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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Charlie Musselwhite Says Hey, Hey, The Blues Are Alright

Nice article about Charlie Musselwhite and his take on the current blues scene. I really liked what he had to say about Chicago in the early 60s. Charlie was part of a group of young white musicians who would go to the blues clubs on the south side of Chicago. That group would include Mike Bloomfield, Paul Butterfield, Charlie Musslwhite, and of course Des Moines own Chicago Rick Lussie. It is true that as the 60s grew on fewer, and fewer, young African Americans listened to the blues. Soul, Motown, and later Funk and Disco, drove many young urban African Americans away from the blues. In many ways Blues was a lot like Country music. Its popularity among younger African Americans was by the 60s and 70s mostly in the rural deep south. Also I think it is important to note that many people assume that the British saved the blues in the 60s. However, if you look at the number of American artists like Bloomfield, Butterfield, Musselwhite, Steve Kats, Al Kooper, and others. Plus, bands that played on the edges of blues, like the Doors, Janis Joplin, Jimmi Hendrix, The Greatful Dead, ETC, then the argument that the British saved the blues makes about as much sense as the argument that the French saved Jazz, and trust me they really think they saved jazz!!!

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