View Full Version : R.L. Burnside 1926-2005
09-01-2005, 11:26 PM
One of my all time faves....I'm gonna miss him a lot. :(
R. L. Burnside
November 21, 1926 - September 1, 2005
R.L. Burnside died today at his hospital room in Memphis.
Blues artist R.L. Burnside, who redefined the blues genre by incorporating indie rock acts and hip-hop production, died September 1, 2005, at St. Francis Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Burnside was born November 21, 1926, in Harmontown, Mississippi, and spent most of his life in the north Mississippi hill country, where he worked as a sharecropper and a commercial fisherman and played guitar at weekend house parties. In 1968, noted folklorist George Mitchell recorded Burnside for the first time. In 1991 Burnside was the first artist signed to then-fledgling Fat Possum Records in Oxford, Mississippi. His debut, "Too Bad Jim," was produced by former New York Times pop critic Robert Palmer. Along with his friend, neighbor, and label-mate Junior Kimbrough, Burnside was one of the most popular and important blues musicians to emerge in the last two decades. He recorded the crossover collaboration "A Ass Pocket of Whiskey" with the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion in 1996 and became a cult hero. In 1998, music from "Come On In" was featured in several movies and television shows, including The Sopranos. Burnside sold hundreds of thousands of records in his lifetime. He is survived by his wife Alice Mae, twelve children, and numerous grandchildren.
09-02-2005, 01:02 AM
Rest in peace, RL.
10-13-2005, 07:49 PM
Sad to read today that Little Milton Campbell also passed away. Even sadder that I had to read it in my copy of Living Blues magazine since Campbell died on August 4th. I guess its fitting, in a way. Little Milton was almost criminally underrated as a performer and he was relegated to near obscurity in death.
Blues king Little Milton dead at 70 (http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/news.php?id=6797)
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- “Little” Milton Campbell, who sang the blues and performed with some of the country's top performers, died Thursday of complications of a stroke.
Campbell, 70, died about 8:50 a.m. at Delta Medical Center in Memphis, Tenn. A statement from the family said the musician died from a cerebral hemorrhage as a result of a stroke Campbell suffered on July 27.
Funeral services were pending. Campbell is survived by his wife, Patricia, and three children.
Greg Preston, a close friend and producer of Campbell's Grammy-nominated album 2000's “Welcome to Little Milton,” visited the singer in the hospital over the weekend.
Preston said he played some of the bluesman's music in an attempt to bring him out of his comatose state.
”I hope he heard me,” Preston said.
The Inverness native had been scheduled to perform Aug. 11 at Clarksdale's Ground Zero Blues Club for the blues documentary “Native Sons,” but that performance was canceled.
Campbell's last appearance in Jackson was at The Allman Brothers Band concert in May.
Preston described the bond between Campbell and The Allman Brothers Band, especially Wayne Haynes as “beautiful.”
”They (Campbell and Haynes) had this love for each other. When they played together it was beautiful because they knew...what the other was gonna do,” Preston said. “There was a kindred spirit there.”
Campbell is best remembered for his booming voices, one that Preston said resonated with audiences nationwide.
”Every time I was in the studio with him his voice was bigger than the whole building,” he said. His detail to every note played on his Gibson Hollowbody 355 guitar made him a truly unique artist, he said.
”Most guitar players they think the more notes the better. Milton, B.B. and Albert King — their style was you make every note count. Because one note can touch an amazing amount of people.
”It's not how many you play or how fast you play. It's how you play that one note. That was his style.”
Campbell's hit record “We're Gonna Make It” and his 1978 vintage black jacket were on display in Clarksdale last year as part of a “Sweet Home Chicago” exhibit at the Delta Blues Museum.
In an interview with The Associated Press last year, Campbell said the exhibit would raise the awareness of blues music and performers.
”The people are the stars, not me,” Campbell said after attending the exhibit's opening last July. “I am just one that is fortunate to have a little talent. When you do it right, they remember you and that is important to me.
”To realize that they are trying to immortalize in a sense your contribution to your profession, certainly none of us are going to live forever, basically in a sense it sort of makes you immortal to know that once you are gone, people are going to walk by and some will say 'you were great.' Some will say 'maybe you weren't so great,”' he said.
Campbell's music was described as having a gritty feel, with pleading vocals and frequently lyrics of dashed love.
Campbell was born on a Delta farm near Inverness on Sept. 7, 1934. He was named after his father, Big Milton, who was a locally known blues musician.
In 1953, Campbell was introduced to Sam Phillips of Sun Records by artist/talent scout Ike Turner. Some of his first recordings were on the Sun label backed by the Ike Turner Band.
