There is a fabulous photo of Keith Richards in today’s Guardian, which has the most beautiful colours and which gives a real sense of the journey, written in his time-worn, uncompromising features, from young blues enthusiast to old bluesman. The picture of a rock ‘n’ roller who tracked the history of the music to its source:
Read the article here. Though not exactly full of new information, it does highlight one of the most important cultural/historical features of the Stones’ early visits to the US, in their music and in their insistence on having the early bluesmen on their TV shows as guests, that of bringing to the attention of Americans – particularly of White America – their own, ignored musical heritage.
I think we just thought it was our job to pay back, to give them what they’ve given us. They’ve given us the music and the friendship, and let’s stand up, be men, and give them a blues, and it went to No 1. Mr Howlin’ Wolf, he didn’t mind at all. It was maybe a moment of bravado, in retrospect, but it worked. We have been blessed by the music that we listened to, and let’s see if we can actually spin it back around and make American white kids listen to Little Red Rooster. You had it all the time, pal, you know. You just didn’t listen.
We’re all listening now: where is the article placed? In the culture section. Roll over Beethoven!