« WTF with Marc Maron Podcast

Episode 772 - David Bromberg

2016-12-29 | 🔗
Singer-songwriter David Bromberg is a human bridge between at least a half-dozen different styles of music. David and Marc talk about the pivotal evolution of modern music, as folk transitioned into rock, and all the people David worked with over the years, including Bob Dylan, Linda Ronstadt, The Band, The Grateful Dead, and Reverend Gary Davis. Plus, David explains why he quit for 20 years and developed a highly specific obsession.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
The guy all right? Let's do this, how are you what the voters, what the fuck bodies, what the buccaneers, what the fuck a delicate? What happening. I mark mare- and this is my pod- cast a beauty up. How's it going. Are you ok, Did you get through the christmas and the kwanzaa and canada through whatever you went through your right know what to tell you, I you know I I I was in new york and I had nice time. I think the last time I talk to you, I was in the city the hotel room but Done a lot yeah, I did one thing: I did one when I last talk to you now is a little bit, gee about it Nah nah non disclosing, but we'll tell you now because on Monday, our first a beauty after the new year. I will share a
about an hour long conversation I had with the boss with the bruce what springsteen out there in jersey hung out with him place not actually in the house but out in the in the studio oh building, stable, looking building, looks like a stable, but it's a studio and I talked to bruce it's going to happen on Monday. I teach that out of the gate for those you were listening on the down timer or those of you who listen, no matter what, even though you may not know David Brandenburg is. I would imagine that barely common, not saying that in a negative way by David, but I barely knew who he was I'll, explain you what happened with that and why it happened, but, okay, so new york city, what it's amazing! I was there. Christmas, it was nice, it was quite. The weather was pleasant. It was chaos the emperor income he is was out of town, so
traffic was reasonable. People were nice. I tell you man the one thing I notice when I was walking around new york was, of course just all different kinds of people. Oh, I everybody industry, its enjoying themselves, walking through the streets always one in new york city and a lot of ways in and all the two interest I kept walking down street sinking like. How is bad. How is all this diversity bad? How is all this? Our all these different kind of people not adding something interesting and unique and proactive. Today, to the world in the country we live in. How is this interest action and community people all different kinds of people moving through the streets in new york, not a beautiful thing that I started thinking about. So many of the places that voted against tolerance that voted against diversity and where they live in, and they don't even have the level of diversity that that you see in new york. I dont know what I don't understand. It was so nice to Edith places like mogador and just be
pact or restaurant people from all over the world. Speaking all different kinds of languages- and just thinking like this is amazing. This This is how it supposed to work, and then they then It all comes raining down on my head again. What I was going on Do you know what I mean course you know what I mean. Of course you do. I mean you work, I hope all of you out there had a comforting holidays. Comforting and nice. Possible, but you're is hard not to be pensive. I mean we should be pensive. It is we entered this this time where we don't know, what's real and what isn't, and we only have our own perception to rely on and how we load up. That perception. That's on us how we want to for ourselves, what sources we draw from? What are our are what are we priorities and beliefs are and how we buttress or question those priorities and beliefs. Do we detached entirely thinking that focusing on our own business and life in the most morally responsible way possible is enough to be pro.
active? I mean we have lives right, but late, This might not be enough because We have to be morally responsible citizens of a country. We still believe and we have to believe- and we have to push back against an avalanche of anti democratic, psychological brutalization on all fronts. Soon, to be government sanctioned, and obviously some of it was before too. But you know what I'm saying I mean we can't buckle and be be than we can't have blinders on, which is a drag, because there are some really great blinder options out there and you can get all of them all blind or options you want on the internet. There are all for types of blinders are available. bottom line is. We might actually have to get involved Yet our hands dirty and help others in a real way. I mean I me to talk about me,
same any, this condescending way, I think about what I need to do all the time. That's what I've been doing during downtime. I have to stop thinking in doing things. I can't think talking about this in a broad and vague way, is actually doing something. I can't think that yeah on but the ideas. I guess a kind of is But in others more I can do, and I'm just like trying to figure it out, get clear on what that might be, and I hope you are too over these holidays. please you to get overwhelmed and terrified and hopeless, and then that becomes debilitating and can provoke a depressive state than then then that depressive state becomes the focus, the blue feelings of dread. They are not the book, ology. The events you are reacting to our path, the logical, your brain embody are doing the appropriate thing and we to relieve it by coming together we can, not let a fuckin
half a nation wide gas lighting event stop us from keeping our brains and our sense of fuckin focus was right and wrong god dammit I put it all. That said, I hope here I hope you got some cool. presence. I hope you ate some. with things albinos, too bad about yourself as we enter this new year. There are enough external things to feel bad about, let yourself off the hook a bit with your interior attacks. If you are waging those battles against you, let's externalize them. My friends, use that critical energy for things that need to be criticised that are, and to you my alpha involved- correct minded people, friends country, men so new york city.
