Berkeley, CA- Birth Place of John Fogerty
Well… tomorrow Truth and Salvage plays the Starry Plough in Berkeley, CA with our friends the Real Nasty. Great band by the way. This particular watering hole has been a legendary spot in the Bay Area for over 35 years. Please come check us out! If you show up around 9 and start drinking, that should be about perfect to catch both acts. Here is the clubs motto that I copied and pasted for ya. I thought it was very cool.
“No Revolutionary movement is complete without its poetic expression. If such a movement has caught hold of the imagination of the masses, they will seek a vent in song for the aspirations, fears, and hopes the loves and hatreds engendered by the struggle. Until the movement is marked by the joyous , defiant singing of revolutionary songs, it lacks one of the most distinctive marks of a popular revolutionary movement; it is the dogma of the few and not the faith of the multitude”-James Connolly 1907
A very inspirational batch of words right there.
So, I did my research on Berkley,CA and there are many musicians from this area. Phil Lesh would have been a good choice, but a little too obvious and after seeing him rock with the Black Crowes, at the Filmore, in a pair of designer jeans… well it just threw me back a little.
Charlie Hunter is from Berkley. A great jazz fusion guitarist that has a cool thing going on. I remember the first time I saw him at Be Here Now (an old venue in Asheville that doesn’t exist any more) in 1997 and it was just him and a drummer. He plays this 8 string guitar, covering both the bass lines, guitar comps, and solos all at once. Amazing. Check some of his stuff out on You Tube.
The Counting Crowes are from there. I loved their first album, “August and everything After”. It was kinda the sound track to my freshman and sophomore years in college at Tennessee Tech. The drummer Steve Bowman has some of the tastiest licks on that record. That record also was one of the first records that taught me how to accompany a songwriters song the correct way.
His syncopation and melodical playing was something I hadn’t heard on a drum set before. Tasty, tasty stuff. I would spend hours trying to emulate some of his hi-hat work on that record. Up until that point, I had just listened to drummers like John Bonham, Neil Peart, Lars Ulrich and Tommy Lee. I didn’t know anything else. I grew up in a town where hair metal was king and Hank Williams Jr. was the preacher. Thank you Randy Tribby for introducing me to Led Zeppelin my junior year in high school.
Peter Buck of R.E.M. is from Berkeley. After high school he moved there.
OK… so I thought I was going to write about Green Day. They are all from the Berkeley area. I went for a little run this evening, put on my headphones, and borrowed Monti’s ipod. I listened to the 4 or 5 songs she had. Great band. Songs are cool, the writing actually really good…. and the drumming was actually good.. Remember now, I know nothing about this band except for the fact that the lead guy has green hair and they have sold a shit ton of records.
I think my generation just missed the Green Day happening. Anyway I listened to them and then to some Counting Crowes (still trying to decide who I was going to research). I definitely vibed with the Counting Crowes stuff better, but I wanted to research Tre Cool and Billy Joe Armstrong because I am less familiar with them. I like a good challenge.
I noticed the funny rivalry between Tre and Travis Barker that the fans have created online. People are funny. In the end I could not find any cool videos of solo’s or performances. The only videos were of them goofing off and running around the stage naked. So… I decided that they were not worth it.
Creedence Clearwater Revival on the other hand is worth it. John Fogerty and his brother Tom were born in Berkeley, CA. One would think, by their style, that they would be from the swamps of Louisiana.
I found a cool clip from the Johnny Cash Show. Doug Clifford the drummer is playing this cool straight-ahead quarter note swing-shuffle pattern. He really uses the quarter note on the hi-hat to drive this song.
The thing about the 60′s-70′s generation of drummers is that they knew how to swing. A lot of them were jazz players previously and started playing Rock and Roll because it was more popular and it paid better at the time. Mitch Mitchell, Ginger Baker, Levon Helm, Charlie Watts, the Wrecking Crew drummers, Motown Drummers, Joe Jackson Jr.(Just to name a few) had this slinky swing style that they implemented to the Rock and Roll movement and gave the music the “feel” that we hear when we listen to those old records. I miss that in today’s drumming. Doug Clifford from Palo Alto, Ca exudes this in this performance.
Sit back, plug in some good speakers and enjoy the soothing, slinky vibe of Fogerty’s voice and CCR’s style.
Check out this link to see all the famous folks that are from Berkeley… Enjoy:
COME OUT TO THE SHOW TOMORROW IF YOU ARE IN THE BAY AREA!!