Monday, February 27, 2017

My 5 Favorite Black Guitarists

Back in August I did a list of my favorite five guitarists. You can read that post here. I'm sure I could exchange a few names on that list at anytime depending on my musical taste at the time. Since, it is Black History Month I thought it would be fun to list my 5 favorite Black guitarists. Some of them were on my 5 favorite guitarist list.

Here it goes...

1) Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix was at the top of my other list two.

2) Buddy Guy

Buddy Guy is incredible he was number three on my other list but he moves up to number two on this list.

3) Prince

He is one of the guys I can't believe I left out of my first list. He could be the very best at guitar when he wanted to be, but he was such an artist and musician that he didn't always stick with the guitar.

4) Hubert Sumlin

He was a sideman, the guitarist for Waters and the Wolf.

5) Wes Montgomery

Ending the list is so hard. Should I include one of the King's? Albert Collins? Maybe Slash? The influential Chuck Berry? Oh well I went with jazz

Who would you have added into the list? Well I will see you soon with a new ost

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Battle of the Bands Results: A Shutout

 My first shutout of 2017. I thought D'Angelo did a great job with the song. The comments didn't indicate he was bad. However he wasn't a big name and he was pitted against two well known artist.
Huey Lewis and Gwyneth  Paltrow ran away with it. But I am still happy with how the month went for BOTBs for me. I wanted to spotlight genres for Black History Month and show how the music has influenced other artists. I think I accomplished that and I did it with two of my favorite genres so that was a plus.

Celebrating the winners is what we do so sit back and enjoy the music!

Here is Gwyneth with Tim McGraw..

Here she is with "Coming Home" from the movie Country Strong...

Here is HueyLewis "Workin' for a Livin'"...

and the "Heart of Rock N' Roll"..

I'll be back on the 1st with a brand new Battle so stay tuned!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Happy Birthday Nina Simone!

I've had a bit of a Black History Month theme going on my blog this month. Some of it planned and somethings were added due to life events.

Today is Nina Simone's birthday and she is an artist who certainly deserves to be celebrated during Black History Month.

Starting the music with this civil rights era tune..

She is probably best known for this song..

Nina Simone was awarded a lifetime Grammy Award and was nominated for several other Grammys

Ain't Got No..

What's your favorite Nina Simone song? Feel free to share in the comments. Thanks for visiting I will have a new post soon.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

R.I.P Clyde Stubblefield

It is great to pay tribute to Black Artists during Black History month. I just wish they weren't dying. Another important musician, Clyde Stubblefield passed away during the weekend. He is best known for his work with James Brown.

James Brown "Funky Drummer"

The beat from the above song is the most sampled segment in the World and Stubblefield is considered one of the greatest drummers.Here he is with "Funk Thing"

Back with James Brown "Ain't it Funky Now"

He will be missed but his music will live on!

Happy Birthday Smokey Robinson!

Today is Smokey Robinson's 76th birthday! I celebrated his 75th birthday last year with this post.  I am also featuring one of his songs in my current Battle of the Bands post. There is still time to vote if you like!

Five years ago, I had the honor of reviewing his performance at the Kennedy Center. It was for a charity event and Robinson still gave a full show. You can read my review here.

Enough about what I've posted, you know my celebrations are all about the music.

Here he is with the Miracles, "You Really Got a Hold of Me"

Elliptical Man posted last year his favorite song from Smokey was "Just to See Her"

I do requests and mentions so feel free to share your Smokey Robinson memories, favorite songs and such in the comments. Here is "Baby Come Close"

Hope you enjoy and I will be back soon!

Friday, February 17, 2017

R.I.P Walter Morrison

The music world lost another one. Walter "Junie" Morrison has passed away,  He was a member of the Ohio Players and later joined P-Funk, Parliament-Funkadelic. Morrison also released seven solo albums.

He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Parliament-Funkadelic. 

Here is "Friends" from his last solo album in 2004..

"Tightrope" from his first solo album..

Here he is singing lead for the Ohio Players...

Here is some P-Funk...

May he rest in peace!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Battle of the Bands: Cruisin' into Black History Month

February is cruising along. February is Black History month and I am using it for a theme for my Battle of the Bands. I started with the blues and this time I am going to another musical place called Motown.

Smokey Robinson is a legendary singer and songwriter. He was is one of the greatest artist from the Motown era and he has a birthday fast approaching. Obviously he is a great choice to pick a song from since he has a large catalog of songs and he has been covered by many musicians.

