Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Two more bluesmen gone

Dave has alerted me to the deaths of two venerable bluesmen - Eddie Kirkland and Big Jack Johnson.

Eddie Kirkland, aged 87, died in a car accident whilst driving to a gig on February 27. He made his name as a session musician backing John Lee Hooker and numerous soul and blues stars including Otis Redding, Ruth Brown and Little Richard. Noted for his on stage acrobatics, he was known as the 'Gypsy of the Blues' because he toured extensively and he recorded a dozen or so albums. Here is his obituary in the Daily Telegraph http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/culture-obituaries/music-obituaries/8369382/Eddie-Kirkland.html

Mississippi bluesman Big Jack Johnson was 70 and died on March 14 after a long illness. He made his name in the 1970s when he recorded with Sam Carr and Frank Frost and released an album under the name of the Jelly Roll Kings. Subsequently he recorded albums both with Frank Frost and under his own name and performed and wrote 'Jack's Blues' and performed 'Catfish Medley' with Samuel L Jackson on the Black Snake Moan film soundtrack. Here's an obituary: http://communityvoices.sites.post-gazette.com/index.php/arts-entertainment-living/blue-notes/27866-mississippi-bluesman-big-jack-johnson-dies
Another death that has come to my attention is that of Joe Morello, drummer with the Dave Brubeck Quartet, whose precise drumming in 5/4 time helped make Take Five an enormous hit in the early 60s and contributed a great deal to Brubeck's other experiments in unusual time signatures. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/joe-morello-one-of-jazzs-most-celebrated-drummers-who-made-60-albums-with-dave-brubeck-2243469.html


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