Rumble: Indians Who Rocked The World
I watched this very important documentary about how Indigenous people had a hand in helping to create American music whether blues, jazz, country, rock ‘n roll, funk, punk or hardcore rock. How we’ve always been there whether next to our black brothers & sisters, mixed Indigenous & black or because of the way this country has always treated us disguised as black in fear of persecution. How we were apart of some of the biggest bands & played with some of the forefathers of these genera. It’s a very eye-opening documentary as we are often times left out of the cultural conversation of what we call American music & how we basically created it alongside black people. Go check it out if your into history & culture.
Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World is a Canadian documentary film by Catherine Bainbridge and Alfonso Maiorana, released in 2017. The film profiles the impact of Indigenous musicians in Canada and the United States on the development of rock music. Artists profiled include Charley Patton, Mildred Bailey, Link Wray, Jesse Ed Davis, Stevie Salas, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Robbie Robertson, Randy Castillo, Jimi Hendrix, Taboo and others. The title of the film is a reference to the pioneering instrumental “Rumble”, released in 1958 by the American group Link Wray & His Ray Men. The instrumental piece was very influential on many artists.
The film features many influential musicians who discuss the musical contributions of Indigenous artists, including commentaries from Quincy Jones, George Clinton, Taj Mahal, Martin Scorsese, John Trudell, Steven Tyler, Marky Ramone, Slash, Iggy Pop, Buddy Guy and others. The film premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.
This documentary is so important to me. As you know half of the blog post I write are on here are about music & the other has in someway to do with my culture. This encompasses both. We all know that all American music was created by black people but did you know that Native Americans also had a big hand in the creation of such beloved sounds like Blues, Jazz, & Rock? Me either which to me is a shame. I grew up with a father from New Orleans so the Blues and Jazz were a staple for him. Two of his favorite genera of music and something that if you are riding with him you were going to listen to that music that he grew up with coming from Louisiana in the late 40s, 50s and 60s. My mom on the other hand growing up in LA was more into the girl & guy groups of the time, Johnny Mathis, the Beatles and so much more. Through both of these influences of music I gained a sence of pride in what we call American music. And growing up black you of course always had to have the conversation about who really created Rock ‘n Roll but sadly the Native American part of this was always left out. Being both black and Native I over time have tried to find more what I call “mainstream” music that Native people created which led me to today’s artist who are making Indigenous hip-hop but I knew there had to be something in between the boarding school & Trail of Tears survivors and today’s music. What were Native people doing during the creations of this music? We had to play a part in it some how right? Yes & this documentary goes through that history and brings us this important cultural retelling of how Indigenous people had a hand in creating some of the most world renounced music out there.
Before blues, jazz and rock we gotta start with who was here before that. The American government puts a ban on indigenous music due to us uprising and celebrating our culture. We as Native people we all have a song that we sing to the sun, sky, moon, mother Earth, when we wake up in the morning and when we go to bed at night. We have songs to honor people and songs to the creator and sacred things. For us our songs are really important to us and sadly the US government tried to take this away from us but we were too strong for them and that’s why our songs and cultures still live on today (most of us).
One really important group that is keeping that ancient song alive and one of my favorite groups of all time is Ulali.
Ulali (/juːlɑːˈliː/) is a Native American women’s a cappella group. Founded in 1987, it includes Pura Fé (Tuscarora/Taino), Soni (Mayan, Apache, Yaqui), and Jennifer Kreisberg (Tuscarora). Ulali’s sound encompasses an array of indigenous music including Southeast United States choral singing (pre-blues and gospel) and pre-Columbian music. Ulali’s live performances address Native struggles and accomplishments. The group was first called “Pura Fe'” and included three female singers and three males. Later, the group became a duo comprising singers, Soni Moreno and Pura Fébefore eventually becoming a trio. In April 2014, the group appeared together for the first time as the “Ulali Project” with Pura Fe’, Jennifer Kreisberg, Charly Lowry and Layla Locklear. The group has performed several times since that formation, including at the People’s Climate March in New York City.
Other groups of people keeping that ancient culture alive are the Mardi Gras Indians of New Orleans who are a mix of black and Native people. One of my parents very good friends and a man who was like an uncle to me was a man named Nash Porter who documented the Mardi Gras Indians through photography until sadly his death in 2007.
Mardi Gras Indians
Mardi Gras Indians are black carnival revelers in New Orleans, Louisiana, who dress up for Mardi Gras in suits influenced by Native American ceremonial apparel. Collectively, their organizations are called “tribes”. There are about 38 tribes. They range in size from half a dozen to several dozen members. The groups are largely independent, but a pair of umbrella organizations loosely coordinate the Uptown Indians and the Downtown Indians.
In addition to Mardi Gras Day, many of the tribes also parade on Saint Joseph’s Day (March 19) and the Sunday nearest to Saint Joseph’s Day (“Super Sunday”). Traditionally, these were the only times Mardi Gras Indians were seen in public in full regalia. The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival began the practice of hiring tribes to appear at the Festival as well. In recent years it has become more common to see Mardi Gras Indians at other festivals and parades in the city.
Not with standing the popularity of such activities for tourists and residents alike, the fact remains that the phenomenon of the Mardi Gras Indians reflects both a vital musical history, and an equally vital attempt to express internal social dynamics.
As a major southern trade port, New Orleans became a cultural melting pot. During the late 1740s and 1750s, many enslaved Africans fled to the bayous of Louisiana where they encountered Native Americans. Years later, after the Civil War, hundreds of freed slaves joined the U.S. Ninth Cavalry Regiment, also known as Buffalo Soldiers. The Buffalo Soldiers fought, killed, forced and aided the mass removal and relocation of the Plains Indians on the Western Frontier. After returning to New Orleans, many ex-soldiers joined popular Wild West Shows, most notably Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. The show wintered in New Orleans from 1884 to 1885 and was hailed by the Daily Picayune as “the people’s choice”. There was at least one black cowboy on the show, and numerous black cowhands.
On Mardi Gras in 1885, fifty to sixty Plains Indians marched in native dress on the streets of New Orleans. Later that year, the first Mardi Gras Indian gang was formed; the tribe was named “The Creole Wild West” and was most likely composed of members of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, though the “Indian gangs” might predate their appearance in the parades.
So because the blues is the reason jazz and rock music was created then we must start at the beginning. One artist they talk about in the documentary was Charley Patton.
Charley Patton (died April 28, 1934), also known as Charlie Patton, was an American Delta blues musician. Considered by many to be the “Father of the Delta Blues”, he created an enduring body of American music and inspired most Delta blues musicians. The musicologist Robert Palmer considered him one of the most important American musicians of the twentieth century.
