''Rock N' Roll is an ADDICTION!''
EDDIE COCHRAN, 1959!
LOUISE, MARGARET, BLACKIE, BABY PEARL,
& MR. HENDRIX
(Rico's onstage Guitars!)
LOUISE is a Gretsch Brian Setzer 6120 SSLVO (Setzer Signature, Laquer, Vintage Orange) She is pictured sportin' her Silver Buckled Vintage El Dorado hand crafted guitar strap. This is the same type guitar and strap used by Setzer in La Bamba when he played Eddie Cochran. The "mud switch" has been replaced by a 16-contour "Smooth Rotation ToneStyler STD". This unique control shifts her pickup's resonant frequency and adjusts the treble roll-off point in 1/3 octave steps.
MARGARET is also a Gretsch Brian Setzer 6120 SSLVO (Setzer Signature, Laquer, Vintage Orange) She is serving as the official backup guitar and is pictured sportin' her own Silver Buckled Vintage El Dorado hand crafted guitar strap. She still has the "infamous" Mud-Switch. Her dice dials have been replaced with vintage Gretsch dials and the cream pickguard has been replaced with an Eddie Cochran clear one.
These two stage amps pictured are actually both 65' Re-issue Fender Super reverbs.
Amp #1 has been enclosed in period correct 62' Bassman piggy-back-cabinet designed by Rico with Blond Tolex and Wheat grill cloth. Outstanding sound!
Amp #2 is a Super Reverb 65' Re-issue. Rico had Mojotone creation the new cabinet complete with Blond Tolex and Wheat grill cloth.
BLACKIE and BABY PEARL are heavily modified Eric Clapton Fender Strat's. PEARL is wearing her black Silver Buckled Vintage El Dorado hand crafted guitar strap. All Strat volume dials are moved to the point of the custom designed Warmoth pick-guard allowing for strumming/picking comfort. The selector switches are also cut down for more strumming room.
Mr. Hendrix is a VERY cool, heavily modified Fender Lefty Strat. Rico converted it to a Righty. He always wanted to know how it felt when Hendrix played a Strat backwords!
The white Gretsch 5422 TDC is sold. You will be missed "No Name"!
Rico at Jack Desmonds Irish Pub with some OLD friends!!
What's with the hat? We never seen you wear a hat!!
Mod'd Strat configurations!
All of Rico's Strat guitars are heavily modified to his exact specifications either by himself, Player's Guitars in Worth Il. or Third Coast Guitars in Chicago Il. All pick-up configurations are hand wired with Shur and/or Lindy Fralin pick-ups by Rico's friend George Ellison, owner of Acme Guitar Works in Florida. Notice the three different Humbucker/Single Coil pick-guard set-up's that can be inserted in the Clapton Strat's. Two set-up's have a Gibson 3 way toggle switch for an ES335 type configuration. They also have an ON/OFF low-profile button that turns on the middle single-coil. Very cool design by Rico. He is currently using Lindy Fralin Custom single-coils in all his stage Strat's.
This will give you an idea of how much "Modding" has to be done to have a Strat converted with Humbuckers and moved volume dials!
His choice of the Gretsch 6120 SSLVO as his main axe was heavily influenced by ROCKABILLY Kings, EDDIE COCHRAN and BRIAN SETZER, two of the Rockin'est Cats who ever lived!
Brian Setzer on Eddie Cochran
“Eddie Cochran. He's my biggest inspiration, when I saw a picture of him I said, 'I want to look like that guy,' then when I heard his music, ‘I want to pattern myself after this guy.' I wanted to sound like him and look like him and it evolved from there.”
Bruce Quintos replies (Finally!)
My pick is the only thing that stands between me and abject poverty! I am so grateful to have had the chance to live in such a Time & Place where the Music was Simple, Heartfelt, and Timeless.
Thank You Rock N' Roll!
"I get off on 57' Chevy's, I get off on screaming guitar!"
"Greetings to my brother & sister guitar players. I've been getting e-mail and guestbook requests to explain my miss-matched Eric Clapton Strat's along with the misplaced volume dials. I can't believe anyone would notice or even care! I will explain this a little later but first,
MR. EDDIE COCHRAN!
