Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Chuck Berry at Blueberry Hill

A night at the Hill to see Chuck! I'm really glad that my friends dragged me along.

(Below: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry (born October 18, 1926) is an American guitarist, singer, and composer.

Chuck Berry is an immensely influential figure, and one of the pioneers of rock & roll music. Cub Koda wrote, "Of all the early breakthrough rock & roll artists, none is more important to the development of the music than Chuck Berry. He is its greatest songwriter, the main shaper of its instrumental voice, one of its greatest guitarists, and one of its greatest performers."[1] John Lennon was more succinct: "If you tried to give rock and roll another name, you might call it 'Chuck Berry'."

Berry was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on its opening in 1986. He received Kennedy Center Honors in 2000.

The ethereal Chuck Berry

CB, original rocker

Chuck's daughter does a solo

I'm going on-stage (in silver silk and denim)

With Chuck's son

With Chuck

Chuck's autograph

Simpsons Land at Blueberry Hill

More Simpsons

Rest of the crew

(Below: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Chuck Berry songs
Many of his songs are among the leading rock and roll anthems:

"Johnny B. Goode" - the autobiographical saga of a country boy who could "play a guitar just like ringing a bell". It was chosen as one of the greatest achievements of humanity for the Voyager I collection of artifacts. The song was also prominently featured in the feature film Back to the Future.
"Rock and Roll Music" - one of the first tunes recorded by The Beatles
"Sweet Little Sixteen" - with new lyrics, it became a hit for The Beach Boys as "Surfin' USA"
"Roll Over Beethoven" - ("tell Tchaikovsky the news"), referred to in AC/DC's "Let There be Rock"
"School Days" - its chorus, "Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll", was chosen as the title of the documentary concert film organized by Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones as his tribute to Chuck, who appears in the film with many others.
"Let It Rock" - fantasia of gambling railroad workers that lives up to the title, written under the pseudonym E. Anderson.
His other hits, many of them novelty narratives, include:

"Maybellene" - car, girl, rival, jealousy—tune based on the traditional bluegrass standard "Ida Red". (Berry was familiar with the 1938 recording of "Ida Red" by western swing band Bob Wills & his Texas Playboys.)
"Too Much Monkey Business" - teenaged attitudes, predecessor to rap, "Same thing every day, gettin' up, goin' to school, no need of me complaining, my objection's overruled". Also inspired the Bob Dylan song, "Subterranean Homesick Blues", Johnny Thunders' "Too Much Junky Business" play on title
"Promised Land" - Cross country journey in song, from Norfolk, Virginia to the Promised Land, California
"Brown Eyed Handsome Man" - adult attitudes, racism, "arrested on charges of unemployment"
"Back in the U.S.A." - which inspired The Beatles' "Back in the USSR".
"No Particular Place To Go" - car, girl, frustration
"Memphis" - unique beat, sweet story. Lonnie Mack and Johnny Rivers both built entire careers starting with this song.
"My Ding-a-Ling" - his only #1, a New Orleans novelty song that he had been singing for years and fortuitously included on a live recording in London in 1970.
"Run Rudolph Run" - his top Christmas song
"You Never Can Tell" - song made famous by the movie Pulp Fiction. Also covered by Emmylou Harris, and Bob Seger on his Greatest Hits album, under the title "C'est la Vie."
Among his blues tributes:

"Confessing the Blues" - signature tune of the famed Kansas City, Missouri jazz band of Jay McShann
"Merry Christmas, Baby" - originally by Charles Brown
"Route 66" - written by Bobby Troup and originally performed by Nat King Cole
"Things I Used to Do" by Louisiana's Guitar Slim
His songs are collected on albums like:

The Great Twenty-Eight is Berry's definitive Greatest Hits album, but the two-CD Anthology set has better sound and a more complete overview.

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