Jimi Hendrix, Johnny B. Goode

Posted in Jimi Hendrix, Youtube Favs on November 10th, 2011 by Willie

And here it is, the ultimate rock and roll guitar song played by the ultimate guitar rock god.  We have Jimi Hendrix, taking the Chuck Berry classic “Johnny B. Goode,” to a place no one thought imaginable.  His guitar sounds like a galloping steed from Hell, riding headlong into a firestorm, conquering everything in its path.  I mean, what are we listening to here really?  It’s kind of like that scene from “Back to the Future,” where Marty McFly takes you through the history of rock and roll with the song.  The one difference being that Jimi just plays the song at the end of the history.  He takes the song to the limit of rock and roll, almost breaking it forever.  It’s remarkably spellbinding and should be studied by musicologists.  So, until then, it’ll just be up to us try our best and take in what’s presented below, enjoy.

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Jimi Hendrix, Hear My Train A Comin'

Posted in Jimi Hendrix, Youtube Favs on November 10th, 2011 by Willie

You’d suspect on a site like mine, there would be no shortage of Jimi Hendrix material to peruse through, but alas, this is the first one I’ve got.  It’s not for lack of love for the man, as in fact, I possess great quantities of the emotion for the guy.  I sit firmly in the camp of considering him the greatest rock and roll guitarist ever, a controversial position I know, (wink) and one that requires a bit of elucidation.  When Chuck Berry laid down his signature riff for Johnny B. Goode, he showed the world how electric guitar was all that was really needed for rock and roll.  No offense to Jerry Lee Lewis and Little Richard’s patented piano lead attack, but the sound and image of the electric guitar would define the genre of music, truly giving the style its rock more than anything else.  Jimi proved this thesis by taking the electric guitar to its logical end point through his experimental rocking.  It’s not like Jimi was technically the best guitar player ever, he was simply the most innovative, and the most in tune with its possibilities.  His insights transformed him into something the world had never seen before, a sort of improvisational Mozart, creating manic symphonies on the spot, all with just one instrument.  Now, with all that said about Jimi changing the world of music with his electric guitar, I present to you quiet acoustic Jimi on 12 string acoustic…Hah!  Don’t worry, electric monster Jimi is coming tomorrow, but no proper introduction of the man would be complete without a thorough discussion on his pioneering efforts in the field of electricity.  This performance of his original, “Hear My Train A Comin,'” is an awesome stunning and intimate look at the man just playing his guitar in a white room, singing the blues.  It’s among the best moments in music history, and luckily its here for all of us to enjoy, so please do.

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Chuck Berry, Johnny B. Goode, and Maybellene

Posted in Chuck Berry, Youtube Favs on March 22nd, 2011 by Willie

Part 21 of my youtube countdown continues with a special Two for Tuesday!  A few weeks ago we saw Chuck Berry rip up “Roll Over Beethoven” on a French TV show in 1958.  It was one of the most iconic moments of all time, and guess what, we’re going back to that very same show for more Berry goodness.  The first vid is Johnny B. Goode, performed with a modified intro solo and sung in a higher key.  Its rollicking.  Next is Maybellene, Chuck’s first hit.  In this performance, Chuck is giving you all his amazing dance moves, PLUS his absolutely killer guitar play.  To me it just looks like he turns his guitar into a piece of rubber, bending it to his demonic rock desires.  It’s just something about the mad look in Chuck’s eyes that makes me feel like that Devil is involved somewhere in making this little moment of awesomeness…Well, anyway, enjoy folks!

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Motorhead, Let it Rock!

Posted in Motorhead, Youtube Favs on March 4th, 2011 by Willie

Part 15 of my youtube favorites continues with Motorhead covering Chuck Berry’s Let it Rock on the old David Letterman show.  Now, you’ve probably never heard of Let it Rock.  It’s one of Chuck’s lesser known tunes.  It’s basically Johnny B Goode with different lyrics and no choruses.  But the lyrics are amazing, featuring an incredible intro, “In the heat of the day, down in Mobile, Alabama, working on the railroad with a steel driving hammer…”  AMAZING, and Motorhead knew this.  I love this hard thrashing performance that basically proves the Marty McFly maxim; play any Chuck Berry song hard, and thou shalt rule the universe.  Also great to see Paul Shaffer as a temporary member of Motorhead, just legendary.



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