Rolling Stone reports on the tribute concert to Chuck Berry as he accepted the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame American Masters of Music Award.
The concert – during which the 86-year-old Berry played – culminated a week-long celebration of his life. Other performers included Merle Haggard, Ronnie Hawkins, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Joe Bonamassa and Lemmy Kilmister.
The site has a news item today that reports the American Pop Music Hall of Fame is seeking input from the public on which group or performer should be in the inaugural class. The story the item is based on has a link to the entire list of candidates.
Paul Anka, The Beach Boys, the Beatles, the Bee Gees, Tony Bennett, Chuck Berry, Pat Boone, the Carpenters, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, Chubby Checker, the Dave Clark Five, Nat King Cole, Perry Como, Bobby Darin, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, the Everly Brothers, the Four Seasons, Connie Francis, Elton John, Dean Martin, Johnny Mathis, the Monkees, Ricky Nelson, Roy Orbison, Patti Page, Les Paul & Mary Ford, the Platters, Elvis Presley, Simon & Garfunkel, Frank Sinatra, Smokey & Miracles, The Supremes, Three Dog Night, Bobby Vinton, Dionne Warwick, Andy Williams, Hank Williams and Stevie Wonder.
I wanted to feature one of the acts on the site in addition to the news item. So I took a pen, closed my eyes and pointed to the screen. The Everly Brothers was the closest.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and Case Western Reserve University have announced that Chuck Berry will be honored as the 17th Annual American Music Masters series.
The series starts on Monday, Oct. 22 and culminates in a concert on Saturday, Oct. 27. No disrespect to any of the previous 16 honorees, but there simply aren’t 16 acts or performers in rock and roll history more important than Chuck Berry.
Here is Sweet Little Sixteen from a 1967 concert at Winterland:
It is really difficult to watch one clip of Sister Rosetta Tharpe. Try it. The best advice is either to not watch any, or set aside about a half hour.
Tharpe was both a big band and religious singer. Her electric guitar playing was amazing considering the era and the fact that she was a woman playing what probably was considered to be a man’s instrument. (Check out what she does at the 1:29 mark of the clip above). She is said to have influenced Johnny Cash, Elvis, Chuck Berry and others. Vocally, she seems to borrow from the Rev. Gary Davis, or vice versa.
Here are Down by the Riverside, Didn’t it Rain, Trouble in Mind and This Train. Tharpe also was backed by the Chicago Blues All Stars and Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. Finally, here is an unnamed piece.
NASA, in an effort to make contact with civilizations on other planets, sends a missile into space packed with cultural items and a planetary map showing our location. There are great novels, reproductions of famous artwork, music recordings, histories of mankind, movies and assorted other things on board. A few years later a missile lands on earth. It contains an envelope and, inside, a piece of paper with strange markings on it.
The government pulls together a team of the greatest scientists and linguists to figure out what it says. After six months, the lead researcher calls the president and says they have broken the code. The president says, “Great, what is the message?” The researcher pauses and says, “They want us to send more Chuck Berry.”
The good thing about the joke is that you can plug in any artist. I think of it as a Chuck Berry joke only because that’s how I first heard it.
Above is Maybellene. First of all, it should be a law that all MCs leave the stage like this guy. Berry’s entrance is almost certainly explained by Bruce Springsteen. His little spiel before he starts also seems carefully planned and well rehearsed.