’s most illuminating interview with Jackson at

Peter Dammann performed alongside Jackson for decades and shared these thoughts via social media: “You gently led me to the groove, made me feel fearless, helped me become the best version of my guitarist-self I’ve ever been. Thank you for your grace, wisdom, humor, generous brilliance. I will be forever grateful for every moment I got to spend with you on the bandstand, CJ.”   

Rest In Power, Carlton.

Carlton Jackson photo by Guy Brooksbank

Carlton Jackson Passing

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