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> Steve Mann, another guitarist on my A list of best of the best...
Blue Willy
post Jul 30 2013, 11:16 PM
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My friend, the late Steve Mann, was an inspiration to me, Erik Frandsen and countless others who had the good fortune to see and hear him play back in the '60s. My arrangement of Pallet On Your Floor (video in another post in Practice Room) is based in large part on his version. He delighted in transposing Ray Charles and Mose Allison piano music to the guitar. If he couldn't quite make a reach that was too far a stretch even for his very long fingers we would watch in amazement as his left hand came over the top of the neck and he brought his thumb into play on the fingerboard. With his thumb fretting high on the neck playing counterpoint and his little finger down low playing a bass line, I counted frets...a 9 fret reach? Yes!...and with complete ease, the passage completed his hand would go back over the neck to the conventional position all without the slightest break in rhythm...completely seamless and oftentimes an accompaniment to a vocal!

Some months before his death I had the pleasure of reconnecting with him via telephone after more than 40 years! We reminisced about the old days and friends and players we admired. It was clear he was somewhat impaired by 40 years in and out of mental hospitals and a lot of heavy medications but it was Steve Mann with his amazing knowledge and wit...just slightly slower. In the following video you will see him playing in the months before his death...his singing very weak since he was doing these tunes from memory after many years of sedation but still his playing amazes. Rest In Peace Steve.



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Mike

"The business ain't nothin' but the blues!" - Rahsaan Roland Kirk


Inductee in the Blues Hall of Fame, March 14, 2012.

Mike-Wilhelm.com
YouTube: Michael Ray Wilhelm, Blusician, guitar & vocal
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audiopaal
post Jul 31 2013, 06:52 AM
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Nice, thanks for sharing. Very cool and interesting video smile.gif
I have heard the name before, but not very familiar with him I'm afraid.
Great player though smile.gif
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Cosmin Lupu
post Jul 31 2013, 08:43 AM
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Pfff, it's such a pity to see how amazing individuals go to waste - out of all the skills that the array of great players had - I mean the ones you presented to us, I am mostly interested and fascinated by the idea of playing and singing in the same time, regardless of what is being played smile.gif


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Blue Willy
post Aug 20 2013, 12:30 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Jul 30 2013, 11:43 PM) *
Pfff, it's such a pity to see how amazing individuals go to waste - out of all the skills that the array of great players had - I mean the ones you presented to us, I am mostly interested and fascinated by the idea of playing and singing in the same time, regardless of what is being played smile.gif

Here's a sound recording of Steve Mann in his prime, live at the Ash Grove in Los Angeles, California back in the early '60s...nobody else could play a ragtime blues like Steve, or any other kind of blues for that matter...



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Mike

"The business ain't nothin' but the blues!" - Rahsaan Roland Kirk


Inductee in the Blues Hall of Fame, March 14, 2012.

Mike-Wilhelm.com
YouTube: Michael Ray Wilhelm, Blusician, guitar & vocal
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Mertay
post Aug 20 2013, 12:39 AM
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listening right now, very inspiring story.


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Cosmin Lupu
post Aug 20 2013, 12:21 PM
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Reminds me of some vintage times - the ones that I can remember smile.gif I am not that old so 1990, a rainy day in Amsterdam and me sitting behind a window, a 6 year old gazing to the busy world outside... That's what this song took my mind to - thanks for sharing, good sir smile.gif


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