Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Oh that takes me back.....


One of the benefit's of getting older is that you start to get a backlog of experiences and (mildly) interesting stories although to actually label them as anecdotes or finally perfected Niven-esque gems might be pushing it.

Blues is where its at children, as my ipod is now charged and keeping me company on the cold winters mornings now I'm letting the "random" function fly constantly and have found it to be bringing up Howlin' Wolf, Elmore James, Albert King and Buddy Guy by the earful. This daily soundtrack has opened up my memory banks and I've remembered a meeting (unplanned as it was) of one of my guitar heroes and influence to everyone from Eric Clapton to Jimi Hendrix, ladies and gentlemen Buddy Guy.....


The scene of the crime for you all is London's Royal Festival hall and after sitting through the frankly pathetic warm up act of The Police's chorus effected guitar twanger Andy Summers and his "jazz" trio which made me for the first time ever start to appreciate Sting.

After the curtain had gone down, a few refreshments later and suddenly the show was on! Horn sections blasting out the Muddy Waters "I Just Want To Make Love To You" with all the balls of a Chicago blues band that you could hope for. The gig progressed and held my attention throughout although my previously mentioned refreshment's started to remind me of their presence and I had to excuse myself and visit the gents, although I had waited for a slow song so I didn't miss any of the fireworks. After I had finished I attempted to walk back into the room to my seat but a firm hand blocked my way and I was told I had to wait till the song finished and in the applause I could slide in, "sorry...house rules"...I could hear the music muffled as it was from the other side of the door and then as the band were winding down they picked up the tempo and dropped straight into "Damn Right I've Got The Blues" and started tearing the neck of the guitar with such fire that the crowd were whipped up into a cheering frenzy. By then I'm almost fighting the doorman to get in and see this natural wonder but "sorry, rules is rules" bloody jobsworth...the cheering got louder and louder while I got more and more disappointed and annoyed out in the foyer.

Then it happened.

The door that had been so firmly shut in my face only minutes before was now open and walking out of it with his polka dot stratocaster was Buddy Guy himself, his guitar plugged into a wireless pack and a few roadies behind him clearing his path while he'd played the solo walking through the crowd, he'd reached the door and was now walking past me and the doorman, he caught my eye, smiled, walked past the bar and then back past me again, all along soloing furiously.

Then it happened.

I don't know why, maybe I wasn't paying attention... It seems like a dream now, definitely in slow motion but I didn't realise my leg was sticking out at an angle.

Then it happened.

Buddy tripped over my converse...down,down,down he went. Like a fat girl hit with a foot ball, he stumbled and fell to one knee, his once riffing Stratocaster now feedback like stabbed seagull...he got his balance back and carried on walking, while shaking his head.

Damn right I had the blues...

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