Saturday, January 15, 2011

B is for...

B is for...body, birth, boobs, breath, books, belief, blues. These are the words I ran through, a little free association and what the hell was I thinking?, before I got to blues. I had 'bear' up there too for a while because of a vague memory of a story my mother told me concerning a forbear's encounter with a bear in her new dress with the row of buttons down the back but my sister could not confirm the story and now that I think about it, was pretty far-fetched. So I took it out. So...

B is for...blues.

As in 'the blues'. I could listen to the blues all day. I like to listen to a lot of different kinds of blues but a natural favorite is, of course, Texas blues. And who else but Stevie Ray Vaughan?

This is what Wikipedia has to say about Stevie Ray Vaughan:

Stephen "Stevie" Ray Vaughan (October 3, 1954 – August 27, 1990) was one of the most influential American guitarists of the late 20th century. Born in Dallas, Vaughan moved to Austin at the age of 17. He began his career there when in 1983, record producer John H. Hammond arranged him a deal with Epic Records. Accompanied by bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Chris Layton as Double Trouble, Vaughan was an important figure in Texas blues, a loud, swing-driven fusion of blues and rock. He became the leading musician of the newly popular blues rock sound with a series of network television appearances and charting albums. His energized interpretations of blues music and style made him hugely popular. Vaughan's debut Texas Flood, released in June 1983, became a double-platinum record.

Unfortunately Stevie Ray left us far too soon, dying in a helicopter crash in the Rockies in 1990.

I listened to and watched several videos on trying to pick out the best, but they are all great so here are just three selections from the late great Stevie Ray Vaughan.

And if you haven't had enough of the blues yet, go on over to Marguerite's blog Cajun Delights for a little bayou blues (scroll down to the end of her post).


  1. Ellen, Ellen, Ellen! The blues! I knew you were going to be an excellent blog to follow.
    My wife Jilda and I went to the the first King Biscuit Flower Hour Blues Festival in Helena, Arkansas several years ago.
    We listened to blues that would make you want to slash both your wrists longways. We saw Buddy Guy, Jessie Mae Hemphill, the Kensington Report (?) and Levon Helm (drummer for The Band).
    We drank whiskey straight from the bottle with Robert Jr. Lockwood.
    And after midnight, we went to a shot house deep in a cotton field in the Mississippi delta where we were the only white faces in the place and we swayed deep into the night to a primal rhythm that still haunts my dreams.
    It was a phenomenal experience.
    And with regard to Stevie Ray, I wept the day he died.
    Great post.

  2. A fine tribute, Ellen. I especially love that last one.. Little Wing.

  3. I always knew we were in tune Ellen [forgive the pun]. Stevie is / was awesome and I could listen to him always. My kids [the ones born after his death] love him too.

    And I can't believe Life 101 brought up the King Biscuit Flour Hour. My husband and just sat here and smiled.


  4. Now I'm playing my blues playlist on the backgrown while I write. Can you believe that I have never paid much attention to blues music until last year? Yep, I had a Harlem Renaissance class and at the end of the class we had a Stephen Ray Vaughan extravaganza; people were playing, swaying, and I was listening and watching. I think I saw everybody under a different light that day.

  5. Great post! One of our best times was spending a few days in the Mississippi Delta on our way to Georgia for Xmas with my sister-in-law. Immersed in the blues!

    Love SRV, but my deepest mourning is reserved for Jimi Hendrix....

  6. stevie ray taking on little wing - well i've not heard that for a while. man he was so very good. i first heard the blues when i was a teenager and found an album of blind lemon jefferson's. it all fell apart from there!!! the thick thread that is the blues wove itself around my listening for a long time. now it's a part of the tapestry but boy was i lost for a while! cool post. more more!! steven

  7. SRV is one of those musicians I turned over on the radio when he came on when I was a teenager. But when my guitarist son started studying his playing and his life, I sat up and took notice, finally. Now, I adore him, really. When my son sings "Pride & Joy" I just melt. He does a pretty darn good imitation of his playing too. And guess what, he has a SRV guitar (Fender, I think?), and he has worn it out almost as much as SRV's. I don't think any musician has had more of an impact on my son. He was a stellar musician and an authentic soul, and went through a lot.

  8. The there any other music??? Yes, there is, but if I had to choose one, it would be the blues.

    Great songs and no words I could say about SRV would justify the amazing artistry of his music.

  9. Great videos! Love Stevie Ray and was fortunate enough to see him live, on several occasions. Thanks so much for the mention, cher!

  10. I love the blues
    I tend to enjoy New Orleans blues

  11. Steve Ray rocks. Love the videos, Ellen. Thank you.

  12. Ellen, Thanks for the note! I quit blogging at she writes and closed it for awhile. Thanks for coming back when I did :). I like the blues and the Bs :)

  13. Ellen, Thanks for the note! I quit blogging at she writes and closed it for awhile. Thanks for coming back when I did :). I like the blues and the Bs :)


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