Buddy Guy, is a Chicago Bluesman born in Louisiana, and one of the living elder statesmen of the Blues. He may not be as well known as BB King or some of his predecessors, nonetheless, he built a niche of music creation and influence all his own. Stevie Ray Vaughn, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix were heavily influenced by Guy's play. Guy was thought to be one of the biggest influences on the play of Hendrix. While Clapton referred to Guy more recently as the greatest guitarist alive.
Buddy Guy remains one of the last Blues links to the traditions of play started by Robert Johnson. Guy recorded with the greats Muddy Waters and Junior Wells
|Buddy Guy in Montreal, Metropolis|
I went to see Guy play at the Montreal International Jazz Fest Year Round series, on April 14th of 2012. 76 years old and still playing his guitar with blistering speed. Guy plays any style, imitating his imitators, playing the likes of Clapton, Hendrix, and Albert King. Guy played music from his own albums spanning all his decades of recording, as well as some Blues standards.
At one point during the show Guy exited the stage only to reappear moments later among the standing room crowd on the floor. He kept strumming his guitar, singing and walking as he moved through the crowd and chatted with the patrons. Over the next 1/2 hour, Guy walked across the floor, up the stairs to the balcony crowd and around to the other side of the stage. Spitting distance I was from a legend.
Guy has some 70 albums to his credit. My personal favourite, from his recent years remains 2001's Grammy nominated Sweet Tea. For beginners to the world of Buddy Guy, I would recommend his 1993 release, Feels Like Rain. The album earned Guy the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album.
Some of today's younger guitarist have picked up the legacy but few under 60 years old have a connections to the traditions.
In 2012 Buddy Guy also released his autobiography, When I Left Home: My Story. The book tells his life story in his own picaresque manner, telling of his youthful days in the music scene to his touring days of the 2000s. Click this link for Guy's upcoming tour dates. Guy is in the midst of his North American tour, including three stops north of the border.
|When I Left Home: My Story|
Today is day 16 of the thirty day writing challenge (February edition) as arranged and hosted by Nicky and Mike over at WeWorkForCheese.com. Today's theme is Music. Go check out their site to see who else is participating and read some more great stories.