Standing time I saw I ate it, mogador aided butter. I got in touch with our scorn, celli who have had on the show, and that's it strong. I went there with this error and her friend iris and then now well, so I ate of the seller. Of course I got a slice. It chose pizza, of course, and I went and saw othello this new production that that is on now by the guy directed it sam gold he's the guy. the direct. Any baker shows in the show was Daniel Craig. You know he was James bomb was any and David or yellow whoa I held on pronouncing the guy from selma and it was pretty amazing because I can't handle shakespeare because I can't follow it. My his peel back and I get lost pretty quickly by this- is that it was a very. Front production. It was at the m the new york theatre workshops, oh you're right on top of it, the entire set an theater was covered imply. Would it was too
you place in what was an army barracks at contemporary army barracks? It was very broadly let the entire space was good up for a lot of the show, except when other effects came into handy. You could see the actors spitting and talking, and I could follow it. I could follow the story. I was so proud of myself. It was like. I know it's happening. I knew the basic story going because I wake it and I just I was able to follow it for the most part and in parts of the language properly and whose very exciting for me- and that was no easy task, because I didn't realize it At the beginning of the play, but towards the middle I realized holy shit. I knew I recognise the guy in front of me because at intermission I software just make dormant. Who is who is that and she was with the kind of like oh shit, that's frances, mc dormant and her Cohen brother they're married. so they were sit in front of me indirectly cross for me was Rachel wiess weiss Is it wise whatever I like her? She good
actress by guess she's married to Daniel Craig, but she was sitting like directly across from me. So I had distractions, column, brother, Frances, mc dormant rachel weiss directly. Ass for me and a fellow happening between us and I stayed on the casually glancing at the side of, I believe it's a joke. Cohen's head and ask myself what happening in their house, cohen brother processing, a fellow with France I felt like what she's inaccuracies watching watching the acting you enjoying the shakespeare because he'd know shakespearian. She appreciates it in doing that way? But what is the kohen brother doing? Well how He framing it housing how's it entering his perception. How is he boxing? Othello is a provoke. Things is thinking of other things. Oh- and I saw this amazing show at the new metropolitan museum of art extension. I guess it would be at the old whitney which I have a lot of childhood memories. At going to the whitney with my mother, single
calder's circus sitting right there in the foyer now at the brewer metropolitan museum, and they Sarah want to see this carry James Marshall rhetoric active, which was probably the high point of my trip to new york, if you're going to new york, if you live in new york, go see that before it goes away the spectacular large canvasses, small canvasses, it's a whole retrospective of a man still alive, he's anne elliot artist, primarily african american themes, but so many layers and so many different dumb style. the elements to each painting and so powerful. Very social. We conscious a very sort of the gotten brain punching work and solid and its a bit retrospective in it just blew my fucking mind, Why you go to new york ted engage in a media culture
and enjoy the diversity around you and the the miracle of new york city and then go and see some actual shit get kicked in the fuckin head with some fucking car sure that's how they say it get kicked in there With culture, and why see christmas more it was very quiet at the hotel was staying. I went down to a to do some writing and there the guy There was a guy there eyes, the only other guy in the lobby and he's wearing headphones and they, I could hear the music from the headphones filtering out, which is not a piece of mine, but it can be annoying like that. Fuck, I'm trying to think- and now I gotta listen to what guys with him into. But we are in a very kind of her brow, can up way. Try in the worst way possible, but I listen now listen and closer. When I do recognise that tune, it was some early tom wait stuff just heard Tom waits jessica
when molly shouting out of this guy's ear phone one side of his headset, one side of his bows noise reductions was walking out some early weights or as a gamer, are bad, but I I did recognize the I don't remember what it was right now and I was annoyed and then I remembered that Tom waits once at was asked what favour kind of music. And he said- and I am radio across the street- and I might well that's- exactly what that sounds like song appreciate waits as you appreciate his favorite music just for across three able coming in at the side of a guy's head still annoying, so my guest today. David Bromberg, David Bromberg is a guitar player and multi instrumental is, but he was years ago
I had this record that I inherited from somewhere when I was in junior high. They got a big bunch, a record for my aunt and one of them had a sketch a guy playing guitar and on front just really just a line drawing and was a david bron borg album. I remember trying to listen to it, but I just couldn't lock in it was all folk he will lay back o and I just couldn't get into it, but I never forgot the record and then some from somewhere. I got the new David brahma record in the mail there's like some third forty years later and I'm like this guy- is still at it what's? story, he didn't I sessions work? He was one he was involved with the dead with the band with raw, m? You harris india, new york? I guess I just you know I I get. I get nostalgic for an error that I missed and am I to talk to that guy, so I'd. I found him and I talk to. And he's got a new record out the who's, the whole blues and nothing, but the blues. You can get that wherever you get music, it's a straight up kind of blue
record all different styles blues braun bergs is a very earnest guy and a very player and a he. Like a twenty year, hiatus tat to tailor about something else which I found fascinating so here now is me David brom burke of all the details I own. I kept one which one and esquire from nineteen fifty eight really and if I lose that my careers over to your fender guy. Oh you all the way back, no gibsons I had a few gibson electric there too many knobs two knobs knobs and the switch Hale one. You know volume tone what the hell do you need yeah. I
Why you it's funny his eyes? I wish the new record and it's the all boys tunes right, but you it up. I mean you do acoustic and then you get you know you get dirty with it and you know, and then you you do the whole. The whole spectrum yeah yeah there, two guitar players on on there. You know mark cosgrove, abril guitar play you get. You can tell him he's got a beautiful sweet, sound IA mine is the nasty soundly at me and you, like nasty, was alleyway. Did you evolve into that because you earlier stuff is nasty? Is it now I guess not. Now I used to play more off the neck pickup oh yeah, I'm guitar right now I play mostly off. Does it has the bite to it, yeah so He had gone back to that like here's. The word story about a couple of things, when I saw that you were around is that I had when I was a kid: the three nights somehow inherited stack records and your first rate It was in there one the one with the sketch on for a year and our member
the kid was in high school with an into town, iraq in some boys and stuff. I couldn't you know lock into it, but I kept it and that it was always just there then get your view. demanding. I get why why? Why? Why can't I get this? You know, because I think it was just a little too. two way back. For me. I was kind of an amp kid and then you know, then I get this new record that you put out. Nana gotta go back in my eye. I know these guys it he suit the real thing. This guy and I gotta get it. Then I wish the new record. I ended up playing it like six or seven times playing it along with their went back to the old records like kind of regrouped around it, and I knew you would play it on a lot of records and then I get this other stack of records recently and for some reason I pull a dare here's record all american, my directly oranges, layer, yanhamu poking around research and you and you're like IRAN, that record like what the fuck is happening, but the thing that their fascinates me about you and in guys, if you know, your ilk is,
You were really there that transition where that first, people like you were a kid. I imagined when you first started here and those original booze records, because I just I just watch doc manner that involve the story of It's name the guy who went down and founder or try to son house now, huh and it dawned on me that I didn't really realize that that generation and that's why he can the mid sixties that those guys were just sort of these voices on records that didn't exist on the real plane in a way and that was sort of where you were coming from. Wasn't it kind of cept, I was very lucky. I mean I was a student vermin, Gary Davis's yeah. I was you know word you find him like words, you grow up. I go in westchester county in new york yeah. But I found the reverend when I was going to college I'm walking down bleaker street. what you got a couch colombia ok. We study, I wasn't
