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50 years since Woodstock!


    The Woodstock Festival took place on a dairy farm in Bethel the 15th through 17th of August 1969. And while many attended the event many were also stuck in traffic and never made it there for trying...  The queue on the highway stretched all the way to New York! So that means that many out there recall what they did at this time fifty years ago, and that this was: being stuck in a car!




    The very word "Woodstock" still means something so clear to people, and so naturally to people who weren't even born at this time too. It needs no explanation. If you say "Woodstock" you're done talking. People got you. 














The word conjures up the immortal sounds of Jimi Hendrix playing the Star Spangled Banner. A classic moment in American history and the history of music.





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Remembering Herb Reed




Herb Reed of The Platters' fame, joined this successful singing group in the early 50's, to sing on hundreds of recordings with them, and tour consistently until the time of his passing. He was the last surviving member of the early line-ups of this group.







HERBERT REED, August 7, 1928 – June 4, 2012


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RIH Willie Ford



There is little doubt that The Dramatics is one of the greatest groups that ever worked in the music industry. Thirty plus something top ten hits, more appearances than anyone on Soul Train, went on for 48 something years, you can't even sum it up if you try - there is so much to find out about this group. And although it is in fact often times about numbers when we look at things, with music the proof is in the pudding too - and it can't even be fully described where the most deep and rich music is concerned. You could attempt to, and assign music theorists and poets for the task of describing the harmonic, melodic, rythmical, blended, rich, vast, deep sounds of the Dramatics, and they would be coming up short. The best music is indescribable. We don't have the faculties. We can wave about a bit and say SOMETHING about the music, but it will only ever be something in the midst of it ALL that could have been said had we had the vocabulary.


The Dramatics original members were Ron Banks, Larry Squirrel Demps, William Wee Gee Howard, Elbert Wilkins - and Willie Ford - all native Detroiters. The group was formed in the 60s and a trillion gazillion things happened since. And two weeks ago we had the heavy - heavy - news that Willie Ford has transitioned, and as these words are written this great contributor to music is being returned home. 


Willie Ford's unique bass voice and stellar capabilities as a dancer is a combo that has made Willie Ford a true one-of-a-kind artistic presence for five decades in entertainment. He has projected the poise of someone who enjoys executing his profession to perfection on stage. He certainly is the very illustration of the gift of musical superbness that we know as The Dramatics. He was there for the creation of and massive break-through of this group, which is what most people associate with The Dramatics, and which was also the pinnacle of their chart success - and he was there for the full journey through all its twists and turns. 

Willie Ford leaves a legacy of happiness to those hundreds of millions of lives that were and will be touched by what he gave of himself to the world. He is forever one of the personalities who make Detroiters extra proud to be Detroiters, and equally one of the legends who represent what music became at the very height of what has been the golden era of recorded music.

We so regret that we didn't get to hear more of him. We will always miss the solo album, and what it could have been. We can only sense what it could have been, and that's something else.



The beginning...


The end... Something feeling like the dignified & matured thing this legacy and five part harmony five lead singers' concept deserved. And you just look at that young crowd loving every second. Well done! 


Thank you so much, Willie Ford, for what you have done for music, and enjoy that Heaven that loves to have you.



Small Note: Willie Ford recorded a song, titled ''Lie To You'', which is currently in the 'vault' of bassist Tony Green. Willie Ford sings straight through this cut. Supposedly this song belongs to its originator/s, and it shouldn't be lost to the world.



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Honoring Rudy Copeland

 




For example... For anyone who went to see Solomon Burke in latter years this is so well known...


There was a man up there, behind the keys of an organ, in constant conversation with King Sol throughout. This man was the fire in the belly of the band, feeding the music with his performances, living the music with every fiber, reaching for the sky in between and sometimes during his playing. An outstanding instrumentalist, who also played the organ for preacher Burke in church and worked with many other luminairies in music.