The Song: Cruisin'

Smokey Robinson isn't in this competition so please don't vote for him. 

Contender One: D'Angelo

Contender Two: Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis

Who gets your vote? I think they are both great covers. One has two big names, so we have a little bit of a Samson and Goliath thing going on. Names don't matter. Hopefully it is all about the music and who you vote for, I just count them up and provide the results sometime after the 21st. Vote in the comments and we will have a winner soon! Please check out the other Battle links here. That site has the most up to date list.

Well I hope you enjoyed the Battle and come back and visit soon!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Absalom Jones

Absalom Jones died on this date in 1818. This date being February 13th. An important figure in black History for his abolitionist activity. Jones was also the first African American ordained priest in the Episcopal Church of the United States. 

Connections are easy to find when celebrating musicians, sports figures, and actors. As fans they become part of your life. But what do I have in common with Absalom Jones?

I'm Episcopalian and he is part of my church's history. He is listed among the Saints and is even included in our Book of Common Prayers. 

If you belong to a denomination, who was your first Black clergy member?

Sunday, February 12, 2017

R.I.P Al Jarreau

Seven time Grammy Award singer Al Jarreau passed away today. His music crossed the genres of R&B, jazz, and soul. If you were a television fan in the 80's you might remember him for the Moonlighting title track...

He won his first GRAMMY Award for this song.."Look to the Rainbow"

He won his last GRAMMY Award by himself for this song..."Heaven and Earth"

He would win another one for a song featuring Jill Scott and George Benson as well. What is your favorite Al Jarreau song? Do you have any Al Jarreau memories? If you do feel free to share in the comments. We will miss Al Jarreau's vocals but we are thankful for his recordings.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Battle of the Bands: The Doors win but results closer then you think!

The Doors were the bigger name and the clear favorite to win my Battle of the Bands. Sometimes these Battles look like they are going to be blowouts before I even push publish. Sometimes battles I think will be close end up being shutouts.

Stephen thought the results of my Battle of the Bands would be "a slam-dunk for THE DOORS!."  Battles The Battle ended up being a 4 to 3 nail biter with Quicksilver Messenger Service hanging tough.

"Celebration of the Lizard" (very long)

But I celebrate winners on BOTB result posts. It's "Love Street"

Bringing it back to my Black History Month Theme..The Doors with the great John Lee Hooker..

I think the real winner is Howlin' Wolf ...

Stay tuned for my next Battle on the 15th....

Monday, February 6, 2017

Happy Birthday Bob Marley!

Last year I celebrated Bob Marley's birthday with a love theme. You can revisit that post here.  Today, I am looking for the theme to go more with Black History Month. Perhaps to give me the opportunity to dig deeper into his musical catalog.

"Babylon System"

"Buffalo Soldier"

"Redemption Song"

I hope you enjoy and I will be back soon with a new post!

What a Super Bowl

What a Super Bowl! The Atlanta Falcons played very aggressive and for a while were dominating the game. Lady Gaga performed a solid halftime show. The New England Patriots rallied back and won the game in overtime! What looked like it could be a blowout turned into quite an exiting game.

Enjoy some highlights..

The Halftime show..

Was the game what you expected? Did you enjoy the Halftime shoes? What was your favorite commercial?

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Battle of the Bands: Black History, Blues and Rock

Today is February and it is Black History month. I will celebrate by incorporating it into my theme. Imagine today's music without the  black contribution, imagine the music of the last century without the black contribution. The truth is we pay tribute to black musicians without even realizing it every month when we do these Battle of the Bands. Black culture and black musicians have created some outstanding music, creative musical genres, and have influence musicians of many races.

I will start with the Blues. I got into the Blues by travelling the musical influence of my Rock and Roll music. I was a huge Led Zeppelin fan (still am), Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton. The roots of this music was easy to find and follow.

I'm going to pick a song written by Willie Dixon and performed by Howlin' Wolf. I love Dixon's songs and could (and have) listened to Howlin' Wolf sing the blues for hours. Wolf died in 1976 so I didn't get to see him perform, but I did get a chance to see and meet his guitarist Hubert Sumlin which was a thrill.  The song is "Backdoor Man" was written in 1960 and recorded in 1961. This version by Howlin' Wolf.

My contenders are going to be from he Rock world to show an example of Blues and black musicians helped shape and influence it.

Contender One: The Doors

Contender Two: Quicksilver Messenger Service

In the end it turns into a fun rocking battle. Who gets your vote? Vote in the comments and we will have a winner soon! Please check out the other contestants links should be up here.