"My first major guitar influence was Eddie Cochran back in the Heyday of Rockabilly. I was 8 yrs. old in 57' and was listening to him, Elvis and Gene Vincent. Talk about formative years."
Edward Ray Cochran, Guitar, Vocals; Born October 3, 1938; Died April 17, 1960
Eddie Cochran was only 21 when he died but left a lasting mark as a rock and roll pioneer. Cochran zeroed in on teenage America with such classics as “C’mon Everybody,” “Something Else,” “Twenty Flight Rock” and “Summertime Blues.” A flashy stage dresser with a tough-sounding voice, Cochran epitomized the sound and the stance of the Fifties rebel rocker.
He was also a virtuoso guitarist, overdubbing parts like Les Paul even on his earliest singles and playing with an authority that led music journalist Bruce Eder to pronounce him “rock’s first high-energy guitar hero, the forerunner to Pete Townshend, Jimmy Page, Duane Allman and, at least in terms of dexterity, Jimi Hendrix.”
Cochran was also proficient on piano, bass and drums and played all the instruments on Summertime Blues!
Eddie Cochran and the Beatles
When Paul McCartney met John Lennon on July 6, 1957, one of the songs Paul played on guitar and sang for John was Eddie Cochran’s “Twenty Flight Rock”. The occasion was the garden fete of St Peter’s Church, Woolton, Liverpool, where John’s band, the Quarry Men, were performing. Mutual friend Ivan Vaughan had introduced the two future Beatles and this impromptu audition took place. Lennon was impressed that Paul knew all of the lyrics to “Twenty Flight Rock”, and McCartney wrote them down for him. A couple weeks later Paul was invited to join the Quarry Men and he eventually did so.
Unfortunately, Cochran didn’t live to hear about the significance his song had on the two future music legends. On April 17, 1960, at the young age of 21, he died from injuries from a traffic accident in a taxi. This was a few years before The Beatles were to became famous.
Sadly, Within 24 hours of blasting out the final notes of his smash number-one hit Summertime Blues Eddie was dead from his injuries after a car smash on the A4 in Wiltshire, England.
Eddie Cochran has inspired three of the most important things in my life,
My guitar playing, my singing, and my hair!"
My next influence was James Burton in the late 50's and very early 60's. James was Ricky Nelson's guitar player and later played with Elvis, The KING, until he went away to the Promised Land. James played a Fender Telecaster from the very start and continues to this day.
"This young man on lead guitar is one of the finest guitar players I've ever met.
His name is James Burton"
ELVIS PRESLEY 69'
ARNIE EVENSON INFLUENCE & WES MONTGOMERY!
"It was 1968 and I was able to gain entry into Chicago's famous "Pepe's Show Lounge" on 63rd street. I was at the impressionable age of 18. Up until that time I was a Rock N' Roll'r. It was there I first heard and saw JAZZ being played. I was listening to 26 year old Arnie Evenson playing a Gibson L-5 . The band was "The Millionaire's". Arnie later became my guitar instructor and jazz mentor. Absolutely one of the best guitar players I have ever heard or seen live.
Arnie introduced me to the guitar work of Wes Montgomery who I was fortunate enough to have latter met. I was just a punk-ass 19 year old kid listening to jazz at the PLUGGED NICKEL here in Chicago on Wells St. Wes took the time to talk to me and offer encouragement. He actually remembered me from a previous show! God rest your Jazzin' Soul Wes and THANK YOU!
John Leslie Montgomery, March 6, 1923-June 15, 1968 Age 45
My first guitar was a 56' Gibson ES 125T. The 125T was an Archtop Thinline version of the Gibson ES 125. It had one P90 pickup , no cutaway and a bound body with a sunburst finish . My parents bought it with lessons for about $150.00. I wish I still had it!
My second guitar was a candy apple red 62' Fender Jaguar that I got from Carnavale's Music Store on 63rd Street in Chicago. I was 12 yrs. old and had picked out a sunburst 62' Strat. My dad asked Mr. Carnavale if that was the best guitar in the store and he replied "no Mr. Quintos (they were really good friends and I always heard him call my dad Bob!) the best guitar we have is this brand new Jaguar! My dad, trying to get me the best, bought the Jaguar INSTEAD of the Strat!
