Tag Archive: Albert King


Happy Birthday Albert King

 

 

 

 

 

Wiki Bio

 

” One of the “Three Kings of the Blues Guitar” (along with B.B. King and Freddie King), Albert King stood 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) (some reports say 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)) and weighed 250 pounds (110 kg) and was known as “The Velvet Bulldozer”. He was born Albert Nelson on a cotton plantation in Indianola, Mississippi. During his childhood he would sing at a family gospel group at a church where his father played the guitar. One of 13 children, King grew up picking cotton on plantations near Forrest City, Arkansas, where the family moved when he was eight.”

 

 

 

” He began his professional work as a musician with a group called In The Groove Boys in Osceola, Arkansas. Moving north to Gary, Indiana and later St. Louis, Missouri, he briefly played drums for Jimmy Reed‘s band and on several early Reed recordings. Influenced by blues musicians Blind Lemon Jefferson and Lonnie Johnson, the electric guitar became his signature instrument, his preference being the Gibson Flying V which he named “Lucy”. King earned his nickname “The Velvet Bulldozer” during this period as he drove one of them and also worked as a mechanic to make a living.”

 

 

 

” King moved to Gary, Indiana in the early 1950s, then to Chicago in 1953 where he cut his first single for Parrot Records, but it was only a minor regional success. He then went back to St. Louis in 1956 and formed a new band. During this period, he settled on using the Flying V as his primary guitar. He resumed recording in 1959 with his first minor hit, “I’m a Lonely Man,” written by Little Milton, who was Bobbin Records A&R man, a fellow guitar hero, and responsible for King’s signing with the label.”

 

 

 

 

albertking

 

 

 

AllMusic Bio

 

” Albert King is truly a “King of the Blues,” although he doesn’t hold that title (B.B. does). Along with B.B. and Freddie KingAlbert King is one of the major influences on blues and rock guitar players. Without him, modern guitar music would not sound as it does — his style has influenced both black and white blues players from Otis Rush and Robert Cray to Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan. It’s important to note that while almost all modern blues guitarists seldom play for long without falling into a B.B. King guitar cliché, Albert King never does — he’s had his own style and unique tone from the beginning.”

 

 

 

” Albert King plays guitar left-handed, without re-stringing the guitar from the right-handed setup; this “upside-down” playing accounts for his difference in tone, since he pulls down on the same strings that most players push up on when bending the blues notes. King‘s massive tone and totally unique way of squeezing bends out of a guitar string has had a major impact. Many young white guitarists — especially rock & rollers — have been influenced by King‘s playing, and many players who emulate his style may never have heard of Albert King, let alone heard his music. His style is immediately distinguishable from all other blues guitarists, and he’s one of the most important blues guitarists to ever pick up the electric guitar.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Albert King left Bobbin in late 1962 and recorded one session for King Records in the spring of 1963, which were much more pop-oriented than his previous work; the singles issued from the session failed to sell. Within a year, he cut four songs for the local St. Louis independent label Coun-Tree, which was run by a jazz singer named Leo Gooden. Though these singles didn’t appear in many cities — St. Louis, Chicago, and Kansas City were the only three to register sales — they foreshadowed his coming work with Stax Records. Furthermore, they were very popular within St. Louis, so much so that Gooden resented King‘s success and pushed him off the label.”

 

 

 

” Following his stint at Coun-Tree, Albert King signed with Stax Records in 1966. Albert‘s records for Stax would bring him stardom, both within blues and rock circles. All of his ’60s Stax sides were recorded with the label’s house band, Booker T. & the MG’s, which gave his blues a sleek, soulful sound. That soul underpinning gave King crossover appeal, as evidenced by his R&B chart hits — “Laundromat Blues” (1966) and “Cross Cut Saw” (1967) both went Top 40, while “Born Under a Bad Sign” (1967) charted in the Top 50. Furthermore, King‘s style was appropriated by several rock & roll players, most notably Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, who copied Albert‘s “Personal Manager” guitar solo on the Cream song, “Strange Brew.” Albert King‘s first album for Stax, 1967’s Born Under a Bad Sign, was a collection of his singles for the label and became one of the most popular and influential blues albums of the late ’60s. Beginning in 1968, Albert King was playing not only to blues audiences, but also to crowds of young rock & rollers. He frequently played at the Fillmore West in San Francisco and he even recorded an album, Live Wire/Blues Power, at the hall in the summer of 1968.”

