Published: 29/07/2011
eISBN: 9781780889689
Format: eBook



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Ain't Bad for a Pink
The life of bluesman Pete 'Snakey Jake' Johnson
by Sandra Gibson

When Pete Johnson appeared on WRFG in Georgia, Curly Weaver’s daughter, Cora Mae Bryant, rang the radio station to say it was “the best goddam blues” she had heard.

Ain’t Bad For A Pink records a life dedicated to music. As a young teenager in the Sixties, Pete ‘Snakey Jake’ Johnson met legendary blues players Sleepy John Estes, Mississippi Fred McDowell, Roosevelt ‘The Honeydripper’ Sykes, Jimmy Witherspoon, Sonny Terry, Brownie McGhee, Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Son House who taught him slide. Subsequently, Pete Johnson’s interpretation of the country blues has been as close as possible to the original spirit of Southern music.

Meet Boomtown the Rat, the girls whose clothes just wouldn’t stay put, and the top-hatted man who had three wakes. Imagine being kissed by each and every one of the Three Degrees, being mistaken for a beggar in Montmartre or having to threaten with a meat cleaver to get your gig money. How about taking a pee next to the PM or forgetting where and when you met the Stones? Or helping Peter Green to remember his previous life with Fleetwood Mac?

Whilst celebrating the country blues, Pete Johnson lovingly describes some beautiful guitars, examines the economics of music shop retail and offers a few perspectives on the baby-boomer generation. This is the man who cooked breakfast for Jimmy Witherspoon. This is the man who topped the blues charts in Georgia. This is the man who was almost arrested for snorting snuff in Stoke-on-Trent.

This book celebrates the life of someone not famous or infamous; an ordinary man who had extraordinary experiences through being part of the post-war explosion in pop music and the blues. Ain’t Bad For A Pink will appeal to readers interested in the pop explosion of the Sixties and Seventies, the country blues and the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle.

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