THE DEATH OF JB LENOIR

A
car has killed a friend in Chicago
thousand miles away
A
car has killed a friend in Chicago
thousand miles away
When
I heard the news, night came early in my day

JB
Lenoir is dead and it’s hit me like a hammer blow


JB
Lenoir is dead and it’s hit me like a hammer blow


I
cry inside my heart that the world can’t hear my man no more

JB
had a struggled play and appreciated blues in vain

JB
had a struggled play and appreciated blues in vain


Now
the blues has lost a king and I’ve lost a friend who died in pain

That was John Mayall’s tribute to JB Lenoir, the greatest
bluesman to ever fail to achieve significant fame.  Born in Mississippi in 1929, JB’s music covered all
the ground you would expect from a southern black man of that era.  Check my other site, Rabbit_Reviews, for a
discussion of JB’s Vietnam Blues.
(it’s not up yet…I’ll link to it when it’s done)

In spite of his extraordinary talent, JB never earned a
living from his music.  He was employed
in the kitchen of a college cafeteria in 1967, when he suffered a heart attack
at the age of 38.  Doctors speculated a
car accident three weeks earlier had damaged his heart.  During those weeks, apparently in pain, he
wrote this song in his journal:

Something
got a hold of me

It must be the Lord

Something
got a hold of me

It must be the Lord

Something
got a hold of me

It must be the Lord

Something
got a hold of me

It must be the Lord

I
can’t sing right, I can’t play right

I
can’t walk right, I can’t talk right

I
can’t eat right, I can’t sleep right

I
can’t do nothing at all

JB Lenoir died 39 years ago today.  Rest in peace, bluesman.

Advertisements

11 thoughts on “

  1. I’ve always been a big fan of Lenoir. I had a compilation album from Chess that had a bunch of his stuff on it, like Eisenhouer Blues (I can never spell Ike’s name right). And one of the chapters of the Scorcese Blues PBS stuff had some actual footage of him, shot by some European blues freaks. Did you ever see it? It was …………amazing.Speaking of amazing…you should also check out the American Blues Festival DVDs which contain performance by all the great bluesmen. They all appeared on TV shows in Europe. Of course, they were more appreciated in Europe than here. SKIP JAMES is even on one of these DVDs! It’s on Amazon, check it out.And yeah. It sounds like he was sad. 🙂

  2. Oh there’s an end all right… and it ends with painting.I had a few minutes to play with Photoshop. It will take years, however, to figure out what half of those buttons do!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s