Thursday, 29 November 2007

Muddy Waters

Muddy Waters, born McKinley Morganfield on April 1913 was an American blues musician known as "the Father of Chicago blues". He is known as one of the great blues musicians of all time and apparently a big influence to Britain's music "boom" in the early 60's.

Waters was born in Issaquena County, Mississippi in 1913. He was brought up by his grandmother at an early age when his mother died in 1915. Waters started out playing music on the harmonica but quickly move onto the guitar where he started playing at parties emulating his favourite Blues artists.

In Muddy Waters early career he began recording in the Summer of 1941 Alan Lomax came to Stovall, Mississippi, on behalf of the Library of Congress to record various country blues musicians. He recorded two sessions which were eventually released on the Testament record label.

In 1943 Muddy moved to Chicago to become a "professional" musician. He played clubs as the support act for Chicago blues maestro Big Bill Broonzy. In 1945 Muddy Waters received his first Electric Guitar from his uncle which apparently paid off as he could finally be heard over the loud crowds. In the next year or so Muddy recorded for a couple of record labels which weren't released at the time. However one of his songs became very popular and continuously played which lead to his popularity in clubs to reach a new heights.

By 1952 Muddy Waters was playing with what he considered to be his best band yet. This band involved such musicians as Little Walter Jacobs and Otis Spann on Harmonica and Piano. This time period Muddy released some Blues classics like "Hoochie Coochie Man" and "I want to make love to you". These two songs charted respectively at Number 8 and Number 4 in the R&B charts. One hit he had was responsible for giving one if the greatest rock bands their name. The song was titled "Rolling Stone" which was a smash hit. With the next few years he continued to have mass success in the charts and also had a famous rival with another Blues God, Howlin' Wolf.

By 1960 he had moved to England and recorded his first live LP titled "At Newport 1960", this album broke him into a whole new generation of music lovers to Waters' sound. The next few years Muddy Waters returned to America and recorded more music. He then returned to England to play with Rory Gallagher and other great musicians.

In 1977 fellow Blues guitarist Johnny Winters convinced his record label to sign Waters. Muddy Waters released his "comeback" album "Hard Again" soon after. The album was recorded in two days, was awarded a Grammy and was a return to the routes of his Chicago blues that he was well known for 25 years previous.

Muddy Waters' comeback continued with a release of his live LP Muddy "Mississippi" Waters Live which carried his popularity for the next few years. Unfortunately Muddy died of Cancer in his sleep in 1983. He was 70 years old.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

November rocks 2007

Last week my band "Cheap Dirt" played a gig in Portlethen called November Rocks. It's a concert run by Portlethen Academy teachers to raise money for the school and charity. This is our third year playing this concert and we had a ball doing it.

This year we only played three cover songs because A. people asked for them and B. we hadn't played together since about June. The songs we played were Steam hammer's Juniors Wailing, Elvis' Jailhouse Rock and the classic Chuck Berry tune Johnny B Goode.

We went over really well despite the fact we were really rusty. It was a huge relief considering last year was such a disaster. From this we are looking for more gigs and possibly playing The Moorings Bar in a few weeks.

For more info considering my have a look at Cheap Dirt's webpage and listen to some of our stuff.

Now back to college work... hahaha!!!

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Two posts in one day!!!

So I finally got back to college, writing two blogs in one day hoping to not get into too much trouble with the tutors. :P

This week has been pretty tiring due to college and baby sitting. I have learned some funky stuff in some of my classes though. So it's not going too much to waste! I'm currently worried about my attendance because I've been off for abit. But It's been a pain in the soup can trying to keep with it.

I've got a gig to play in Portlethen tonight. My band haven't played since June so it's rather worrying not knowing whether or not it'll go well. I don't know, we'll see. It couldn't be healthy trying to predict the future anyway.

I've ran out of things to say now!!!


What I did on my holidays... (except missed two weeks of college)

3 weeks ago I disappeared to turkey (lucky me) and completely neglected my college work. I do regret that but the holiday was worth it despite being last minute and extremely stressful. I'll try to keep this short but to the point

Right so getting to the airport was fun... MEGA BUS!!! It wasn't that bad, it was a nice relaxed bus trip. I really enjoyed it. Now comes about 3 o clock when we got to the airport, that's when the fun started. I tell you, travelers are so horrible and rude I'm surprised people can fly constantly with the way these people were. People were walking into each other, cursing, swearing... there was even a wife beating her husband with her bag (poor him). Anyway we spent all day in this giant concrete block to be placed on a giant metal tube full of dentist chairs. This is what the plane looked like to me. It was filthy and smelt sooo bad.

The flight was groovy, it was my first time flying. I loved the rush of taking off, that was quite fun. The general flight itself was dire... I couldn't be bothered forking out for headphones to watch Shrek The Third (which isn't that good anyway.)

So we arrived at 4am and got automatically chucked onto a bus. Sat and travelled in the dark for 2 hrs to arrive at Marmaris' Club Turquoise. Lovely little hotel with a pool and a bar. Not big by any means but definitely very nice. Next thing I done... SLEPT!!!

Right so the next few days there was nothing to report. I sat at the pool side getting to know the staff and toasting in the sun. Met some lovely guys called Joseph, Ozzy and Senol. They be my friends for the next two weeks ha ha.

So in the weeks I was away I went to this cool market place in the marina. People haggling for clothes, food etc. Interesting experience having 20 Turks in your face trying to sell you the same thing for different prices. Also discovered a booty kickin' rock bar called... *drum roll* ROCK BAR! Great service - songs and cheap drinks! :D

Now for the highlight of the two weeks. EPHESUS!!!

We took a 2 day trip up to see the ancient city of Ephesus and the white cliffs of Pamukkale. This trip was great. We had a far out tour guide called Sam who's a history nut. He's quite memorable for the way he rounds up the tour group he's leading. He loves to get every ones attention with the words "Water Fall!!!". He learned how to talk through an American and actually sounds like one. The more he talks, the more American he sounds and the more he shouts "Water Fall!!!". Don't ask. Anyway onto my trip.

Ephesus is a beautifal scenery of an excavated city. We got to see some fantastic sites like the public library (which was huge), the Theatre and of all things... an ancient Brothel. Sam took us round this great place and gave us a long detailed (and very interesting) historical talk about the sites, statues and buildings we were coming into contact with. Fantastic place. After a few hours of this place we went onto Pamukkale. Have a look in this website here Ephesus website

Pamukkale is a popular tourist drop off in turkey but it's worth it. Apparently (According to Sam) they like to call the place "the white cliffs" because, well they're white as snow. The reason behind this is the water that stream down it is full of calcium and when it dries apparently it goes real hard and very white. I don't know much about this but if you go to this website. this will show you pictures and everything you need to know. It's worth a look or going to see. it's also round the corner from an ancient place called Hierapolis. It's what Sam said is a "place where the Greeks hung out!". It's got some ruins, a huge theatre and some old pools (one I swam in). Anyway I could go on forever about this place but I'm cutting this down short.

So onto the next few days I didn't do much. I sat at the pool side and had some memorable nights out with the guys from the hotel. I got bored to the point where I went in search of a Tattoo artist. I found one in the name of Wish (cool name huh?!). He's a fantastic artist. He shown me some of his work which was amazing. Unfortunately I couldn't afford these ones so I chose a smaller one. He redesigned it for me and drilled it into my arm. He done a great job to say the least.

Unfortunately for me this was my last hours spent in turkey and a few hours I was flying back to Scotland (Booooo!!!!).

THIS is what I did on my holidays. Fantastic Essay isn't it?! :P