 

 

 

” Early in 1969, King recorded Years Gone By, his first true studio album. Later that year, he recorded a tribute album to Elvis Presley (Blues for Elvis: Albert King Does the King’s Things) and a jam session with Steve Cropper and Pops Staples (Jammed Together), in addition to performing a concert with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. For the next few years, Albert toured America and Europe, returning to the studio in 1971, to record the Lovejoy album. In 1972, he recorded I’ll Play the Blues for You, which featured accompaniment from the Bar-Kaysthe Memphis Horns, and the Movement. The album was rooted in the blues, but featured distinctively modern soul and funk overtones.”

 

 

 

 

 

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Bio

 

” In 1969, King performed live with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, forming what was called an “87-piece blues band.” During the early Seventies, he recorded the album Lovejoy with a group of white rock singers and an Elvis Presley tribute album, Albert King Does the King’s Things. King continued to tour throughout the Seventies, and in June 1970, he joined the Doors onstage at a show in Vancouver, Canada.”

 

 

 

” King’s sound underwent a major change in the Seventies, as he teamed up with the Bar-Kays and the Memphis Horns on the albums I’ll Play the Blues for You and I Wanna Get Funky. That partnership gave his music a much funkier sound than it had on his earlier recordings, and the former album’s title track became one of his signature songs. King also worked with Allen Toussaint and some of the Meters during this period.”

 

 

 

 

 

Cascade Blues Bio

 ”  If the annals are ever logged as to who the most influential guitar greats of all time were, then there would be no question regarding the inclusion of the three “Kings” of the Blues: B.B.Freddie and Albert. There is little doubt of the impact that each of these artists brought to the future sounds of Blues, Soul and Rock ‘n’ Roll. Albert King was a master of the single-string attack and was intrigued by Blues performers that he heard while growing up outside of Memphis. In turn, he influenced a new generation of guitar players that would include the likes of Jimi HendrixEric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan.”

”  On February 1, 1968, Albert King shared a bill that included John Mayall and Jimi Hendrix for opening night at a new venue in San Francisco called The Fillmore Auditorium. This popular music hall would become a second home for King, and later that same year he returned to record a live album “Live Wire / Blues Power” became one of the best-selling Live Blue! recordings ever and helped establishKing’s career further. Two other albums were released in the early 1990s that were taped during these same performances (“Wednesday Night In San Francisco: Recorded Live At The Fillmore Auditorium” and “Thursday Night In San Francisco…”  Though weaker than the original both serve as true testaments to the talents of Albert King’s guitar.”

” King continued to record with Stax, until the demise of the label in the mid-1970s. The output of this period included some strange mixtures for a Blues musician. In 1969, Albert became the first Blues performer to perform with a symphony orchestra in a concert that teamed him with the St. Louis Symphony. He recorded the album “Lovejoy “at Muscle Shoals with white Southern rockers and even released a tribute album to Elvis Presley, “Blues For Elvis: Albert King Does The King’s Things“. There was even an appearance on a comedy LP by Albert Brooks, “A Star Is Bought“. After Staxfolded, King would record for a number of labels that would include TomatoUtopia and Fantasy, until he decided to retire in the mid-1980s. Though Albert King had given up on recording, he still managed to find time to perform. He made cameo appearances on albums by up-coming Bluesmen like Chris Cain (“Cuttin’ Loose“) and Gary Moore (“Still Got The Blues“). He also made frequent stops at Blues festivals around the world, continuing to influence new generations of guitarists including Stevie Ray Vaughan and Robert Cray.”

” King played his final concert in Los Angeles on December 19, 1992. He died two days later at home in Memphis after suffering a sudden heart attack. After his funeral, a procession was led down Beale Street in a true New Orleans-style Jazz tradition, as the hearse bearing King’s body was led by the Memphis Horns playing “When The Saints Go Marching In“. King was laid to rest across the Mississippi River in the Paradise Gardens Cemetery in Edmondson, Arkansas, not far from where he spent his childhood.”   

“Albert King has been honored by The Blues Foundation with his induction into their Hall of Fame. Both “Born Under A Bad Sign” and “Live Wire / Blues Power” are also honored as Classics of Blues Recordings. But, the real honor for King is the love and everlasting respect that so many of his peers have given him. Stevie Ray Vaughan would call him “Daddy” and John Lee Hooker named him as one of his all-time favorite guitarists. Michael Bloomfield once said, “Albert can take four notes and write a volume. He can say more with fewer notes than anyone I’ve ever known.”  B.B. King stated in his autobiography “He wasn’t my brother in blood, but he sure was my brother in Blues.”  Albert King’s legend will live on.  Every time a Blues or Rock combo is on stage, in an arena or small nightclub, or just playing in their garage and grinds into “Born Under A Bad Sign” or “Crosscut Saw“, his influence will be shining true.”

 

 

 

” King died on December 21, 1992 from a heart attack in his Memphis, Tennessee home. His final concert had been in Los Angeles two days earlier. He was given a funeral procession with the Memphis Horns playing “When The Saints Go Marching In” and buried in Edmondson, Arkansas near his childhood home. B.B. King eulogized him by stating “Albert wasn’t my brother in blood, but he was my brother in blues.”

On December 11th, 2012, it was announced that King would be posthumously inducted into the 2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “

 

 

 

 

 Albert Nelson King

 

    Apr. 25, 1923-Dec. 21, 1992

 

 

 

Discography

Albums

Born Under A Bad Sign

‎ ◄ (12 versions)

Stax

1967

 

Live Wire / Blues Power

‎ ◄ (11 versions)

Stax

1968

 

Albert King , Steve Cropper & Pops Staples – Jammed Together ‎ ◄ (5 versions)

Stax

1969

 

King Of The Blues Guitar

‎ ◄ (6 versions)

Atlantic

1969

 

Years Gone By

‎ ◄ (6 versions)

Stax

1969

 

King Does The King’s Thing

‎ ◄ (6 versions)

Stax

1969

 

Lovejoy

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Stax

1971

 

I’ll Play The Blues For You

‎ ◄ (9 versions)

Stax

1972

 

I Wanna Get Funky

‎ ◄ (4 versions)

StaxStax

1974

 

Albert King / Chico Hamilton / Little Milton – Montreux Festival ‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Stax

1974

 

Travelin “To California

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

King Records (3)

1976

 

Truckload Of Lovin’

‎ ◄ (8 versions)

Utopia (2)

1976

 

Albert Live

‎ ◄ (4 versions)

Utopia (2)

1977

 

The Pinch

‎ ◄ (5 versions)

StaxEMI

1977

 

King Albert

‎ ◄ (5 versions)

Tomato

1977

 

Albert

‎ ◄ (5 versions)

Tomato

1978

 

New Orleans Heat

‎ ◄ (8 versions)

Tomato

1978

 

San Francisco ’83

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Fantasy

1983

 

I’m In A Phone Booth Baby

‎ (LP)

Fantasy

1984

 

The Lost Session

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Stax

1986

 

Blues At Sunrise

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Stax

1988

 

Thursday Night In San Francisco

‎ ◄ (3 versions)

Stax Records

1990

 

Wednesday Night In San Francisco

‎ ◄ (2 versions)

Stax

1990

 

Red House

‎ (LP, Album)

Essential

1991

 

Crosscut Saw – Albert King In San Francisco

‎ (CD, RM)

Stax

1992

 

Mean, Mean Blues

‎ (Cass, Album)

Highland Music

1993

 

Albert King With Stevie Ray Vaughan – In Session ‎ ◄ (9 versions)

Stax

1999

 

Live 69

‎ (CD, Album)

Tomato

2003

 

Talkin’ Blues

‎ (CD)

Thirsty Ear

2003

 

The Big Blues

‎ (LP, Album, RE)

Sundazed Music

2012

 

Live At The Blues Festival

‎ (LP, Album)

Links

100 GREATEST GUITARISTS

MTV Biography

Albert King: inducted in 2013 | The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame …

Albert King, Mississippi Blues musician – Mississippi writers …

Albert King | Bio, Pictures, Videos | Rolling Stone

Albert King – Profile and Biography of Blues Guitarist Albert King …

Albert King Biography – Musician Biographies

Videos

Wattstax (1973)

