August 12: Happy 69th Birthday Mark Knopfler

Mark-Knopfler

…. Actually we are soul mates. As far as guitar playing goes he never steps all over with fancy licks. Yeah, Mark was incredible. He helped make this record in a thousand ways, not only musically, which in itself would have been enough. Brilliant guy, I can’t say enough about him.
~Bob Dylan (Talking about Knopfler part in the making of “Infidels” – July 1983 to Martin Killer)

The most celebrated British guitar hero to emerge in the 1970s and ’80s, Mark Knopfler rose to fame as the leader of Dire Straits, and his songwriting and incisive guitar work played a decisive role in making them an international success story. At a time when punk and new wave were making technique for its own sake seem irrelevant, and metal was taking the guitar solo in noisier and unpredictable directions, Knopfler’s clean but dexterous picking proved there was still room for traditionalism and chops in mainstream rock & roll.
~Mark Deming (allmusic.com)

Dire Straits – Sultans Of Swing (Alchemy Live – 1983):

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August 7: Happy 68th Birthday Rodney Crowell

RodneyCrowell

… When I was 12 years old, or however old I was when Bringing It All Back Home came out, I’d just skip back and forth endlessly between ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues’ and ‘It’s Alright, Ma’ and ‘Mr. Tambourine Man,’ and now my Dylan roots are showing big time.
— Rodney Crowell

Rodney Crowell & Emmylou Harris – Shelter From The Storm (live 2006)

From Wikipedia:

Born August 7, 1950 (age 68)
Houston, Texas United States
Genres Country
Occupations Musician, Songwriter
Instruments Vocals
Guitar
Years active 1978–present
Labels Warner Bros., Columbia, MCA, Sugar Hill, Epic, Yep Roc
Associated acts Rosanne Cash, Emmylou Harris, The Notorious Cherry Bombs, Los Super Seven
Website Official Site

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August 2: Happy Birthday Eric Garth Hudson

Hudson was just as crucial to the very different sounds made in the Basement the year afterwards: especially since in large part it was Garth who tape-recorded those unique, informal sessions, and had the sense to look after, afterwards, all the dozens of unknown-about extra ones beyond those of immediate interest to Dylan’s music publisher, and which only began to circulate decades later.

Hudson was also the musicians’ musician—and actually gave the other Hawks music lessons—and when the Hawks became the Crackers became The Band, he was the multi-instrumentalist supreme in a group of multi-instrumentalists. If The Band introduced a small orchestra’s worth of olde worlde instruments to mainstream rock music, it was Hudson who had introduced many of them to The Band.
~Michael Gray (The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia)

Members of The Band Accept Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Award at 1994 Inductions:

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August 1: The Late Great Jerry Garcia Birthday

There’s no way to measure his greatness or magnitude as a person or as a player. I don’t think eulogizing will do him justice. He was that great – much more than a superb musician with an uncanny ear and dexterity. He is the very spirit personified of whatever is Muddy River Country at its core and screams up into the spheres. He really had no equal. To me he wasn’t only a musician and friend, he was more like a big brother who taught and showed me more than he’ll ever know. There are a lot of spaces and advances between the Carter Family, Buddy Holly and, say, Ornette Coleman, a lot of universes, but he filled them all without being a member of any school. His playing was moody, awesome, sophisticated, hypnotic and subtle. There’s no way to convey the loss. It just digs down really deep.
~Bob Dylan (Jerry Garcia’s Obituary – 10 August 1995)

Bruce Hornsby inducts the Grateful Dead at the 1994 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony:

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July 28: The Late Great Mike Bloomfield was born in 1943

mike bloomfield

Expression, pure expression. Without a guitar, I’m like a poet with no hands. Actually I can articulate much clearer on the guitar than anything else.
~Mike Bloomfield (Rolling Stone, April 1968)

When I’m playing blues guitar real well, it’s a lot like B.B. King. But I don’t know, it’s my own thing when there are major notes and sweet runs. You know I like sweet blues. The English cats play very hard funky blues. Like Aretha sings is how they play guitar. I play sweet blues. I can’t explain it. I want to be singing. I want to be sweet.
~Mike Bloomfield (Rolling Stone, April 1968)

Son House, Mike Bloomfield and Paul Butterfield discuss and play the blues:

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July 27: Happy 74th Birthday Bobbie Gentry

bobbie gentry

Can a song be so perfect, so successful, that it eclipses its creator? It can if it’s Bobbie Gentry’s Grammy-winning 1967 chart-topper Ode to Billie Joe, one of the most elegantly powerful pieces of storytelling ever to travel the airwaves.
~Dorian Lynskey (The Guardian)

Ode to Billie Joe:

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