His name: Rudy Copeland.

Remember that name.


His story is of course so much longer and you will be well advised to go explore HERE


Here he is being excellent solo:


And here he is laying the foundation to a very memorable cut:


Us here at Musicians' Corner are great fans of this artist's contributions to music.

Thank you for the music, Mr. Copeland.



For a little more reading about Solomon Burke's band we recommend the articles with Kenneth Meredith a.k.a. 'the love man', that are featured here. 


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Remembering Ma Rainey



"Prove It On Me Blues" Ma Rainey


Ma Rainey's biography from the RRHOF




Ma Rainey (perhaps born April 26, 1886 – December 22, 1939)

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Remembering Bobby Womack


Musicians' Corner remembers Bobby Womack





BOBBY WOMACK, March 4, 1944 – June 27, 2014

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Remembering Didier Lockwood

Musicians' Corner remembers Didier Lockwood

Didier Lockwood


Remembering Didier Lockwood. Monsieur Lockwood did an article with us in 2014, and it didn't take many moments into our talk with him before we realized that we had set up way too little time for the article. A man of great depths! The article became a flicker of something, as we faced the fact that we had in fact missed an opportunity to dive deeper. But the subtext speaks volumes. We always intended on getting back to him, and we especially wanted for someone to do an artist-to-artist interview with him to really get in there, into the conversation on the inside of music. Sadly this never happened, and it is without a doubt one of our biggest regrets here on Musicians' Corner.


A quartet that blows our minds: Didier Lockwood, Mike Stern, Tom Kennedy, Dave Weckl




Didier Lockwood, 11 February 1956 – 18 February 2018


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Remembering Warren Zevon


Warren Zevon

Musicians' Corner remembers Warren Zevon






Warren Zevon, January 24, 1947 – September 7, 2003

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Michael Ray remembers Clifford Adams

Michael Ray remembers Clifford Adams

 

Clifford Adams



He was my closest and best friend on the planet. 

We played together in our neighborhood band the VSQs, we played together, with The Stylistics and with Kool & the Gang. He was such an energetic player.

I stay in touch with his sisters. 

I still grief for him.



Mike Ray and Cliff Adams

They don't stand still, do they? Trenton natives Mike and Cliff perform together.





Clifford Adams, October 8, 1952-January 12, 2015





Enjoy the New Jersey heroes!


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Remembering Cleo Brown

Musicians' Corner remembers Cleo Brown


 

  Cleo Brown>

Musicians' Corner remembers Cleo Brown



Cleo Brown, the first female instrumentalist who was honored with the NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship.






Cleo Brown, December 8, 1909 - April 15, 1995

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Remembering Clifford Brown

Musicians' Corner remembers Clifford Brown


Clifford Brown

Musicians' Corner remembers Clifford Brown


Max Roach talks vividly about Clifford Brown



Clifford Brown, October 30, 1930-June 26, 1956 

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Remembering John Coltrane

Musicians' Corner remembers John Coltrane

John Coltrane

Musicians' Corner remembers John Coltrane


An interview with John Coltrane from 1965




John Coltrane, September 23, 1926 – July 17, 1967

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Remembering Barry White

Musicians' Corner remembers Barry White

Barry White

Musicians' Corner remembers Barry White


"Let The Music Play"


A VH1-documentary about and interview with Barry White




Barry White, September 12, 1944 – July 3, 2003



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Remembering Tiny Grimes

Musicians' Corner remembers Tiny Grimes





Musicians' Corner remembers Tiny Grimes



Lloyd Tiny Grimes, July 7, 1916 – March 4, 1989

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Remembering Eric Dolphy

Eric Dolphy

Eric Dolphy, The Last Date:






Eric Dolphy, June 20, 1928 – June 29, 1964

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Remembering Prince

The Symbol
Musicians' Corner remembers Prince



Classic Prince interview:





A conversation with Kim Berry, Prince' hair stylist:



NPG members who have spoken here on Musicians' Corner so far:


KAT DYSON


PHILIP LASSITER


LIV WARFIELD



PRINCE ROGERS NELSON, June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016. Rest in Power. We miss you.

