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Joe Leslie Edmonson (Lil Joe)
Hometown - Omaha, Nebraska
Lil Joe and the Impacts
Much has been written about Joe Leslie Edmonson's and his philanthropic and very successful accomplishments with his youth foundation in Omaha, Nebraska, however, little has been written about "Lil" Joe Leslie Edmonson the musician.

Joe Leslie Edmonson (shown seated, lower left in group photo) was born August 7,1947 in Kansas City, Missouri. He came to live with his Grandmother, Mary Edmonson, in Omaha, Nebraska at a very early age. Mary Edmonson became the single most important and influential person in Joe's life. It was thru Mary's encouragement, perseverance and patience, that helped Joe overcome many of life's obstacles...some real, some imagined, some self inflicted.

Mary Edmonson (Granny, to Joe and many others) a deeply religious and devoted parent, made sure that Joe Leslie, had the very best of everything that she could afford. She purchased a saxophone, a drum set and a organ and several other assorted instruments. Joe began to learn the basic concepts of music theory, unfortunately, however, he had little patience for the structured, formal and repetitive teaching environment, required to master either the saxophone or the drums.The organ became the one instrument Joe could and did master, again with the help of his Grandmother, Mary who was the organist in her church.

Joe Leslie Edmonson was always a fiercely competitive and a self starter who believed that 'if know one will help you, then help yourself.'

In the early 1960s Joe formed the group "Lil" Joe and The Impacts. The group's members were, "Lil"Joe Leslie Edmonson, organ, Sylvester "Syl" Johnson, piano and vocals, Vaughn "Richard" Chatman rhythm guitar, Herman"Cal" Franklin, lead guitar William "Penn"Franklin, bass, Donnie Beck, drums and Andre Davis manager. The group performed in and around the Omaha metropolitan area for several months, until a unfortunate trampoline accident left "Lil "Joe Leslie paralyzed. For most of us that would have spelled the end but not for Joe Leslie Edmonson… it was just the beginning….."No Magic…Just Hard Work" was always his motto. Joe Leslie Edmonson left this earth to join his Grandmother in heaven on July 8, 2002

We All Miss Ya "Lil" Buddy,
Vaughn "Richard" Chatman