Saturday, June 20, 2009

Clapton's Guitar

I posted a brief review of Clapton's Guitar - Watching Wayne Henderson Build the Perfect Instrument, by Allen St. John over at The Bookworm Collective.

One day Tuffy P. came home from work with a copy of this book. She said our friend IR thought I would enjoy it. IR was right. Thanks very much!!


irando said...

Hey Mister Anchovy, IR here. Read your review over at the collective and I enjoyed it. I agree, the Clapton angle was what used to introduce us into Wayne Henderson's world, but a straighht bio would have worked as well. I was fascinated with Henderson and 1)I don't play any instruments 2)don't really appreciate them, that is until I read the book. I was incredibly tense while he was working, he seemingly laid-back approach freaked me out! Great book.

Candy Minx said...

Always great to hear about people who have found out "how to live" in a personal and fun way!

Who is Eric Clapton? Isn't he the person who started that awful marketing device "unplugged"?


Barbara Bruederlin said...

I'll need to head over to check out your review!

mister anchovy said...

I suspect that Mr. Clapton had little to do with the marketing device, but might have been the first to participate. I consider most of the music industry to be an awful marketing device.

mister anchovy said...

IR, I'm going to pass the book along to a guitar picking friend of mine, if that's OK with you.

I haven't played any guitar in years (I never was very good at it), but after reading the book, I started thinking it would be fun to pick up a guitar again and learn a few old time tunes.

Candy Minx said...

Yeah, maybe it's true...maybe the music industry is a big scam. It's got good and bad stuff with it.

I was way wrong thinking Eric Clapton was the fist artist to go unPlugged ...

I found this from Wiki:

The underlying concept behind the Unplugged series has been attributed to the popularity among musicians of a variety of informal musical performances on stage, film, television and record in earlier decades. The casual "in-the-round" sequence in Elvis Presley's 1968 Comeback Special, and the Beatles informal studio jams documented in the 1970 film Let It Be were both precursors of the "Unplugged" concept. Though they were neither conceived nor promoted as such at the time they occurred.

The direct inspiration for the series came in the decade immediately preceding the creation of the MTV program. The catalyst was a series of highly-publicized "unplugged" performances that occurred in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The first of these was the June 1979 appearances by Pete Townshend at The Secret Policeman's Ball - a series of benefit shows in London for human rights organization Amnesty International at which the usually electric guitar-wielding Townshend was persuaded by benefit producer Martin Lewis to perform his hits Pinball Wizard and Won't Get Fooled Again on acoustic guitar. The performances were widely seen and heard on the 1980 live album and the UK-only movie of the benefit and inspired other rock performers to emulate Townshend.
Two years later in September 1981 Lewis produced a sequel benefit show The Secret Policeman's Other Ball that featured similar performances by other rock performers including Sting, Phil Collins and Bob Geldof. The 1982 live album of these performances and the US version of The Secret Policeman's Other Ball movie (which incorporated a 'flashback' of Townshend's 1979 performances) both became very successful and were widely seen and heard in the USA.
The phenomenon of rock stars re-creating their hits in an acoustic manner was thus well established by the early 1980s though the word 'unplugged' had not yet been applied to the concept.

In addition, the late 1980s saw a renewed interest in folk and acoustic music in general (accompanied by a wave of nostalgia for the music of the 1960s, which also had a significant folk/acoustic movement). Many new acts established during the period had a strong folk/acoustic influence, e.g. The Indigo Girls, R.E.M., SinĂ©ad O'Connor, Suzanne Vega, Lyle Lovett, Michael Penn, Enya, and Bruce Hornsby and the Range. At the same time, many established folk and folk-influenced artists of the 60s and 70s experienced renewed success — some reaching the greatest commercial success of their careers — such as Paul Simon, The Grateful Dead, Jethro Tull, Bonnie Raitt, Dire Straits/Mark Knopfler, Yes, and Bob Dylan.

The first rock artist to perform in an "unplugged" mode on MTV was Jethro Tull, who, on November 17, 1987 as an acoustic trio (Ian Anderson, Dave Pegg, and Doane Perry), performed a portion of "Serenade to a Cuckoo" and "Skating Away (On the Thin Ice of the New Day)". XTC performed in May 1989, and Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora performed "Livin' On A Prayer" and "Wanted Dead or Alive" during the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards.