Tuesday, July 18, 2006

"Boom Boom"

Wow, it's hot. The kind of weather that suggests quietly but firmly that you should either stay indoors and try to move as little as possible, or pop the roof on your convertible and head for the open road.
And if you choose the latter, may I suggest some John Lee Hooker to accompany your cruising? This is serious driving music, the sort of thing you'd play if you were in a rush to get out of California before midnight and had a posse on your tail.
One thing I am eternally grateful for is the electrification of the blues. Now, I yield to nobody in my appreciation of Robert Johnson and his peers who brought the blues out of the cotton fields and into the radio stations, but listening to the old recordings of one man and a bottleneck kinda pales in comparison to what can be achieved with electric amplification.
Case in point here: you get the old, hoary, dirty growl that comes as a standard part of the Hooker package, standing solidly on a bedrock of blues that just begs to be played loud. The intro is as close to perfect as you'll ever get, the half-spoken words over an insistent, hurried riff but when the entire band joins in... well, it's as good as it gets. Small wonder that "Boom Boom" is officially one of the songs that shaped rock and roll.

No comments: