Fred Schott’s Blog

Carlos!

There are precious few guitarists who, with a single note or a single lick, you can immediately identify. One of them turns 77 today, Carlos Devadip Humberto Santana Barragan. His father, a mariachi musician, taught him violin at five and guitar at eight. But his big break came with a coin flip.    In early […]

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Rock and Roll!

Another contender for the birth date of rock and roll is July 11. On this date way back in 1951, Alan Freed broadcast his first Moondog House Rock and Roll Party marking the first known use of the phrase “rock and roll” on radio (giving Freed a claim on inventing the phrase). Freed was also

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Our Independence

We all know that today is to celebrate the Declaration of our independence. But here are a few facts you may not know about its author and be even more impressed with him for the struggles he endured. Before 1776, Thomas Jefferson had five daughters and one son.  All of them but one died before

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Mick and Mick

On this date in 1969, Mick Taylor was announced as the replacement for Brian Jones in the Stones, ushering in what many people (including yours truly) see as the golden era of the band as a live juggernaut. Not only did Taylor elevate the band’s sound on classics like Brown Sugar, Can’t You Hear Me

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MOTOWN

On this date, way back in 1960, Motown Records Corporation was founded. Berry Gordy had gotten his start helping to write hit songs for Jackie Wilson in the late ‘50s. With those earnings, in April 1959, Gordy and his sister Gwen founded Anna Records. Later that year he purchased a photography studio at 2648 West

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Best Drummer and Best Acoustic Guitarist Share Same Birthday

The man I consider the best drummer and the man I consider the best acoustic guitar player ever were both born yesterday. First, the drummer. John freakin’ Bonham would have been 76 today if he hadn’t drank 40 shots of vodka on October 26, 1980.  John did everything with ferocious excess including beating the life

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