In 65' I switched to a 64' white Gibson SG and a 65' Epiphone Rivera. Finally I got my cherry red 67' ES 335 Gibson in 1968 and kept it until 2005. I sold it to one of my old guitar students, Mike Krupowicz. More on Mike latter!
"GO FORTH AND MODIFY!"
One of my favorite guitars is a mid 90's Eric Clapton re-issue strung with Ernie Ball 10 gauge. I didn't like the position of the volume dial because I kept banging into it when I played. This is always a problem when I play any Strat. I had it rerouted and moved to the front of the pick-guard. Works great!
The Clapton Strat comes with an active pick-up system than runs on a 9 volt battery. I got sick and tired of replacing 9 volts especially during the middle of a show! I had the active pick-up system removed.
I replaced the stock Fender noiseless neck pick-up with a Seymor Duncan JB Junior humbucker and the stock Fender noiseless bridge pick-up with a Seymour Duncan SHR1Hot Rails humbucker pick-up giving the FrankenStrat a fatter, meatier sound.
The 5 way selector switch was re-wired to suite my playing style. I also replaced the white pick guard with the one pictured and cut the selector switch down to keep it out of my way. I also had the guitar re-fretted with jumbo frets.
I have no idea what the guitar is worth. I think it's pretty jazbo'd with all the changes I made. I love it and ain't gonna part with it anyway.
Les Paul Double-Cut
I own and have owned many guitars but the one's I use for shows are Louise (Gretsch Brian Setzer 6120 SSLO), Baby Pearl (#1, Olympic White Clapton) and BLACKIE (#2, Black Clapton) and And yes I do own a Gibson Les Paul Double-cut and yes I have used it on a FEW Rico jobs. I own a 52' re-issue Tele but I keep it stored.
I have 3 acoustic guitars. I have a Bigsby equipped Gretsch Rancher, a Taylor CE710 and a Ovation Ultra 2178. The Ovation neck feels very close to the Eric Clampton Strat V neck. I have them all strung with Ernie Ball 10 gauge for ease of playing. The Rancher is great! It's action is very close to my FrankenStrat so I use it for Acoustic Shows. Guitar player/tech extraordinaire Mike Krupowicz, owner of Players Guitar in Worth Il., did a great amount of work on the neck and the bridge. No fret buzz even with the light gauge strings.
Oh by the by, The Taylor hasn't been out of the case in over a year!
I'm proud to say I was Mike's first guitar teacher way back in the early 70's.
Now he's a giggin' player, a guitar store owner and has his own Band,
"SLIPPERY WHEN WET"
This is a picture of me giving Mike a guitar lesson at my guitar studio a long, long time ago!
POSTED ON OUR MESSAGE PAGE:
158. Bill and Quigley gang - 2008-06-02 10:54:17
Hey Rico, We were the gang sitting in front of the stage at Quigley's Saturday. Great band one of the best up here. We left before I could ask about the stuff on your amp. I read the Frankenstrat page but it just talked about guitars.
ANSWER: Brother Bill, I think you also play guitar am I right? Talking about guitars and stuff is my favorite subject. There's a vintage guitar shop on 111th Street in Worth Il. called Players. All the ax slingers go there and shoot the BS. It's a great place.
I have three amp set-ups for gigs. My "Number 1" is a heavily modified Fender Super Reverb. The second is the Super Reverb "Y Boxed "to a Fender DeVille (all tube amp of course) with 4 10in. speakers.
For festivals or BIG venues I use the Fender Super Reverb and the Fender DeVille 4X10 piggy-backed on top of a Fender DeVille cabinet with 2 12in. speakers. I split the signal using both amps with the extension cabinet.
I mic all three set-ups with a Sennheiser evolution e906 Dynamic Guitar Amp mic that goes into the mixing board. I can add or subtract volume from there. I try to keep my rig as simple as possible. For the Fender DeVille I only use 6 pedals on the pedal-board I built myself. They are set in the following order: Tuner, 2 Blues Drivers and Delay (set up for Rockabilly slapback).
