Swithin

Chuck Berry (1926-2017)

97 posts in this topic

It just hit me. Several years ago, I read an article that indicated that Philly's young people, largely because of musical tradition and the great DJs, had the best musical taste of any city in the U.S. It said that, by way of contrast, Phoenix was tone-deaf. Would you have moved to Arizona if you knew that?

 

That might be true about Phoenix (a city I often refer to as "the nondescript urban sprawl of Los Angeles but without a beach and with the atmospheric thermostat cranked up another 25 degrees in summer"...in other words DGF, Phoenix holds no charms for me), but up here in the higher altitudes of northern Arizona, there seems to be a whole different "feeling" and/or "character" to the place, and something perhaps exemplified by the large number of artists and "New Agers" to be found in Sedona and other nearby towns here in the Verde Valley.

 

The small mountainside town of Jerome, from where the aforementioned radio station "Gulch Radio" KZRJ-FM studio exists and broadcasts, is another little burg up here in the Arizona's Verde Valley. It was established as a mining town in the late-19th Century but the mining company ceased operations in the 1950s. A decade or so afterward, it would become home to a number of "Hippies", and then later the "artist types" would move in. It's now a very popular tourist destination, although not quite to the level as is Sedona now days.

 

I bring this up because the commercial free radio station KZRJ broadcasts a very eclectic blend of music. It sometimes reminds me of a famous but now long gone L.A. radio station, KMET (TCM board members and L.A. natives Arturo or James or Stephen probably remember it) and which was considered fairly "avant-garde" for its time. And, just as KMET was back in the day, I've gotten the feeling KZRJ's playlist and the separate musical programs containing a wide array of genres which they broadcast, cater to those with a fairly developed sense of musical tastes.

 

(...and so I guess the bottom like here is the thought that unlike what apparently many people who are not truly familiar with the state of Arizona seem to believe, and that being that they seem to assume most of this state can be summed up by the city of Phoenix alone, the truth is that The Grand Canyon State is a much more diverse location in almost all regards than what sometimes seems to be the general consensus among this nation's citizenry) 

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I listened to the "Geezer Rock" program on a local radio station (Jerome Arizona's KZRJ-FM 100.5 aka "Gulch Radio") yesterday. This program which is broadcast from 4pm-6pm every Sunday afternoon features rock and roll music from the mid-'50s to the mid-'60s honored Chuck Berry's passing by playing many of his recordings and those by other artists which had either covered his songs or were influenced by them.

 

The last song played during this program was one of the few slower tunes Chuck would ever record, "(In the)Wee Wee Hours", a blues tune which I don't believe I had never heard before, and which impressed me quite a bit...

 

"Wee Wee Hours" was the "B" side of  "Maybelline".

 

Being a blues enthusiast and player, the "basement" band I was in used to do it in our set.  Good song and enjoyable to listen to and play.

 

 

Chuck's been referred to by many names:   "The true king of rock'n'roll",  "The father of rock'n'roll";  etc.  But Scott Pelley of CBS news tonight called him "The GODFATHER of rock'n'roll."   I kinda LIKE that  :)

 

"Havana Moon"?  Sure.  Nice tune.  But, it's a CHUCK BERRY tune, so that goes without saying  ;)

Sepiatone

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Chuck's been referred to by many names:   "The true king of rock'n'roll",  "The father of rock'n'roll";  etc.  But Scott Pelley of CBS news tonight called him "The GODFATHER of rock'n'roll."   I kinda LIKE that  :)

 

Sorry, but there should only be one Godfather, musically speaking!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5BL4RNFr58

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Sorry, but there should only be one Godfather, musically speaking!

 

 

 

Nah.  You have to keep the "Godfather" thing genre specific.  Otherwise you're gonna get people arguing that "musically speaking", the "Godfather" should be....

 

BEETHOVEN

 

MOZART

 

MILES DAVIS

 

CHARLIE PARKER

 

LOUIS ARMSTRONG

 

BOB DYLAN

 

etc., etc., etc.  ;)

 

 

Sepiatone

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Nah.  You have to keep the "Godfather" thing genre specific.  Otherwise you're gonna get people arguing that "musically speaking", the "Godfather" should be....

