Friday, February 15, 2013

Broonzy to McGhee to Deemer

Brownie McGhee
I played my best guitar in the sixties, especially folk blues in the tradition of Big Bill Broonzy and Brownie McGhee. Memories of those days tonight, listening to a Best of Brownie album on the Fire. I covered many of their songs ... Pawnshop Blues, In the Evenin', Key to the Highway, Sporting Life Blues, Texas Tornado ... and I wasn't half bad, even had small followings in the Army, LA, Eugene.
"My baby's a Texas Tornado / and she howls just like the wind / She'll blow the house down / if you ask her where she's been"
"Gonna leave here runnin' / walkin' is most too slow"
"This ol' Sportin' Life / it is a mean life / and it's killin' me" 
Great music, still. Less is more.

My late good friend, PF, and I sometimes argued all night after an evening of playing music together with others, arguing about the guitar skills of Brownie McGhee v. Lightnin' Hopkins. I favored the former, P favored the latter. Folks might crash at midnight or one and wake up again at six or seven and find us still huddled over the phonograph, arguing, playing examples, and of course drinking beer. We had a great time. P drove a pickup truck, The Blue Goose, with our stuff to Eugene when I started grad school, I rode shotgun, and it was a two day trip to remember. Many, many fine experiences with P and the LA crowd.

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