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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Jakedog, Oct 28, 2020.
He's a diamond today
RIP Billy Joe. There's a nice article on his life on the Rolling Stone site today.
Saw him and Eddie do a show at a tiny coffee house here in town. Bumped into him before hand as he was admiring the view of the river. He was kind enough to speak with me for a few minutes and they put on a fine show. Another man done gone.
One of the first times I sat and talked with him he asked if I’d heard his son Eddy play. I told him he’d passed before I got to see him live, but I had all the Shaver stuff he’d played on, as well as some records by other people. I told him I’d stolen everything I know on electric guitar, but I’d stolen more from Eddy and Dickey Betts than anybody else.
He then gave me the inside scoop on how Eddy had spent his formative years living down the block from Dickey, and since Billy wasn’t around for a lot of it, Dickey had kinda taken him under his wing and helped him out with a lot of “dad” stuff, as well as gotten him started playing guitar. It was Dickey that gave him his first 50’s Strat, according to Billy.
Until then I had no idea there was a connection between my two biggest guitar heroes. It was an enlightening conversation. Billy also asked me if I wanted to know the secret to Eddy’s playing. I said “sure”. He said “the secret is, you can’t do it. Only he could. Nobody else will ever sound like that.”
He also told me the story of discovering Eddy was a smoking guitar player. He said Eddy was at his house, and was maybe 14 or 15 years old. Billy asked if he played guitar, and Eddy said “I play some”. So Billy handed him his guitar and said “why don’t you tune this up for me.” Billy told me “ ‘bout a half a minute later I was feeling pretty stupid”.
Those two definitely had their ups and downs over the years, but he loved Eddy more than anything.
I saw him with Eddy. At the Club de Wash. Eddy had a ton of amps against the wall of the tiny club (I remember noticing a Matchless in there) and he was LOUD.
I was still in love with my then-wife, and I literally swept her off her feet as we danced to "When the Fallen Angels Fly"
One of my all-time favorite performances, ever
It's encouraging to hear that a "big" guy happens to also be a "great" guy.
Sorry for your loss.
Peace - Deeve
Man, what a blow! Great musician and songwriter. He's singing for the Lord today. R.I.P., brother. You may have been an old chunk of coal, but I'll be you're a diamond today.
This first time I ever met Billy was the first show we did together at the Beachland Ballroom in Cleveland. Probably around 2001 or 2002. I was playing guitar for the opening band, and we were kinda unhinged partiers back in those days.
After the show, Billy hung at the merch table for a bit, but the band took the tour rig and went back to the hotel. When he was ready to go he had the club call him a cab. I don’t know why, but I just happened to glance out the side door, and there in the pouring rain is cab with the door open, and Billy stuck next to it because our ridiculously inebriated rhythm guitarist had him wrapped up in a full tilt bear hug and wouldn’t let go. Billy was keeping his cool, but was looking pretty freaked out. I grabbed the club owner and we ran out there and split em up. Billy climbed into the cab and I leaned in and said “sorry about my friend. He’s just a really huge fan and he’s had way too much to drink.”
Billy smiled at me and said “aw, that’s ok kid. I understand. I used to be a real a$$#ole too!”. And off he went.
I have only one recording; the live one. If you haven't heard it (and you should) it starts with Billy Joe introducing the first tune but he is interrupted possibly by Eddy to play "Hottest Thing In Town". His reply is a simple 'alright, let's do that then' and the whole band kicks butt and takes names.
I smile everytime I hear that line; lets all try that next gig with our singers and see if they are that cool and humble.
I guess he had been at some point.
One of the best songwriters from the Lone Star State. Gonna listen to Unshaven for a Lil shot of BJ & Eddy.
For something different, watch his strong supporting role in Robert Duvalls movie The Apostle.
Thats a loss. Talent the size of Texas.
He was the cotton-pick in’ rage of the age.
What a great songwriter and performer. He'll sure be missed. I'm glad he found Jesus along the way. I saw him give his testimony in an interview. It's quite a story. RIP Billy.
I heard his momma left him the day before she had him.
Friend texted me the news this morning. Got to see Billy Joe couple times over the years. Twice with Eddy. Billy is a bona-fide legend in my opinion. Grew up listening to my Dad's record collection & would read the liner notes. Honky Tonk Heroes album informed me what I needed to know. Thanks Billy Joe for sharing your gift with us.
Sad loss. I suppose like many others, I was first introduced to his music via Waylon’s Honky Tonk Heroes album, but then discovered the original writer of those songs be much more authentic and captivating. I’m glad he and Eddy were able to produce so much good music together as father and son.
Damn, first Jerry Jeff Walker, now within days, Billy Joe Shaver? 2020 really needs to end.
An amazing talent in every way. When I first heard Billy Joe I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. All the raw emotion from the song writing, singing, playing, and entertaining
Maybe the greatest Texas songwriter that ever was or will ever be
RIP Billy Joe Shaver