Patton was born in Hinds County, Mississippi, near the town of Edwards, and lived most of his life in Sunflower County, in the Mississippi Delta. Most sources say he was born in April 1891, but the years 1881, 1885 and 1887 have also been suggested. Patton’s parentage and race also are uncertain. His parents were Bill and Annie Patton, but locally he was regarded as having been fathered by former slave Henderson Chatmon, several of whose children became popular Delta musicians, as solo performers and as members of groups such as the Mississippi Sheiks. Biographer John Faheydescribed Patton as having “light skin and Caucasian features.”
Patton was considered African-American, but because of his light complexion there has been much speculation about his ancestry over the years. One theory endorsed by blues musician Howlin’ Wolf was that Patton was Mexican or Cherokee. It is now generally agreed that Patton was of mixed heritage, with white, black, and Native ancestors. Some believe he had a Cherokee grandmother; however, it is also widely asserted by historians that he was between one-quarter and one-half Choctaw. In “Down the Dirt Road Blues”, Patton sang of having gone to “the Nation” and “the Territo'”, referring to the Cherokee Nation’s portion of the Indian Territory (which became part of the state of Oklahoma in 1907), where a number of Black Indians tried unsuccessfully to claim a place on the tribal rolls and thereby obtain land.
In 1897, his family moved 100 miles (160 km) north to the 10,000-acre (40 km2) Dockery Plantation, a cotton farm and sawmill near Ruleville, Mississippi. There, Patton developed his musical style, influenced by Henry Sloan, who had a new, unusual style of playing music, which is now considered an early form of the blues. Patton performed at Dockery and nearby plantations and began an association with Willie Brown. Tommy Johnson, Fiddlin’ Joe Martin, Robert Johnson, and Chester Burnett (who went on to gain fame in Chicago as Howlin’ Wolf) also lived and performed in the area, and Patton served as a mentor to these younger performers. Robert Palmer described Patton as a “jack-of all-trades bluesman”, who played “deep blues, white hillbilly songs, nineteenth-century ballads, and other varieties of black and white country dance music with equal facility”. He was popular across the southern United States and performed annually in Chicago; in 1934, he performed in New York City. Unlike most blues musicians of his time, who were often itinerant performers, Patton played scheduled engagements at plantations and taverns. He gained popularity for his showmanship, sometimes playing with the guitar down on his knees, behind his head, or behind his back. Patton was a small man, about 5 feet 5 inches tall, but his gravelly voice was reputed to have been loud enough to carry 500 yards without amplification; a singing style which particularly influenced Howlin’ Wolf (even though Jimmy Rodgers, the “singing brakeman”, has to be cited there primarily).
Patton settled in Holly Ridge, Mississippi, with his common-law wife and recording partner, Bertha Lee, in 1933. He died on the Heathman-Dedham plantation, near Indianola, on April 28, 1934, and is buried in Holly Ridge (both towns are located in Sunflower County). His death certificate states that he died of a mitral valvedisorder. The death certificate does not mention Bertha Lee; the only informant listed is one Willie Calvin. Patton’s death was not reported in the newspapers. A memorial headstone was erected on Patton’s grave (the location of which was identified by the cemetery caretaker, C. Howard, who claimed to have been present at the burial), paid for by musician John Fogerty through the Mt. Zion Memorial Fund in July 1990. The spelling of Patton’s name was dictated by Jim O’Neal, who also composed the epitaph.
Next we have to talk about Jazz which was birthed out of the Delta Blues. One jazz singer who was big in the scene in the 1930s was Mildred Bailey “The Rockin Chair Lady”.
Mildred Bailey (born Mildred Rinker; February 27, 1903 – December 12, 1951) was a popular and influential Native American jazz singer during the 1930s, known as “The Queen of Swing”, “The Rockin’ Chair Lady” and “Mrs. Swing”. Some of her best-known hits are “It’s So Peaceful in the Country”, “Trust in Me”, “Where Are You?”, “I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart”, “Small Fry”, “Please Be Kind”, “Darn That Dream”, “Rockin’ Chair”, “Blame It on My Last Affair”, and “Says My Heart”. She had three singles that made number one on the popular charts.
She grew up on the Coeur d’Alene Reservation in Idaho, where her mother was an enrolled member. The family moved to Spokane, Washington when she was 13. Her younger brothers also became musicians, with her brother Al Rinker starting to perform as a singer with Bing Crosby in Spokane and eventually becoming famous as a member of The Rhythm Boys. Charles Rinker became a lyricist, and Miles Rinker was a clarinet and saxophone player who later became a booking agent.
Bailey was born Mildred Rinker on a farm in rural Tekoa, Washington. Her mother Josephine was a member of the Coeur d’Alene people and a devout Roman Catholic.
Bailey and her siblings grew up near De Smet, Idaho, on the Coeur d’Alene Reservation. Her father played fiddle and called square dances. Her mother played piano every evening and taught her to play and sing. Her younger brothers included Miles, Al, a vocalist and composer, and Charles, a lyricist.
Ok so now we have blues and jazz which both led us into rock ‘n roll. At the same time as Sister Rosetatharp & Chuck Berry were creating rock music so were the indigenous community. One of those artist was Link Wray who had a big hand in helping to influence all-electric guitar players that came after him. Link also said in an interview that he learned how to play so well because he learned from a black guy named Hambone who was from the circus & who was just this incredible player. He also said that all the white popular music back then was too safe and bubble gum so he listened to all the black music & that is how he rocked so hard.
Fred Lincoln “Link” Wray, Jr. (May 2, 1929 – November 5, 2005) was an American rock and roll guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist who became popular in the late 1950s. Building on the distorted electric guitar sound of early records, his 1958 instrumental hit “Rumble” by Link Wray & His Ray Men popularized “the power cord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarists,” facilitating the emergence of “punk and heavy rock”. Rolling Stone placed Wray at No. 45 of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time. In 2013 and 2017 he was a nominee for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Though he began in country music, his musical style went on to consist primarily of rock and roll, rockabilly, and instrumental rock.
Wray was born on May 2, 1929 in Dunn, North Carolina, to Fred Lincoln Wray, Sr. and his wife, Lillian M. Wray (née Coats), who were Shawnee Native Americans, although the 1930 and 1940 censuses refer to them as White. Three songs he performed were named for American Indian tribes: “Shawnee,” “Apache,” and “Comanche.” “Apache” was an instrumental composed by Jerry Lordan; it was originally a hit in the United Kingdom for The Shadows in 1960 and reached #2 on the Billboard charts in the U.S. on April 3, 1961 by Danish guitarist Jørgen Ingmann. Wray recorded a cover version 30 years later, when it was also associated with The Ventures and the Incredible Bongo Band.
In 1958, Wray’s first hit, “Rumble,” was banned in New York and Boston for fear it would incite teenage gang violence. The record was first released on Cadence Records(catalog number 1347) as by “Link Wray & His Ray Men.” Before, during, and after his stints with major labels Epic and Swan, Wray released 45’s under many names. Tiring of the corporate music machine, he began recording albums using a three-track studio he converted from an outbuilding on his brother’s property that his father used to raise chickens.
While living in the San Francisco Bay Area in the early 1970s, Wray was introduced to Quicksilver Messenger Service guitarist John Cipollina by bassist James “Hutch” Hutchinson. He subsequently formed a band initially featuring special guest Cipollina along with the rhythm section from Cipollina’s band Copperhead, bassist James “Hutch” Hutchinson, and drummer David Weber. They opened for the band Lighthouse at The Whisky a Go Go in Los Angeles from May 15–19, 1974. He later did numerous concerts and radio broadcasts in the Bay Area including KSAN and the Bill Graham venue Winterland Ballroom, with Les Lizama later replacing Hutchinson on bass. He toured and recorded two albums with retro-rockabilly artist Robert Gordon in the late 1970s. The 1980s to the present day saw a large number of reissues as well as new material. One member of his band in the 1980s, drummer Anton Fig, later became drummer in the CBS Orchestra on the Late Show with David Letterman. In 1994, he played on four songs of the album Chatterton by French rocker Alain Bashung. He went on to release two albums of new music: Shadowman (1997) and Barbed Wire (2005). Recently discovered recordings are slated to be released in 2018.
Because of Link Wray and his big contribution to the creation of rock music people & bands like Jesse Ed Davis, Stevie Salas, Robbie Robertson, Redbone, Randy Costillo, Jimi Hendrix & many other Indigenous artist found a way to connect and make this type of music that through it was a connection to their culture. It is said most big bands and artist wanted these Native artist to play with them do to them bringing a different more organic spirit to their playing which makes sense because of our high connection to the Earth.
Jaime Royal “Robbie” Robertson, OC (born July 5, 1943), is a Canadian musician, songwriter, film composer, producer, actor, and author. His career spans six decades.
Robertson is best known for his work as lead guitarist and primary songwriter for the Band, and for his career as a solo recording artist. His work with the Band was instrumental in creating the Americana music genre. Robertson has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Canadian Music Hall of Fame as a member of the Band, and has been inducted to Canada’s Walk of Fame, both with the Band and on his own. He is ranked 59th in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 greatest guitarists.
As a songwriter, Robertson is credited for writing “The Weight”, “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”, “Up on Cripple Creek”, “Broken Arrow”, “Somewhere Down the Crazy River”, and many others. He has been inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Songwriters.
As a film soundtrack producer and composer, Robertson is known for his collaborations with director Martin Scorsese, which began with the rockumentary film The Last Waltz (1978), and continued through a number of dramatic films, including Raging Bull (1980) and Casino (1995). He has worked on many other soundtracks for film and television.
Now of course Jimi Hendrix has to be my favorite artist of this list. For most black kids who are into rock music we trace it back to Jimi. For me he was more than that he connected me to my roots of being black, Cherokee and white. I remember the first picture I saw of Jimi when I was very little I felt this energy from the picture of him lighting his guitar on fire. When I see certain outfits he would wear I saw our culture in those clothes or the way he played that guitar and sang had the rhythms of our black & Native ancestors in it something many other rock artist at the time couldn’t match. The fact that he was so proud of his culture really touches me & helps me to continue to be proud of my black & Native roots as well.
James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix (born Johnny Allen Hendrix; November 27, 1942 – September 18, 1970) was an American rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter. Although his mainstream career spanned only four years, he is widely regarded as one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of popular music, and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame describes him as “arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock music”.
Jimi Hendrix had a diverse heritage. His paternal grandmother, Zenora “Nora” Rose Moore, was African-American and one-quarter Cherokee. Hendrix’s paternal grandfather, Bertran Philander Ross Hendrix (born 1866), was born out of an extramarital affair between a woman named Fanny, and a grain merchant from Urbana, Ohio, or Illinois, one of the wealthiest men in the area at that time. After Hendrix and Moore relocated to Vancouver, Canada, had a son they named James Allen Ross Hendrix on June 10, 1919; the family called him “Al”.Born in Seattle, Washington, Hendrix began playing guitar at the age of 15. In 1961, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and trained as a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division; he was granted an honorable discharge the following year. Soon afterward, he moved to Clarksville, Tennessee, and began playing gigs on the Chitlin’ Circuit, earning a place in the Isley Brothers’ backing band and later with Little Richard, with whom he continued to work through mid-1965. He then played with Curtis Knight and the Squires before moving to England in late 1966 after being discovered by Linda Keith, who in turn interested bassist Chas Chandler of the Animals in becoming his first manager. Within months, Hendrix had earned three UK top ten hits with the Jimi Hendrix Experience: “Hey Joe”, “Purple Haze”, and “The Wind Cries Mary”. He achieved fame in the U.S. after his performance at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967, and in 1968 his third and final studio album, Electric Ladyland, reached number one in the U.S.; it was Hendrix’s most commercially successful release and his first and only number one album. The world’s highest-paid performer, he headlined the Woodstock Festival in 1969 and the Isle of Wight Festival in 1970, before his accidental death from barbiturate-related asphyxia on September 18, 1970, at the age of 27.
Hendrix was inspired musically by American rock and roll and electric blues. He favored overdriven amplifiers with high volume and gain, and was instrumental in popularizing the previously undesirable sounds caused by guitar amplifier feedback. He was also one of the first guitarists to make extensive use of tone altering effects units, such as fuzz tone, Octavia, wah-wah, and Uni-Vibe in mainstream rock. He was the first artist to use stereophonic phasing effects in music recordings. Holly George-Warren of Rolling Stone commented: “Hendrix pioneered the use of the instrument as an electronic sound source. Players before him had experimented with feedback and distortion, but Hendrix turned those effects and others into a controlled, fluid vocabulary every bit as personal as the blues with which he began.”
