Blues News

Birthdays – August 3rd – 9th

Birthdays – August 3rd – 9th 

Birthdays – August 3rd – 9th – This week features: Morris Dickerson, Lee Rocker, Michael Stipe, Rick Derringer, Allan Holdsworth, Magic Slim, Anton Fig and Jimmy Witherspoon! 

Morris “B.B.” Dickerson: 08/03/1949

As the bassist with the 1970s Latin–funk group War, and before that The Creators. Morris Dickerson creates funk grooves flavored with Latin and reggae influences.  Dickerson co-wrote and played on all of War’s seminal hits. Including, “Spill the Wine,” “The Cisco Kid,” “Why Can’t We Be Friends?,” and the iconic “Low Rider”. Currently, living in California, Dickerson plays in the “Low Rider band with the four surviving members of War. 

Lee Rocker: 8/3/1961

Lee Rocker is an American double bass player. He is a member of the rockabilly revival band “Stray Cats”. He is the son of the classical clarinetists Stanley Drucker and Naomi Drucker. As a child he starts out on cello and moves on to Bass guitar.

Michael Stipe: 8/4/1960

R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe is born in Decatur, Georgia. In 1980, he befriends Peter Buck, a store clerk at Wuxtry Records who shares his weird taste in music. They form a band and quickly bring Mike Mills and Bill Berry into the fold. Releasing their debut single, “Radio Free Europe”. Since then, they’ve been creating music and working on solo projects ever since.

Rick Derringer: 8/5/1947 

Guitarist/vocalist, working extensively with the brothers Edgar and Johnny Winter in the 1970’s, playing lead guitar in their bands. And producing all of their gold and platinum disc recordings. Working with Steely Dan and discovering Cyndi Lauper and “Weird Al” Yankovic. 

Allan Holdsworth: 08/06/1946

Holdsworth is a highly proficient and successful guitar player and composer from England. In the late 60’s and early 70’s, Holdsworth already shows a major interest in playing jazz and pushing his playing to higher levels. Known for his mind-blowing technical abilities on the guitar, and his funky headless guitars. His style is described as jazz fusion mixed with progressive rock. Gaining a lot of notoriety in the 80’s and into the 90’s. His knowledge of the instrument is unmatched. Musicians like Zappa and Gary Moore, “proclaim that Holdsworth is one of the most advanced guitarists of his time.”  While recognized for his signature headless synth axe.

Morris Holt AKA Magic Slim: 8/7/1937

Acclaimed Mississippi-born guitarist, singer, songwriter, and bandleader who begins to carve a niche for himself in Chicago blues. After his return to the bustling city in 1965. His first attempt to make it in The “Windy City”, alongside his friend and mentor Magic Sam. With little success in Chicago, he returns to Mississippi to sharpen his skills and form a band of his own.

Anton Fig: 08/08/1952

Anton Fig is a prolific musician that has been around music for quite some time and performs in various settings. Playing everything from hard rock and blues to gospel and jazz. Born in Cape Town, South Africa in 1952, and is introduced to music at the age of four. Fig begins practicing and gigging with many rock groups to make a name for himself early on.

Earning the nickname “The Thunder from Down Under”. Anton has played with many artists, including a two-album stint with the explosive entertainers, KISS! A major part of David Letterman’s Late Show Band run by Paul Schaffer. Currently Fig performs with Joe Bonamassa and appears on a few of his albums and live performances. 

Jimmy Witherspoon AKA Spoon: 8/8/1920

Jump blues and jazz singer known for his recordings of “No Rollin’ Blues”, “Ain’t Nobody’s Business”, and “Big Fine Girl”. Witherspoon’s style of blues that of the “blues shouter” becomes unfashionable in the mid-1950s. He returns to popularity with his 1959 album Jimmy Witherspoon at the Monterey Jazz Festival, which features Roy Eldridge. As well as Woody Herman, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, Earl Hines and Mel Lewis, among others. Later, Witherspoon records with Gerry Mulligan, Leroy Vinnegar, Richard “Groove” Holmes and T-Bone Walker.  He continues to perform and record into the 1990s.

That’s it for this week! Be sure to check back next week! 

Help us with our mission of Keeping the Blues Alive in schools:  To learn more or donate to “Keeping The Blues Alive”, visit our website at https://keepingthebluesalive.org/

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