No BLOOOOZE Here--but the BLUES is not dead!

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by PastorJay, Dec 14, 2019.

  1. PastorJay

    PastorJay Tele-Afflicted

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    About a month ago I learned that a friend of mine is playing in a blues band that runs their gigs as a jam.

    Finally got to go see them last night and sat in on 5 or 6 tunes.

    The crowd of jammers included some relative youngsters who played with great feel. A couple guys who must have been about 30 were particularly impressive. One had a nice jazzy tone; we had some nice interplay between his guitar, my friend's guitar (more of a blues/rock thing), and my harp. The other had a bit of a country feel or sound. Both had good voices.

    A good drummer I worked with back in the 90s was there.

    No old guys who wanted to wank away endlessly on guitar solos.

    I was impressed.
     
  2. Fiesta Red

    Fiesta Red Friend of Leo's

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    It’s still out there, you just have to look.
     
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  3. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Sooo jealous.
     
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  4. Rufus

    Rufus Tele-Afflicted

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    You say that like its a bad thing...
     
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  5. Rumblur

    Rumblur Tele-Meister

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    The blues is dead because people like you describe are killing and desecrating it daily. It really needs to go completely away again for a while or it will never recover. The problem is everybody is rehashing existing stuff, playing all the classic stuff. The FUN stuff. The EASY stuff. But nobody is writing anything worth listening to. Nobody is unique, inventive, interesting, or developing a style. You can't tell one from another from Marcus King to whoever. SRV, Freddie King, Albert King, Lonnie Mack - all instantly recognizable and SUPER listenable. Nobody since Derek Trucks has had anything close to that.

    So I really wish hard rock would make a big comeback, and kids would leave the blues alone for a decade or two.
     
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  6. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    The blues rules and it's way more fun not repeating the same exercises over and over. It's the only way I know how to improvise and using it as a base you still have the option to go outside of the rules relying on your ear to guide you.
     
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  7. Bergy

    Bergy Tele-Holic

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    Cool to hear, PastorJay. The Blues is basically a universal language among musicians. It is a great and storied American artform. Passing it on to the next generation is very important.

    As for the blues being dead and needing to go away...ridiculous. I definitely gripe about the state of the Blues but I completely disagree with that sentiment.
     
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  8. PastorJay

    PastorJay Tele-Afflicted

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    Rumblur, I'll give you that, at least at blues jams, everybody is rehashing existing material, playing songs that follow a very basic pattern or are very well known. The best you might get is an obscure song that follows a variation on the 12 bar, 1, 4, 5, pattern. I think that's a limitation of the very concept of the jam.

    It's tough to get onstage with people you didn't rehearse with and play something not everybody knows.

    It seemed to me that the blues was dead, at least around here, for about ten years. Now all these jam sessions are popping up. Seems like there are a lot of people who want to play the blues but there aren't nearly as many gigs as there were 20 or 25 years ago. So guys who might have been playing gigs are now showing up for free to play at somebody else's gig. With all the limitations of the jam. And some of the people showing up are young. So there's obviously still interest, or maybe renewed interest, in the blues.

    I do think that there's some interesting and innovative blues-based music being produced. You mentioned Derek Trucks. Tedeschi Trucks may be my new favorite band. Warren Haynes and Gary Clarke, Jr. I would put in this category too. Much of the music produced by the Grateful Dead related bands is blues based--going back to the jug band era. Little Feat combined blues, funk, and country influences. I'm guessing Little Feat is no more, although I haven't seen an announcement. And it's probably true that Dead & Company is no longer innovating, but improvising within an established structure. Keb Mo is still doing innovative, mostly acoustic blues. Catfish Keith is less well known, but also I think innovative. Polish blues, anyone?

    I don't want to live on a steady diet of 12 bar 1, 4, 5 tunes. But I'm glad to see blues appearing to make a comeback. And I'm hoping for some more innovation.
     
  9. Allan Allan

    Allan Allan Tele-Meister

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    Funny how you never heard and bluesmen saying leave the blues alone. Often they'd say "keep the blues alive!" Or "blues ain't about color."

    But we live in a new era, where the collective "I" decides what "you" want.
     
  10. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    The blues is still everywhere, nearly every band, player that improvises is playing the blues. I don't go to see or watch YouTube clips of bands and players that regurgitate the same thing over and over. I want to see players adapting to what ever is going on on stage. Yeah its great if you can write a cool song but who wants to play or hear that exact version at every performance? The Jam Band scene is doing well and open mic's etc should be training the next generation of players.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2019
  11. Corvus

    Corvus Tele-Meister

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    Man the Blues will never go away because nobody ever gets through life without having the blues and it can be very expressive and emotional music but..... I do agree that endless 12-bars can really be a turn off.
     
  12. Rumblur

    Rumblur Tele-Meister

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    Of course they want it kept "alive" = that keeps them gigging and selling stuff. You can ask any of those old black bluesmen who their hero is and they will say SRV because he created the vacuum that gave their careers a 2nd act. Before SRV, they were suffering. Nobody wants to go back to that!
     
  13. Rumblur

    Rumblur Tele-Meister

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    I'm not talking about jams, what you're saying here is a given for them. No, I'm talking about "artists" or all the cats out there pretending their musicians. Gary Clark Jr is a prime example. he's PERFECT for marketing purposes, but he's a terrible guitarist (and I use that term very loosely here). Not really good at singing or writing, but he LOOKS the part. He can sell a lot of tickets and merch based on his visual. He offers nothing musically. Mike Zito is another one like that, although he doesn't have the visuals for mass media marketing. There are literally DOZENS of these people out there today clogging the works up like a sock full of concrete in a toilet. Haynes & Trucks should be the rule, not the exception.

    There are guys out there like Hadden Sayers who is too white bread visually but can sing/play/and write his ass off. He's not true blues really, he was more of a rocker but like all aging white guy rockers the blooze is the last bastion of a career choice. When you're too "dad" like for rock and roll, you can play blues. Besides, rock is for the most part dead. Blues festivals and cruises are now the bread and butter of anybody that can half-ass sing and knows the minor pentatonic.

    I DO want to live on a diet of 1-4-5. I just miss the guys who did amazing things with it. Peter Green, SRV, T-Birds, Healey, and others. I've always looked at the blues as the black and white photography of music. It's an art that can touch your soul if done by someone born to do it... or it can be boring and downright painful to endure in the hands of someone who should have made a career in roofing instead of playing guitar. They have watered it down to the point where it's the McNugget of music instead of the prime filet mignon it was 32 years ago.

    I was extremely lucky to be alive and coming of age in the last era of true blues artists who were meant to do it. It's a horrible tragedy that they made it so attractive to those that don't have the right stuff for the art form. An art form easy to play, and hard to master.

    As always, this is purely my opinion and views, not those of employers, websites, anybody who should've been a roofer instead of owning a guitar, etc.

    :)
     
  14. Bergy

    Bergy Tele-Holic

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    Roofing houses ain't nuthin to poopoo! Neither is the blues.
     
  15. PastorJay

    PastorJay Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm with you on Haynes and Trucks. Not everyone is. We can disagree about Gary Clark, Jr.

    My cup of tea is your cup of dishwater. Except that I hate tea. Most tea tastes like dishwater to me.

    So maybe my glass of bourbon is your cup of tea.

    I hadn't heard of Hadden Sayers. Checked out some videos. Good stuff. Thanks.
     
  16. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Gold Supporter

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    I got this thread mixed up with the other blues thread.
     
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