Blues, the Beginning, and Rock & Roll, the End
July 7, 2017 9:37 PM   Subscribe

How the blues evolved and is still going strong. Followed by an essay on rock & roll and its beginnings, using the blues, and predicting its end: Like Iggy Pop? Thank Your Grandparents.
posted by MovableBookLady (9 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Great stuff, thanks for the post!
posted by languagehat at 8:24 AM on July 8, 2017

The guitar player did a pretty good job of collecting all those riffs. You could argue about which were included and not included but it was a fairly rounded collection. Far better than any list Rolling Stone could come up with.
posted by Ber at 9:58 AM on July 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

Ha! Just last night, I had, um, an extra beer, so I buttonholed my son and made him watch a bunch of Gatemouth Brown videos with me. He was a great bluesman, but more than that, he was the master of ignoring genre boundaries, which is one of my favorite things about him.*

The more you listen to American root music, the less genre seems to matter. The shared culture and experience stands out so much more than the superficial elements that make something one genre vs. another.

This is Delta Blues
, and this is Appalachian Folk. Yeah, there are differences, but there's so much coming from the same kind of place that when you listen for a little while, the differences matter less and less.

* I saw him once at a little blues club, and during his break, he came over to sit with me, pulled out the fattest grandpa wallet I'd ever seen, accordioned out all these pictures of his family and introduced me to them, then asked to see mine. I was kind of embarrassed that all I had were a couple pictures of my son, but Gatemouth fawned all over them. So I love him extra because of that, too.
posted by ernielundquist at 11:28 AM on July 8, 2017 [11 favorites]

It's always good to promote to the aspiring blues guitar player that they should look back farther than Stevie Ray. For the listener, too. I've been listening some to the excellent but expensive anthology "Plug it in! Turn it up!: A History of Electric Blues Guitar", and it's almost jarring to hear the original recordings of standards that I first heard in blues-rock, Clapton type readings.
posted by thelonius at 2:31 PM on July 8, 2017 [2 favorites]

“The lifespan of rock ’n’ roll was not a long time at all,” Linderman says.
Well, there goes the credibility of everything he says or wrote.
Rock and roll will never die.
Unlike that gummy-bear music they selling today.

And of all the early amplifier pictures to show, that late 30s Sears Hawaiian guitar amp just tops the cake. Mm mm mm make me all sweaty.
“A couple of years ago, I came to the realization that I had lived through virtually the entire history of rock ’n’ roll,” Linderman says.
So did Trump, Jim.
posted by Twang at 4:09 PM on July 8, 2017

I too met Gatemouth Brown, at a club here in Asheville back in the late 90s. What a musician! And what a nice man. Next to Koko Taylor, he's my favorite meet. He seems to be a little underappreciated these days, which is a shame.
posted by MovableBookLady at 5:55 PM on July 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'm pretty sure Iggy Pop is a grandparent, now.
posted by atoxyl at 11:08 PM on July 8, 2017

Pavement reveled in the death of rock and roll but Jon Spencer kept blues timeless.
posted by sjswitzer at 2:05 PM on July 9, 2017

rock 'n roll is here to stay,
it will never die
it was meant to be that way,
though i don't know why
i don't care what people say,
rock 'n roll is here to stay
posted by entropicamericana at 7:33 PM on July 9, 2017

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