Monday, June 23, 1997

Katie Webster ~ 1997

Katie Webster, the Swamp Boogie Queen, was born January 1936. She is acknowledged as one of the most important blues artists of her generation.
Katie had to deal with deeply religious parents who did everything in their power to stop their daughter from playing R&B. But the rocking sounds of Fats Domino and Little Richard were simply too persuasive. Local guitarist, Ashton Savoy, took her under his wing, sharing her 1958 debut 45 for the Kry logo.
In 1964, she guested with Otis Redding's band at the Bamboo Club in Lake Charles and so impressed the charismatic Redding that he absconded with her. For the next three years, Webster served as his opening act, but after his death went into semi-retirement. Until the 1980s this boisterous singer and pianist was known only to record collectors, but beginning in the 1980s she was booked for European tours and recorded albums for the German record label, Ornament Records.
To balance these solo efforts, she cut You Know That's Right with the band Hot Links, and the album that established her in the United States; The Swamp Boogie Queen with "Silent Partner" Russell Jackson, Tony Coleman, and Andrew "Jr. Boy" Jones and with guest spots by Bonnie Raitt and Robert Cray. The lovably extroverted boogie pianist encored with Two-Fisted Mama! and No Foolin' before suffering the stroke. She died on September 5, 1999 at the age of 63. ~ Wikipedia

Saturday, June 21, 1997

Sam "Bluzman" Tayor ~ 1997

"Sam "Bluzman" Taylor was born in Mobile, Alabama, and cut his teeth early in music, beginning singing gospel at age 3.His first major professional gig was as Maxine Brown's band leader at the Apollo Theater. Sam recorded for various labels including Capitol Records and authored hundreds of songs, many of them hits and some even gold records like "Do It 'Til You're Satisfied" by the BT Express. His songs can be heard rendered by Freddie King, Son Seals, Jimmy Witherspoon, Jay and the Americans, Joey Dee, Maxine Brown and Joe Tex. Taylor also was bandleader/guitarist for the likes of Big Joe Turner, The Isley Brothers, Tracy Nelson, Otis Redding and more notably Sam and Dave.

Taylor was also original member/guitarist of Joey Dee and the Starliters, one of the first integrated rock and roll band that contributed to the twist-dance craze with the "Peppermint Twist". He was also a mentor to, and wrote some of the first songs for The Vagrants which included innovative rock guitarist, Leslie West,of Mountain.
At the start of the 1970s, Sam & Bennie were hired as staff writers for The Beach Boys new record label, Brother Records.

In the early 1970s, Taylor released his opus Tunnels Of My Mind on the GRT record label and in the late 70s, he moved to Santa Monica, California, where he created a scene of his own at Venice Beach that attracted fellow artists like Rickie Lee Jones and good friend Albert Collins. He later moved to Tucson, Arizona where a supportive blues community helped him become a celebrity of the town. He was living in Tucson when we invited him to play Alleyfest, but it was during this time his band moved to New York, so Sam hired a car and driver to bring him to Longview for the weekend.

Sam later rejoined his band in New York, and lived theruntil his death in January 5, 2009 at his home in Islandia, New York. He was 74". ~Wikipedia