When I was a young guitar student around 8 to 14, i thought

A discussion of the blues for blues lovers and fans.

When I was a young guitar student around 8 to 14, i thought

Postby lightninboy » Tue Feb 15, 2005 9:31 am

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Has blues got any better?

Postby lightninboy » Wed Feb 16, 2005 12:54 pm

Well its seems that it may be a forgone conclusion.
5 votes for pre 60's, none for post 60's.
I voted for the pre 1960's myself, but 10 to 15 years ago I would have swung the other way.
As I get older, I understand the older era a lot more.
Is it that we mellow as we get older?
Do we get wiser as to what blues is all about?
Or have most of you always loved the old stuff, from a young age?
Please indulge me, as I find this subject very interesting.

Another point worth considering; Early blues was a kin to pop music today. There was more focus on blues back then than there is today. Blues enthusiast's and performers today are almost a minority group compared to modern pop.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby stumblin » Wed Feb 16, 2005 6:52 pm

I wonder if it's really as simple as a clear-cut division between pre-war and post-war (I'm referring to WWII here, natch).
Many of my favourite musicians have recorded what could be characterised as pre-war styles in the post war period.
e.g. John Lee Hooker, Lightnin' Hopkins, to name but five...
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby blueswriter » Wed Feb 16, 2005 11:26 pm

"Blues enthusiast's and performers today are almost a minority group compared to modern pop."

Blues enthusiasts and performers are definitely a minority today compared to modern pap (or pop). It's recognized by many that blues had two truly creative and formative periods... the Pre-war style, whether it be players from Texas, Mississippi, Georgia and other locales when the music was still in its relatively early stages of recording, and the Post-war era from the later 1940s into the early 1950s when the amplified movement got rolling. After that, everything has pretty much been a reworking of tried-and-true styles from years before. This isn't to say that good blues hasn't been played since then, but in the years following the 1950s, much more influence has come into modern blues which often tends to water down the purity it had in its formative years. I'm sure there are some who'll disagree with this, but I don't think you can improve on perfection - which is what I see Pre-war and immediate Post-war Blues as.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby grady » Wed Feb 16, 2005 11:31 pm

IMO,,,Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker are about as good as it gets in the Post-War era.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby bighollowtwang » Wed Feb 16, 2005 11:32 pm

I think the only thing blues has gained since 1960 is a whole lot of volume and painfully long guitar solos.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby allanlummox » Wed Feb 16, 2005 11:53 pm

Only one cure for that.


Play shorter solos.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby grady » Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:02 am

>Only one cure for that.
>
>
>Play shorter solos.


Yep,,,sho 'nuff
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby bighollowtwang » Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:11 am

>Only one cure for that.
>
>
>Play shorter solos.

Heckle the guys who don't.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby allanlummox » Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:28 am

Man, I once grabbed this guys hat - a black one, flat, with conchos - and started a game of "Keep away" at a Blues Jam at " The Barbary" in Philly.



He got the message, and the next week, played "The Things that I Used to Do" - his first Non SRV inspired tune that I'd heard.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby bighollowtwang » Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:39 am

[updated:LAST EDITED ON Feb-16-05 AT 07:39 PM (EST)]>He got the message, and the next week, played "The Things
>that I Used to Do" - his first Non SRV inspired tune that
>I'd heard.

Hate to break it to you but SRV covered that one! Anyone with a SRV hat has a very high chance of having learned that song off a SRV record as opposed to the Guitar Slim original!
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby allanlummox » Thu Feb 17, 2005 1:02 am

Yea, I know - but he wasn't wearing the hat anymore, so we gave him that one.
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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby rustyslide » Thu Feb 17, 2005 3:43 am

I first heard that one done by G. Love...

ramble ramble ramble
I got ramblin' on my mind.

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RE: Has blues got any better?

Postby bosco » Thu Feb 17, 2005 3:56 pm

The vast array of equipment, effects and wattage available today is the chief problem as I see it...and why blues has not and will not get better.

The AFBF DVDs are convincing proof that ensemble blues reached the zenith when played at lower volumes to the natural level of the drums. This allows all of the dynamics and articulation to be heard that the music was meant to have.

There's no shortage of well-meaning players that want to do justice to the blues...they just don't know how. The vast majority are classic rockers who became addicted to wattage in the 70s and 80s. They are not willing to digress to 5 watt practice amps, upright basses and brushes for the drums. Louder has to be better, right?

Then again, your generation XX audience who doesn't appreciate substance begins to factor in. "What? You don't have a video?" ... "Turn it up!"..."Play some rock!"

Guess I'm just getting old...but not too old to appreciate great blues...played the right way.

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