Rock N Roll
Jimi Hendrix would be 70 today were he still around to have birthdays. And I am sure that if he were still around he would not be opening his concerts with “Purple Haze”.
A70-year-old Hendrix would not be playing anything like the virtuoso pop he was trying to escape at the time of his death.
The Rolling Stones this week opened the first concert of their - probably the last - tour with “I Want to be Your Man”, the debut record which Lennon/McCartney wrote for them in 1963 -19-flippin-63, about 50 years ago
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You don’t have to read very far into Steve Earle’s 2001 short story collection, Doghouse Roses, to know he might not have been the best husband and father. While the book is not entirely autobiographical, Earle admits much of what he writes about was informed by his own life’s experience.
After a spectacular relationship bust-up in the desert around Joshua Tree east of Los Angeles, one character in the title story falls into a self-destructive spiral. “…he had his publisher wire him some cash and prepay a plane ticket to Nashville, where Bobby continued to do all the right things to kill himself for three more years. No money. No Car. No place to live. But the worst was yet to come.”
Followers of Earle’s life story will know from Lauren St John’s raw biography Hardcore Troubadour, life in Nashville for the Texan was as hard as it gets. At one stage he’s admitted to hospital after an overdose and wakes in his bed, wondering what had gone down.
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Throughout my high school years I used to walk to Brighton High in Adelaide’s beach suburbs with my mate Andy Durant. Andy and I liked walking because we could smoke a ciggie or two and talk about music.
Andy went on to become, all too briefly, one of Australia’s most promising song-writers, penning tunes for a South Australian band, Stars, until cancer took him at the ridiculously young age of 25. There was a brilliant memorial concert for Andy in Melbourne featuring a stellar line up including Richard Clapton, Broderick Smith, Don Walker, Jimmy Barnes, Ian Moss, Glyn Mason … you get the idea.
Among Andy’s enduring legacy was helping a young kid who came from a home without much music discover the delights of rock, blues, folk and country songs.
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