I have a Shure PGXD14 Digital Wireless System velcro'd to the top of the amps along with the power supply and chord. It looks like a lot of cables and stuff but it's only the send and return from the pedal board, the XLR from the Sure mic, and the 1/4 inch going into the amp from the wireless. SIMPLE! Talk soon I hope, Bruce
Rico's retirement plan.
"I'll Sell a vintage guitar every 3 years and hope I don't live past 102!!!"
67' Gibson ES335
70' Gibson Johnny Smith
The Gibson Johnny Smith again
Not a very good shot of Rico's 71' Gibson SG but check out that guitar strap!
Ofc. Phil Wasek and pre-PoPo Rico.
Not a good way to transport a 69' Country Gentleman, gentlemen!
Gretsch 69' Country Gentlemen
Very hard to see but that's a first run Vox Super Beatle on stage powering Rico's sound pushed by a Gretch Country Gentleman. Sports coats and turtlenecks? Very cool!
67' Gibson ES335 played through a 1968 Fender Super reverb amp. The year was 1996. Bruce was practicing some new arrangements with Ed Kane and Don McGrath on bagpipes
Question from the Guestbook:
173. Rico fan
- 2008-07-12 17:25:33
Is that Bruce playing country guitar on Put Me Out Of Business? Just heard it on one of the old Bluestack CD’s. That and Danny Boy.
Irish power trio, BLUESTACK!
We toured all over the country playing Irish Rebel Rock!
An undisclosed cemetery! At Gaelic Park Music Row in Nashville!
BLUESTACK, Irish Rebel Rock!
Answer: Yes, but the original song is called SAXON CAGE. I recorded that CD with Brendan Loughrey shortly before our power trio Bluestack broke up. I recorded it direct into a CD recorder using onboard effects. No amp or pedals. It was an over-track and I had to listen as I was recording thru headphones. I recorded Danny Boy the same way. Kinda tricky on a cold winter morning in Brendan's basement but it worked!
"I just go where the guitar takes me.
I wouldn't know any newer bands. We're past the pimple stage.
I'm sick to death of people saying we've made 11 albums that
sounds exactly the same, In fact, we've made 12 albums that sound exactly the
same. There are all sorts of cute puppy dogs, but it
doesn't stop people from going out and buying Dobermans.
We're a rock group. we're noisy, rowdy, sensational and
weird. When I'm on stage the savage in me is released.
It's like going back to being a cave man. It takes me six hours to come down
after a show."
"Yes, we're still five little people with a noisy attitude!"
Mr. Keith Richards, 2010 & beyond!
Few humans have cheated death more often than Keef. He has survived multiple near-fatal drug over-doses and knocked back enough booze to disease two-dozen livers. On occasion his blood has become so toxic he's required a full transfusion. Richards has lived through incarceration, tumbles from trees and peril at the hands of Hells Angels. He seems to know no fear!
Keith's remarkable durability inspires faith in the adolescent dream that if you stay true to the spirit of Rock N' Roll, you can swagger through this whole damned life with a cigarette dangling from you lip, a strong drink in one hand, guitar in the other, and a scarf flung nonchalantly over your shoulder. At public appearances "Keef" often observes,
"It's good to be here.....It's good to be anywhere!"
It's certainly great to have them both here....STILL!! Long Live the Keef & Angus!
Stevie Ray Vaughan
"Like my brother Jimmie says, I play like I'm breaking out of jail."
Rest In Peace SRV. Your music lives and is safe with us. PROMISE!
Saving the BEST for last!
Mr. Brian "Rockabilly" Setzer!
This Cat is the best guitar slinger I've ever heard and I've heard them all!
ROCK N' ROLL IS HERE TO STAY, IT WILL NEVER DIE!!!
It's All Eddie Cochran's Fault! By Binky Philips
Eddie Cochran. Okay, yeah, I know, that's the guy who wrote "Summertime Blues," right? Yeah, cool... uh... He's that dude that 21st-century rockabilly fans worship as a deity. Inducted into the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame the second year they were open for business. Oh yeah, sure, I know the guy.
