Serge Gainsbourg singing “Chez Les Ye-Ye.” Serge is Pee Wee Herman on sopors. He rocked, but not as much as Pierre Cassel whose shoes became glued to the floor during the video. Cassel’s son is a rapper named “Rockin’ Squat.” Go figger.
Now there’s some Red Hot Rockin’ Squat by Robert Gordon with Link Wray in 1978. That’s a cover of a 1958 hit by Billy Lee Riley, titled simply “Red Hot.” The song can be traced to the work of Robert Johnson.
Personally, I think Robert Johnson was/is overrated, and his fame is due to his recordings covered by British rockers of the early 60s.
Yeah I know, Blasphemy. Johnson got picked, while others, like Papa Charlie Jackson were overlooked. I’m not an authority on musical anthropology, so take it for what it’s worth.
Jackson’s “Airy Man” showed up on a Yazoo Records album that the Missus gave me years ago. The chords were unusual, and the liner notes said this:
“Airy Man Blues,” a work in the key of D, illustrates Jackson’s most complex blues picking in the uptempo idiom at which he and very few other bluesmen excelled. Two fingers play melody and harmonies with support from a thumb which is quite steady within several different patterns. Often he executes complex or seemingly impromptu runs on three or more strings. The basic chord changes are:
D, D, G7, D;
G, D, E, A/A7;
D, D, G7, D;
G7, D, E/A7, D.
In the break he changes to
B, B7, E, E7, A, A7 D/D minor, D.
Despite the length of these phrases and the comedy of his lyrics, the song is well within the basic blues idiom, lacking in all essential ragtime qualities except speed.
So I looked for a live vid of Papa Charlie Jackson, but instead found a cool tribute by “Gnarlemagne.” It works.
With that we’re out. Have a great weekend, folks and be back here tomorrow for more inane entertainment.