Hendrix was the recipient of several music awards during his lifetime and posthumously. In 1967, readers of Melody Makervoted him the Pop Musician of the Year, and in 1968, Rolling Stone declared him the Performer of the Year. Disc and Music Echo honored him with the World Top Musician of 1969 and in 1970, Guitar Player named him the Rock Guitarist of the Year. The Jimi Hendrix Experience was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992 and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. Rolling Stone ranked the band’s three studio albums, Are You Experienced, Axis: Bold as Love, and Electric Ladyland, among the 100 greatest albums of all time, and they ranked Hendrix as the greatest guitarist and the sixth greatest artist of all time.
Randy Castillo as said by Stevie Salas was one the worlds best heavy metal drummers who worked with everyone including Ozzy Ozborn. He was Apache and Mexican with roots in New Mexico. Everytime he felt anykind of pressure or the limelight got too much he would go back to those roots and take Stevie Salas who didn’t fully have the same connection to his Native roots with him back home. His grandmother was a Curandera and he embodied that Native drum rhythem that connected him back to the Earth like his ancestors did & put it into this mainstream music.
Randolpho Francisco Castillo (December 18, 1950 – March 26, 2002) was an American musician. He was as Ozzy Osbourne’s drummer during the mid-1980s to the early 1990s, and later as drummer for Mötley Crüe, from 1999 to his death in 2002. Castillo was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He was inspired to take up the drums after seeing The Beatles perform on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964.
In 1984, Castillo was hired to play drums for Lita Ford and was featured on her Dancin’ On The Edge album. Ford introduced Castillo to her boyfriend, Mötley Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx, and Nikki’s bandmate Tommy Lee. Shortly after the “Dancin’ on the Edge” tour, Lee called Castillo from a party he was at with Ozzy Osbourne and told him Ozzy was looking for a new drummer. Despite being unable to audition right away due to a broken leg he suffered while skiing, Castillo was hired by Osbourne a couple of months later and ended up staying with the Ozzy Osbourne band for ten years, recording five albums with Ozzy during that time: The Ultimate Sin (1986), No Rest for the Wicked (1988), an EP entitled Just Say Ozzy (1990), No More Tears (1991), and a double-disc live album, Live & Loud (1993).
After recording Ozzy’s live album in 1993, he joined the short-lived Bone Angels, followed by Red Square Black. Castillo also briefly returned to Osbourne’s band in 1995 for a tour, and played drums on several tribute albums during this time. He played with Ronnie James Dio on a cover of Alice Cooper’s “Welcome To My Nightmare” on the Alice Cooper tribute album “Welcome To The Nightmare (An All Star Tribute To Alice Cooper) ” and performed all drumming duties on a star-studded Def Leppard tribute album titled Leppardmania. The album featured John Corabi (Angora, The Scream, Mötley Crüe), Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt, Quiet Riot), Kevin DuBrow (Quiet Riot), Joe Leste (Bang Tango), and Jani Lane (Warrant, solo artist), among others. Guitar and bass duties were handled by Jerry Dixon and Erik Turner of Warrant, and Tracii Gunsof L.A. Guns.
In 1999, after Lee had left Mötley Crüe, Sharon Osbourne called Castillo and suggested he join the band, which he did without audition. He’d previously briefly played with Vince Neil as a touring drummer for the Vince Neil Band, and was an old friend of the band. His only recording with the band, 2000’s New Tattoo, was somewhat of a return to the classic Mötley Crüe sound. However, fan reaction was mixed and the album was not as successful as the band was hoping it would be. Still, there was excitement over the upcoming tour due to the revival in interest of many ’80s hard rock acts, and the band geared up for their “Maximum Rock” tour with thrash metal legends Anthrax and Megadeth.
A couple of weeks before Mötley Crüe was set to tour the New Tattoo album, Castillo became ill while performing with his mariachi side project Azul at the Cat Club in Hollywood. Immediately after the show Castillo took a cab to nearby Cedars Sinai Hospital where he collapsed as he was being admitted. The doctors discovered a duodenal ulcer that had ruptured his stomach and performed emergency surgery that saved Castillo’s life. While taking time off from Mötley Crüe to recover from his surgery, he discovered a small lump on his jaw and a month later, after it had grown to roughly the size of a golf ball, he sought treatment and was diagnosed with Squamous cell Carcinoma, a common form of cancer that is not usually fatal if it is discovered early but can spread rapidly if left untreated. The cancer went into remission in mid-2001, and he was rumored to be rejoining Osbourne’s solo band for that summer Ozzfest tour (along with Geezer Butler on bass), though these rumors were later revealed to be untrue.
Within a few months the cancer returned, and a few days after returning to the doctors, Castillo died on March 26, 2002 aged 51. During the final weeks of his life, Castillo had been working with ex-Ozzy Osbourne and Alice in Chains bassist Mike Inez on a new band and was in the process of hiring a singer.
I had discovered Redbone back when Guardians of the Galaxy came out back in 2014. I loved the funky rhythms of the song and how incredible slick this groove was but it wasn’t until a year or two later that I discovered they were Indigenous. Then I watched their Midnight Special performance were they were dressed in their traditional regalia & started the performance with a stomp dance on live tv which was powerful. I fell in love. I then looked into other songs they had and they were all about Native things but they were so funky I felt this was right up my ally. Redbone credit Jimi Hendrix for giving them the ok to do the Native thing. They say he told them to do the Native thing which I find to be incredible Indigenous solidarity during a time where doing the Native thing could get you killed.
Redbone is a Native American rock group originating in the 1970s with brothers Pat and Lolly Vegas. They reached the Top 5 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1974 with their No. 4 hit single, “Come and Get Your Love”. The single went certified Gold selling over a million copies. Redbone achieved hits with their singles “We Were All Wounded At Wounded Knee”, “The Witch Queen of New Orleans”, “Wovoka”, and “Maggie” in the United States, although these singles were more successful overseas. Redbone is known and accredited in the NY Smithsonian as the first Native American rock/Cajun group to have a No. 1 single in the United States and internationally.
Born in Coalinga, California, near Fresno, brothers Patrick (bass and vocals) and Candido “Lolly” Vasquez-Vegas (guitar and vocals) moved to Los Angeles in 1959 and played for 10 years in Clubs under the name of Pat and Lolly Vegas. Pat won the first ever singing competition held by Coca-Cola in 1958 at the age of 17. Pat had also won a recording contract which he put off to move to Los Angeles with his brother Lolly. They performed at local clubs on Hollywood and Sunset Blvd, such as Gazzari’s, while writing and playing on records by Tina Turner, Sonny & Cher, James Brown, Little Richard, Elvis, among other legendary recording artists.