Uh, no, you don't. I've had a bee in my bonnet about this young man for decades, dammit! Here's the deal-io! Eddie Cochran was a Paradigm Guitar Player... Closer to James Marshall Hendrix than a late-1950s contemporary like James Burton in the Impact category.
A Pedantic Paragraph: No matter which art form, artists who single-handedly shift the direction of their field of artistic endeavor are extremely rare. There have been a small number of Paradigm guitarists over the last six decades or so. Most often cited, Charlie Christian, Django Reinhardt, Les Paul, B.B. King, Pete Townshend, Jimi Hendrix, Eddie Van Halen... All utterly valid. Yet, somehow, in a field that has been, and is, pored over on a minute-to-minute basis the world over, there remains someone in the shadows, who among only the true rock cognoscenti, stands shoulder to shoulder with the all of above-mentioned, Eddie Cochran.
Before we go any further, let's retell the tale of Cute Paulie meeting Johnny Rhythm for the first time... It's around 3:30 in the afternoon on Saturday, July 6, 1957. Paul has watched John's Quarrymen do a few tunes at a garden party at a Liverpool church. Wanting to impress John, who is clearly the leader of the group, and just as clearly a bit of a hard-ass, Paul he knows exactly what to hit this guy with... Years later, John Lennon recalling the moment, was knocked out by the fact that Paul knew all the chords and words to "20 Flight Rock" by "everyone's idol," Eddie Cochran.
And right there, you have the whole story in one word. "Idol" is just not a word you can throw around. It's worthless (false!) when you do. Eddie Cochran, the merest two-hit-wonder also-ran in his own country, the US of A, was worshipped right along side Elvis Presley in Great Britain in the 1950s. It is this off kilter fact, among other pop-culture-stew ingredients, that one can directly trace the almost total dominance of English rock guitarists from 1964 through the early 70s.
Kids learning to play guitar in England at the end of the 1950s had an enormous advantage. They were paying attention to Eddie, in particular, the hardcore kids at the time, who'd caught Eddie's one UK tour in the Spring of 1960. Yes, that was the one he had just finished when he was killed in a taxi accident on his way to Heathrow to catch the plane back home.
Teenage boys like Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend, Ritchie Blackmore, Jeff Beck, went to see that tour, or knew someone who did. All of them down front (where any serious guitar playing kid would be) saw something utterly new, something revolutionary. Eddie's G string was unwound. Okay, this sounds like a joke, right. But, this is, in actuality, one of the most profoundly pivotal moments in the history of the guitar. The entire course of popular music was to be drastically, tangibly, directly impacted by this one revelation Eddie brought with him from Minnesota. Word spread like wildfire.
Technical explanation: For centuries, guitars were strung with 4 wound strings (a wire with thinner wire wound around it) and 2 plain (one wire) strings, the plain strings being the highest treble strings, E and B. Normally, the 3rd string, the G, is wound, making it a tough string to bend. An unwound G instantly makes a guitar easier to play and more expressive. And, the G string is more often than not, the string that is voicing the 'flavor' note in any given chord, and is also often the root string when soloing.
In other words, Eddie Cochran impacted virtually every young guitar player in England in the late 1950s like a head on (yeah, maybe even Eric "Robert Johnson" Clapton), while American guitar kids were still sitting around waiting for The Ventures to arrive with their straightforward and polite guitar stylings in late 1960. Poor Eddie had been dead almost 6 months when "Walk Don't Run" was released. This would be enough for the Maw of History, but, no, no, no...We're just getting started...
You know how cool it was when, in the early 1970s, guys like Todd Rundgren were producing demos and even albums playing all or almost all the instruments, over-dubbing one after the other. Well, Eddie beat them to that trick by well over a decade; the first ever rock star to write, record, produce, and play most of the instruments on all his records. And... Eddie was doing this while he was still a teenager!
He was 18 in 1957 when he recorded his version of the revered "20 Flight Rock." He played all the instruments, except for his pal and occasional co-writer, Jerry Capehart, thumping on a cardboard carton in lieu of a snare drum.
