WBEZ | Buddy Guy http://www.wbez.org/tags/buddy-guy Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: Buddy Guy's honor at Grammys draws attention to Chicago's lack of blues museum http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-02-09/morning-shift-buddy-guys-honor-grammys-draws-attention-chicagos <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/ConcertTour.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Flickr/ConcertTour" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/190278534&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">BP Refinery strike hits Whiting, Indiana</span></p><p>Enjoying the low gas prices? Well, there&rsquo;s fear now that all could be coming to an end sooner rather than later. That&rsquo;s because more than 1,000 workers at BP&rsquo;s Refinery in Whiting, Indiana walked off the job early Sunday morning. Contract talks between the oil giant and the United Steelworkers of America broke down. That&rsquo;s causing fear that could result in a spike at the gas pump. WBEZ&rsquo;s Northwest Indiana Reporter Michael Puente has more.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong><em><strong>&nbsp;</strong><a href="https://twitter.com/mikepuentenews">Michael Puente</a> is WBEZ&#39;s Northwest Indiana Bureau reporter.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/190278529&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Buddy Guy&#39;s honor at Grammys draws attention to lack of Chicago blues museum&nbsp;</span></p><p>Chicago&rsquo;s Buddy Guy received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys. Its one of the countless honors he&rsquo;s received throughout his career spanning over 50 years. But the one thing that he really wants is a permanent place of honor for the blues. He ran the Checkerboard Lounge in the 1970s and opened his namesake club in the 1980s.&nbsp; But he&rsquo;s always wanted a museum where people could learn about his music and maybe be inspired to follow in his footsteps. There&rsquo;s the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, a jazz museum in Kansas City and the Stax museum celebrating soul music in Memphis. Why isn&rsquo;t there a blues museum in Chicago, the undisputed home of the electric blues? WBEZ&rsquo;s Yolanda Perdomo joins us with that story.</p><p><strong>Guests:&nbsp;</strong></p><ul><li><em><a href="https://twitter.com/yolandanews">Yolanda Perdomo</a> is a WBEZ reporter. </em></li><li><em><a href="http://www.billybranch.com/">Billy Branch</a> is a Chicago blues musician and educator.&nbsp;</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/190278527&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Legendary Motown songwriters take to Broadway</span></p><p>Chicago&rsquo;s Buddy GWhen you think Motown sound, you may think of The Supremes, Smokey Robinson or Marvin Gaye. But there are less visible-but equally influential-that cement the sound in the canon of American music. With their partner Lamont Dozier, Brian and Eddie Holland are the songwriters behind some of the most well-known songs of Motown. Now the three have teamed up to score the musical Three Wives Club, which premieres this month at Oriental Theater. We talk with Brian and Eddie Holland about their musical career and about bringing the sensibilities of the Motown sound to the Broadway stage.</p><p><strong>Guests:&nbsp;</strong><em>Brian and Eddie Holland are legendary motown songwriters. Their group, <a href="https://rockhall.com/inductees/holland-dozier-and-holland/bio/">Holland-Dozier-Holland</a> are the writers behind the music of Chicago&#39;s <a href="http://broadwayinchicago.com/show/first-wives-club/">The First Wives Club</a> broadway play.&nbsp;</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/190278523&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=falsee&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Selling the family home stirs emotions and prompts important questions</span></p><p>When a parent passes away, one not only has to deal with the loss, but with the material things left behind. For most, a family home and its contents are more than just objects to be sold, tossed or given away. They&rsquo;re vessels that contain precious memories. Siblings and others that may or may not be helpful, and a tangle of legal questions, can add additional layers of pain and confusion to an already difficult situation. We talk about how to navigate the transition from memories of loved ones to moving on from a death with Robert D. Steele, Co-chair of the American Bar Association&rsquo;s Emotional and Psychological Issues in Estate Planning Committee. And Karen and Tom Brenner share their personal story of moving forward after Tom&rsquo;s mother died recently.