Thursday, September 23, 1999
From the beginning Canned Heat was not your typical rock band, Canned Heat was founded by blues historians and record collectors Alan “Blind Owl” Wilson and Bob “The Bear” Hite. Drawing from their large collection of 78 rpm records, the group specialized in updating obscure old blues recordings. Applying this bold approach, the band attained two worldwide hits, “On The Road Again” in 1968 and “Going Up The Country” in 1969, an update of Mineola, Texas bluesman, Henry Thomas', version complete with penny whistle.
They gained international attention with their performances at 1967's Monterey Pop Festival and the headlining at the original Woodstock Festival in 1969. Through the years Cannned Heat's personnel have evolved to the band which still carries on in the style of founders. Led by Fito De la Parra, a member from the earliest days, he had played drums professionally since he was 16 years old. He was born in Mexico City on February 8, 1946, and as he grew older, had become a member of a series of Mexican rock bands and drumming for the Coasters, T-Bone Walker, Ben E. King, Mary Wells, Etta James, and the Platters.
Because of their iconic sound and memorable songs, the band has been heard television commercials including “On The Road Again” for Miller Beer, “Goin’ Up The Country” for Pepsi, Chevrolet and McDonalds, “Let’s Work Together” for Lloyd’s Bank, England’s Electric Company and for Target Stores and other songs for 7-Up, Levi’s and Heineken Beer.
The band line up when playing Alleyfest included Fito, Robert Lucas, Greg Kage, and the one and only, Harvey "The Snake" Mandell. And while the band may have changed over the years, one thing that never changes is the fact that this band can "boogie!"
Canned Heat still Boogie at www.CannedHeat.boogie