yeah for a year and a half that yeah yeah, I'm on a leave of absence that I dunno. If they'll take me back, he could try, they might be a job. Alright, sorry, walking down bleaker she. What year, we talking must have been in the sixties, ah mid too late, sixties and your eye twenty yeah yeah. What happened to you so there's a sandwich sign out in front of a place called the dragon's den. It said reverend Gary Davis here this afternoon it was the middle east and you knew who he was. I knew cause I'd I'd I'd heard I'd already gotten a record of his yeah or like a seventy eight. No, I there was a record that he had half of an pink and and had him and I had that- and it was wonderful record yeah. So I went in and listened and was there anyone there tariff people are here and it was great Mean was unbelievable and he must have been in his sixties. Yeah na
went up to him after and I, as I assume, if he'd give me lessons, and he said yes, five dollars bring the money, honey haha. That was a reverend and that's that's how a story after a while, instead of five dollars, I'd lead him around yeah, but already mean help. He was blind. He was always he was, there was another blind one to wet aware that applying lemon what was actually lemon chairperson, there was also blind, blake blind fuller. What was I boy fuller languages, odin of every year, Davis's also yeah. So what was reverend Gary Davis's history? He was a multi instrumental is right like he played a few things. Mostly guitar? Ah so I know slide you could play slide. He just didn't bother with it very much. Did you find no and studying this and working with these guys that there is a distinct difference? in between those regions in terms of the music that was being played? Well, the reverend was
about unique some of blind boy. Fuller stuff sounds like the reverend and that's the only recorded stuff that I've heard. That really sounds like the river and the only other guitar play. The reverend would speak of complementary was blind blake. Who was a nurse Are phenomena yeah, and the reverend used to say you know on on record, does nobody could beat blind blake? And now you know he didn't have anything to say about anybody else. Rarely yeah a competitive or just a kid he was a whole lot of everybody else, Where did you learn from him? I mean like you idiot. What did he show you where these open turnings, where we work and with no was an open to new stuff five finger cords and I do mean five. Anger courts yeah, you know with the thumb over the edge and these, but I still users yeah yeah and When I started with a I was playing with three fingers and he used to, and I think I can too much more what picking yeah really he's one there's two finger guy.
guy talking to that sweeney about this? The two finger thing is really big in the blues and I start a hearing about it. Well, I thought that the three there should be better and after a while, I discovered it, it isn't why for what? He does yet for what the reverend does, because he do these roles that were really sink a painted and when you just did em like this with either double finger or double farm right, you got a great sound, so it's south yeah, if you want to play a certain way used three fingers, but if you want to have that sounded by two yeah pretty much I mean the heat, things that I can. really duplicate. He used to pick every single note with his first finger. Some of that stuff was real fast. How he did that is beyond me, but he did it really. So just run up the strengths, We have moved down, no, not those top their street three strings. Yon finger he was amazing. I turn
you down the village you're, taking lessons from reverend Gary Davis, you're in columbia, studying what the lessons were in the bronx to begin or that's where he lived well. When I first met him, he was living in a a little hut, a shack that was in between two two large buildings and then and at a certain point- a pitiful mary record to his his version of samson delilah, oh yeah, and they got him to copyright it and- and he to a little house in a nice neighborhood in queens. Also they they add. They did the right thing. They should do the right thing and the air was on one of their big selling records yeah and it took a got him out of the young, the garbage yeah, that's beautiful, yeah. I was for there not nessa you and call them blues people blues men. Peter Paul married now, but they had big ears. You know the idea it's. It is very interesting to me that there was the you just a few like young, jewish deeds, really. You know you're took too.
blues and anne and became real blues met them out. There were a lot of us right bloomfield yeah did you know MIKE. I met him once we played together once how do you like his playing this great because I know I did you guys that you love the blues in there. Certainly, part of the history of of sort of resurrecting the buddha on on record and in fighting whose guys and what not, do you think the connection between being jewish and the blues music blue, Bob Dylan there's another gettings, now blues soulful and full of irony air. So there you go, lay low. We brought up religious no now just kind of anything but religious yeah, oh yeah, pay cycle of my father will always say this. God must
a very secure creature to require so much constant pray at what did he do? It was a shrink. Oh, he was and psychiatrist in the city, first in the city, and then he moved it out to tarrytown. Where we were, we lived in we study. When you went to colombia, I thought I was gonna, be amused, ecologist cause. What I wanted to do was play muse but yeah, but I wasn't supposed to I was supposed to be. You know something white collar. Yet what war what is the job of a musicale damned. If I know we sorta, are one now well amuse ecologists study different aspects of music. I mean some of them study construct some of them study composer, some of them study you, cultures, yeah yeah. So when you start taking lessons with with the reverend. This must have been like you know an amazing sort of strain
in beautiful opportunity that you know you. You knew you integrating yourself into part of history away. I didn't think of it that way, I knew I was learning some great guitar shit from, but you knew he was like the real deal: oh yeah He wasn't lying similar back of the music store. Guitar teacher, you knew you are you're being there was a legacy you're being passed along some very specific historical wisdom. This It's true that it will. Then I was being passed. Some historical wisdom, but I really you know, I'm I'm not that bad. Nah. I didn't see it as an in that way at all. All I knew was that I was learning to play some stuff that very few other people on the planet could play okay and it was blue specifically, and that was the music. You know it wasn't blues now the reverend would not play blues and public uh huh. He played a religious tunes and what a lot of people miss is that, and
You know who finally Johnson was yet he sang only religious stones right in you. Bessie smith, well, yeah yeah when they pay albums, bessie smith and black willie Johnson. They would press twice many a blind willie chances because he sold twice as much because of the religious the religious song so much better than blue la SAM cooke was in the cell stairs for years. Jani I bury I mean gospel music is is into its connected and yet I was always connected. Religious music, yeah virtual means. But the point is that in the community that the african american community of the thirties- even yeah, I'll, also How much later, I'm sure the debate, we listening the blues. They were listening to religious, music and sermons recorded sermons. Was he a good preacher, the reverend yeah he was? but he had a pretty thick accent and I couldn't always understand him. Yeah one night,
one night Stephan Grossman, who was maybe his closest student. during a concert in a village- and I was playing the gaslight down the basement and I didn't know but the reverend went to hear staff, and then I saw him when I came on stage sitting out in the audience. So I play one of his tunes and I played one of mine and dedicated to him and he stood up and gave a sermon and it started ah, I have no children, but I have sons and boy. That was just a great thing for me as moving so before you even started to take lessons from from the reverend you you were playing out in the village and eighteen nigh dont, think I was playing out now now that you're new doin around yeah, I was playing the asked our plane when I was thirteen and what was your music at that point by what you like? Was it off always folk, music and boost?
