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Wild Wanda, Queen of Rockabilly
August 20, 2009 10:49 AM   Subscribe

Fifty years ago, those decrying rock 'n' roll as devil music that would crumble the morals of America needed to look no further than Wanda Jackson for evidence. Her raspy, brassy voice, suggestive lyrics, and sexual energy were almost unbelievable for the Eisenhower years. Coaxed into singing rockabilly by her then-boyfriend, Elvis, she had a string of rock hits, before marrying and IBM programmer and switching to more traditional, conservative country music.
posted by Jon_Evil (23 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite

 
I too, can shake a chicken in the middle of a room.

this is a good post
posted by The Whelk at 10:57 AM on August 20, 2009


Wanda Jackson is a national treasure.
posted by vibrotronica at 11:05 AM on August 20, 2009


Wanda Jackson still performs rockabilly today. I saw her at the Black Cat at Washington DC in 2007.
posted by jonp72 at 11:08 AM on August 20, 2009


Wonderful stuff, thanks.
posted by marxchivist at 11:09 AM on August 20, 2009


Awesome. I love "Hard-Headed Woman" but hadn't yet gotten further into Jackson's catalogue. Thanks for this!
posted by EvaDestruction at 11:10 AM on August 20, 2009


And what's with the double-necked guitar in the "raspy" link?
posted by marxchivist at 11:11 AM on August 20, 2009


"Rock Your Baby All Night Long!"

Great music ~ way ahead of her time. Glad to hear she's still singing.
posted by garnetgirl at 11:13 AM on August 20, 2009


And what's with the double-necked guitar in the "raspy" link?

it's awesome, that's what. dude beat out jimmy page by over a decade
posted by Jon_Evil at 11:13 AM on August 20, 2009


I saw Wanda Jackson at the Cadillac Lounge in Toronto in 2005, and she put on a great show, no "for a woman pushing 70"-style disclaimers necessary.
posted by The Card Cheat at 11:13 AM on August 20, 2009


And what's with the double-necked guitar in the "raspy" link?

That is Joe Maphis. King of the double neck Mosrite.
posted by goml at 11:16 AM on August 20, 2009


Oh my God, she's awesome! Thanks for bringing her to my attention.
posted by cazoo at 11:35 AM on August 20, 2009


Wow. She is dynamite!
posted by Xoebe at 12:24 PM on August 20, 2009


My favorite.

Shades of psych-pop. In 1961.
posted by decagon at 12:41 PM on August 20, 2009


And she was recently inducted in to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

There's a 1960s black-and-white portrait of her in our office bathroom, so every time you sit down to pee, she gazes into your eyes. It's lovely.
posted by pfafflin at 12:42 PM on August 20, 2009


Let's have a party!
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:01 PM on August 20, 2009


Wanda rules. Thanks for the post, Jon_Evil.

A few choice Wanda clips figured into this FPP I made on guitar wizard Joe Maphis back in February 2008, but guess what? Surprise surprise, all three of 'em (and they were so badass) have been pulled.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:54 PM on August 20, 2009


And what's with the double-necked guitar in the "raspy" link?

None other than the the above mentioned Joe Maphis, my friend!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:57 PM on August 20, 2009


and I see gomi already mentioned that...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:57 PM on August 20, 2009


wow, That was unexpectedly wonderful. She's awesome. Dynamic, intense and sizzling.
posted by nickyskye at 6:35 PM on August 20, 2009


I ain't knockin' Wanda Jackson in general, but that recording of Riot in Cell Block Number 9 doesn't hold a candle to The Robins (later to become The Coasters) version.
posted by Reverend John at 7:32 PM on August 20, 2009


Thanks for the Wanda reminder, Jon. It's the energy level on her records that sets her apart.

Here are a couple [c. 1915] [c. 1903] of other double-neck guitars that somewhat predate the overexposed Mr. Page. Here's H. C. Levin's 1897 US patent for a double-necked instrument. And here's a one-off from 1690.
posted by Herodios at 7:47 PM on August 20, 2009


Mercy!
posted by telstar at 10:00 PM on August 20, 2009


Atlanta folks: Wanda Jackson will be at the Starlight Drive-In's Drive Invasion this year.
posted by sadiehawkinstein at 6:55 AM on August 21, 2009


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