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Michael Bloomfield The Rise and Fall of an American Guitar Hero

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Hardcover, 224 pages, English, Chicago Review Press This is the definitive biography of the... more

Michael Bloomfield: The Rise and Fall of an American Guitar Hero

Hardcover, 224 pages, English, Chicago Review Press

This is the definitive biography of the legendary guitarist whom eminent figures like Muddy Waters and B. B. King held in high esteem, and who created the prototype for Clapton, Hendrix, Page, and everyone who followed. Bloomfield was one of the first popular music superstars of the 1960s to earn his reputation almost entirely on his instrumental prowess. He was a member of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, which inspired a generation of white blues players; he played with Bob Dylan in the mid-1960s, when his guitar was a central component of Dylan's new rock sound on "Like a Rolling Stone" and at his earthshaking 1965 Newport Folk Festival performance.

He then founded the Electric Flag, recorded Super Session with Al Kooper, backed Janis Joplin, and released at least twenty other albums, despite debilitating sub-stance abuse. He died of a mysterious drug overdose in 1981. A very limited edition of a book of this title was first published in 1983, but it has here been so thoroughly revised and expanded that it is essentially a brand-new publication.

Based on exten-sive interviews with Bloomfield himself and with those who knew him best, and including an extensive discography and Bloomfield's memorable 1968 Rolling Stone interview, Michael Bloomfield is an intimate portrait of one of the pioneers of rock guitar.

'A brilliant biography of the ethereal Chicago blues guitar giant who shook the walls down in the '60s and '70s with his soaring art. There is a mother lode of fresh rock 'n' roll history in these pages. The discography alone is worth the price of admission. Highly recommended!' —Douglas Brinkley, author of Rightful Heritage and The Wilderness Warrior

'In this chronicle of a life found and lost, Ed Ward writes with deep empathy, and also with a hard-boiled patience that burns off all sentiment. It is the perfect tone for a story Ward never tries to make bigger than it is, so that finally it makes terrible and final sense.' —Greil Marcus, author of The History of Rock 'n' Roll in Ten Songs and Mystery Train

'Michael Bloomfield was brilliant, troubled, flawed, charming, and dauntingly influential, and Ed Ward adeptly balances his strengths and weaknesses, creating a picture of a man who was all too in tune with a complicated time.' —Elijah Wald, author of Dylan Goes Electric! and Escaping the Delta

'With all due respect to Eric Clapton, B. B. King, Albert King, Buddy Guy, Johnny Winter, and so many others who are in the pantheon of blues greats, in this white Jew's opinion, Michael Bloomfield was simply the best blues guitarist I've ever heard.' —Rob Reiner, filmmaker and actor

'Mike Bloomfield was such a unique and mercurial character it was like handling hot coals in your mind. You should get to know him because the people that knew him, loved him. His guitar playing was beautiful. His heart and soul were as big as it gets. This remembrance brings to life the amazing story of a young Jewish kid from Chicago's North Side whose unique style of improvisational guitar led the world into the modern age of blues and rock. Hey, folks, he was historic.' —Nick Gravenites, singer and songwriter

Foreword by Billy F. Gibbons
Talk about impact . . . ! Talk about influence and inspiration! We're I talking Bloomfield: Mike Bloomfield, guitarist and stylist extraor-dinaire. From distant observer to distinguished performer, Mike B. and his guitar ran the gamut, traversing all there was and would be within his vision, where guitar inventiveness became trademarked in his all-too-brief career. Yes, we're talking the one-and-the-same Bloomfield whose blues bloomed and boomed under the dexterous developments that dealt his hand and landed him in the game where he knew he wanted to be. Sounding familiar . . . ? Perhaps so with the Bloomfield we came to know seemingly appearing from out of nowhere fast. Yet the overnight sensation was a long time in the making.