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Remembering Fats Waller

Musicians' Corner remembers Fats Waller

Fats Waller


Yass, yass, yass - remembering Fats Waller.





Thomas Wright Fats Waller, May 21, 1904 – December 15, 1943

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Remembering Jimmy Ruffin


Jimmy Ruffin
Musicians' Corner remembers Jimmy Ruffin



What becomes of the broken hearted missing the many, many - many people in music whom we have lost?





Jimmy Ruffin, May 7, 1936 – November 17, 2014

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Remembering Bernie Worrell

Musicians' Corner remembers Bernie Worrell



Bernie Worrell
Musicians' Corner remembers Bernie Worrell


An interview with Bernie Worrell



Bernie Worrell, April 19, 1944 – June 24, 2016

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Major congrats to Pulitzer Prize Winner Kendrick Lamar!

Musicians' Corner congratulate Kendrick Lamar


Kendrick Lamar has won the Pulitzer Prize for "Damn", and makes history, as this heavy award generally goes to contemporary classical music and jazz music.


Pulitzer Prize-winning music:


A bit more info on the award:

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Remembering Don Myrick

Musicians' Corner remembers Don Myrick

Don Myrick

Musicians' Corner remembers Don Myrick


Remembering Don Myrick's wonderful contribution to music and tragic passing over at the hands of a police officer.







Donald Myrick, April 6, 1940 – July 30, 1993

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Remembering Lightnin' Hopkins

Musicians' Corner remembers Lightnin' Hopkins



Lightnin Hopkins album cover, fragment
Musicians' Corner remembers Lightnin' Hopkins


Lightnin' (Sam) Hopkins answering a question



Lightnin' Hopkins, March 15, 1912 – January 30, 1982

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Remembering James Reese Europe

James Reese Europe

Musicians' Corner remembers James Reese Europe


A few of the reasons why we need to remember James Reese Europe, presented in this excellent video:



James Reese Europe, February 22, 1881–May 10, 1919

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Remembering Natalie Cole

Musicians' Corner remembers Natalie Cole

Natalie Cole
Musicians' Corner remembers Natalie Cole


Natalie Cole talks about music important to her.



Natalie Cole, February 6, 1950 – December 31, 2015

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Remembering William Powell

William Powell

Musicians' Corner remembers William Powell


"How Time Flies" - The O'Jays


Classic O'Jays "Back Stabbers"


The O'Jays inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005 - William Powell posthumously.



William Powell, January 20, 1942 – May 26, 1977

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Remembering David Bowie

Musicians' Corner remembers David Bowie

David Bowie
Musicians' Corber remembers David Bowie



David Bowie gets philosophical in this interview from French tv.



David Bowie, 8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016

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Remembering June Pointer

Musicians' Corner remembers June Pointer

June Pointer

Musicians' Corner remembers June Pointer



The Pointer Sisters live 1975, opening with their rendition of "Salt Peanuts", and taking the audience on a small tour around a music universe.



June Pointer, November 30, 1953 – April 11, 2006

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Remembering Ray Collins

Ray Collins remembered

Musicians' Corner remembers Ray Collins


A nice tribute video to the Mothers of Invention - singer



Ray Collins, November 19, 1936 – December 24, 2012

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Remembering Mack Rice

Mack Rice

"Respect Yourself" and remember Mack Rice...  :-)



Mack Rice, November 10, 1933 – June 27, 2016

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Remembering Dizzy Gillespie - 100

Musicians' Corner remembers Dizzy Gillespie

Dizzie Gillespie


Remembering the great Dizzy Gillespie on his 100d birthday.




Dizzy Gillespie, October 21, 1917 – January 6, 1993

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