Obituary: Jimmy Gregg Otto

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Feb. 14, 1945 to July 11, 2023

By Patrick Cannon

Jimmy Otto was an essential thread in the fabric of Laguna Beach’s historic and creative culture. He was the curator of music that served as the background for every adventure that defined our youth.

The Sound Spectrum record store, like Mystic Arts World, was the beating heart of the counterculture in which we thrived.

The Sound Spectrum has survived as an island of vintage posters and vinyl only a small flight of stairs removed from the changing tide that has transformed our beach town.

The Sound Spectrum is there, so Jimmy is there. When we drive by, it’s a comfort to know it subconsciously; like our heartbeats.

Jimmy Otto will remain with us within the memories we share of his contributions to Laguna Beach and our lives.

All of our good vibes and support belong to Edith, his wife, the second part of the two-part harmony and with whom we share this loss.

I choose to believe our Jimmy has gone on to better beaches.

Thank you, Jimmy. You kept the beat.

In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Jimmy can be made to the Pacific Marine Mammal Center.

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  1. The Sound Spectrum that Jimmy Otto created decades ago was an oasis for music fans, who got to hear stories of their favorites from the Master, and discover the CD, vinyl, or rock gift they needed. He championed reggae and introduced new artists we might not have known. He found just the right person, Wave, to run the store when he retired from daily operations, so that this bastion of true Laguna and great music could continue to be our happy place to visit. Condolences to Edith and all Jimmy’s fans on his loss. Rock on.

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