Starting with that pawnshop six-string, the unraveling of the alluring mystique of sounds abound-ing all around in his very hometown began to make sense once the pieces to that powerful puzzle, them blues, began to gather. And it was this allure that became the stepping-stone to take his curiosity to the street. Although a stranger now frequenting those strange outposts of that strident sound, he was not alone. Several like-minded individuals were similarly drawn to the task of attempting to emulate the basics of that thing they were after.

So, banding together as newfound souls with a friendly sort of mutual bond was the obvious way in to getting way out, way outside any notion whatsoever of creating something predictable. Rather, some very unpredictable expressions began to emerge between Bloomfield and the aggregation with the likes of Paul Butterfield, Charlie Musselwhite, Nick Gravenites, Norman Dayron, guitarist Elvin Bishop, Barry Goldberg, and the fashionable Mark Naftalin. These were the guys surging toward forming this nucleus actually expressing something not only believ-able—they began laying down sound that was solid . . . sounds that were standing up to a stiff legion of loyalists not necessarily impressed with anything less than what the head honchos of the day were laying down with the late-night crowd.

Muddy Waters had it, Jimmy Reed had it, Howlin' Wolf more than had it . . . hell, it seemed like every-body on the South Side of Chi-Town either had it or was bound and determined to get it, and here Bloomfield was smack-dab in the midst of gettin' it. And gettin' down pretty hard. Keep in mind this was mid-'60s stuff. A time when people were waiting to get what they were wanting, waiting to feel what they all wanted to feel, and all of a sudden, all of it managed to find its way to wax. Bloomfield, wringing out his tasty additions for Butterfield and band, hit the mark.

Mike's presence heard on those superb entries into the field are what we came to know and admire and ultimately have come to miss. This is where we might best leave it for now. There's certainly a somewhat vague awareness of what came after right up to the end, yet Mike's legacy of tantalizing and tasteful tags on "them blues" luckily lingers on. Yes, we're talkin' Bloomfield.

Article properties: Michael Bloomfield: The Rise and Fall of an American Guitar Hero

  • Interpret: Michael Bloomfield

  • Album titlle: The Rise and Fall of an American Guitar Hero

  • Year of publication 2016
  • Einband Gebundene Ausgabe
  • Language Englisch
  • Biographies & Memoirs
  • Seiten 224
  • Artikelart Bücher/Books

  • ISBN-13 9781613733288
  • Verleger Chicago Review Press
  • Größe 15.2 x 2.5 x 22.9 cm
  • ISBN-10 1613733283
  • Autor Ed Ward
  • EAN: 9781613733288

  • weight in Kg 0.62
Die kleinen Kneipen auf der West und South Side von Chicago hatten in den frühen... more
"Michael Bloomfield"


Die kleinen Kneipen auf der West und South Side von Chicago hatten in den frühen Sechzigerjahren ein paar ungewöhnliche Besucher. Eine Handvoll junger weißer Musiker aus der Region machte die Runde, um bei ihren Helden mitzuspielen. Durch ihre instrumentalen Fähigkeiten und ihren Mut erwarben sie sich Anerkennung. Zu diesen Pionieren gehörten die Bluesharpspieler Paul Butterfield und Charlie Musselwhite, der Sänger und Gitarrist Nick Gravenites, Keyboarder Barry Goldberg sowie die Gitarristen Elvin Bishop und Michael Bloomfield. 'Es war praktisch bei uns hinterm Haus, wir mussten nur ein Auto von jemandem kriegen, einsteigen, hinfahren und darum bitten, bei diesen Leuten mitzuspielen und mit ihnen rumzuhängen', sagt Goldberg. 'Es gab keine Ängste. Es war nur der Wunsch, es zu tun – koste es, was es wolle, von ihrer Musik zu lernen.' Es steht außer Zweifel, dass Bloomfield seine Lektion bestens gelernt hatte. Sein familiärer Background liest sich nicht wie ein Standard-Blueslebenslauf: Er wurde am 28. Juli 1943 in Chicago in eine reiche jüdische Familie geboren und wohnte ab seinem 12. Lebensjahr in einem der besseren Vororte im Norden der Stadt- mit 13 bekam er seine erste Gitarre.

