LondonJazzCollector – I was fortunate enough to grow up in the “Blues Boom” of the mid to late Sixties, and would go to the Marquee in Wardour Street for evenings with John Mayalls Bluesbreakers, Jeff Beck, all the greats. I don’t think there is any instrument so expressive in those days as the electric guitar (mine was a Gibson Les Paul original) in the hands of the great players like Peter Green and the young Clapton. For me as a player in those days, the emotion was all in the skill of the vibrato. Bend that B or E string two notes and keep it singing; We used to fit Banjo strings for their greater suppleness.Then crank the Marshall stack to overload for that dirty sustain. It was rarely about “note” but more what you did to them that expressed the emotion. Your whole body is behind that vibrato, it wasphysical, finger tips hardened like stone.
Personally I trace it all back to the Otis Rush original version of “So Many Roads”: the sound and voice that launched a thousand players. I don’t think its ever been done better since, still rgabs up my emotions. I don’t follow the scene now but I dust my blues every now and then, and it still hits the spot. Add BBKing’s Live at the Regal (original vinyl). Timeless, and amost entirrely three chords. Ridiculous when you think about it.
C.Flitney – You are a lucky man, (not that I’m envious at all).
Thanks for sharing your memories with us and I really appreciate your support.