Albert King – Live 1/7/78 Full Show

Albert King – Maintenance Shop Blues (Live 1981)

John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers 1982 Jam With Albert King , Etta James …

Stevie Ray Vaughan & Albert King in session 1983

Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughan — In Session 2010 1983

B.B. King & Albert King – Japan Blues Carnival 1989

Albert King / Canned Heat Aussie Tour 1990

LiveLeak.com – Rock and Roll Hall of Fame – ALBERT KING

Interviews

Albert King – Interview

Albert King – Interview 2

Greg Koch On Meeting Albert King • Wildwood Guitars Story

 

 

 

Music

Albert King – King Albert Vinyl Records, CDs and LPs

iTunes – Music – Albert King – Apple

Albert King on Spotify

Amazon.com: Albert King

Albert King – Listen to Free Music on Pandora …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Albert King – Live – Fillmore East New York 1970

 

 

 

Published on Dec 21, 2014

” Setlist:
0:00:00 – Bill Graham – Backstage at the Fillmore
0:01:31 – Oh, Pretty Woman
0:05:57 – Blues Power “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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John Mayall: Jammin’ With The Blues Greats 1982

 

 

 

Published on Jun 30, 2013

” One hot night in June 1982 at New Jersey’s Capitol Theater, John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers, featuring Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones) on lead guitar, John McVie (Fleetwood Mac) on bass, and Colin Allen (of Rod Stewart’s band) on drums, paid homage to and were joined by five blues immortals: Albert King, Etta James, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells, and the 83-year-old Sippie Wallace. Each of the blues greats were backed by the Bluesbreakers, resulting in some amazing musical moments. Awesome is the only word to describe the guitar jams among Albert King, Buddy Guy, and Mick Taylor. “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

—-

John Mayall: Jammin’ With The Blues Greats 1982

 

 

 

 

Published on Jun 30, 2013

” One hot night in June 1982 at New Jersey’s Capitol Theater, John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers, featuring Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones) on lead guitar, John McVie (Fleetwood Mac) on bass, and Colin Allen (of Rod Stewart’s band) on drums, paid homage to and were joined by five blues immortals: Albert King, Etta James, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells, and the 83-year-old Sippie Wallace. Each of the blues greats were backed by the Bluesbreakers, resulting in some amazing musical moments. Awesome is the only word to describe the guitar jams among Albert King, Buddy Guy, and Mick Taylor.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughan — In Session 2010 1983

 

 

 

 

Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughan — In Session 2010 1983

 

 

 

 

 

Two Songs From The 1987 Grammy Broadcast

 

 

 

 

I Make Love & Let The Good Times Roll

Three Masters At Work

 

 

 

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Two Masters At Work

The Master At Work

 

 

 

Daily Video 1.29.14

Albert King – As The Years Go Passing By Live In Montreaux With Rory Gallagher

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stevie Ray & Albert

Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughan — In Session 1983

 

 

 

The 28th Annual Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony

 

 

 

Albert King (guitar, vocals; born Albert Nelson on April 25, 1923, died December 21, 1992)

 

 

 

 

” As an electric guitar player who focused more on tone and intensity than flash, Albert King had a tremendous impact on countless rock and roll guitarists, including Eric ClaptonJimi Hendrix, Michael Bloomfield and Stevie Ray Vaughan. King was also one of the first bluesmen who crossed over into the world of soul music, signing with Stax Records and recording such classic songs as “Born Under a Bad Sign” and “Crosscut Saw.” “

 

 

 

 

” Albert King was born Albert Nelson on April 25, 1923, in Indianola, Mississippi, the same town where B.B. King grew up. As a child, he sang with his family’s gospel group at a church where his father played the guitar. When King was eight, his family moved to Forrest City, Arkansas, and he would pick cotton on plantations in the area. Around that same time, King bought his first guitar, paying only $1.25. His first inspiration was T-Bone Walker.

King began working as a professional musician when he joined a group called In the Groove Boys in Osceola, Arkansas, in the late Forties. He then moved north and played drums with Jimmy Reed, both onstage and on several early Reed recordings. In the early Fifties, King moved to Gary, Indiana, and then, in 1953, to Chicago. It was in Chicago that King cut his first singles, “Lonesome in My Bedroom” and “Bad Luck Blues,” for Parrot Records.”