music, no, it was whatever I heard the right. You know. I liked everything on the radio and that's how I started playing. Will you not three forecourt? see what was on the radio he ever in iraq, banned in high school or anything. I wasn't in iraq, but now I wasn't a folk band. Yeah yeah folk was a big thing. It was it's hard to imagine like I did. Did you see the movie the wet way, Luna llewyn Davis than allowing brothers movie? No, you didn't I didn't because terry foul, who had been, who was dave and rocks wife said that she sought an eye. Terry and I trust her ear and she said disappointed her was there was no joy in it and that a day So all the joy that we all took him playing the music- and I figure and there's nothing in it? For me really interesting, I mean, if I think about it, that sort of, It is part of a dark tail and away, and they miss that you know they got a lotta things right, but a court.
Terry. I mean I can't say first hand, but I believe that they they missed. what we did it. I don't know we were having a ball, but it was before you when it started me. You stop, the folk thing started actually before it political in nature. To begin with. Oh yes about it was very only was and who were the leaders of it? Who were the inspirations like pete, seeger and woody guthrie yeah, and I, and that was the first generation? I mean those are the guy's before you well before them. There was actually Carl Sandberg again guy named John Jacob niles, there were sandberg the poet yeah haha, but the pot Resumption of the though the the folk music in the working man's. Then it was led belly, pete, Seeger, right yeah. and did you see what belly no never saw never saw pete. Yes, all peace, no more time
and so, when you got to it, when you got to the village who was around, who were part of the crew, who are you kind of like, meeting at the diner afterwards and smoking cigarettes with well, richie havens right, like he's an interesting player, huh, always marvellous, he invented zones lit his whole. hey. You know he invented zone tuning place mostly with some over the net right. You know you and and his team. I'm right area. Very I've asked but but breaks up the race down there, I mean he's brilliant. He was a big deal. Oh well, you know I used to play guitar, The here, of when dino wasn't around. There was a kid they dino learned from richie and and play great we're, richie, learn it, I'm so oh yeah yeah, but that fell over the top things very. forgetting hendricks. Did it a little bit too well, sir? Davis media, but not across all of them.
strange or five strange circuit, richie havens, and you harris paul siebel and I mean harris started down the village. Well, I think she don't know that she started there, but she might have started in d c and can't came up to the village for a few years is made sixties yeah. Who, with For that you would go. Watch go out of your way to see no matter when they play. Turner, Zacarias now, molly half Let's see you know who we are left out of the first wave of we left out or data. That's right, yeah. I thought that, because I mentioned south korea's last name. She she just performed siberia, and I I once called by her whole name- and she said you don't do that- that's too powerful a real that what's our dead, his wife told me she didn't want me to say, and you can't say it still. I love her.
When did you first started achieving yo success? How did it happen like you did you record? When did you start being recognised? Well First national laughed to ask me to play with them. Was Tom Paxton MA? Am I played with him and then back to the village opening No, no! No! No! Well! You guitar player play a accompanist study. That was my whole thing. I didn't sing yeah missing. I do now yeah yeah, but back then I didn't I was. I was guitar player for all the people. Then I most of the people mentioned so paxton. The first guy did you guys it plays while the right young most of them yeah, but but I would, I would add, ornamentation and then solos and things and and when it so here's the first guy that kind of a national act I mean yeah. You know I mentioned paul siebel and yeah Emmylou. I used to play guitar for them and for richie and anybody
let me yeah right yeah, so you tour paxton, but the big The same was probably I ran into a guy named Donnie broke suicide, harmonica player yeah introduce me to a pallet his named well eventually named jerry, Jeff walker right, jerry Jeff was of jazz fusion rock band, really yeah called circus. Maximus. Aha along with a great songwriter named Gary white the band hated church of stones I loved playing on you know we met we play together, saw used to drag him around with a primarily country, his stuff, I was very country here, so you know call me might say well looking for an opening act, I was not an act right, so so I'd say well. Let me see if during ethel do it. You know yapping jerry definition we used to go to
w b, I affirm- and this was a very important thing here- jerry, jerry, Jeff's, career and mine, because I became known being jerry, Jeff spanned rife, We used to go up to w b a I radio on name of old bob fass. It was an important show and it went from midnight until and would you do up there while we played alive yeah yeah, I think it was someone it brought me up there near, and so I would get jerry Jeff to come when I could write and the tourist go up there and we'd play and bob fast fall in love with MR bush angles, and he recorded at three separate times and and put him on a tape lupin if we weren't there, he play that several times tonight. Your version of it not me georgia is at his song yeah. He wrote that he'd absolutely wrote it. Some people ask me who really wrote it. He wrote it yeah yeah like that- is one the songs
everybody knows it's, it's a great great song and Did you play on their original recording of it yeah you want the story, yeah! Ok, there was a guy down the village a pub. sure and end manager and doing a lot of things- need David wilkes, ah, and I remember him taking me and jerry Jeff to an airplane a little piper cub and we flew down to Memphis. Yet The sun was already out before jerry Jeff records it because chili's bar, which was where Sinatra would hang out near the piano player, was a guy named Bobby Cole and he heard it on the late night radio he figured as a great tune I'll cover it. You know he's my son out, so he recorded for date, records and jerry Jeff, eventually signed with at coal, which is division, but let me say, credited jerry right. I don't
I think he did yet but the city only thing that a song writer has that can say about a song. Is he gets to pick the first person to record it right after that, anyway? can ok and so so Bobby call put out the first recording without jury Jeff, knowing what he assumed it or even out yet so so. David Wilkes, jerry Jeff, and I flew down to Memphis where a brilliant engineer, a brilliant man, he, the guy, who invented phaedr here was engineering, was producing an engineering. The session of the dixie flyers were the where the band ok and They were having a difficult time with it because kept sounding like being these walls. Like the group, and I really want to be in the studio. and after a while I was in tears. I'm a little embarrassed by us the truth