The word “redbone” is a Cajun term for a mixed-race person, which the band adopted to signify their own mixed blood ancestry. Patrick and Lolly Vasquez-Vegas were a mixture of Yaqui, Shoshone, and Mexican heritage. The band often alluded to Cajun and New Orleans culture in their lyrics and performing style. The brothers began by performing and recording surf music as the Vegas Brothers, “because their agent told them that the world was not yet ready to embrace a duo of Mexican musicians playing surfing music”. First as the Vegas Brothers, then later as the Crazy Cajun Cakewalk Band, Pat and Lolly performed throughout the 1960s at venues on the Las Vegas Strip.
Before forming Redbone, Pat and Lolly released an album in the mid-1960s entitled Pat & Lolly Vegas at the Haunted House (Mercury MG 21059/SR 61059). Of the twelve songs on the album, six were originals by the Vasquez-Vegas brothers which earned them some early success. Pat and Lolly also appeared on the 60’s hit show Shindig! repeatedly, becoming regular performers. They also released several singles from 1961 to the mid-1960s. One of them was titled “Robot Walk” / “Don’t You Remember” (Apogee Records A-101) and more making a name for themselves in early years. In 1967 P.J. Proby recorded his only Top 30 hit “Niki Hoeky” by Jim Ford, Lolly Vegas, and Pat Vegas. The next year, Bobbie Gentry performed the Cajun-influenced song on The Summer Smothers Brothers Show. Pat Vegas also wrote songs for legendary names like Aretha Franklin amongst others.
According to Pat Vegas, it was Jimi Hendrix, himself part Cherokee, who inspired the musicians to form an all-Native American rock group. They signed as the band “Redbone” to Epic Records in 1969. The band then consisted of Pat Vegas, Lolly Vegas, Peter DePoe and Robert Anthony Avila, a Yaqui-Mexican American, better known by his stage name Tony Bellamy. Their debut album Redbone was released in 1970.
Redbone played primarily rock music with R&B, Cajun, blue-eyed soul, funk, country, tribal, and Latin roots. Their first world commercial success came with the single”The Witch Queen of New Orleans” that peaked at No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100 and followed by the single “Maggie” from their second album, Potlatch. “Come and Get Your Love” followed as a smash No. 5 hit for Redbone and remained on the chart for 24 weeks being certified gold by the R.I.A.A. on April 22, 1974. Redbone was also the opening act introducing the very first Earth Day to the world in Philadelphia along with Senator Edmund Muskie. Their opening song was “Chant 13th Hour” from the Potlatch album.
Redbone’s music was characterized by the Leslie rotating speaker effect that Lolly Vegas used for his electric guitar amplifier and a “King Kong” style of drumming developed by drummer Peter DePoe (born 1943, Neah Bay, Washington). The first self-titled album by Redbone was released as a double album in North America. In Europe it was released both as a double (EPC 67242) and as a single album (BN 26280) on the Epic label. Their third album, Message from a Drum, was released in Europe (except Spain) with the title The Witch Queen of New Orleans and different cover than the one released in the U.S. and Canada.
In 1973, Redbone released the politically oriented “We Were All Wounded at Wounded Knee”, recalling the massacre of Lakota Sioux Indians by the 7th Cavalry Regiment in 1890. The song ends with the subtly altered sentence “We were all wounded ‘by’ Wounded Knee”. It charted in several European countries and reached the No. 1 position in The Netherlands but did not chart in the U.S. where it was initially withheld from release due to lyrical controversy and then banned by several radio stations due to its confrontation of a sore subject. DePoe had left this band in 1972. He was replaced by Arturo Perez (1939- ), but later by Bellamy’s Filipino-Chicano cousin, Butch Rillera around that point. Following this the band achieved much of their commercial success. Tony Bellamy (guitar, piano and vocals) left the band in 1977, with Rillera leaving shortly after.
The band’s current remaining membership is led by Pat Vegas, although an array of new members have joined Redbone since then due to Lolly Vegas suffering a strokethat left him unable to tour with the band. No member has been official other than Pat Vegas after the original members were not present. A proposed reunion tour in 2003 did not occur. There is evidence that suggests the existence of an “imposter band” (one of many who try to gain recognition) who was illegally touring the United States and posing as Redbone under the name (or alias) “Denny Freeman”. Freeman – who Pat Vegas confirmed to be unaffiliated with Redbone in an interview with the Montana Standard – defrauded the county fair board of the Butte Silver-Bow County Fair in Butte, Montana, under pretenses of being a co-founding member of Redbone, yet he was never a band member.
On December 25, 2009, Tony Bellamy died of liver failure at a hospital in his hometown of Las Vegas. Less than three months later, Lolly Vegas succumbed to lung cancer at his family home in Reseda, California, on March 4, 2010. Redbone has had some limited activity in recent years in the major public eye, but Pat Vegas continues to tour in the United States and Canada in support of his solo albums, Ambergris, Peacepipe, and Speed of Sound.
With Jesse Ed Davis his death was sad. Apparently he had this magic power about him who could play the blues guitar like no other. Taj Mahal music was on fire because of him, All four Beatles were in love with him, Claptain & the Rolling Stones admired him & he gave Jackson Browne a top 10 hit. He was on top of the world at that time. But sadly like most musicians at the time drugs & alcohol got to him when he was on tour with Rod Steward which if you know anything about Indigenous people alcohol and drugs are not good for us & brings us back to the terrible history of the colonizer abusing us once again with something that was foreign to us. The fact though that he was so out and proud about his Native culture was really powerful & important and I am very glad I know about this man now.
Jesse Ed Davis
Jesse Edwin Davis (September 21, 1944 – June 22, 1988) was a Native American guitarist. He was well-regarded as a session artist. His death in 1988 was attributed to a drug overdose. Davis was born in Norman, Oklahoma. His father, Jesse Ed Davis II, was Comanche, and his mother’s side was Kiowa. His father was an accomplished artist known for his “true Indian” painting style; his works were exhibited in the capitol in Oklahoma City. Davis began his musical career in the late 1950s in Oklahoma City and surrounding cities with John Ware (later a drummer for Emmylou Harris), John Selk (later a bass player for Donovan), Jerry Fisher (later a vocalist with Blood, Sweat & Tears), Mike Boyle, Chris Frederickson, drummer Bill Maxwell (later with Andrae Crouch and Koinonia) and others. By the mid-1960s he quit school and went touring with Conway Twitty.
