It’s funny how life turns on a dime. This post was supposed to be experimental. Not the pictures. The technology. WordPress allows you to program the time when you want to make a post. I was going to do this work last night and program the delivery time for about now. I’ve never done that although that option has been around for a while. I like posting live. For some reason I didn’t. Too many pictures to end up in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Or, was it some internal instinct that told me to just hang on? Wait a minute. Be patient. Give the notes a place to breath.
The first thing I saw when I woke up this morning was that B. B. King had passed. Probably the heart and soul of anybody’s love of music. What to say? What to think? I dunno. I think anybody who listens to music knew it was coming. It’s just a big shock when it does. Just about everybody in the world is posting their memories of him on Facebook, or they tweeting up a storm. I don’t have much to add. Not to that. Everybody is doing just fine. This is when the internet is wonderful. All those memories are sewing together into something that is way greater than its parts.
I saw B.B. King once. In the heart of all things blues. Memphis. The show was wonderful. As always. Musicians like him don’t know how to play a bad show.
It’ll be a sad day around here. I keep two things close to my heart. “The work is the prayer.” And, something I learned when my mom passed while I was spending so much time in China. A Chinese saying that translates to, “When somebody is dies and they are over 80 years old you laugh.” It’s not as heartless as it seems. It just means that person had a good long life. Celebrate it.
Eric Clapton posted a very sweet and humble video expressing his thoughts. He suggests that if you don’t know B.B.’s music that you start with an album called “Live at the Regal.” It’s at that point in time where he became… I agree. Also. “Live at the Apollo” is a great album as well.
Us? Here? Right now? We are listening to “Let The Good Times Roll.” It’s a tribute album to Louis Jordan that B.B. recorded in 1999. Louis Jordan was a big band sax player and vocalist who migrated from big band to swing and then to rhythm and blues and finally a kind of early rock n roll. The album also features a couple of New Orleans players like Dr. John. Also, the great drummer Earl Palmer and a couple of members of Ray Charles’ Band. If you have a moment take a listen. You can probably find it on YouTube.
It’s right for us. Right now. As you know I’ve been chasing all those ghosts for a book project. The real birth of rock n roll was sometime around 1947. In New Orleans. With help from all kinds of southern places. That’s what this album sounds like. 1947.
These pictures. Hmmm. Every now and then I get invited into the inside pre-second line parade preparations. It’s humbling and an honor. I wrote a lot about that about a year ago. The paraders get ready. They change from street clothes into their parade clothes; sort of like any entertainer. The old help the young. Traditions are passed down. Finally, they huddle for a moment into a prayer circle. Then, out the door they go.
The photo technique. I just reverted to one of my oldest techniques. Seems right. The ISO is as low as I can go, not get away with. The f-stop is 5.6. Whatever motion happens just makes the picture feel a little more rich and real to me.
RIP B.B. King.