 

BEETHOVEN

 

MOZART

 

MILES DAVIS

 

CHARLIE PARKER

 

LOUIS ARMSTRONG

 

BOB DYLAN

 

etc., etc., etc.  ;)

 

 

Sepiatone

James Brown-----Godfather of Soul

Elvis Presley----King of Rock and Roll

Chuck Berry----Father of Rock and Roll

Bruce Springsteen---The Boss

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Sorry, but there should only be one Godfather, musically speaking!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5BL4RNFr58

If I remember correctly, James Brown is the Godfather of Soul, not Rock and Roll.

Agree with Sepia though, you really cannot say who is or is not a godfather, king, etc.  There are too many sub-genre's.

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Nah.  You have to keep the "Godfather" thing genre specific.  Otherwise you're gonna get people arguing that "musically speaking", the "Godfather" should be....

 

BEETHOVEN

 

MOZART

 

MILES DAVIS

 

CHARLIE PARKER

 

LOUIS ARMSTRONG

 

BOB DYLAN

 

etc., etc., etc.  ;)

 

 

Sepiatone

 

Genre specific?   Well what are the 3 genres associated with Armstrong, Parker and Davis?    :D

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Genre specific? Well what are the 3 genres associated with Armstrong, Parker and Davis? :D


Haydn would be in that position before Mozart.
Actually Haydn is known as the Father of the Symphony and the Father of Chamber Music.

James, I'm not an expert on Jazz, but I remember Dizzy used to appear on the Johnny Carson show and it seems like he said he did something called
"Be-Bop".

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Haydn would be in that position before Mozart.
Actually Haydn is known as the Father of the Symphony and the Father of Chamber Music.

James, I'm not an expert on Jazz, but I remember Dizzy used to appear on the Johnny Carson show and it seems like he said he did something called
"Be-Bop".

 

Note I was just teasing a fellow musician.    But you're correct that the music Dizzy and Parker were known for being the godfathers of Be-Bop,  a sub-genre of jazz.

 

So to answer my own question I would say Armstrong is the godfather of swing jazz and Davis of Modal jazz (jazz based on a static harmony).

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Note I was just teasing a fellow musician.    But you're correct that the music Dizzy and Parker were known for being the godfathers of Be-Bop,  a sub-genre of jazz.

 

So to answer my own question I would say Armstrong is the godfather of swing jazz and Davis of Modal jazz (jazz based on a static harmony).

You people are throwing around the term "godfather" rather loosely. The mob may be taking notice.

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I don't know about that, but I just know our AM station in the midwest played it and it was on jukeboxes. In fact they played all of Chuck Berry songs-- that's how I know them.
 

 

In those days, they counted jukeboxes in their rating system. Because remember, Chuck would have been considered "race music" and not played on many stations.

 

 


--As for Keith Richards and Brian Jones, they graduated with a song on their
12 X 5 album called "Around and Around".
 

 

Around and Around is one of my favorites (Its true, you can't have just one ). That was the Stones go to song live for a lot of years. It helped Make Mick's live stage persona. 

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In those days, they counted jukeboxes in their rating system. Because remember, Chuck would have been considered "race music" and not played on many stations.

 

 

 

Around and Around is one of my favorites (Its true, you can't have just one ). That was the Stones go to song live for a lot of years. It helped Make Mick's live stage persona. 

There was really nothing "black" about Berry's music. Just like the later Hendrix, he was rock through and through. I doubt if black audiences were big fans of Berry.

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J.B., The Hardest Working Man in Show Business, Soul Brother

Number one. Elvis Presley, Soul Brother Number 2,690,903.

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J.B., The Hardest Working Man in Show Business, Soul Brother

Number one. Elvis Presley, Soul Brother Number 2,690, 903.

I forgot someone:

 

Aretha Franklin-------Queen of Soul

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I forgot someone:

 

Aretha Franklin-------Queen of Soul

Yep. And though I wasn't a big fan, Michael Jackson was

called the King of Pop. Then there's the Queen of Country

Music. I remember two women being called that--Tammy Wynette

and Loretta Lynn.

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There was really nothing "black" about Berry's music. Just like the later Hendrix, he was rock through and through. I doubt if black audiences were big fans of Berry.