</p><p><strong>Guests:&nbsp;</strong></p><ul><li><em><a href="http://www.whafh.com/modules/attorney/?action=view&amp;id=46">Robert D. Steele</a>, is the co-chairman of the American Bar Association&rsquo;s Emotional and Psychological Issues in Estate Planning Committee. </em></li><li><em><a href="http://www.alzinfo.org/author/blogger-tkb/">Tom and Karen Brenner</a> are the authors of &quot;You say goodbye amd we say hello: the montessori methord for positive dementia care.</em></li></ul></p> Mon, 09 Feb 2015 07:54:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-02-09/morning-shift-buddy-guys-honor-grammys-draws-attention-chicagos For Chicago blues, sweet home is hard to find http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/chicago-blues-sweet-home-hard-find-111519 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Blues-1-Muddy-Waters-creative-commons-photo-by-Kevin-Dooley.jpg" style="height: 219px; width: 320px; float: left;" title="Muddy Waters, circa 1971. The late music legend will be honored at this year’s Chicago Blues Festival (Kevin Dooley/flickr)" /><em>Updated 11:13 a.m.</em></p><p><em><em>(Editor&#39;s Note: After our story was published the Chicago Blues Experience&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chicagobluesexperience.com/" target="_blank">launched this official website</a>.)</em></em></p><p>Back in the 1950s Buddy Guy was a young guitarist living in Louisiana. Like others he eventually traveled north to Chicago, where the blues scene was thriving.</p><p>&ldquo;Muddy Waters, Howlin&rsquo; Wolf, all those great guys,&rdquo; said Guy. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s why I came here. To get a day job and go watch them play at night.&rdquo;</p><p>Those musicians not only inspired him to play, but to open the famed Checkerboard Lounge in the 1970s followed by Legends in the late 80&rsquo;s to keep the music alive. Guy says he&rsquo;ll never forget those early days watching <em>his</em> legends.</p><p>&ldquo;The beer was 25 cents a bottle when I came here. And when Muddy played there wasn&rsquo;t no cover charge. The beer was 35 cents,&rdquo; remembered Guy. &ldquo;So the 10 cents was going for the band members. Muddy Waters was in the band. And those were the greatest days of my life.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">Guy just received a Lifetime Achievement award at this year&#39;s Grammys. But he and other artists in town say their music should be just as celebrated locally. And they wonder: If Chicago is the home of the blues, then why doesn&rsquo;t it have a permanent home honoring it?</p><div>The blues made important stops in Memphis and St. Louis, but Chicago is where the blues really came alive in the middle of the last century. That&rsquo;s when musicians like Muddy Waters came here from Mississippi, electrified their down home Delta Blues and recorded it for labels like Chess Records.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>You can still see remnants of this history around town. Like at the old Chess Records on S. Michigan Avenue and Muddy Water&rsquo;s former house at 4339 S. Lake Park Avenue.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><p>&ldquo;This is the house of the blues before there was a house of the blues,&rdquo; said Barry Dollins, former director of the Chicago Blues Festival, standing in front of the boarded up building. &ldquo;This was the rehearsal house.&rdquo;</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Blues-4-Barry-Dollins.jpg" style="float: left; height: 373px; width: 280px;" title="Former Chicago Blues Festival Director Barry Dollins stands in front of Muddy Waters’ former home (WBEZ/Yolanda Perdomo)" />Muddy Waters bought the home in the 1950s at the peak of his career and lived there for 20 years. It wasn&rsquo;t just a home for Waters and his family. It was a gathering place for other musicians, where countless jam sessions were held.</p><p>Today the red brick two flat is in bad shape.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s just depressing just to see that X up there,&rdquo; Dollins sighed, pointing to a big red X affixed to the front.</p><p>That X means the house is abandoned and unsafe. It&rsquo;s been on and off the market for years. Dollins says the home could&rsquo;ve served as a historic space, much like the Louis Armstrong home in New York. A place where people can see where and how the musician lived and what inspired them.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s sad that there was no forethought in what the significance of this building is,&rdquo; said Dollins. &ldquo;And how it could&rsquo;ve been preserved and utilized.&rdquo;</p><p>In some ways, the neglected house is symbolic of the overall failure to erect a permanent space to preserve Chicago&rsquo;s music heritage.