9 May 2007

Charlie Musselwhite loves NZ! (He's got good taste!)

When I heard Charlie Musselwhite was coming back to New Zealand (2006) I knew I had to get along to see him. He was bringing his own band which included Kid Andersen, a Norwegian guitarist who sounds like he grew up in Memphis according to Charlie.

Opening act were two stalwarts in the NZ blues scene, Midge Marsden and Bullfrog Rata, both top acts in and of themselves. So when they teamed up together for Charlie's nationwide Delta Hardware tour they struck the right chord with the crowd.

From start to finish Charlie and his band performed every note on the button, every song to its original form and once again satisfied a full house of blues converts. I say converts because in the truest sense thats what we all are - people who have become profoundly fascinated by the music created by black sharecroppers from the Mississippi Delta. And thanks to people like Charlie Musselwhite we get to hear and experience what could be said as the literal tradition of that original 'stuff' they call Blues.

I caught up with Charlie after the show and took a few photos and asked him a few questions, generally hung out with him - WOW! A real treat. This guy had walked, talked, learnt and drunk (oh yeah quite alot of drinking!) with some of the greatest blues peoples around - Big Walter Horton, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, James Cotton, Will Shade, the list goes on.

When Charlie comes to a town near you, you best go see him, he's a modern day master, nuff said.

Check out what he said about New Zealand to Billy Hutchinson in May 2006 while in London on his Delta Hardware tour.

Billy: Once again you are to tour New Zealand, not a typical blues tour destination. What’s with Charlie Musselwhite and New Zealand?

Musselwhite:There are a lot of blues fans in NZ and some real
good blues players there too. It is a beautiful country and I love to go and play there. If you've seen Lord of the Rings then you know how beautiful it is. The people are wonderful and I have many good friends. It’s one of the nicest places in the world: the air is clean, the water is clean, they are environmentally concerned – they are good hearted people – and they LOVE blues.

Here Memphis Charlie brings to the stage Midge Marsden
and Bullfrog Rata to help tear the roof off the sucker!


And here I get to spend some time hanging out with Charlie after the gig. A very genuine guy. Notice the Community Radio Hamilton sticker in his harp case and the pounamu (Greenstone/Jade) taonga/gift/necklace he's wearing ! Mate, he could be one of us E-Z-P-Z!

Charlie's Website is worth a visit, go there by clicking here

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