Remembering The Blues Pioneer Robert Johnson

Robert Johnson will forever be remembered as a world-class blues musician who paved the way for future generations and shaped the genre into what it is today. His landmark recordings are still hailed as some of the most incredible blues sounds ever heard. Unfortunately, like many other great talents, Johnson passed away incredibly too soon at the age of 27. The exact details of his death are unknown, but accounts say that he was poisoned by a jealous husband in the form of liquor. Johnsons music will forever be remembered and will continue to inspire all generations of music!

 

BORN THIS WEEK IN ROCK HISTORY

Percy Mayfield: August 12, 1920 (RNB Singer)

Buck Owens: August 12, 1929 (Country guitarist)

Roy Gaines: August 12, 1934 (Texas blues guitarist and singer)

Mark Knopfler: August 12, 1950 (Guitar, Vocals, and Founder of Dire Straits)

Pat Metheny: August 12, 1954 (Jazz/Fusion Guitarist)

David Crosby: August 14, 1941 (Guitar, Vocals, Songwriter, The Byrds, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young)

Tim Bogert: August 14, 1944 (Bass, Vanilla Fudge)

Larry Graham: August 14, 1946 (Bass Guitar, Sly and the Family Stone)

Oscar Peterson: August 15, 1925 (Jazz Pianist)

Sib Hashian: August 17, 1949 (Drums, Boston)

Eric Johnson: August 17, 1954 (Blues-Rock Guitarist)

Steve Firnab: August 17, 1965 (Drums, Black Crowes)

Dennis Elliott: August 18, 1950 (Drums, Foreigner)

 

DIED THIS WEEK IN ROCK HISTORY

King Curtis: August 13, 1971 (Saxophone)

Les Paul: August 13, 2009

Big Bill Broonzy: August 14, 1958 (Blues Guitar)

Roy Buchanan: August 14, 1988 (Guitar)

Jerry Wexler: August 15, 2008 (Producer)

Robert Johnson: August 16, 1938

Elvis Presley: August 16, 1977 (Vocalist & Guitarist, The King of Rock & Roll)

 

MUSIC RELEASES & TOP OF THE CHARTS

Kinks’ You Really Got Me enters UK charts: August 13th, 1964

The Beatles release Help! in the United States: August 13th, 1965

Eric Clapton releases his first solo LP, Eric Clapton: August 14th, 1970

Led Zeppelin In Through The Out Door is released: August 15th, 1979

Stevie Wonder releases his first single: August 16th, 1962

The Doors’ Waiting for the Sun tops the charts: August 17, 1968

Deep Purple releases “Hush”: August 17, 1968

Eric Clapton’s 461 Ocean Boulevard hits #1: August 17, 1974

Bad Company releases “Can’t Get Enough”: August 17, 1974

Jethro Tull’s A Passion Play hits #1: August 18, 1973

 

AND HERE IS THE GOOD STUFF…THIS WEEK IN ROCK HISTORY

– Jim Morrison’s indecent exposure trial begins in Miami, Florida. Although, honestly, we’d argue it was a pretty decent exposure; August 12th, 1970

– Janis Joplin plays her last show at Harvard: August 12, 1970

– Woodstock 94’ begins in New York. 350,000 people attend: August 12th, 1994

– Guitar virtuoso Roy Buchanan passed away at only 48 years old in a jail in Fairfax, Viriginia. Buchanan’s death was ruled a suicide, although family and friends have disputed that ruling. Buchanan is a fantastic guitarist. Give him a listen if you haven’t: August 14th, 1988

– Stephen Stills was arrested on charges of cocaine possession at a motel in California, for what it’s worth: August 14th, 1970

– After the tragic passing of Jerry Garcia, the leader of the Grateful Dead, the band cancels their fall tour. We still miss you, Jerry: August 14th, 1995

– Mourning for Elvis begins at his home, Graceland, in Tennessee. The occasion was so momentous that President Jimmy Carter issued a statement, saying, “Elvis Presley’s death deprives our country of a part of itself. He was unique and irreplaceable”: August 17, 1977

– Ringo Starr makes his Beatles debut and the core four play together live for the first time ever. The concert occurred at a horticultural society dance in Birkenhead, England. Is Ringo the greatest drummer ever? Probably not, but he would like to be under the sea in an octopus’ garden, so there’s that: August 18, 1962

– More on The Beatles: The band gets themselves in hot water after siding with Americans who dodged the Vietnam War draft by moving to Canada. This after Lennon’s “Bigger than Jesus” comment and it’s controversy city for the Fab Four: August 17, 1966

– Woodstock, Day 3. Performances include a legendary turn by Joe Cocker – that version of “A Little Help from My Friends” still smokes – CSNY, The Who, The Band, and oh yeah, a small-time guitarist who went by the name of Jimi Hendrix: August 17, 1967

– Mick Jagger shoots a film. Mick Jagger is accidentally shot in the hand during filming. No matter. Mick Jagger still manages to write the song “Brown Sugar” while shooting: August 18, 1969.

 

That’s all we got for you this week. What’d we miss? You can let us know in the comments below. Meanwhile, check out what else is new on the blog this week.

Patrick Ortiz

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