</p><p>&ldquo;Why don&rsquo;t we have a blues museum? It comes down to money,&rdquo; Dollins said. &ldquo;It takes millions of dollars to create a museum.&rdquo; &nbsp;</p><p>Steve Cushing is the host of the national radio show &ldquo;Blues Before Sunrise.&rdquo; He said Chicago deserves to have a blues museum, but he&rsquo;s not sure how viable it would be.</p><p>&ldquo;How would you pay for it and where would you put it?&rdquo; asked Cushing. &ldquo;It would seem that you would want it in a place that was related to the actual location of the blues. But if you put it on the south side, would tourists, would white folks go down there?&rdquo;</p><p>If something does ever get off the ground, it won&rsquo;t be called the Chicago Blues Museum. That&rsquo;s because local guitarist Gregg Parker copyrighted that title.</p><p>&ldquo;They call me the black Indiana Jones. If I can&rsquo;t find it, it doesn&rsquo;t exist,&rdquo; said Parker.</p><p>Parker once played with Mick Jagger and Buddy Miles among others, but now mostly collects artifacts for traveling exhibitions.</p><p>&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t need a building to do what I&rsquo;m doing. I own it,&rdquo; said Parker. &ldquo;The blues museum is a state of mind. It&rsquo;s not a building.&rdquo;</p><p>In fact, the address for Parker&rsquo;s museum&rsquo;s is a P.O. box number. He once had a storefront space but won&rsquo;t say why it closed. He gets a little defensive&nbsp;when asked when the public could see his whole collection.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m not going to tell you my itinerary,&rdquo; scoffed Parker. &ldquo;You might be a thief!&rdquo;</p><p>Parker shows how fragmented and disorganized efforts are to showcase the blues in Chicago. Many say the only way to get everyone on the same page &mdash; and all the artifacts under one roof &mdash; is for the city of Chicago to get involved. They point out that City Hall moved mountains for the proposed George Lucas Museum and the Obama Presidential Library.</p><p>So why hasn&rsquo;t it done more for the blues?</p><p>The Department of Cultural Affairs sent this statement: &quot;The City of Chicago celebrates its rich blues music heritage each year with the world renowned Chicago Blues Festival on the shores of Lake Michigan. More than 500,000 blues fans attend the festival each year, proving that Chicago is the &ldquo;Blues Capital of the World.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p><p>But some tourists at last year&rsquo;s free festival&nbsp;said they wished there was more to see while they were in town.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve been to Buddy Guy&rsquo;s place, but that&rsquo;s about it,&rdquo; said&nbsp;Karl Roque, who came all the way from the Philippines. When asked if he&rsquo;d like to see a museum dedicated to his favorite art form, Roque didn&rsquo;t hesitate. &ldquo;Yes. Why not? Maybe it&rsquo;s about time.&rdquo;</p><p>Buddy Guy agrees.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve been begging for it for almost 30 years.&quot;</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Blues-3-Buddy-Guy.jpg" style="height: 373px; width: 280px; float: left;" title="Buddy Guy’s 78th birthday party celebration at his South Loop club Legends (WBEZ/Yolanda Perdomo)" />According to Guy he may not have to wait too much longer. Guy has been working with a group that&#39;s been trying to build a blues museum for a few years now. &nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;They already got the building on Navy Pier,&quot; said Guy. &ldquo;A blues experience museum on Navy Pier.&rdquo;</p><p>No one at Navy Pier would comment. A statement from Tim Wright, co-founder of the so-called Chicago Blues Experience, said they&rsquo;re close to finalizing the details, but can&rsquo;t confirm when.&nbsp;</p><p>In the meantime, another blues museum is moving full steam ahead. Built with a mix of public and private funds, the $13 million, 23,000 square foot space will feature interactive exhibits and a theater for live music.</p><p>But you won&rsquo;t find it in Chicago.</p><p>The <a href="http://www.nationalbluesmuseum.org/" target="_blank">National Blues Museum</a> is set to open this summer in St. Louis.</p><p><em>Follow WBEZ reporter Yolanda Perdomo on Twitter </em><a href="https://twitter.com/yolandanews"><em>@yolandanews</em></a> <em>&amp;&nbsp;</em><em><a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/106564114685277342468/posts/p/pub">Google+</a></em></p></p> Mon, 09 Feb 2015 07:41:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/chicago-blues-sweet-home-hard-find-111519 Chicago bluesman Buddy Guy chosen for Kennedy Center Honors http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/chicago-bluesman-buddy-guy-chosen-kennedy-center-honors-104058 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP905221780317.