Michael Bloomfield wagte sich als Teenager furchtlos auf die South Side, um den Blues aus erster Hand zu erleben und hüpfte oft auf die Bühnen, um zu beweisen, dass er mithalten konnte. Scotty Moore und Cliff Gallup waren seine ersten Einflüsse an der Gitarre, jetzt hörte er den Besten der Windy City aufmerksam zu. Der scharfsinnige John Hammond erkannte Bloomfields Können an der elektrischen Bluesgitarre, nahm ihn für Columbia unter Vertrag und produzierte am 7. Dezember 1964 eine damals nicht veröffentlichte Session mit ihm, bei der eine sehr überzeugende Version des langsamen Blues Goin' Down Slow von St. Louis Jimmy Oden aus dem Jahr 1941 entstand. Bloomfields Gesang und seine Schnellfeuer-Leadgitarre wurde durch Musselwhite an der Bluesharp sowie seine reguläre Liveband mit Mike 'Gap' Johnson (Rhythmusgitarre), 'Silver' Sid Warner (Bass), Brian Friedman (Klavier) und Norman Mayell (Drums) ergänzt. Columbia verbannte diese erste Session ins Archiv, aber das hielt Michael nicht auf. Produzent Paul Rothchild von Elektra Records bestand darauf, dass Bloomfield Teil der Paul Butterfield Blues Band wird, und so begleitete er den ungestümen jungen Bluesharpspieler auf den 1965er-Klassikern Born In Chicago und Work Song sowie beim experimentellen Jam East West, wodurch er bald den Status eines echten Gitarrenhelden erlangte.

Michael Bloomfield nahm sich außerdem die Zeit, auf der Bob-Dylan-LP 'Highway 61 Revisited' und bei dessen kontroversem Auftritt beim Newport Folk Festival 1965 mitzuspielen. Michael verließ Butterfield Anfang 1967, um The Electric Flag zu gründen, eine vielseitige Gruppe mit Bläsern, die Rock, Blues und Soul vermischte (Goldberg und Gravenites waren ebenfalls an Bord). Trotz eines triumphalen Sets beim Monterey Pop Festival brach die Band bald auseinander. Bloomfields größter Plattenerfolg war eine locker strukturierte Jamsession-LP mit dem Keyboarder Al Kooper: 'Super Session' (auf Columbia) erlangte 1968 Gold-Status. Verfolgt von seinem Drogenmissbrauch, zog sich Michael Bloomfield in den 70er-Jahren in die Gegend von San Francisco zurück und nahm sehr persönliche Platten auf, die viele Spielarten des traditionellen Blues enthielten. Er starb am 15. Februar 1981 in San Francisco an einer Überdosis. 'Er ist auf jeden Fall einer der einflussreichsten Gitarristen unserer Zeit', sagt sein langjähriger Freund und Produzent Norman Dayron. 'Wenn du zuhörst, kannst du seine Innovationen hören.

' Bill Dahl aus PLUG IT IN! TURN IT UP! Electric Blues 1939-2005 - The Definitive Collection! - "Plug It In! Turn It Up! - Electric Blues 1939 - 2005" auf Bear Family Records hat bei den Blues Music Awards in Memphis, Tenneessee, am 9. Mai den prestigetraechtigen Preis in der Kategorie 'Bestes historisches Album' erhalten. Die einzigartige, 12-teilige CD-Dokumentation vermittelt erstmals einen umfassenden Blick auf die Geschichte dieses bedeutsamen Genres, unabhaengig von Grenzen, die einzelne Plattenfirmen aufzeigen. Unser Autor Bill Dahl aus Chicago war vor Ort und nahm den Preis vor etwa 1.300 Bluesmusikern, Journalisten und Fans entgegen. Die Blues Music Awards, die alljaehrlich in Memphis fuer die besten Blues-Veroeffentlichungen verliehen werden, gelten als wichtigste Auszeichnung weltweit und werden auch als 'Oscars des Blues' bezeichnet..

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