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|6/26/2003 4:22 PM|
|Stephen Giles||Chuck Berry|
Interesting character, only saw him once in 1964, terrific lyrics to perhaps no more than a dozen song templates. Often the guitar playing is fairly abysmal although the piano playing is superb - Johnny Johnson was the man, anyone know anything about him?
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|6/26/2003 8:31 PM|
Chuck is legendary for being difficult. Apparently he would not step on a stage before being paid first, in cash. I wonder if he paid his taxes!!
|6/26/2003 8:48 PM|
After Chuck spent some time in prison in the 60s (the first conviction was thrown out after the trial was shown to be blatantly racist, after he was convicted a second time Berry always maintained his innocence), he gained a reputation for being very difficult.
He got stiffed a lot early on so I don't blame him for demanding cash BEFORE he plays. It's all in the contract and he always maintains that the only people who should have a problem with it are those who are trying to rip him off. He also plays for EXACTLY the contracted time - not a minute more, not a minute less.
|6/26/2003 10:45 PM|
That's probably why his playing sucks... cause he's always got one eye on his watch
|6/30/2003 1:10 AM|
He also doesn't normally travel with his own band. He just has the promoter put togeter a band in each city. Most of the time he has never even met them before he plays. So, if they suck, so does he. I saw him in the 80s and he didn't even bother to tune his guitar. It was awful.
On the other hand, I have seen videos of him with Keither Richards and Eric Clapton where he rocked.
I guess it depends on the level of effort.
|6/30/2003 6:14 AM|
||Chuck Berry - Live at the Fillmore|
This album on Mercury Records has been reissued on CD and with the Steve Miller Blues Band backing him it is one of my favorite live albums from the hippy-dippy 60's.
Rather than just play his greatest hits (as he generally does at his shows) he played a lot of blues tunes and jams, pretty much what you'd expect someone to play at the Fillmore.
As for Johnny Johnson he put out one or two CD's in the 90's, backed with a stellar cast of rock stars. (I prefer his old recordings on Chess backing up Chuck and other artists.)
|6/30/2003 1:47 PM|
Sounds great, I will have to pick it up.
Lets not forget, his guitar riffs influanced all of the rock we listen to in one way or another.
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