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago blues legend Buddy Guy will receive Kennedy Center Honors this Sunday in Washington, D.C.</p><p>The Chicago blues community came together Tuesday to give him a musical send-off. Blues artist Eddy Clearwater, the Blues Kids of America and several other musicians took the stage at Jay Pritzker Pavilion to congratulate Guy.</p><p>Michelle Boone, commissioner of the city&rsquo;s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, said Chicago wanted to send Guy off in style.</p><p>&ldquo;Everybody was so willing to participate and wanted to show their love and be a part of something really special for a very special man,&rdquo; Boone said.</p><p>Buddy Guy&rsquo;s been playing the blues in Chicago since leaving his home state of Louisiana in 1957. He came to the city hoping to see Muddy Waters and Howlin&#39; Wolf play the blues in person.</p><p>After several months in the city, Guy found a steady gig playing guitar at the famed 708 Club in Bronzeville. He later became a session man at South Side record label Chess Records.</p><p>&ldquo;I came to Chicago 55 years ago, and [when] I got here, it was pretty cold,&quot; remembered Guy. &quot;I started listening to the music here, and I forgot how cold it got. 55 years later, I&rsquo;m still here, and I&rsquo;ll be here.&quot;</p><p>Guy owns Buddy Guy&rsquo;s Legends club in the South Loop, where he can be found performing when he&rsquo;s in Chicago.</p><p>He was chosen as a Kennedy Center honoree for his musical contributions. Numerous guitarists including Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughn cite him as a major influence.</p><p>On the Kennedy Center website, chairman David M. Rubenstein called Guy a &quot;titan of the blues.&quot;&nbsp;</p><p>&quot;[He] has been a tremendous influence on virtually everyone who has picked up an electric guitar in the last half century,&rdquo; said Rubenstein.</p><p>During his career, Guy has received six Grammy awards and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2003, he received the National Medal of Arts for his contributions to blues music.</p><p>The bluesman will be joined in Washington this weekend by his fellow honorees including TV host David Letterman and rock band Led Zeppelin.</p><p><br />&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 27 Nov 2012 18:30:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/chicago-bluesman-buddy-guy-chosen-kennedy-center-honors-104058 Chicago to honor guitarist Buddy Guy http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-honor-guitarist-buddy-guy-104036 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/GraffitiPhotographic.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago is honoring blues guitarist Buddy Guy before he receives a national award for his lifetime contribution to the arts.</p><p>Guy is among several artists who&#39;ll receive 2012 Kennedy Center Honors on Dec. 2.</p><p>But before he leaves, Chicago wants to send him off in style. The city has planned to honor Guy on Tuesday afternoon with a concert at Pritzker Pavilion Stage in Millennium Park.</p><p>The distinction from the Kennedy Center is the nation&#39;s highest honor for those who have influenced American culture through the arts.</p><p>Other winners include actor Dustin Hoffman, comedian David Letterman, rock band Led Zeppelin and ballerina Natalia Makarova.</p></p> Tue, 27 Nov 2012 09:26:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-honor-guitarist-buddy-guy-104036 Buddy Guy: From the farm to fame http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-05/buddy-guy-farm-fame-99599 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center; "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/4398790979_52312e7131_z.jpg" style="width: 620px; height: 415px; " title="Buddy Guy performing at Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago. (Flickr/Aaron Warren)" /></div><p>Buddy Guy: His name is as synonymous with blues music as that of his idol, mentor and father-figure, Muddy Waters. But Guy would be the first person to say he could never equal or surpass the musical prowess of &ldquo;Mud.&rdquo; That&rsquo;s the kind of man Buddy Guy is: humble and honest. His middle name should be &ldquo;Nice.&rdquo;</p><p>But he is also a determined man. From the day he heard his father&rsquo;s friend, Coot, play a beat-up, two-string guitar when he was a youngster living in a shack with his family in the small town farm town of Lettsworth, Louisiana, Buddy seemed to know that music was meant to be his life.