 

 

 

 

” The electric guitar quickly became King’s primary instrument, his preferred instrument being a Gibson Flying V that he played left-handed, holding it upside down and tuning it for a right-handed player. A huge man, weighing more than 250 pounds and standing six-feet-four, King was  a commanding physical presence onstage.

In 1956, King returned to St. Louis and formed a new band. He resumed recording in 1959 and scored his first minor hit, “I’m a Lonely Man.” The song was written by Little Milton, who was an A&R man for Bobbin Records, the label that released the record. King recorded for several other small labels during this period, including King Records. In 1961, he scored his first major hit, “Don’t Throw Your Love on Me Too Strong,” which reached Number 14 on the R&B chart. 

 

 

 

 

King’s real breakthrough came in 1966, when he moved to Memphis and signed with Stax Records. Working with producer Al Jackson Jr. and backed by Booker T. and the M.G.’s, King recorded such classics as “Crosscut Saw” and “As the Years Go Passing By.” In 1967, Stax released Born Under a Bad Sign. The title track became King’s best-known song and has been covered by many artists, including Cream. King played many shows at promoter Bill Graham‘s Fillmore East and the Fillmore West venues. One show was recorded and released as the album Live Wire/Blues Power.

In 1969, King performed live with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, forming what was called an “87-piece blues band.” During the early Seventies, he recorded the album Lovejoy with a group of white rock singers and an Elvis Presley tribute album, Albert King Does the King’s Things. King continued to tour throughout the Seventies, and in June 1970, he joined the Doors onstage at a show in Vancouver, Canada.

King’s sound underwent a major change in the Seventies, as he teamed up with the Bar-Kays and the Memphis Horns on the albums I’ll Play the Blues for You and I Wanna Get Funky. That partnership gave his music a much funkier sound than it had on his earlier recordings, and the former album’s title track became one of his signature songs. King also worked with Allen Toussaint and some of the Meters during this period.”

 

 

 

 

” During the Eighties, King received considerable praise from many young blues guitarists, most notably Stevie Ray Vaughan. The two appeared together on the Canadian television show In Session in December 1983, a performance that was issued on CD in 1993. One British writer described Vaughan as a “young Texan who apparently believes that Albert King is God and the Lord should be praised regularly.”

 

 

 

 

” King continued to perform until his death from a heart attack on December 21, 1992. At his funeral, Joe Walsh played a slide-guitar rendition of “Amazing Grace” as a tribute to King.”

 

 

 

 

” From Eric Clapton, Michael Bloomfield and Johnny Winter, to Joe Walsh, Stevie Ray Vaughan,Derek Trucks and beyond, the influence of Albert King’s husky vocals and his signature Gibson Flying V guitar will live on forever.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

—-

 

 

 

Albert King – Blues Power

Albert King – Blues Power

Rest In Peace SRV

Twenty Three years ago today we lost a GIANT

 

 Stevie Ray Vaughan, blues guitarist, dies in a helicopter crash at 35

 

Allmusic:

  “With his astonishingly accomplished guitar playing, Stevie Ray Vaughan ignited the blues revival of the ’80s. Vaughan drew equally from bluesmen like Albert KingOtis Rush, and Muddy Waters and rock & roll players like Jimi Hendrix and Lonnie Mack, as well as the stray jazz guitarist like Kenny Burrell, developing a uniquely eclectic and fiery style that sounded like no other guitarist, regardless of genre.Vaughan bridged the gap between blues and rock like no other artist had since the late ’60s. For the next seven years, Stevie Ray was the leading light in American blues, consistently selling out concerts while his albums regularly went gold. His tragic death in 1990 only emphasized his influence in blues and American rock & roll.”

 

Pride And Joy

Texas Flood 

COULDN’T STAND THE WEATHER

Crossfire

Sweet Home Chicago with Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Buddy Guy, Jimmie Vaughan, Robert Cray

Why I Sing the Blues with BB King , Eric Clapton , Albert King , Etta James , Dr John , Paul Butterfield, Phil Collins, Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, Billy Ocean

A Tribute to Stevie Ray Vaughan

Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughan — In Session 1983

Live at the El Mocambo 1983

Honolulu 1984