Eddie Bo Is Gone
This just in....my friend, Tom, host of the New Orleans Big Beat on WEVL in Memphis let me know today that Eddie Bo has passed away. A quick check of Keith Spera's blog for the Times-Picayune today reveals that Eddie died Wednesday of a heart attack. He was 79.
What a body blow this is for his legion of fans. Another influential giant of New Orleans soul and funk from the 1950s onward is no more, an eccentric innovator and a risk-taker who pursued his musical muse against often long odds and frequent adversity up to, including, and beyond the Federal Flood. I am just beginning to take this all in.
Of course, I'll have more to say. . .and play, later on.
Update 3/22/2009: I want to direct y'all over to Funky 16 Corners where the always enterprising Larry Grogan already has a very hip Eddie Bo-related podcast mix of the more funky stuff Eddie was involved in producing/writing, mainly for other artists (although a couple of those "others" were actually Eddie!). Not only that, Larry has re-posted "Hook and Sling" and "Pass The Hatchet". And he's not done yet! So, while waiting for me to summon something up, get down with Mr. Grogan. While I don't work nearly as fast as Larry, his offerings have freed me up to feature some of Bo's earlier work, including productions for other artists, most of which I have not posted before. Stay tuned. . . .
Almost forgot to tell you that I have just added three more Eddie Bo songs to the HOTG Radio stream. They are cuts from several of his self-produced CDs from the 1990s: Eddie Bo And Friends - 1995 (later re-issued as A Shoot From the Root, in Germany - I think), Back Up This Train - 1996, and Nine Yards Of Funk - 1998. Very funky stuff. Enjoy.
Update 3/25/2009: I've learned from OffBeat that there will be a memorial service for Eddie in New Orleans at the Rock 'N Bowl, Wednesday, April 1, from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM - open to all. Alex Rawls adds in his Pop Life blog that Allen Toussaint, Joe Krown, and Marva Wright are scheduled to perform, so far.
Update 3/27/2009: I haven't had much time this week to work up material from my Eddie Bo archives, sorry to say. The good news is that others have their own archives and have been busy. Besides Larry Grogan, who continues his Bo bounty with podcasts and posts at Funky 16 Corners, my bro Red Kelly has a tribute up over at The "B" Side with some tracks from Eddie's Chess recordings and one of his Ric sides. He's done his usual fine job and has saved me some time and bandwidth to boot. Both Larry and Red must be able to blog in their sleep. Check these guys out!! My hat's off to 'em. Hope to have the first part of my Bo restropective up in a day or so and will try to fill in where I can some of the stuff they don't have up. . . .yet. Hint, we're starting at the beginning.
[Update 3/28/2009] Well, after much delay, including a malware attack on my laptop that took an entire day to undo (note: never go to a "free" photo editing site), I have finally got Part 1 of my Eddie Bo retrospective up. See above. I also wanted to hip you to another bountiful Bo tribute mix at Second Line Social. Thanks to Jukeboxmafia for the heads-up. Bo-consciousness abounds.
PLEASE NOTE: I just realized that I neglected to copy the following information from my word processor. Sorry for the late heads-up - but this information has been available at other sites I've linked to, anyway.
A fund has been set up to defray expenses incurred by Bo's family and to continue his musical legacy. Send your donations to
Eddie Bo Memorial Fund
P. O. Box 57175
New Orleans, LA 70157-7175