the both I'm sitting in the both, because he didn't want some kid he never heard of, Finally, the engineer yet the engineer and producer Tom Dowd. Ok them also was involved in the manhattan project. Just so you know how intelligent timed out. Ok, so mercury I didn't say I want the kid no effort while Tom doubtless put the kid ok If there was a woman who was playing twelve string- and he said let him player twelfth string, and so I had a part yeah, and I played part, was in six eight, not three four, and that did it that That did you haven t got out. I think I was yet in itself. because, like it, jerry jeff walkers, when these guys, I come back around too thanks to my buddy dan over gimme gimme records right, because when I grew up it was up against the wall. Redneck mothers. That was this all that was later I know much later, but like it's like, like
I don't, like you, realize, a guy, my age who miss the sixties, really so anything I got. I had to pick up from the rubble and I m still doing it like you, I'm still like you may that guy was that guy. You know I like right now, like you're the guy that was, the twelve string but then- You go on, so I imagine that session. How does it pick up, Why could you played with balkan everybody of that era? and I dont know how that she might my father assumption is that you know Cause? You know you play with their yet that most of the grateful dad's on what two or three of your record- and you know and they get it runs dad who I know I just I just recently when in the last six months got this the first stone ponies workers. Which I'd love yeah, that I agree your her seeing like that she's such a great and then, but did you have that moment, though, when you used in this dump ponies and you're like she's about and beyond this that there is something transcendent. That word we
I feel that it has been realised yet that she was eight singer, but folk was held her back in away somehow no I just you, know, Here's the thing where I live in a moment. I know and that's all I wanted to live in the moment. I heard her and she moved me. She was just just with their own ponies, yeah she's supply. The bitter end. The an end, if you she talks about this in her ah autobiography one night. She was there after different drum yeah, he released a number of tunes. Hi muddy waters was one of you tat. She sang it was just great but yeah, but it different from nothing. Did anything aha so one night when she was The bitter end I got her and drake. to the apartment where I lived
Also gary white, jerry Jeff lived, and I rounded up paul civil and gary white in me and linda and a hub It was not a songwriter sooner. The am I was everybody's guitar play right, so they say her songs and next album was mostly gary one and paul civil songs and half the they that restarted her career was long long time, which Gary white saying to her that night real with I'd sit in with her she'd introduce we, as somebody help restarted leah over the top stuff. What it was I loved it, when I was a moment you're like come on, but there was more to that night there night when she decided to go back to her hotel she ran to jerry Jeff in the hallway and he was on his way uptown, for god knows what right and they shared a cat, yes and he, hold her that she she had to hear the song that the
ugh the mcgarrigle sisters had written and sang heart like a wheel, the act which is one of her favorites ever and that was a huge hit too so so their mentors. It was a momentous night. It's interesting that, like I imagined you know for me, I dunno for you, because you you seen that at yo nata to have their the same sort of and yeah- I romanticize- you- know, groups of people and times and errors, but I mean like in retrospect to be at the sort of like the pivotal juncture of these things in making these time impulsive decisions that they have the kind of ripple effect must be sort of interesting and exciting. I loved playing guitar with these guys. You're, not nostalgic. Now I loved playing guitar with these guys, and I wanted I wanted to do it as much as I could. I I would get a jerry, Jeff and Paul siebel yeah booked at the folklore center do a concert, so I could play guitar with them and have
with civil Y got sibyl one of those, and I got I had just with Paxton mia, so I got the producer to come down and listen to Paul. Peter siegel was his name be at his nixon producer and Paul gotta get a contract na It was a small business and to her, and he was into like a you know, you are not a small whose is it as it is today recording in germany? I guess, but it just seemed like there is: there is more maybe I'm wrong, just seem like yours, a community there were these ye go. certain city and then ino people were hungry for new out new talent and everybody was sort of around. You know it doesn't seem that maybe it works at way. Still I dont know what one is that the record companies did, as they were editors, because as everybody one make a record right and recordings studios didn't record everybody right. So
slowly you know today that you have to be on youtube raw how many million others right. Anybody in doing yeah, but two to get known. If you're really good, I mean how do you stick out new to it? An easy now, I think, is harder today, but why So you do you? Will you eventually you played with richie havens I play richie havens. I think before I ever met your jaffee me at yeah and I'm just looking at some of the people. You worked with AL cooper, I didn't mean to later right character. How you owe you- and I I really love him good producer yeah. You can't right through the history iraq, nor without AL cooper. Sure rolling stone raina that organ. Yet with that ends of the blues project end. What was the name of that great corn ban? He founded edwards in tears. Yeah
But I mean even before that he wrote a song that Gary lose the play. Boys report, I think, or was it short shorts He wrote one of those pop things you here. One of the kids who like Paul Simon, was also who live in the publishing buildings there there were two buildings in new york. One of the most famous was the brilliant right, but there was another one to hear. and there were kids who would hang out there to do whatever they could, because they want to rights on palestine. Was given that yeah, I think he was here. Did you know him did you were ignored in aid already come and dine there? I met a much later we talk about the dead because seem to you know. Jive with those did, mean they played on your record yeah and you played with them. Yet what was add what were they? What was the? I'd there, because I noticed in your playing and when I listen to stuff that it seems likes you,
as were able to really and also the band to define this. This space there's a space. It that you, you know you kind of like you, you not filling up every hole. You letting things said, there's a groove that that your I think, poor, trying to get back to a little now but there's something about like I never really put it all together. In tow It was a few years ago in air clapton had yet there were two there, though Jimi hendrix, went to england a lot of the right eyes were like, while it's done it's over yeah, I presume reason when the bans first record out Eric laughed and said it's over, even that the Dave achieved this perfection that I'm never going to achieve every years. I confess what that is, and it's really about the space. I think you're right I think so, the ban, was so soulful I mean from My taste is if it's not solved
