Friday, February 6, 2015

how flash you play it

"Rhythm and blues was the gate."

--------------- [Life, Keith Richards' autobiography, excerpt] ------------------

Cyril Davies and Alexis Korner got a club going, the weekly spot at the Ealing Jazz Club, where rhythm and blues freaks could conglomerate.  Without them there might have been nothing.  It was where the whole blues network could go, all the Bexleyheath collectors.

People who read the ad came down from Manchester and Scotland just to meet the faithful and hear Alexis Korner's Blues Incorporated, which also had the young Charlie Watts on drums and sometimes Ian Stewart on piano....

Almost nobody was booking this kind of music in clubs at the time.  It's where we all met to swap ideas and swap records and hang.

 Andrew Loog Oldham, the Stones' manager in the early days

Rhythm and blues was a very important distinction in the '60s.  Either you were blues and jazz or you were rock and roll, but rock and roll had died and gone pop -- nothing left in it.

Rhythm and blues was a term we pounced on because it meant really powerful blues jump bands from Chicago.  It broke through the barriers.

We used to soften the blow for the purists who liked our music but didn't want to approve of it, by saying it's not rock and roll, it's rhythm and blues.

Totally pointless categorization of something that is the same [stuff] -- it just depends on how much you lay the backbeat down or how flash you play it.


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