Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Bo Knows Diddley


Bo Diddley, Rock 'n Roll pioneer, died Monday.
Anyone of a certain age who played in a rock band knows Bo. With his signature beat (how many musicians have a BEAT named after them?) and his earthy singing, Bo was an original, the archetypical field-hand blended with 20th century electronics and primitive poetry. Any hard rock band worth its salt covered Bo, if only to tap into his raw power, to use his music to bring out elements within themselves that were previously undiscovered.

Bo would come to town about every year or so, playing with a local band and always firing up the crowd with his home-made lit-up guitar that spelled "Bo Diddley" in red LEDS. My old band mate Danny played with him on one occasion, he said Bo told them a story backstage about two gray doves that Johnny Otis (Willie and the Hand Jive) gave Bo once. Bo kept breeding those doves until he got one pure white dove and one pure black dove. "So I guess there's a little bit of you in me and a little bit of me in you."

Bo had a dark side as well, his lyrics for Who Do You Love are downright scary:

I walked 47 miles of barbed wire,
Used a cobra snake for a neck tie.
Got a brand new house on the roadside,
Made out of rattlesnake hide.
I got a brand new chimney made on top,
Made out of human skulls.
Now come on darling let's take a little walk, tell me,
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love?

Arlene took me by the hand,
And said oooh eeeh daddy I understand.
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love?

The night was black and the night was blue,
And around the corner an ice wagon flew.
A bump was a hittin' lord and somebody screemed,
You should have heard just what I seen.
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love,
Who do you love?

Arleen took me by my hand,
she said Ooo-ee Bo you know I understand
I got a tombstone hand and a graveyard mind,
I lived long enough and I ain't scared of dying.

Who do you love
Who do you love
Who do you love
Who do you love?


Bo, we won't miss you because you'll always be with us, whenever some young punk band starts the bomp-ba-bomp-ba-bomp, bomp-bomp.

By Professor Batty



2 Comments:

Blogger Quiet Paths said...

Howdy, my husband will be interested in this. Thanks. And the link to the Icelandic blog was great. Thanks squared.


Blogger Professor Batty said...

... thank you for stopping in, I've been following your blog for a couple of months now...

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