Blues News

September 14 – 20 Birthdays

September 14 – 20 Birthdays

September 14 – 20 Birthdays This week’s birthdays include Paul Kossoff, Snooky Pryor, B.B. King, Little Willie Littlefield, Billy Boy Arnold, Hank Williams Sr, Louis Myers, A.J. Ghent as well as, Cass Elliot!

Paul Kossoff: 9/14/1950

English guitarist and songwriter At age 15, Kossoff founded the Black Cat Bones, a blues rock band that toured with Champion Jack Dupree, this young guitarist co-founded and achieved fame with the popular hard rock act “Free”. With his sublime tone, use of vibrato, and deceptively simply riffs, Kossoff was a key component to the sound and success of the band. Unfortunately, his addictions contributed both to Free’s breakup and the drastic decline of his health.

Snooky Pryor: 9/15/1921

Pioneering Chicago blues harmonica player and vocalist. Snooky claimed to have been the very first person to ever amplify his instrument of choice. He recorded his exemplary harmonica focused blues throughout the late 40’s and 50’s. After retiring for a number of years, he released a successful comeback album in the late 80’s with Blind Pig Records and enjoyed a successful career until he died in 2006.

B.B. King: 9/16/1925 

B.B. King is the “King of Blues.” Furthermore, he is one of the most influential singers, songwriters, and guitarists in the history of blues music.  He is celebrated as one of the most important blues men to emerge after the Second World War.  He has been a vital player and figurehead of the genre for nearly seven decades. As a guitarist, King wrote the book, with Lucille by his side. 

Little Willie Littlefield: 9/16/1931 

R&B and boogie-woogie blues pianist who from an early age gained attention due to his musical abilities. First recording at age sixteen, he would have hit songs with “It’s Midnight” and “Farewell” early in his career. Furthermore, he is the original artist to record the famous rhythm & blues song “Kansas City.” 

Billy Boy Arnold: 9/16/1935 

This sixty-year veteran of the blues taught the harp by none other than the original Sonny Boy Williamson. He is best known for the Chicago blues classic “I Wish You Would”.  Also, a singer, songwriter, and guitarist, he continues to record and tour to this day. 

Hank Williams Sr: 9/17/1923 

is one of the most celebrated country music artists of all time. He’s a Grand Ole Opry member, a Country Music Hall of Fame member, a country radio station mainstay, a beloved hillbilly and an icon of American music. As well as country music’s first superstar.

Louis Myers: 9/18/1929

Louis Myers was a Chicago blues guitarist and blues harpist most well known as a member of the Aces, the band playing behind harmonica genius Little Walter on his early work. The Aces originally also included Myers’ brother Dave as well as another harmonica legend in Junior Wells. After leaving Little Walter and the Aces in 1954, Louis Myers went on to perform as a sideman for many bluesmen including Earl Hooker and Otis Rush. He did record some solo work later in his life. He died on September 5, 1994.

A.J. Ghent: 9/18/1986

Aubrey Ghent Jr. or A.J. [j-ent] is great multi-genre guitarist who comes from a long line of musicians who even helped to pioneer a specific aspect of guitar playing. Ghent was born in Fort Pierce, Florida, an area that isn’t known for housing too much musical history, but that is where his family came in. Ghent’s great uncle and grandfather were early pioneers of the “sacred steel tradition” of slide guitar playing; in fact, his grandfather Henry Nelson was the founder! The short version of the technique was that steel slide guitars were used in gospel churches during worship. Now, A.J. is one of the notable modern players of this style.

Cass Elliot: 9/19/1941 

Cass Elliot, also known as Mama Cass, was an American singer and actress who is best known for having been a member of the Mamas and the Papas. After the group broke up, she released five solo albums. In 1998, she was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for her work with the Mamas and the Papas.

September 14 – 20 Birthdays – That’s it for this week but be sure to check back next week!

Keeping the Blues Alive

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/

Photo Credits: B.B.KING – US Blues musician – promotional photo by Graziano Ferrari

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