that it doesn't strike me as soulful. I got no time for and the band was very First of all, I loved their records and I used to run into them in later years. Every really yeah! I'd run into a at hotels. What's understandable, gigs yeah, yeah sure hope, truck, stop a real you just get ready to do up just kept running until I met at and- and I really like you replay with any of them sure yeah, oh yeah, well I love everything. Well, dankert was my best friend and the ban. We were at the shuttle normal staying there. I forget why yeah and I'm walking around the ground
for some reason. Then I bump into danko- and he says: oh thank god yeah. He says I gotta do this Ringo's star album and he wants me to play fiddle. Will you play fiddle with me while I don't have? I don't remember if I had a fiddle with me or not. Actually I said okay, so that got me on a written. We were trying to hide behind each other, because we were both pretty terrible and you know, so I got that was the first of the renal star. Elms I played on a dagger seem like he was a pretty funny guy. He was a sweetheart. He was really wonderful and, and so was leave on air yeah. Did you ever There are two woodstock an hour. No, till later years yeah you know the problem was, it was fashionable to do that and I have always been- and I dont its necessarily a good thing here, militant leant, I fashion. So
so. You want to be trendy. Dont want to seem like you are part of the gang. I I just wanted to find a way to do so. Myself, you know. Ah you know- and you are talking about how I was playing in the folk thing- the ep. but I wasn't playing that much folk music. I play this rock and roll on the acoustic guitar, as I did for me. I played all kinds of different music the. You know it a whole different thing. I always said if whatever, if what I do ever becomes popular A corner on the market the only guy do it on the only guy stupid, but I liked by day when you play with them. Why dank? Oh, I too soon we like such a great voice and such like a fun spirit like when you talk about food, like a year that in the folk stuff, in that this sort of, like you knock it like. I am thinking about that that there there's an ecstatic sort of
you know, communal feeling too that music, I guess it exists like with any ban that has popularity but but there seems to be so things, simple and and and and pure about folk, music and weird way, Well, maybe I mean I never really thought of my Office are focusing right, but you were their knees, but I was there. I came out with a full clubs. I absolutely, but I was s to give up a keynote speech a couple years ago: yay the folk alliance and I thought about it, and I decided to talk about the difference between folk, music and americana. Ok, the term americana didn't exist when I was first that sorta now echo and are now so wait. Wait army so out. The music is music that has been or is being played, withers no chance of money changing hands. I mean it. you think about it. That's true!
but to find it so you mean it's done like you know it at social events, sir gatherings or or at work or in prisons or on ships. Were you know it is the personal thing it's no. It is getting paid for her so an american music is music. That kind of sounds like that, but as written for profit, ok and I had to t shirts printed up fifty of saying the David brownrigg quintet. making americana great again events for the new record. Now just for the hell of seeing you can, you yourself, iraq, musician, all the time I don't know I mean I played on rock record, certainly Andrey records country. I played on some three workers I play on all kinds behind what instruments you play oven
Dewey guitar player can play a little man Lynne. I play little dough brow. I can play a tiny bit of fiddle. Ah, you know I can measure with a few I used to play little banjo. I can mess around with a lot of different instruments. So you in your career, you put out like twenty of your own records. Almost and you know you played with a very eclectic bunch of people but like what I'm gathering, though, is that as you know, I mean you played with link grave in it, country? They end up and what I'm gathering know is that. like usually, unless you start with somebody or you have a friendship white with raker, Linda jerry Jeff, that you know you're going in to do the job and you d You know you don't necessarily end up becoming pals right with with wherever there, no matter how you write in so I guess right. I know that in my heart but like for some reason. I still want to know that, like Maybe you know you,
in david- am ran a hunter. Buddies, yeah, we're friends, you are Who are you area and we are yet because he was sort of an interesting, kind of beatnik legacy very interesting man yeah, and he does is it that I would necessarily think that was your music now, I found a way in yeah I'm on a couple of his records and we've played together on other people's records yeah and like if, but with someone like link wray, do you have an impressions. like you like, when you show up for work. You know with went gray who had point, I imagine, is it in his more country mode as opposed to your brain in part apps at sound. What what are you working with me? What are you? What are you? Ok in order to talk about link ray, I have to tell you about Tommy k, o k, Thomas Jeff, and K. Ok here producer, and he never paid scale.
He underpaid everybody, but it was. work and getting on records, so I did a lot a record with him and he and he produced the they re record that I played on and also I played on a wilbur, harrison record the guy I can't see it here and I also played on the very last hit that jane the americans had, and I was I'm k record and he produced a lot records for mercury, which was doing kind of a scam back. Then they would get a band and they would put to know not a ban. With their we get studio, musicians to play a pop tune. And if it was a hit some, put together a ban by that name. If it was a real band and they did a record, they print up a lot of them and then delete it from their catalogue so that they will. have to pay any royalties. I mean it It was a whole we're thing but to explain. Tommy katy tommy k is just an album with doc,
John John haven't. I just got down and down my bloomfield. Yet it's terrible network- How could anybody take those three guys like it out arable? So eventually I stopped doing records with with him doing dates cause. I started getting scale apple scale triples yeah. I guess I was in demand and us well. He calls me one day and he says: listen. I got a session you as so I dunno. I I think I might be busy that day. The army said no, no, no. You gotta play this one year or so. why do I have to play this week? He said well, the other guitar players are clapton guessing to play this so you clapton fence, yeah sure is great great lawyer so I regret the studio and I see the solar guitar player setting up yeah I go to Tom. Is it tommy? That's not class,
yes, I know, but he looked just like him. Doesn't it where there are no. No, no, it was a typical tommy gave out for you play with link right, yeah and what is your impression in it. It was so long ago, I thought he was cool and this is, but he wasn't playing It was it was it on a country record or was it on a dirty word? I don't even remember reeling, that's where it goes. There was a do. You realize how long was I was more than fifty. You ok all right. I guess yeah you're right, but they did in the end recording. Dylan is well yeah yeah, and you remember that, yes oh yeah, well, but not that clearly the first recordings would you do, which record the first record that I played on with him was a self portrait yeah. I, like that record, yeah yeah, he called me up.