Hold on here a minute - - let's take a giant step back.

Rock and roll comes from black music and the essence of Berry's lyrics and musical culture is Black American culture.

What we just have to realize is that the essence of rock and roll music is absolutely black and we take it from there.

Do you remember what Sam Phillips said about Elvis Presley-- he had to find a white man who could sing like a black man so he could sell him to the white mainstream Society.

American culture is and assimilation of all the different groups who live here - - the country and western and the folk music element of rock and roll is just as present as the rhythm and blues element.

Just like I've always believed about tap dancing - - another Great American art form-- is that no one group owns any American art form-- it belongs to all of us.
However,We can't deny where the foundation of rock and roll came from and who was doing it first.

Just like tap dancing - - when you come to a culture that's American, you've got to have many aspects to it although some do stand out.

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Hold on here a minute - - let's take a giant step back.

Rock and roll comes from black music and the essence of Beery's lyrics and musical culture is Black American culture.

What we just have to realize is that the essence of rock and roll music is absolutely black and we take it from there.

Do you remember what Sam Phillips said about Elvis Presley-- he had to find a white man who could sing like a black man so he could sell him to the white mainstream Society.

American culture is and assimilation of all the different groups who live here - - the country and western and the folk music element of rock and roll is just as present as the rhythm and blues element.

Just like I've always believed about tap dancing - - another Great American art form-- is that no one group owns any American art form-- it belongs to all of us.
However,We can't deny where the foundation of rock and roll came from and who was doing it first.

Just like tap dancing - - when you come to a culture that's American, you've got to have many aspects to it although some do stand out.

Take all the giant steps back you want, but Berry appealed primarily to white audiences.

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Yep. And though I wasn't a big fan, Michael Jackson was

called the King of Pop. Then there's the Queen of Country

Music. I remember two women being called that--Tammy Wynette

and Loretta Lynn.

..and Donna Summer was the "Queen of Disco".

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Yep. And though I wasn't a big fan, Michael Jackson was

called the King of Pop. Then there's the Queen of Country

Music. I remember two women being called that--Tammy Wynette

and Loretta Lynn.

 

Michael Jackson was the "King of Pop" because he told his PR people to call MTV and the music magazines and told them to call him the "King of Pop". He felt left out because he didn't have a sobriquet, so he started it himself. At the time Jackson was pre-scandal and at the height of fame and power, so they did it and it stuck.

 

Chuck Berry's sound was definitely "black", DGF, but you may be confused because a whole lot of white people copied him soon after. 

 

And Iggy Pop is the Godfather of Punk. ;)

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Take all the giant steps back you want, but Berry appealed primarily to white audiences.


Who did Sam Cooke, Clyde McPhatter, The Drifters, Jackie Wilson appeal to?-- not just white people not just black people but rock and roll audiences in general. All the black artists were on AM radio and they appealed to the mainstream - - who do you think bought all those records of The Shirelles, the Crystals, The Cookies, The Orlons?

And should I also bring up The Coasters and Ben E. King-- these were rock and roll artists who appealed to everyone.

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..and Donna Summer was the "Queen of Disco".

And Freddie Mercury was the Queen of Queen. Sorry,

I couldn't help myself. He works hard, everyday.

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Michael Jackson was the "King of Pop" because he told his PR people to call MTV and the music magazines and told them to call him the "King of Pop". He felt left out because he didn't have a sobriquet, so he started it himself. At the time Jackson was pre-scandal and at the height of fame and power, so they did it and it stuck.

 

Chuck Berry's sound was definitely "black", DGF, but you may be confused because a whole lot of white people copied him soon after. 

 

And Iggy Pop is the Godfather of Punk. ;)

I think I might have read about Jackson doing that before and forgotten

it. It did seem to fit at the time. With rock and soul already taken, I guess

pop was the best name left. Better than the King of Bleaching.

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And Freddie Mercury was the Queen of Queen. Sorry,

I couldn't help myself. He works hard, everyday.

 

Are you kidding?  He's so lazy he hasn't done a THING for the last 26 years!

 

(eh, couln't resist either)

 

Sepiatone

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