Music Diary – 10th January

Welcome to my Music Diary – today for the 10th January!

Chester Arthur Burnett aka Howlin' Wolf (10th June 1910 – 10th January 1976)

Chester Arthur Burnett aka Howlin‘ Wolf (10th June 1910 – 10th January 1976)

On the 10th January 1976, one of the most outstanding musicians of the Blues genre passed away: Mr. Chester Arthur Burnett, better known as Howlin‘ Wolf, died at the age of 66. Born on the 10th June 1910 in White Station Mississippi (USA), he lived together with his mother and uncle Will, who treated him badly. At the age of 13, he ran away from home and started to search for his father. After a 85 miles barefoot walk he found him and became a full family member.

In the thirties he crossed paths with Blues man Charlie Patton, who taught him playing the guitar and Howlin‘ Wolf started to perform as a solo artist. He also worked and recorded with musicians like Floyd Jones, Johnny Shines, Honeyboy Edwards, Sonny Boy Williamson II, Robert Johnson, Robert Jr. Lockwood, Willie Brown, Son House and Willie Johnson. In 1948 he founded his own band featuring the guitarists Willie Johnson and Matt „Guitar“ Murphy, Junior Parker on harmonica and Willie Steele on drums. The trademark of the sound was Howlin‘ Wolf’s unique voice and the local radio station KWEM in West Memphis began broadcasting the live performances.


In 1951 the first singles were released: „How Many More Years“ with „Moaning at Midnight“ on the flip side (by Chess Records) and „Riding in the Moonlight“ backed with „Moaning at Midnight“ (by RPM Records). One year later, Howlin‘ Wolf was signed only by Chess Records and the Blues man moved to Chicago. More singles followed and in 1959 his debut album „Moanin‘ in the Moonlight“ was released.


In the sixties the Blues classics „Wang Dang Doodle„, „Back Door Man“, „Spoonful“, „The Red Rooster“ (later known as „Little Red Rooster„), „I Ain’t Superstitious„, „Goin‘ Down Slow“ and „Killing Floor“ hit the market and Howlin‘ Wolf became a very famous musician not only on the Blues scene. In 1964 he toured Europe – in the same year, The Rolling Stones reached number one in UK with their version of „Little Red Rooster„. Howlin‘ Wolf continued recording and perfroming – and he worked with many musicians all around the world, like Bo Diddley, Muddy Waters, Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Ian Stewart, Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts. In 1973 his last album „The Back Door Wolf“ for Chess Reccords was released. In the seventies Howlin‘ Wolf suffered several heart attacks and on the 10th January 1976 he died due to complications of kidney disease. He passed away at the age of 66.

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Music Diary – 27th December

Welcome to my Music Diary – today for the 27th December!

Scotty Moore

Happy birthday to Mr. Winfield Scott „Scotty“ Moore III, who was born on the 27th December 1931 in Tennessee (USA)! Scotty became very well known as the guitarist for The King of Rock’n’Roll, Mr. Elvis Presley!


Moore’s first group was Doug Poindexter & the Starlite Wranglers, before he played his first Sun Studio sessions with Elvis Presley in 1954. His unique playing can be heard on classics like „Blue Suede Shoes„, „Heartbreak Hotel„, „Mystery Train„, „That’s All Right (Mama)„, „Hound Dog“ and „Jailhouse Rock„. When Moore’s solo album „The Guitar That Changed the World“ was released in 1964 on Epic Records, Sam Phillips from Sun Records was very upset and Scotty Moore was sacked. Scotty played his last show with Elvis on „Elvis NBC TV-Special“ in 1968, which is better known under the moniker „68 Comeback Special„.


After that, Moore continued playing and recording with several artists like Carl Perkins, Dolly Parton, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Eric Clapton and Keith Richards. In 2000, Scotty Moore was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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Music Diary – 29th September

Welcome to my Music Diary – today for the 29th September!

Jerry Lee Lewis

Jerry Lee Lewis

On the 29th September 1935 Mr. Jerry Lee Lewis aka „The Killer“ was born in the town of Ferriday, Louisiana (USA). The singer and pianist is considered as one of the greatest Rock’n’Roll musicians in history. At the age of 21, Jerry Lee Lewis traveled for an audition to the legendary Sun Records studios in Memphis, Tennessee. Jack Clement recorded the cover version of „Crazy Arms“ (formerly recorded by Ray Price) and Lewis‘ own composition „End of the Road“. One month later, in December 1956, Lewis started his solo career and became also a sessions musician for Sun Records. His unique piano playing can be heard on many recordings for artits like Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash.

On the 4th December 1956 the historic jam session featuring Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins,  Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis happened. Label owner Sam Phillips recorded it. 25 year later is was available titled as „Million Dollar Quartet„.

In 1957 Lewis recorded his first hit „Whole Lotta Shakin‘ Going On„. And more chartbreaker followed like „Great Balls of Fire„, „Breathless“ and „High School Confidential„. After his marriage to his 13-year-old cousin Myra in the same year, his popularity was quickly gone due to this scandal. He still recorded all over the years and especially his wild live performances in the sixties became legendary. The live album „Live at the Star Club, Hamburg“ (1964) proves this: „‚Live at the Star Club‘ is extraordinary, the purest, hardest rock & roll ever committed to record“, so music critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine (Allmusic).

In 1989 the biographical movie „Great Balls of Fire!“ directed by Jim McBride with Dennis Quaid starring as „The Killer“ and Winona Ryder as Myra was released. For the soundtrack Jerry Lee Lewis re-recorded his songs.


After the induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1986), Lewis toured again in 1998 with the two Rock’n’Roll legends Chuck Berry and Little Richard. In 2006 the album „Last Man Standing “ was released. Three years later the record „Mean Old Man“ hit the stores. For the 18 new songs he worked together with people like Eric Clapton, Sheryl Crow, John Fogerty, Mick Jagger, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, Keith Richards, Kid Rock, Slash, Ringo Starr, Robbie Robertson and Ronnie Wood – just to name a few.

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