and I was at first. I thought it was somebody pulling my leg ray and he said I could have I'm going to check out the studio. Will you check this come with me and check out a studio really out of nowhere? You'd met him before I had shook his hand when he came to the er job the club where jerry Jeff was playing right was accompanying? I never thought he paid any attention to meet her, so of course later. I learned that he knew studio very well. I really here yesterday you check in you out yeah yeah, so we went in and and it was the way I love to work no rehearsal licit book clear, and so I had a good time. I take great store where years later in in the nineties, and I was not performing at all- you know I stopped performing for twenty two years. I know I was going to ask about then I'll get your ear. So I did
a couple of shows here and there- and I did wonder at the bottom line- I used to play their anniversary of air, so I kept doing that from time to time and one of those times new young was playing at the beacon and new york and by went to that. They both came down to hear me and evidently, Neil said to Bobby you. Oughta have this guy producer, so Bob asked me to produce a mamma. He thought it was a good idea. I guess yeah and so I I produced a bunch of tunes. Two of them have been released, I think eventually they may all get released, but who knows which the lake on which record? What period are we talking about? And while it was in the nineties, but his release a little later on one of the bootleg album? Okay yeah, it was the one that was for no three disc yeah yeah, but it was released as two discs and you paid extra for the third and I saw the tunes were missed the mississippi and you, which is on the first or second, and the first
the third cd, if you bought it said can brady and will have you done a lot of production. Previous, I was whose myself yeah I produced, carly simons demo, I produced johnny shines, but mostly I had produced myself yeah and what was that like working with him as a producer? Oh, it was fun. We had a very good relationship, we known each other for very long time. From that day, went to the studio, yeah, yeah yeah and stay in touch? Oh yeah, yeah. That was a time when we would hang out together in a village anyhow I really should have told us too to bob before I tell it to you. I've never told him this cause. I keep forgetting the legality of this address, my wife, the only white person in a church choir in chicago we were living in Chicago and I asked The choir to come in and sing on a few of the tools that we were recording with bob yeah yeah.
They never heard of Bob dylan yeah. They you know what year we talk and ninety five If I heard of him no absolute, they did. You know there's a there's, a very important record store in chicago called out of the past and I was there once, and I found a bob Dylan. What do you call pirate record here, you know bootleg yeah bootleg. You know they may at the prices when you bring it home or abroad or something I had no idea who was either and they are abec. It really is the only thing in there there was a buck. That was the only record store, which was the size of airplane hangar ya, where there are no beetles records the records. Do they have it? Every block artist you ever heard of right and people come from all over all over the world. To that place, great record is still there. Yeah.
As far as I know, I was the you, bring the choir bring sobering, acquiring and Nancy tells me later they were at one end of the studio and barbarous novotny voice at another, and he was doing a tune that I actually ended up. Recording twice called nobody's fault of mine. This is a church to and The first time are recorded was during the famous discos scare recorded disco version and I haven't yet on the second version: disco scare, yeah. Well, what else was an obama has this and for some reason I want to record a lot of my tunes or too said had recorded and he's in the the booth trying to a groove, that's not that one year and it took, some time he's working on it. You know and as he told me later, that that they had a little prayer. Let's, let's pray for this man, they prayed. Dear lord, please
This man find whatever it is he's looking for and with the quickness I'm not your work in the big picture of mature work for me, that day. Did that day too good, star. When you work with him, did you did you get the hang out with them? Or did you talk to move that it always seems like there's a lot of people on his records. He told me so that made me feel very good. Now yeah, he told me two. John Lennon had set the other we guys down, made them, listen to my first arm from start to finish real, yeah I wish no not before that's that those great moments in life. Tell me about so all right put out all these records on your own and how's your how's, your following when you go out, platy get a nice group, amazingly enough. I do yoga and
you know, I mean I'm able to play places the people who had hit records, which I never did ya, can't play. So, I I'm very, very, very lucky. You find that there are people that you would maybe see yourself hanging out with. Are they your age or me? What is it like at a yoga that the crew from the sixties I mean? Who, who goes? Do you notice there are occasionally some younger people put their mostly people. My age they are, but there recently received more more young people, but you know from me I am who I am. I am my age of seventy one year and and end that did that's not a good thing in in this business. You know old news. I don't know this just put out a blues record so did I it's good to ban the records good. I play I've been playing along with it by gay
because I, like the groove you now, I'm proud of it s great. That's why banned on to it? What's it called again the blues, the whole blue is nothing but the maria that's your band. That's your touring ban on their yeah. It's tricky with the boozes in it, because the booze is not really owned by anybody right. So when you show up for them, it's on you to make your own and it's it's a tricky it's a very tricky thing, because there something that happens to all kinds of music will suffice, and people who say in dixie land jazz that you can't play high society it without playing them. Clarinet part right. You can't play a blue question without ross. Drugs break and people that were that way about the blues, and. while the interesting thing about it is that because, like somebody like me, complete,
like it's everybody's music, in a way yeah- and you know, the structure of it has been sort of worn down and over from familiarize like you know, like any bar band can make their way through a blues tune. You know, give or take yeah, alright, okay, so how do you make it special? You know, it defines that it has to be what's what you've got to be, what you bring to it, exactly, not what you do to it right, what you bring to it yay. That was the entry the thing about your record and also about the stones records is like you know. Those songs are for everybody. You know yeah, we, you know we that were familiar with the song. But what's gonna make you go I like this version? Do you know what I mean it's in well I discovered something about a blues guitar playing in church and you go to church. I I used to bring the reverend to church right and it was the place on.