Davis joined Taj Mahal and played guitar and piano on Mahal’s first three albums. He played slide, lead and rhythm, country and even jazz during his three-year stint with Mahal, making an appearance with the band as a musical guest in The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus. After Mahal’s 1969 album Giant Step, Davis turned to session work for David Cassidy, Albert King, Willie Nelson and others. In 1970, he played on and produced Roger Tillison’s only album for Atco Records, a division of Atlantic. Davis and Tillison − both Oklahoman − were joined at the Record Plant by Bobby Bruce (fiddle), Larry Knechtel (organ and harmonica), Stan Szelest (piano); Billy Rich (bass); Jim Keltner (drums) and Sandy Konikoff (percussion); Don Preston and Joey Cooper were vocal accompanists. Roger Tillison’s Album was recorded live. It was finally released on CD by Wounded Bird Records in 2008, with Davis playing electric guitar, bottleneck (slide) guitar and banjo. The Woody Guthrie song “Old Cracked Looking Glass” has become a standard for Oklahoma bands.
In 1971, Davis recorded his first solo album after Atco Records signed a contract with him to record two albums with the label. The first was the album Jesse Davis (1971), which featured backing vocals by Gram Parsons and performances by Leon Russell and Eric Clapton, among others.
Davis was close friends with Gene Clark. In 1971, he played on and produced Clark’s second solo album, White Light, and provided lead guitar on Clark’s album No Otherin 1974. At Jackson Browne´s debut in 1972, he played the solo on “Doctor My Eyes”.
After guesting with Russell on Bob Dylan’s 1971 single “Watching the River Flow”, Davis went on to work with George Harrison, performing at the ex-Beatle’s 1971 Concert for Bangladesh extravaganza at Madison Square Garden, along with Ringo Starr, Billy Preston, Russell, Keltner, Clapton and others.
Two more solo albums followed: in 1972 Ululu, which included the original release of Harrison’s “Sue Me, Sue You Blues”, and in 1973 Keep Me Comin, occasionally listed as Keep On Coming. Around this time, Davis began playing with John Lennon, for whom he played lead guitar on the albums Walls and Bridges (1974) and Rock ‘n’ Roll (1975). In addition, Davis was a guest performer on other albums by former Beatles: Harrison’s Extra Texture (1975) and Starr’s Goodnight Vienna(1974) and Ringo’s Rotogravure (1976).
In the late summer and fall of 1975, he performed with the Faces as second guitarist throughout their final US tour. Davis continued to work as a session player. In addition to the artists listed above, Davis contributed to albums by Eric Clapton, Rod Stewart, Keith Moon, Steve Miller, Guthrie Thomas, Harry Nilsson, Ry Cooder, Neil Diamond, Rick Danko, Van Dyke Parks and others. He played on Leonard Cohen’s Death of a Ladies’ Man (1977), produced by Phil Spector.
In 1977, he moved to Hawaii; In 1981, he returned to Los Angeles “broke and ravaged by drug and alcohol addiction”. In and out of clinics, Davis disappeared from the music industry for a time, spending much of the 1980s dealing with alcohol and drug addiction. Throughout the ten years he was with Patti Daley, they never married. In the following years he married twice. While married to his second wife, in 1985 he formed and played in the Graffiti Band, which coupled his music with the poetry of the Native American activist John Trudell.
In the spring of 1987, the Graffiti Band performed with Taj Mahal at the Palomino Club in North Hollywood, California. At this show, George Harrison, Bob Dylan and John Fogerty got up from the audience to join Davis and Mahal in an unreleased set which included Fogerty’s “Proud Mary” and Dylan’s “Watching the River Flow”, as well as classics such as “Blue Suede Shoes”, “Peggy Sue”, “Honey Don’t”, “Matchbox” and “Gone, Gone, Gone”.
Davis collapsed and was pronounced dead in Venice, California, on June 22, 1988. Police stated his death appeared to be the result of a drug overdose. He was 43 years old. In 2002, he was posthumously inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame.
Stevie Salas is a Native American guitarist, author, television host, music director, record producer, film composer, and Advisor of Contemporary Music at The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.
In 1990, Salas released his first solo album Stevie Salas Colorcode, opening for Joe Satriani and his 1989 album Flying in a Blue Dream. Salas’ music received attention in both Japan and Europe.
In 1993, he released Stevie Salas Electric Pow Wow, a covers album of songs that inspired Salas as a youth featuring guest artists like Zakk Wylde, Glenn Hughes, T.M. Stevens, Richie Kotzen and Slim Jim Phantom. Then in 1994, Salas released Back From the Living in Japan, where his singles “Start Again” and “Tell Your Story Walkin” were released. During this time, he also appeared on the album Rats by then girlfriend Sass Jordan. Stevie was touring guitarist for Rod Stewart´s Out Of Order tour where he got the inspiration for his book ˝When We Where The Boys˝, a hilarious book of memories of touring world stages.
In 2001, Mick Jagger hired him as guitarist and music director for Jagger’s “Goddess in the Doorway” Tour. Later that year Salas released “Shapeshifter: The Fall and Rise of Stevie No-Wonder.” In 2003, he released The Soulblasters of the Universe, and did his first European Colorcode tour since 1999.
From 2006 to 2010, Salas served as music director and consultant for American Idol and 19 Entertainment nurturing Kris Allen, Adam Lambert, Chris Daughtry, and their respective touring bands for subsequent American tours.
Salas began working as host and executive producer of the Canadian Music TV series Arbor Live for APTN. In mid-2009, Salas co-founded with the internet entrepreneur Laurence Dorazio the company Rockstar Solos, LLC which focuses on iPhone and iPad gaming and entertainment application development. The first application also called Rockstar Solos became available in the iTunes Store in December 2009. The company Rockstar Logic has thousands of downloads to date.
In 2009, Salas worked with T.I and Justin Timberlake on the song “Dead and Gone,” the single eventually reaching #2 on the US Billboard Charts. Later that year, Salas received a Native American Lifetime Achievement Award at the Native American Music Awards. From 2010 to 2012, he served as the advisor to contemporary music at National Museum of the American Indian. He co-created both the Up Where We Belong-Natives In Popular Culture exhibit and The Living Earth Festival. In 2012 Salas created and is executive producer of Catch The Dream Bios with Adam Beach for APTN with shows airing 2014.
2017 and present Salas is Executive Producer of ‘RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World’, a Native American music documentary for PBS and Super Channel.(2017 Sundance winner for Masterful Storytelling). Executive Producer and Creator of Dreamcatcher Bios (currently in production). Produced by Rezolution Pictures Montreal Canada for APTN television. Co-Wrote and Produced the new project/band INABA/SALAS with Japanese superstar vocalist, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Koshi Inaba for the Japanese record label Vermillion Records. Chubby Groove album was released on January 18, 2017 and was the #2 album in the country that week and remained in the top 10 for several weeks after. The album was supported by sold-out Chubby Groove Tour 2017 that played throughout Japan in January/February 2017. The record was certified Gold in Japan on October 4, 2017.