In a 2003 tribute to the late Phillips, Campbell said Phillips cared little about critics who were unhappy with “what they called at that time, black music.”
”He would always say, 'Well, I don't worry about what nobody else say. I'm going to do what I want to do,”' Campbell said.
Campbell went on to record “I'm a Lonely Man” and “That Will Never Do” for Bobbin Records. He switched to Checker Records in 1960 and in 1965, he had a hit entitled “We're Gonna Make It.”
Campbell joined Stax Records in 1971 and recorded “Annie Mae's Cafe” and “Little Bluebird,” two of his most memorable songs.
Campbell was presented with the W.C. Handy 1988 Blues Entertainer of the Year. He was also inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame that year.
The Delta native also enjoyed a career with Malaco Records in Jackson, which began in 1984. At the label he wrote “The Blues Is Alright” and recorded the album “Welcome To Little Milton,” which was nominated in 2000 for Best Contemporary Blues Album.
At his death, Campbell was signed with the label Telarc International based in Cleveland, Ohio. His last album “Think of Me” was released in May 2005.
In a statement, Pat Campbell and the label expressed thanks for the “outpouring of support from well-wishers throughout the blues community.”
Telarc spokeswoman Amanda Sweet said condolences can be directed to the Campbell family through the record label and monetary donations can be made through a fund established at the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis
10-17-2005, 07:49 PM
Tough year for the Blues. I guess Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown (http://www.vervemusicgroup.com/artist.aspx?ob=pri&src=prd&aid=2780) fell off the perch last month, too. Poor guy spent his last days suffering from lung cancer and getting evacuated from his Louisiana home.
Texas Bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown Dies (http://jazztimes.com/columns_and_features/news/detail.cfm?article=10558)
Date: September 13, 2005
Written By: Katherine Silkaitis
Bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown died Saturday in his hometown of Orange, Texas at age 81. The musician, who hated to be pigeonholed into genres, had been battling lung cancer and heart disease and was in ill health for the past year, according to his booking agent Rick Cady. The singer and guitarist had been residing in New Orleans but returned to his hometown of Orange to stay with his brother and family to escape Hurricane Katrina. Brown's home in Slidell, La., a bedroom community of New Orleans, was destroyed by the hurricane. Cady said Brown was completely devastated and heartbroken upon hearing of the destruction of his home.
Brown was born on April 18, 1924 in Vinton, La., but moved to Orange when he was only a few weeks old. He was immersed in music from the very start, as his father was a locally known country, Cajun and bluegrass musician. Brown began playing the fiddle when he was five, and by the age of 10, he had taught himself an odd way of guitar picking, a style that would later define him and his music. As he entered his teens, Brown began touring with swing bands as a drummer and was nicknamed "Gatemouth" for his deep voice. After a brief stint in the Army, Brown returned to Texas in 1945, where he became inspired by the work of blues guitarist T-Bone Walker.
It was Walker who inadvertantly gave Brown his big break. It was 1947 and Walker was performing in a Houston nightclub. He fell ill, however, and had to leave the stage in the middle of a set, The club manager, looking to fill the void somehow, invited Brown onstage to sing. But Brown had a different idea and grabbed Walker's guitar and started playing "Gatemouth Boogie," thoroughly impressing the crowd with a song he claims to have made up on the spot.
Brown began recording in the the 1940s and 50s, releasing memorable songs inluding "Okie Dokie Stomp," "Boogie Rambler," "Dirty Work at the Crossroads" and "Ain't That Dandy." But he became frustrated with the limitations the blues imposed and was soon experimenting with styles, including jazz and country. He soon became a multi-instrumentalist across genres, playing everything from bass to harmonica in styles ranging from straight-up blues to zydeco and Cajun. By the end of his career, he had more than 30 recordings and the 1982 Grammy for best traditional blues album.
While he recorded with other artists, notably Roy Clark, Eric Clapton, Ry Cooder and Bonnie Raitt, Brown was dismissive of most musicians, including many of his contemporaries. He once called B.B. King "one-dimensional" and accused his Texas blues contemporaries Albert Collins and Johnny Copeland as clones of T-Bone Walker.
Survivors include three daughters, Ursula Brown of Houston, Celeste Biles of Vista, Calif and Renee Brown of New Orleans; son Dwayne Brown of Oklahoma City; brother Bobby Brown of Orange; and six grandchildren.
10-17-2005, 09:29 PM
Hard times for bluesmen...........hard times indeed :(
10-18-2005, 03:01 AM
Hard times for bluesmen...........hard times indeed :(
Losing Son Seals was the one that really got me. He was the embodiment of Chicago Blues.