Saturday, December 17, 2005

Guitar on the River

One of the things I am beginning to notice as I enter 'doodah'-hood is the increasing irrelevance of my allusions, of the cultural literacy once espoused by E.D. Hirsch -- like when a young friend never heard of the legendary rock 'n' roll performer in this photo.

At age 79, the "black hillbilly" still has it -- moving like a man twenty years younger (I should know). Last night Chuck Berry rocked the house -- along with daughter, Ingrid, and son Charles, Jr, and two other sidemen -- at the Argosy Casino on the Mississippi in Alton, where Berry plays a couple times a year. Ingrid is also 'moving' on harmonica and vocals, while Charles Jr. plays the guitar like ringin' a bell. Expect "The Berrys" to be performing for many years after dad has gone to Rock 'n' Roll (or Hillbilly) heaven. I shot a brief (.20 second) video of the Berrys in action.

Good thing that the music was uplifting, because driving to Alton I stewed about the negative review in Nightlife of Guitars Between the Rivers, Vol 2, buried with no headline of its own between two blurbs about other musicians' projects in the making -- after the CD Release Party was completely ignored in "Music Notes" the week before. The review starts off with "every track is fine" but quickly gets to "the primary weakness". For graphics, old file photos of two of the guitarists were used, instead of the album cover, and this "review" was highlighted on the front page! More than incompetence, we're thinking. . . . more of a sandbagging.

At least the Carbondale Times found space for a more positive spin, and The Southern Illinoisan recommended it (along with Roam Home to a Dome) as a good gift for the holidays. I don't know what the Nightlife editor has against me, the guitarists, or the Hurd Brothers to give Guitars Between the Rivers short shrift for two years running, but I'll explore the reasons in the "Meeting the Media" chapter of my blook, which reminds me . . .

Carbondale After Blog won't be available in local bookstores until March 1 -- even though the deadline for the Blooker Prize is January 30, 2006. The Official Rules say entries must be printed and bound. Since my blook will be only partially (and minimally) in paper format -- and mostly on CD -- it may not qualify. If it does, then three copies must be submitted to LuLu Press by the end of next month. But the rest of the world will have to wait another month. In the meantime, I'll publish excerpts of selected chapters as they become ready. (You'll need TK3 Reader.)

There's a good profile of the legend at age 78 in the Charlotte Observer. Posted by Picasa


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