Wednesday, June 17, 2015

What Did You Miss This Week? (Week 405 #450)

Paul Oscher!!!

If you missed Monday this week, you missed the blues legend Paul Oscher! (And if your excuse for not showing was tornadoes or the Blackhawks game, well, rest assured the room was packed with people who were undeterred by such things.)

In 1967, as a very young man, Paul Oscher got the invitation to play with Muddy Waters, a gig he played until 1971 and we were lucky enough this week to have Paul sit before us in B1 and share his stories. Paul started with a harmonica gift to him from his uncle who soon saw that Paul's playing for tips earned more than the grocery delivery he had been doing, so his uncle took him to meet Sonny Boy Williamson. That's a pretty good start!
By age 15 Oscher found himself doing club gigs. Reception at the first was good and the announcer said afterwards, "Ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for the little blue-eyed soul brother."
Paul was great fun to have in class - he has a good sense of humor and the stories roll right out of him about his life in the blues and about lots of other players - Little Walter, Muddy, Horton, his current neighbor James Cotton, Otis Spann, Junior Wells just to name a few. He says he's working on a book that tells his life story, so watch for that when it comes out one day.
And of course, Paul laid down a lot of his killer traditional sound, on both harp and accompanying slide guitar and vocals. Thanks, Paul, for joining us in B1. It was an honor to have you!
Class Notes

  • This week was the last class of the session, so get yourself re-registered.
- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew