Jim Dickinson was born November 15, 1941, in Little Rock, Arkansas. His family moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1949. He attended White Station High School, where he formed his first band, The Regents, in 1958. Signing his first recording contract with Rubin Cherry's Home of the Blues on Beale Street, he later recorded as an Artist for Sam Phillips' SUN label.
He attended Baylor University in Waco, TX, studying drama under Paul Baker. Returning to Memphis, he married Mary Lindsay Andrews. The couple graduated from Memphis State University with degrees in History and Anthropology.
He participated in the now-famous Memphis Country Blues Festivals at the Overton Park Shell with Furry Lewis, Sleepy John Estes, and Fred McDowell.
After getting his first real break from Bill Justis in Nashville, he began his work in the Memphis music industry, playing sessions at American Studio for Chips Moman, '65/'66; then for John Fry at Ardent Studio, '66/'67; then Sam Kessler at Sound of Memphis Studio, '68/'69, where he joined Charley Freeman, Tommy McClure, and Sammy Creason in the rhythm section that became know as the "DIXIE FLYERS".
In Muscle Shoals, Alabama, in December, 1969, Dickinson recorded "Wild Horses", with the ROLLING STONES, for their album Sticky Fingers.
In 1970, the Dixie Flyers moved to Miami, Florida, contracted to ATLANTIC RECORDS as the house band backing such artists as Aretha Franklin, Sam & Dave, Jerry Jeff Walker, and Carmen McCrae.
Dickinson left the Dixie Flyers and returned to Memphis, recording his solo album, DIXIE FRIED for Atlantic. He began a career as a producer working with Ry Cooder and Big Star. In the early 70s, he toured with Arlo Guthrie after recording "City of New Orleans." Dickinson spent the '70s and '80s developing the notorious and mysterious Mudboy and the Neutrons, Memphis super group,ollaborating with Ry Cooder on motion picture scoring (PARIS, TEXAS; THE BORDER, CROSSROADS, THE LONG RIDERS), and touring Europe twice with Ry Cooder and Jim Keltner.
Dickinson returned to production with Austin's New Sincerity roots rockers,True Believers, which led to Green On Red, and ultimately The Replacements' masterpiece, PLEASED TO MEET ME, and Toots Hibbert's Super Session (Sly and Robbie, Eddie Hinton,Teenie Hodges) TOOTS IN MEMPHIS.
Honored by local NARAS chapter with the Board of Director's Governor's Award in 1992, Jim Dickinson won Producer of the Year seven times before retiring his name from the competition.
After the murder of Dickinson's partner,Lee Baker, Mudboy retired, but not before sons, Luther and Cody, had joined the list of Neutrons. While continuing to produce a few choice projects, Dickinson has concentrated his efforts on the family recording complex, Zebra Ranch, and launching the careers of his sons, Luther and Cody, the North Mississippi Allstars. The Allstars have received three Grammy nominations for their CDs: SHAKE HANDS WITH SHORTY, 51 PHANTOM,and ELECTRIC BLUE WATERMELON