You also had the Native influence on folk music as well in artist like Peter La Farge & Buffy Saint Marie who were talking about Native issues on a national scale in the ’60s & ’70s.
Peter La Farge (born Oliver Albee La Farge, April 30, 1931 – October 27, 1965) was a New York-based folksinger and songwriter of the 1950s and 1960s. He is known best for his affiliations with Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash.
Oliver Albee La Farge was born in 1931 to Oliver La Farge, a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and anthropologist, and Wanden (Matthews) La Farge, a Rhode Island heiress. The family moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where his younger sister Povy was born in 1933, but his parents’ marriage fell apart. They separated and divorced in 193. His father married Consuelo Baca, with whom he had one child, Peter’s half-brother John Pendaries La Farge, nicknamed “Pen” (b. 1952). Wanden took the children with her and bought a ranch in Fountain, Colorado, in 1940, later marrying foreman Alexander F. “Andy” Kane.
La Farge grew up partly in New Mexico and partly on the Kane Ranch in Colorado, although he did not get along well with his stepfather. He shared a love and respect with his father for the histories and cultures of Native Americans, with which his father was deeply involved in study. But he later became estranged from his father, changed his given name to Peter, and at times would even claim, falsely, that he was adopted. He also claimed to be distantly descended from the Narragansett Indian tribe through his New England ancestors.
Buffy Sainte-Marie, OC (born Beverly Sainte-Marie, February 20, 1941) is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician, composer, visual artist, educator, pacifist, and social activist. Throughout her career in all of these areas, her work has focused on issues of indigenous peoples of the Americas. Her singing and writing repertoire also includes subjects of love, war, religion, and mysticism.
In 1997, she founded the Cradleboard Teaching Project, an educational curriculum devoted to better understanding Native Americans. She has won recognition and many awards and honours for both her music and her work in education and social activism.
Buffy Sainte-Marie was born in 1941 on the Piapot Plains Cree First Nation Reserve in the Qu’Appelle Valley, Saskatchewan, Canada. She was later adopted, growing up in Massachusetts, with parents Albert and Winifred Sainte-Marie, a Wakefield, Massachusetts couple of Mi’kmaq descent. She attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst, earning degrees in teaching and Oriental philosophy and graduating in the top ten of her class.
In 1964, on a return trip to the Piapot Cree reserve in Canada for a powwow she was welcomed and (in a Cree Nation context) adopted by the youngest son of Chief Piapot, Emile Piapot and his wife, Clara Starblanket Piapot, who added to Sainte-Marie’s cultural value of, and place in, native culture.
In late 1975, Sainte Marie received a phone call from Sesame Street producer Dulcy Singer to appear on the show for a one-shot guest appearance. Sainte-Marie told Singer she had no interest in doing a children’s TV show, but reconsidered after asking “Have you done any Native American programming?” According to Sainte-Marie, Singer wanted her to count and recite the alphabet but Buffy wanted to teach the show’s young viewers that “Indians still exist”. She regularly appeared on Sesame Street over a five-year period from 1976–81. Sainte Marie breastfed her first son, Dakota “Cody” Starblanket Wolfchild, during a 1977 episode, which is believed to be the first representation of breastfeeding ever aired on television. Sesame Street even aired a week of shows from her home in Hawaii in January 1978.
Sainte-Marie claimed in a 2008 interview at the National Museum of the American Indian that she had been blacklisted by American radio stations and that she, along with Native Americans and other native people in the Red Power movements, were put out of business in the 1970s.
In a 1999 interview at Diné College with a staff writer with Indian Country Today, Sainte-Marie said “I found out 10 years later, in the 1980s, that President Lyndon B. Johnson had been writing letters on White House stationery praising radio stations for suppressing my music” and “In the 1970s, not only was the protest movement put out of business, but the Native American movement was attacked.”
As a result of this blacklisting, purportedly led by (among others) Presidents Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, and Nashville disc jockey Ralph Emery (following the release of I’m Gonna Be a Country Girl Again), Sainte-Marie said “I was put out of business in the United States”.
Other Native Artist Featured In The Film:
Rhiannon Giddens- (born February 21, 1977) is an American musician. Giddens is multiracial in ancestry. Giddens’ father was white and her mother was African-American and Native American. She is known as the lead singer, violinist, banjo player and a founding member of the Grammy-winning country, blues and old-time music band Carolina Chocolate Drops. She is a native of Greensboro, North Carolina, an alumna of the elite North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, and a 2000 graduate of Oberlin Conservatory where she studied opera. In addition to her work with the Drops, Giddens has released two solo albums: Tomorrow Is My Turn (2015) and Freedom Highway (2017). She married Irish musician Michael Laffan in 2007. The couple have a daughter, Aoife, and a son, Caoimhín. Giddens has homes in Greensboro, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; and Limerick, Ireland. She and Michael Laffan are now separated.
John Trudell (February 15, 1946 – December 8, 2015) was a Native American author, poet, actor, musician, and political activist. He was the spokesperson for the United Indians of All Tribes’ takeover of Alcatraz beginning in 1969, broadcasting as Radio Free Alcatraz. During most of the 1970s, he served as the chairman of the American Indian Movement, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
After his pregnant wife, three children and mother-in-law were killed in 1979 in a suspicious fire at the home of his parents-in-law on the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes Duck Valley Indian Reservation in Nevada, Trudell turned to writing, music and film as a second career. He acted in films in the 1990s. The documentary Trudell (2005) was made about him and his life as an activist and artist.
Trudell was born in Omaha, Nebraska on February 15, 1946, as the son of a Santee Dakota father and a Mexican mother. He grew up in small towns near the Santee Sioux Reservation in northern Nebraska near the southeast corner of South Dakota. He was educated in local schools and also in Santee Dakota culture.
In 1979, John Trudell met musical artist and activist Jackson Browne and became more interested in the musical world (and recording albums and performing his own compositions in live venues).
Trudell recorded an album A.K.A Grafitti Man (“graffiti” was misspelled in the title) with Kiowa guitarist Jesse Ed Davis that was originally available on cassette tape format only. This comports with the practice common to American indigenous and other so-called minorities of distributing music mixtapes captured live at group events and copied and distributed through non-commercial channels, like those of the San Francisco-based rock group Grateful Dead, Native American powwow music performances in general, and African-American gatherings whence came the expression Each One Teach One, common also to an emerging grassroots movement that was arguably itself a response to the reactionary madness of slavery and/or military-industrial/imperialist hegemony flourishing in the 1980s.
In 1990 John Trudell took part in Tony Hymas’s Oyaté project. In 1992 Trudell remade and re-released A.K.A Grafitti Man as an audio CD to substantial critical and popular acclaim.
Arguably his greatest musical success came with the 1994 album Johnny Damas & Me that was described as “a culmination of years of poetic work, and an example of a process of fusing traditional sounds, values, and sensibilities with thought-provoking lyrics, this time with urgent rock and roll.”
Other musical releases (many with his band Bad Dog) include A.K.A Grafitti Man (1986), Heart Jump Bouquet (1987), Blue Indians (1999), Descendant Now Ancestor(2001), Bone Days (2001), Live A Fip (2003), Madness and The Moremes (2007), Crazier Than Hell (2010), Wazi’s Dream (2015).
Popular Music critic Neal Ullestad said of Trudell’s live performances, “This isn’t simply pop rock with Indian drums and chants added. It’s integrated rock and roll by an American Indian with a multicultural band directed to anyone who will listen.” The closing sequence of Alanis Obomsawin’s 2014 documentary film Trick or Treaty? is set to Trudell’s song “Crazy Horse.”
Jaime Luis Gomez (born July 14, 1975), known professionally as Taboo, is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, actor and DJ, best known as a member of the hip hop group The Black Eyed Peas.
Roberto Agustín Miguel Santiago Samuel Perez de la Santa Concepción Trujillo Veracruz Bautista (Spanish pronunciation: [roˈβeɾto tɾuˈxiʎo]; born October 23, 1964) better known as Robert Trujillo, is an American musician and songwriter. He has been the bassist of the American heavy metal band Metallica since 2003. He was also a member of crossover thrash band Suicidal Tendencies, funk metal supergroup Infectious Grooves, heavy metal band Black Label Society, and has worked with Jerry Cantrell and Ozzy Osbourne.
Alvin Youngblood Hart
Alvin Youngblood Hart (born Gregory Edward Hart, March 2, 1963 in Oakland, California, United States) is a Grammy Award-winning American musician.
Hart was born in Oakland, California, and spent some time in Carroll County, Mississippi, in his youth, where he was influenced by the Mississippi Country Blues performed by his relatives. Hart is known as one of the world’s foremost practitioners of country blues. He is also known as a faithful torchbearer for the 1960s and 1970s guitar rock of his youth, as well as Western Swing and vintage country. His music has been compared to a list of diverse artists ranging from Lead Belly, Spade Cooley to acoustic and electric guitar as well as banjo and sometimes the mandolin. Bluesman Taj Mahal once said about Hart: “The boy has got thunder in his hands.” Hart himself said, “I guess my big break came when I opened for Taj Mahal for four nights at Yoshi’s.”
His debut album, Big Mama’s Door, came out in 1996. In 2003, Hart’s album Down in the Alley was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album. In 2005, Hart received a Grammy Award for his contribution to Beautiful Dreamer – The Songs of Stephen Foster.
Hart was featured in the 2003 Wim Wenders film The Soul of a Man, which was featured in Martin Scorsese’s film series The Blues. Hart was also featured in the documentary Last of the Mississippi Jukes. Hart appeared in the film The Great Debaters in 2007, playing a 1930s juke-joint musician.
In 2010 Hart teamed up with friends Jimbo Mathus and Luther Dickinson to form The South Memphis String Band. Their first album, Home Sweet Home, was nominated for “Best Acoustic Album” at the 2011 Blues Foundation Music Awards. The group released a second album, Old Times There, in the spring of 2012.
Corey Harris (born February 21, 1969; Denver, Colorado) is an American blues and reggae musician, currently residing in Charlottesville, Virginia. Along with Keb’ Mo’ and Alvin Youngblood Hart, he raised the flag of acoustic guitar blues in the mid-1990s. He was featured on the 2003 PBS television mini-series, The Blues, in an episode directed by Martin Scorsese.
Chester Arthur Burnett (June 10, 1910 – January 10, 1976), known as Howlin’ Wolf, was a Chicago blues singer, guitarist, and harmonica player, originally from Mississippi. With a booming voice and imposing physical presence, he is one of the best-known Chicago blues artists. The musician and critic Cub Koda noted, “no one could match Howlin’ Wolf for the singular ability to rock the house down to the foundation while simultaneously scaring its patrons out of its wits.” Producer Sam Phillips recalled, “When I heard Howlin’ Wolf, I said, ‘This is for me. This is where the soul of man never dies.'” Several of his songs, including “Smokestack Lightnin'”, “Killing Floor” and “Spoonful”, have become blues and blues rockstandards. In 2011, Rolling Stone magazine ranked him number 54 on its list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”.
The Neville Brothers
The Neville Brothers are a very distant relative to my family on father’s side by the way. The Neville Brothers is an American R&B/soul/funk group, formed in 1977 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The group notion started in 1976, when the four brothers of the Neville family, Art (born 1937), Charles, (1938–2018), Aaron (b. 1941), and Cyril (b. 1948) got together to take part in the recording session of The Wild Tchoupitoulas, a Mardi Gras Indian group led by the Nevilles’ uncle, George Landry (“Big Chief Jolly”).
In 1988, the group released Uptown from EMI featuring guests including Branford Marsalis, Keith Richards, and Carlos Santana. The following year saw the release of Yellow Moon from A&M Records produced by Daniel Lanois. The track “Healing Chant” from that album won best pop instrumental performance of the Grammy Awards.
In 1990, the Neville Brothers contributed “In the Still of the Night” to the AIDS benefit album Red Hot + Blue produced by the Red Hot Organization.
Also in 1990, they appeared on the bill at that year’s Glastonbury Festival. Due to Art Neville’s health issues, the band kept a low profile in the late 1990s onto the early 2000s. They made a comeback in 2004, however, with the album, Walkin’ In The Shadow Of Life, from Back Porch Records, their first newly recorded effort in five years.
All brothers except Charles, a Massachusetts resident, had been living in New Orleans, but following Hurricane Katrina in 2005 Cyril and Aaron moved out of the city. They had not been performing in New Orleans since Katrina hit the city, however, they finally returned to perform there at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in 2008, being given the closing spot which had been reserved for them for years.
Infrequently, Ivan Neville, Aaron’s son (keyboards) and Ian Neville, Art’s son (electric guitar), both of the band Dumpstaphunk, have played with the band in recent years. The group formally disbanded in 2012 but reunited in 2015 for a farewell concert in New Orleans. Charles Neville died of pancreatic cancer on April 26, 2018 at the age of 79.
Video I Made On Rumble:
Till Next Time…Give Thanks!