Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Number 388 - Jeff Healey Band

Number 388

Jeff Healey Band

"While My Guitar Gently Weeps"

................Genre: Blues...............
art by IdaMO
First, a message to all the George Harrison and Beatles fans .... Calm the ^&%!*$%* down for a minute! You can vote how you feel at down the bottom of the page. Jeff Healey was a fantastic artist, almost hard to imagine he was blind at all, with the skill he played the electric guitar, he would make most 20/20 people hang their head low with envy. Jeff must have had a fascination for seeing as quite a few songs were about just that, with songs like "Angel Eyes", "See The Light", 'Lost In Your Eyes', "I See You In My Dreams" & "Leave The Light On", to name a few.
Jeff's rendition of "While My Guitar Gently Sleeps" remains faithful [hell, even George Harrison did the backing vocals for the song] but Jeff puts his view on the Harrison classic as if it was his own song, but not only that, Jeff actually makes the song better and this is why Jeff's version is here and not George Harrison's.
And who knows, maybe those two artists are jamming away together on another plane of existence. All i can say is I miss both.
Legendary Jeff Healey: 25.03.66 to 02.03.08
What makes Jeff Healey different from other blues-rockers is also what keeps some listeners from accepting him as anything other than a novelty -- the fact that the blind guitarist plays his Fender Stratocaster on his lap, not standing up. With the guitar in his lap, Healey can make unique bends and hammer-ons, making his licks different and more elastic than most of the competition. Unfortunately, his material leans toward standard AOR blues-rock, which rarely lets him cut loose, but when he does, his instrumental prowess can be shocking. Healey lost his sight at the age of one, after developing eye cancer. He began playing guitar when he was three years old and began performing with his band Blues Direction at the age of 17. Healey formed the Jeff Healey Trio in 1985, adding bassist Joe Rockman and drummer Tom Stephen. The trio released one single on their own Forte record label, which led to a contract with Arista Records. The Jeff Healey Trio released their debut album, See the Light, in 1988 and the guitarist immediately developed a devoted following in blues-rock circles. Featuring the hit single "Angel Eyes," the record went platinum in the U.S. While the Jeff Healey Trio's subsequent records have been popular, none have been as successful as the debut.
Jeff Healey Band
As the 21st century dawned, Healey began to change his direction. He taught himself to play the trumpet and began to lean to the kind of traditional 1920s and '30s jazz that had always fascinated him. He released two classic jazz albums, 2002's Among Friends and 2004's Adventures in Jazzland, on his own HealeyOphonic label, and while he continued to do some shows in his old blues-rock style, he increasingly gigged with his jazz combo, the Jazz Wizards. His first album of jazz to see wide release was It's Tight Like That, which appeared on Stony Plain in 2006. Healey continued in the traditional jazz idiom for both Among Friends and Adventures in Jazzland, released in 2007 on HealeyOphonic. In 2008, a month before the release of his last studio album Mess of Blues, Healey died from cancer. ~ [Stephen Thomas Erlewine & Al Campbell, All Music Guide]
Interesting Curiosities About Jeff
Roadhouse 1989
For many years, Healey performed at his club, "Healey's" on Bathurst Street in Toronto, where he played with a rock band on Thursday nights and with his jazz group on Saturday afternoons. The club moved to a bigger location at 56 Blue Jays Way and it was rechristened "Jeff Healey's Roadhouse". Though he had lent his name to the club and often played there, Jeff Healey did not own or manage the bar. Healey also starred in the 1989 movie Road House alongside Patrick Swayze.
Over the years, Healey toured and sat-in with many legendary performers, including, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Buddy Guy, BB King, ZZ Top, Steve Lukather, Eric Clapton and many more. In 2006, Healey appeared on Deep Purple vocalist Ian Gillan's CD/DVD Gillan's Inn.
Healey was an avid record collector and amassed a collection of well over 30,000 78 rpm records. He had, from time to time, hosted a CBC Radio program entitled My Kind of Jazz, in which he played records from his vast vintage jazz collection. He hosted a program with a similar name on Toronto jazz station CJRT-FM, also known as JAZZ.FM91. ~ [Source: Wikipedia]
For George Harrison see Number 806
For Beatles see Number 489, #587, #894 & #947
For Stevie Ray Vaughan see Number 592
For BB King see Number 410
For ZZ Top see Number 647
For Eric Clapton see Number 537
For Deep Purple see Number 686
What does RS think about Jeff Healey?
Nothing, not even their offshoot rhapsody.com had to say anything about him. Now, all 39 of us outside Canada can be gobsmacked with our arms folded with our "come face" look of disbelief. But let us 39 non-americas imagine what Canadians must think? Canada do not have their own Rolling Stone franchise just for the cunnucks!
However i did find a music magazine from Canada, which i think is printed free [?] for the Canadians .... and they indeed have something to say about one of their sons. "In 1990, Healey won his first Juno as Entertainer of the Year and went on to record four more blues albums. He eventually turned to his true love of jazz, both playing trumpet and guitar in the band Jeff Healey’s Jazz Wizards and DJing on CBC Radio using his extensive 30,000-plus collection of 78-rpm records. At the time of his death, Jeff was on the verge of releasing his first rock/blues album in eight years. Mess of Blues is scheduled for release in Canada on April 22, through Stony Plain, the independent Edmonton-based label that released his three jazz CDs. Healey is survived by his wife, Cristie, daughter Rachel (13) and son Derek (three). He was 41." ~ [Source: http://www.exclaim.ca/]
Rolling Stone magazine deemed their '388th Song of all Time' was "Roxanne" by The Police. The Police have not appeared in The Definitive 1000 of All Time.
Rolling Stone Top 500 Songs ranked this song at Number (RS- We are the Walrus) and the Album ranked at Number (Goo goo a joob)
This song has a total Definitive rating of 79.3 out of 108
Jeff Healey & Stevie Ray Vaughan
Search Artist here:1-2-3-A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J-K-L-M-N-O-P-Q-R-S-T-U-V-W-X-Y-Z
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