</p><p>But the blues wasn&rsquo;t the first music that touched his heart &ndash; it was the singing of the birds. Guy grew up in the fields of a plantation, picking cotton alongside his dad. He loved and still loves the outdoors and nature.</p><p>How do I know this? I just finished reading Guy&rsquo;s biography, <a href="http://www.buddyguy.net/news/buddy%E2%80%99s-autobiography-%E2%80%9Cwhen-i-left-home%E2%80%9D-available-may-8"><em>When I Left Home: My Story</em></a>.</p><p>Guy takes the reader on a wonderful ride filled with humor, sadness, some regret, lucky breaks and, of course, music. I learn that Guy made his first two-string guitar by stripping some of the wire from the new screen window his mom, Isabell, bought. When he was 12 years old, his dad plunked down $4.32 to buy his son Coot&rsquo;s guitar.</p><p>Like many African-Americans in the first half of the 20<sup>th</sup> century, Guy left the south to come north to Chicago. He arrived on September 25, 1957, a small town young man with no prospects and enough cash to last maybe a month. But boy, what a ride. Guy came to Chicago when blues music was the music of choice for African-Americans, especially the working class who toiled away in the factories and needed release of all kinds after slaughtering cattle at the stockyards or making steel.</p><p>I believe Guy&rsquo;s breaks, in what he calls &quot;the crazy blues life&quot; of Chicago, were equal parts luck, humility and kindness. No, he wasn&rsquo;t a saint. But he also certainly wasn&rsquo;t rough and tumble like some of his early heroes and peers in the blues life.</p><p>Another of those talented characters was the father of Chicago blues: McKinley Morganfield, aka Muddy Waters. There&rsquo;s good reason Guy&rsquo;s book is dedicated to Muddy Waters, &ldquo;father to us all.&rdquo;</p><p>From the first night Guy met Muddy Waters, who was driving his red Chevy wagon outside the 708 Club, until Water&rsquo;s death in 1983 at the age of 70, Guy was always in awe of Waters and his creativity.</p><p>Guy hit Chicago at the height of blues in Chicago, then rode the waves of its decline in the African-American community and its ascendance among white fans around the world. Now at age 75, Guy is a legend. He may have slowed down some, but he continues to show no lack of energy and creativity when he picks up his guitar. I think after 55 years in Chicago, we can rightly call him one of our own and beam with pride.</p><p>He&#39;s my guest on <em>Eight Forty-Eight</em> Tuesday. Join us!</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="338" mozallowfullscreen="" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/43046857?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;color=ff0000" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="600"></iframe></p></p> Tue, 29 May 2012 08:29:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-05/buddy-guy-farm-fame-99599 Famous blues musician Buddy Guy makes special appearance at grandson's school http://www.wbez.org/story/culture/art/famous-blues-musician-buddy-guy-makes-special-appearance-grandsons-school-84468 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//story/photo/2011-March/2011-03-30/buddyguy.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>It’s not every day a legendary blues musician comes to your high school. But it helps if he’s your grandpa.</p><p>When teacher Kathryn Guelcher learned one of her student’s was Buddy Guy’s grandson, her jaw dropped. She sent Gregory Guy home with a request for a visit.</p><p>Of course, Buddy Guy's really busy, so it took months to arrange a date. There were several attempts.</p><p>"It’s really embarrassing, but I thought there’s nothing to lose here," Guelcher said. "I drew a stick-figure scenario of this room, so I had a stick-figure Buddy Guy with his stick-figure polka-dot guitar, and then like a bunch of kids saying, 'Oooh, yeah, wow,' and 'That’s my granddad,' and I said 'Please, please, please, please'."</p><p>Gregory Guy sent her a text message with the date his grandpa would appear at Carl Sandburg High School in Orland Park.</p><p>"I said to my husband, oh my God, oh my God, I think Buddy Guy’s coming," Guelcher said. She's been so excited, she hasn’t slept much. But she downplayed it for students, just in case something came up on the Grammy-winning musician's schedule.</p><p>What she didn’t know yet is that Buddy Guy (as he would soon point out in his speech) has never missed a gig. He came early.</p><p>"I’m feeling humbled and excited and I’m trying not to be anxious because he’s so cool," Guelcher said.</p><p>Guy gave the command performance on behalf of his grandson to about 50 students. A few teachers and staff snuck in, and later, a guitar class joined them. Most of the students rushed to sit up front, a high honor from high-schoolers.