RIP Donald "Duck" Dunn

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I managed to compose myself this morning for the Mother's Day festivities after my initial reaction upon hearing about this. Just came across Booker T's statement here http://www.vintagevinylnews.com/2012/05/music-world-reacts-to-passing-of-donald.html and the waterworks started again, although I tried to keep them down to a discrete Ozu-like trickle.

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 00:33 (2 years ago) Permalink

Guess you can go straight to Booker T's sight and bypass that feed: http://www.bookert.com/

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 14:34 (2 years ago) Permalink

that's a good one.
yeah, as booker t says, losing a lot of amazing musicians these days. I have a whitney balliett book of his "jazz diaries" from the 70s and pretty much every page has an obit for some great jazz musician from the 20s-30s-40s. seems like we're kind of getting to that point with the big 60s-70s people too.
i only saw duck play once, w/ neil young in 1993 or thereabouts, but i can still remember how genuinely happy the guy looked as he played. like there was nowhere better to be than onstage jamming.

tylerw, Monday, 14 May 2012 14:41 (2 years ago) Permalink

"God is calling names in the music world. He gave us these treasures and now he is taking them back."

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 14 May 2012 14:47 (2 years ago) Permalink


this is great -- short, but very cool. playing for some groovy parisians.

tylerw, Monday, 14 May 2012 16:54 (2 years ago) Permalink

been playing MG's all morning at work.

Scott, bass player for Tenth Avenue North (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 16:56 (2 years ago) Permalink

they definitely had a little bit of an edge live that doesn't come through on records. Would love to have heard them stretch out.

Scott, bass player for Tenth Avenue North (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 16:58 (2 years ago) Permalink

Do any recordings of extended jams exist? The live stuff I've heard is all like stax/volt revue stuff.

Scott, bass player for Tenth Avenue North (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 16:58 (2 years ago) Permalink

i've heard a few live green onions that could almost be mistake for the velvet underground -- definitely had an element of threat that didn't come across too much on the records.

tylerw, Monday, 14 May 2012 16:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

this show has a pretty long time is tight. don't know if they ever really went nuts though in terms of length.

tylerw, Monday, 14 May 2012 17:00 (2 years ago) Permalink

Used to have the 8-track to this:

pplains, Monday, 14 May 2012 17:01 (2 years ago) Permalink

Thanks for video. Speaking of groovy Parisians, this French guy has created a, um, treasure trove of bass transcriptions of famous R&B basslines by Duck and other luminaries such as Tommy Cogbill and David Hood. The ones I spot-checked seemed pretty accurate, although I'll let Three Word Username have the final say. Go here: http://freebasspart.pv24.pagesperso-orange.fr/Bass_Players.htm

There was a movie of a concert in Norway that came out on DVD a few years ago that is a must-see for exactly that live edge you are talking about.

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:01 (2 years ago) Permalink

Thing that always set them apart is that through these little ditties like Green Onions or "obvious" covers like McLemore Ave, they were just so unbelievably tight, and a huge part of that is the now-deceased rhythm section.

pplains, Monday, 14 May 2012 17:03 (2 years ago) Permalink

Steve Cropper said that there was a natural delay in that studio and they all had to watch each other to keep it tight- he would actually watch Al Jackson's hand. At some point they started exaggerating the delay for that "Jerk" effect, starting with "In the Midnight Hour."

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:12 (2 years ago) Permalink

I'm glad I got see him a couple yrs back with Booker T and Eddie Floyd, Dunn sat in a chair for the whole set but he could def still play

chr1sb3singer, Monday, 14 May 2012 17:15 (2 years ago) Permalink

(xp: See or google page 62 of Soulsville, USA )

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:16 (2 years ago) Permalink

Those transcriptions are kinda lame -- just the basic bassline melody, not notations of ghost- or grace notes or playing behind the beat, so I'm not really sure what their purpose is.

Three Word Username, Monday, 14 May 2012 17:40 (2 years ago) Permalink

Apparently I have seen a clip from that Norway concert and forgot about it:

Hey, the Norwegians´╗┐ actually knew how to clap on 2 and 4 by 1967! They really are more progressive than Americans!
hurting 10 months ago 19

Scott, bass player for Tenth Avenue North (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:49 (2 years ago) Permalink

Ha, somebody suggested the engineer synced the clapping.

Never change, C0lin.

The Unbassful Serpent (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:50 (2 years ago) Permalink


Sounds so soulful don't you agree

Scott, bass player for Tenth Avenue North (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 17:57 (2 years ago) Permalink

another great one from that same paris show

tylerw, Monday, 14 May 2012 18:03 (2 years ago) Permalink

got the boss to hook her phone up to the xm radio thing to play green onions in the store, it was way cool

arby's, Monday, 14 May 2012 18:03 (2 years ago) Permalink

all youtubes where the MGs back up otis redding - diamond classics

arby's, Monday, 14 May 2012 18:04 (2 years ago) Permalink

RIP

a true musical hero

Bandersnatch Cumberbund (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 14 May 2012 18:14 (2 years ago) Permalink

I think my favorite MG's track is probably The Hip-Hug-Her. Epitomizes the way they were able to be super-funky by understating the funkiness. Fairly straight rhythms played super tightly with just the right accents and a little peppering of syncopation.

this guy's a gangsta? his real name's mittens. (Hurting 2), Monday, 14 May 2012 18:22 (2 years ago) Permalink

I watched the recent PBS documentary on Cab Calloway just a couple days ago and there's a great interview with Dunn and Cropper on the Blues Brothers filming and recording - hopefully it's up on YouTube somewhere. Say what you will about the Blues Brothers, but for a 12 year old in 1978 they were a terrific gateway to great music. I got to see Dunn play once (when Neil Young had Booker T & the MGs as his backing band) - wish there was a DVD release of that tour.

Fuck... RIP

Vini Reilly Invasion (Elvis Telecom), Monday, 14 May 2012 19:27 (2 years ago) Permalink

Say what you will about the Blues Brothers, but for a 12 year old in 1978 they were a terrific gateway to great music.

OTM. also they got all those guys working again.

It was you. Miming to Tenacious D. (stevie), Tuesday, 15 May 2012 07:08 (2 years ago) Permalink

Say what you will about the Blues Brothers, but for a 12 year old in 1978 they were a terrific gateway to great music.

Forreals! This movie was my first intro to seeing artists do songs I knew in totally different arrangements. The version of "Think" is one in particular.

And, if nothing else, I can drop "If the shit fits, wear it." in any crowd, and instantly know who was paying attention.

RIP, Mr. Dunn. Heaven's band just got a much bigger bottom end.

Sauvignon Blanc Mange (B.L.A.M.), Tuesday, 15 May 2012 14:48 (2 years ago) Permalink

Ian Hunter Is Learning the Game (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 19 May 2012 12:03 (2 years ago) Permalink

I was just talking with someone who played in a pick-up band with Duck Dunn one night, and he asked about some "Midnight Hour" mystery. Apparently, if you listen closely, there's a missing bass note somewhere in there, where during the take Dunn missed the switch to the bridge or chorus or something, but everything else was perfect, so in real time during the mix there was a guy on the boards who just zeroed the bass for that one night then faded it right back up!

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 1 June 2012 15:33 (2 years ago) Permalink

P good. Interesting how you can hear the differences in rhythmic approach btw the MGs and Crazy Horse -- want to say the MGs play a little more on top of the beat than Crazy Horse.

this guy's a gangsta? his real name's mittens. (Hurting 2), Friday, 1 June 2012 15:58 (2 years ago) Permalink


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