By the time he was 20, Eddie had already written and recorded many of his biggest hits, several of which stand today as monuments of the highest quality and purest music produced in the infancy of Rock'n'Roll.
Eddie was the first songwriter to appropriate Chuck Berry's breakthrough observational lyric style. And Cochran was actually a teenager making his empathetic observations from inside the situation, as opposed to a smooth sly older gentleman, who wrote lyrics that a Porter or Sondheim would envy. The knowing details, laid back wit, and fully-developed vision Eddie displays in the lyrics of "Summertime Blues," "Somethin' Else," "Nervous Breakdown," "Pink Peg-legged Slacks", are staggering coming from someone barely out of his teens.
Like Buddy Holly, the only other true guitar/writer/singer/producer giant of the time, Eddie also was writing using the immemorial 1 - 4 - 5 chord sequence in ways that did not use the the standard 1 - 4 - 1 - 5 - 4 - 1 blues sequence (even if you know nothing about music, you can hear what I'm referring to just by humming a blues to yourself). Virtually every one of Cochran's masterpieces utilizes those same three chords. Yet, he arranged the changes in ways that made the music new and fresh. A serious trick!
Eddie was blessed with looks that really were in Elvis' league and his persona was much closer to Elvis' than the justly legendary Buddy Holly. While a deeply hard-ass gun-carrying Texas cat in 'real life', Buddy presented himself as safe as a vanilla shake. Eddie's voice, lyrics, publicity shots, all had an authentic brooding bad-boy quality to them, almost akin to James Dean.
Eddie was also a wicked years-ahead-of-his-time lead guitarist. Remember that unwound G string? While none of his hits ever contained a moment where it would make sense to cut loose, there are b-side and album tracks that exist where, if we're gonna be honest, he tears contemporary guys like James Burton and Scotty Moore and Link Wray to little bitty shreds. I've been playing guitar for over 45 years. Trust me, Eddie C (almost viciously) wipes the gol-dern floor with all of them.
He may well be rock'n'roll's first-ever 'techie gearhead,' too. I have never seen another photo of a modified guitar as early as Eddie's Gretsch 6120 with a Gibson P-90 pickup in the neck position. Les Paul had dozens of prototypes at his disposal. This was an 18-year-old kid swapping electronics in his electric guitar in 1957. And, by the way, he was on the money. P-90 pick-ups are awesome!
Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey were particularly enamored with Eddie's Flamenco strumming on his hit, "Three Steps To Heaven," an otherwise corny track that featured the strum that Townshend would utilize to its fullest advantage in "Pinball Wizard." "Here For More", the b-side of "The Seeker," and Roger's best songwriting effort, was essentially an excuse for Pete to do Eddie's "Heaven" strum every 10 seconds. Whenever Pete threw that Eddie strum into a song on stage, Roger inevitably would turn to Pete and smile knowingly, Pete smiling back. I saw that happen several times from my front row vantage point over the years.
Another viscerally important Cochran factor... The big bold chunky chug and feel of Eddie's rhythm tracks. Up to that point, there was simply no music recorded with the rhythmic drive and leaning-into-the-beat feel of tracks like "C'mon Everybody," "Somethin' Else,", and "Jeannie Jeannie Jeannie." Eddie's production emphasized the mid-and-low end range thus adding an extra oomph from the bass guitar and drums. One can hear that precise feel in songs by the likes of The Who, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Led Zeppelin (another Cochran cover-band!), one more little gift from Mr. Cochran.
In the Spring of 1969, Jeff Beck released his second album under the name, The Jeff Beck Group, "Beck Ola (Cosa Nostra)", featuring Rod "The Mod" Stewart on lead vocals. It is a milestone album by any critical aesthetic analysis. Cueing off of Jeff's first solo LP, "Truth," "Beck-Ola" was the first true blend of Flash Blues Metal and Outright Funk. Every cut is brilliant, with Jeff playing some of the wildest lead guitar ever committed to a recording process. While every track has scorching guitar throughout, there is a riff on "Hangman" that just totally destroyed me as a budding guitarist. It was the first thing I learned off that album. I sat in my room for a weekend getting it exactly right. For several months, I'd whip it out whenever I jammed with someone and it always dropped jaws. "Show me that riff, Binky! Now!"