</p><p>Gregory Guy introduced his grandfather. Buddy Guy sat on a stool next to him in a brightly patterned sweater and khakis.</p><p>He looked like someone's trim grandpa, until you saw his hands. The big rings on his fingers spelled out his initials, "BG" and the word "blues" in diamonds.</p><p>Guy told the students there are songs to be found everywhere, even in people talking about their problems in a restaurant.</p><p>"My producer, every time me and him sit down and talk, he comes with his pad and pen, he says man, because every time you say something, there’s a song," Buddy Guy said. "I didn’t know that ‘cuz I just figured I was never a good guitar player, never a good song writer, I just tried to follow the greats that I learned everything from by watching and listening."</p><p>He was strikingly humble and open with the students. Guy said he was so frightened at an early gig, he couldn’t face the audience and got fired. He still gets stage fright. But he told the students, they don’t need alcohol or anything else to find their courage.</p><p>"This was my little thing to hide behind," he said. "But that was a poor excuse. So you don’t need nothing to learn how to play a guitar, but keep it in your hand as much as you can, or the keyboard or the drums, whatever you want to do, just keep doing it."</p><p>Someone asked Guy to play. He was hesitant without his band or his famous polka-dotted guitar. He explained he likes the feel of his own instrument.</p><p>But his grandson pulled out his own guitar.</p><p>"What kind of guitar did you bring? I think he set up all of this, didn’t he?" Buddy Guy said to the students, who laughed.</p><p>Guy started tuning the guitar, and gently chided his grandson for not playing it more -- he could tell from the tension of the strings.</p><p>There was no amp, so Guy started strumming, unplugged. Staffers ran to get an amp from the band room, and Guy's music soon filled the school auditorium.</p><p>One of the students, Najeeb Dababneh, kept yelling out requests.</p><p>"Now guess what," Guy told him. "Come up here, I want to hear you play. You can play this I know."</p><p>Guy played a few bars from "Sunshine of Your Love." Dababneh said he didn't want to play that song.</p><p>"Just play man, you sound like I did when I was your age. I was afraid to do everything. Go ahead," Guy told him.</p><p>"You got no pick, nothing. We going to use our fingers, we gonna go old school?" Dababneh asked.</p><p>"Whatever man, you want my pick?" Guy asked.</p><p>"Yeah, can I please, of course," Dababneh said.</p><p>"You can have it because I already autographed it," Guy said to laughter.</p><p>Guy gave him his stool, and Dababneh sat down and played for a legend.</p><p>Dababneh said he was terrified. But he understands now how professional musicians feed off the energy of a crowd because he enjoyed being up there so much.</p><p>"I knew I would never have this chance again. I’m so glad I did it, because it got rid of some stage-fright, and I got to play for Buddy Guy, and hopefully, he enjoyed it," Dababneh said.</p><p>As he played, Buddy Guy nodded his head in time, then applauded for Dababneh when he was finished.</p><p>Student Chris Sigel called this the best experience of his life. He was raised listening to the blues.</p><p>"Music is something that should be appreciated and artists are getting older and older," Sigel said. "We need to value their contributions as much as we can, especially if they’re still alive because we can lose them at anytime."</p><p>He said he'd like to see more events like this to introduce the blues to a new generation, and help save the art form.</p><p>"I think introducing kids my age and younger to artists like Buddy Guy or B.B. King, I think it will broaden their perspective and bring more to their music palette," Sigel said. "They need to appreciate more than just what they hear on the Top 40 stations because that’s not real music. This is real music."</p><p>Even Guy’s grandson, Gregory, who’s used to seeing him perform, was touched by the experience.</p><p>"Today was a good experience for me, first time ever being onstage with my grandfather as he was performing in front of my friends," Gregory Guy said. "Big change. Now I’m more confident around people."</p><p>After, students and teachers rushed to get Buddy Guy's autograph. The line soon reached all the way along the stage in the auditorium and into the aisle.</p><p>Guy stayed until the last autograph was signed, and the last photo taken. He left thanking the crowd as they thanked him, and wishing everybody a good time.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 31 Mar 2011 04:12:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/culture/art/famous-blues-musician-buddy-guy-makes-special-appearance-grandsons-school-84468