planet where I felt a most welcome and the most at home. So I would check out a few other churches. Now I am the only only african american churches white churches, I didn't feel welcome, and I started really dig some preachers and then I realized something listening to baby king and our working here. If you listen to baby, He said that the tone that he gets is an attempt to duplicate Lonnie Johnson's sound on the acoustic qatar on the electric, and you can hear yeah, if you listen to lonnie any listen to a baby, choice of notice his own and was brilliant. His phrasing is a preachers phrase and that's the difference between the white blues players and the black blues players is the phrasing because the price yours will be talk
to you and then at some point they wore pause, to make. You really want to hear what they're gonna say next ah- and and you do that. That's what baby does on the guitar sea. Like that way, he's told me this guy is the on going to have that my head. Now, what While you were talking, you remind me of something else that I think I I figured out when I first heard bebop I didn't care for it at all. I wasn't until I heard charlie parker than I then I realized this stuff is beautiful and charlie parker, of course, is the source what everybody was trying to sound like if you list charlie parker hastened Jordan, early melodic player, he plays a thread. Yeah the gut. but in the course of plain that thread, he picked some notes that alter cords and
it's different an unusual cords. If you think of it as corridor and all people I listened to and didn't like They really understood these course he was doing and they would play instead of in a line they play vertical They play one cord to another cord to another cord right and it wasn't tied together right yeah. So Who cares right now, you're talking about the lyricism He was a melodic player, he would lose player and he played gorgeous melodies and that's why he was great in these other guys. Were China not? when you're playing your best, the muse. it comes from somewhere else, your concentrating so hard that you cease cons. Trading and the music seems to flow through you and come out your finger. He relax open up it just comes from someplace in it. It works you right when I was it twenty three or so in our plan in the village, that's what I did all these sessions- and I was at my best and I
discovered. The first concert that I did where I actually sang I discovered I finish first, solo, that I did in this performance. I couldn't find the english language. I could speak english I didn't know the don't war. I didn't know what any english words were in it me a while I had to play through another and and withdraw my mind, and and find the lyrics and your speaking guitar I speaking music. It yeah that you can get back right, So I learned for a while, and I didn't learn that night. I mean I knew I had to do that. split. I wasn't able to do it all at night. Here too, When I could see the end of a solo coming up about eight twelve bars away here, I also see what I mean. going to play them draw my mind out of the the musical my fingers. Do it the end and try remember lyrics
so you have to be conscious that you're gonna make the jump. So why did you quit. I got burned down and I was too stupid to Nora, was burnt out. You know you never, like. You know, you're hanging around a lot of hard core people. You seem like a druggie sort, no well, but I am also not an angel, and I had my moments, but what it was was. I was on the road at one point for two years without being home for two weeks. I do in your own shit. It was my own barrier and- and I discovered when I was home then I wasn't practising. I wasn't writing and I wasn't jamming there's nothing of a musician. and I didn't want to be. One of these guys are dragged himself onto the stage. Does a bitter imitation something he used to love, so I for another waited in my life and what that violence, reed violin making and violent identification. And I love it-
I really like being able to pick up about you know. If you guitar, says fender or gibson on at the chances. Are it maiden fullerton, org or where or national? Yes guess I yeah still. But if you, your violin, says stradivarius the us are not really that he ever saw the thing you know. oh so that doesn't make it a bad violin who made it you have to know it's like fine painting- you have to know that the chisel store wilson and end the perfectly which I say you want full narrowed rabbit hall on violent, I went full nerd rabbit online, he can make a violent. I guess Good, I haven't touched edge tools since I graduated from school. That was me, about my aim was always in identification view repair, no dissent, demographic adjusted unification. I also am about to. I am
collective violence that were made in the united states, but you're not like you do in your own emission in a great violin player, no you just like violent yeah just like the the instruments now. I think I have a little bit of understanding of them. fascination with that was that are always a thing. Did it come to you later I mean violence very specific. What about it? I Ass needed me that somebody would look at your violin, said stradivarius in it and say no. This was made in Austria in the year eighteen, twenty splay yet, and I want to be able to do that with violet With violence- and I actually made a place for myself in the violent world by acting violence made in the united states, which everyone told me there were no good ones and unsafe, about that. I couldn't understand. I dont think americans are genetically inferior to europeans,
So why shouldn t be as good well untruth they are, but there's so tons and tons of really bad ones. Yeah. So, why you know well, I guess, I'm mean I'm told them. The expert on violence made the united states two hundred and sixty three of them in my collection. And the library of congress is raising the funds to buy a third of the collection. Gonna donate the rest. Ok, now Now you back in the booze band yeah I got a grey fiddler bantu, oh yeah, yeah, that's it an idea. You know when you were saying that that road and not practicing and and not you know taking that time for yourself to engage in in creativity in a way that That's what really war allotted do down yeah sure to know you killed the article The hardest thing is beginning the energy together night after night after night,
to be wonderful or whatever the hell you have to be. You know you gotta put on the shelf it put on the show talking about losing your albert king, I believe had a rather unique way of doing it. I think after having seen him a few times that, if he was having trouble getting the energy together. He would manage become furious at one of the guys in this band and kick him off the stage and play the rest of the set in a cold fury. and everybody in the band understood this was going to happen because he was just tired because he couldn't work up another way to have the energy to deliver its interesting and you what a deliver night after night after night, you got, diarrhea doesn't matter, deliver yeah, you know whatever is going on ticket, that's right, you n, and they don't want to hear that tonight. You don't quite have it where much experience. You haven't actually backing blues guys. Not a whole lot yeah, no mere, although
in your thinking, electric blues, I mean missus John hurt and I spent two weeks and dressing room. Just plan with each other that was a ball. I was accompanying a singer named jerry more and we were in full feel opening fur, the john hurt and weep and john, and I just played together. stage, and then he invited me to go with him to were the philadelphia focus play with them, and I am very proud that I had the good sense to Thank you so much. I can't do it. Nobody would want to hear me play on top of mississippi. John is easy solo guy they. They wanted to hear what he did. I mean there was a similar thing. One. When I produced a record of Johnny shines, I suspected- The people who bought it probably hated it really. Because I produced the. Where produce myself, I used horns. I use backup singers, used all piano. I use all kinds of stuff
and he said twice before he died, His favorite did anne. I think the reason is that I did make him soon on a bale. Hey Overall, with a red ban. Ten, which is what everybody wanted. They wanted to hear him sitting on that bale of hay with a red, bandana yeah, but you took it up the next. Well, I don't know if I had at first I did. I did what I would do for myself. I did for him and I think that the probably people who asked me to do. It were terribly it really. I didn't realize that two years he loved he loved it so fuck, great talking you David re, talking to you feel good I feel very good. I I've admired your interviews, I think you're the best som very, very proud to be too and am very happy. It came out good luck with the tour in a record. Thank you as
That's it now is me and mr brok, MR brown bird, also gotta devotee of pod, back onto check on my upcoming tour dates. get a mailing with buy up stir. Whatever you gotta do I believe, I'll play some guitar. I believe I will
Transcript generated on 2022-09-03.