About five years later, someone in England got around to releasing the recording of the one live show Eddie Cochran did for the BBC just weeks before his death. Among all these great BBC performances, Eddie did his version of "Milk Cow Blues" (the solo on this, and his original recorded version, will curl your toes!). About two-thirds of the way through the song, in between vocal lines, Eddie whips out a deadly deadly lick. Guess which one? And I mean, THE EXACT LICK, complete with the psycho vibrato on the last note... Yep, Jeff Beck's transcendent "Hangman" riff... nine years before Jeff got to it. So, why do I know all this?
Well, the first time I ever heard the name Eddie Cochran was out of the mouth of Roger Daltrey at the Village Theater in July, 1967. He announced that The Who were gonna do "a new one for us, but, it's an old Eddie Cochran number called 'Summertime Blues'... ." They went into their completely over-the-top slamming version of this very famous song that I'd somehow never heard before. I spent the rest of my 14th summer bashing those three chords in that "Summertime Blues" sequence every day, all day.
Eventually, just the way I discovered Chuck Berry, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Willie Dixon, through the Rolling Stones, I did the same with anyone The Who were covering. That led me to Eddie in late 1967. Hunting down his albums in New York back then was almost impossible. Now, of course, there are all kinds of videos of Eddie Cochran up on YouTube that you can check out. By all means, do.
I leave you with this... Know that much of the music you love sounds the way it does because of a teenage guitarist who delivered unto us musical gifts of a lifetime and then "left the building" six months shy of his 23rd birthday!Binky Philips, Music Aficionado
Eddie Cochran By Richie Unterberger
has not accorded Eddie Cochran quite the same respect as other early rockabilly
pioneers like Buddy Holly, or even Ricky Nelson or Gene Vincent. This is
partially attributable to his very brief lifespan as a star: he only had a
couple of big hits before dying in a car crash during a British tour in 1960. He
was in the same league as the best rockabilly stars, though, with a brash, fat
guitar sound that helped lay the groundwork for the power chord. He was also a
good songwriter and singer, celebrating the joys of teenage life -- the parties,
the music, the adolescent rebellion -- with an economic wit that bore some
similarities to Chuck Berry. Cochran was more lighthearted and less ironic than
Berry, though, and if his work was less consistent and not as penetrating, it
was almost always exuberant.
Eddie was already an accomplished rockabilly guitarist and singer on these early sides, and he started picking up some session work as well, also finding time to make demos and write songs with Jerry Capehart, who became his manager.
Cochran's big break came about in a novel fashion. In mid-1956, while Cochran and Capehart were recording some music for low-budget films, Boris Petroff asked Eddie if he'd be interested in appearing in a movie that a friend was directing. The film was The Girl Can't Help It, and the song he would sing in it was "Twenty-Flight Rock." This is the same song that Paul McCartney would use to impress John Lennon upon their first meeting in 1957 (Paul could not only play it, but knew all of the lyrics).
Cochran had his first Top 20 hit in early 1957, "Sittin' in the Balcony," with an echo-chambered vocal reminiscent of Elvis. That single was written by John D. Loudermilk, but Eddie would write much of his material, including his only Top Ten hit, "Summertime Blues." A definitive teenage anthem with hints of the overt protest that would seep into rock music in the 1960s, it was also a technical tour de force for the time: Cochran overdubbed himself on guitar to create an especially thick sound. One of the classic early rock singles, "Summertime Blues" was revived a decade later by proto-metal group Blue Cheer, and was a concert staple for the Who, who had a small American hit with a cover version. (Let's not mention Alan Jackson's country rendition in the 1990s.)
Cochran is more revered today in Britain than the United States, due in part to the tragic circumstances of his death. In the spring of 1960, he toured the U.K. with Vincent, to a wild reception, in a country that had rarely had the opportunity to see American rock & roll stars in the flesh.
The Rest as they say is
ROCK N' Roll History!!!