Wednesday, June 04, 2008


I have been remiss in not mentioning the recent passing of rock 'n' roll great Bo Diddley.

While I wouldn't claim the man as a major guitar inspiration, I do recall a few times when Mr. Diddley (and his rhythmic contribution to modern music) provided me with great satisfaction and/or entertainment.

1) The moment I realized I could actually play the Bo Diddley beat on the guitar without my plectrum ricocheting off the strings.

2) The time I, along with a group of co-workers, was listening to a radio program about Bruce Springsteen. The song "She's the One" came on and I observed "Ah, the Bo Diddley beat!" to everyone's confused and dismissive looks, which were soon erased when the radio host confirmed my statement.

3) Hearing/seeing The Rolling Stones open a 1994 concert with Buddy Holley's "Not Fade Away," introduced by Charlie Watts' rendering of the Bo Diddley beat on the drums.

4) The segment in the film "Chuck Berry: Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll" wherein the trio of Berry, Diddley and Little Richard discuss how they were gypped out of considerable royalties over the years. Poignant, yet laced with the kind of hilarity only truly great raconteurs possess.

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