Friday, March 20, 2009

Eddie Bo 1930-2009

Word came out today that Eddie Bo, yet another New Orleans piano playing funk pioneer passed away on Wednesday, March 18. Bo is among the last pianists from the age of classic New Orleans rhythm and blues where he had some big hits as well as wrote a number of songs that became classics for others. His career spanned the boogie influenced jump blues to the more modern funk.

His website biography summarized his career succinctly: "In a career that spans well over five decades, Eddie Bo has made more 45’s than any artist has in New Orleans other than Fats Domino. He has produced records for Irma Thomas, Robert Parker, Art Neville, Chris Kenner, Al "Carnival Time" Johnson and the late Johnny Adams. Bo is a prolific songwriter, having penned several timeless songs: "Check Mr. Popeye", "It Must Be Love", "I’m Wise" (made famous by Little Richard under the name "Slippin' and Slidin'") and the hit recorded by Etta James, "My Dearest Darling". He also wrote Tommy Ridgely's "In The Same Old Way" and further demonstrates genius in the realm of contemporary New Orleans funk on the highly creative works, "Hook and Sling" and "Pass the Hatchet.""

I had the pleasure of first seeing him perform at one of the Ponderosa Stomps performing solo, and at several JazzFests with a tight, funky band where he always did some of his favorites. Rounder reissued some of his funky R&B that included the popular dance number "Check Mr. Popeye," after all Olive Oyl was in the danger zone. A favorite CD of his was "New Orleans Solo Piano" on Night Train. His death, coming shortly after the death of Snooks Eaglin, is a terrible loss to fans of New Orleans music. I join the many world-wide, who mourn this great artist.

The picture is from April 26, 2008 at the Fais Do Do Stage at the New Orleans Jazz & heritage Festival

1 comment:

NOLA tunes said...

As one New Orleans legend passes another is born. RIP eddie, you'll be missed!