Pete's Blog

Blues Jam

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Last night I went to a good club in Seattle called Highway 99 to sit in on their Monday night Blues jam. It was a good time - Bubbles came along and raised my status among the other players. I sang "The Battle is Over" and "Never Do Right Blues" to a reasonable level of satisfaction. Of course, "blues" means something different today than it did when Charlie Bendes and I were playing around the church basements of Pittsburgh or when I was holed up in Erie, Atlanta, St. Louis, you name it, stealing licks off 78s. What I heard last night was mostly what I'd call "rock" music, heavy guitars and drums playing stuff you might have heard on a Mountain LP in the 1970s. Still, as I said last week, if young electric guitarists are playing music that was recorded 35 years ago by blues-revival acts like Cream or Paul Butterfield, that's not much different (in its chronology, anyway) from me listening in 1968 to records made in 1928 by the Memphis Jug Band or Charlie Patton. So rave on young brother, say I. I'm going to take the telecaster in there next Monday night, leave the Martin at home. I can play like Eric Clapton, too, you know.

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