At age 79, Buddy Guy is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, a major influence on rock titans like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, and Stevie Ray Vaughan, a pioneer of Chicago’s fabled West Side sound, and a living link to the city’s halcyon days of electric blues. Buddy Guy has received 6 GRAMMY Awards, a 2015 Lifetime Achievement GRAMMY Award, 34 Blues Music Awards (the most any artist has received), the Billboard Magazine Century Award for distinguished artistic achievement, a Kennedy Center Honor, and the Presidential National Medal of Arts. Rolling Stone Magazine ranked him #23 in its "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time."
Though Buddy Guy will forever be associated with Chicago, his story actually begins in Louisiana. One of five children, he was born in 1936 to a sharecropper’s family and raised on a plantation near the small town of Lettsworth, located some 140 miles northwest of New Orleans. Buddy was just seven years old when he fashioned his first makeshift “guitar”—a two-string contraption attached to a piece of wood and secured with his mother’s hairpins.
In 1957, he took his guitar to Chicago, where he would permanently alter the direction of the instrument, first on numerous sessions for Chess Records playing alongside Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, and the rest of the label’s legendary roster, and then on recordings of his own. His incendiary style left its mark on guitarists from Jimmy Page to John Mayer. “He was for me what Elvis was probably like for other people,” said Eric Clapton at Guy’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2005. “My course was set, and he was my pilot.”
Seven years later, July 2012 proved to be one of Buddy Guy’s most remarkable years ever. He was awarded the 2012 Kennedy Center Honor for his lifetime contribution to American culture; earlier in the year, at a performance at the White House, he even persuaded President Obama to join him on a chorus of “Sweet Home Chicago.” Also in 2012, he published his long-awaited memoir, When I Left Home.
These many years later, Buddy Guy is a genuine American treasure and one of the final surviving connections to an historic era in the country’s musical evolution. He keeps looking to the future of the blues through his ongoing work with his 16-year-old protégé, Quinn Sullivan.
“I worry a lot about the legacy of Muddy, Wolf, and all the guys who created this stuff,” he says. “I want people to remember them. It's like the Ford car—Henry Ford invented the Ford car, and regardless how much technology they got on them now, you still have that little sign that says ‘Ford’ on the front.
“One of the last things Muddy Waters told me—when I found out how ill he was, I gave him a call and said, ‘I'm on my way to your house.’ And he said, ‘Don't come out here, I'm doing all right. Just keep the damn blues alive.’ They all told me that if they left here before I did, then everything was going to be on my shoulders. So as long as I'm here, I'm going to do whatever I can to keep it alive.”
Buddy Guy released his brand new studio album Born To Play Guitar on July 31, 2015 via Silvertone/RCA
Records, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Blues Albums chart. The follow-up to his 2013 first-
ever double disc release, Rhythm & Blues, which also debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Blues Albums
chart, Born To Play Guitar is produced by GRAMMY Award winning producer/songwriter and Buddy’s
longtime collaborator Tom Hambridge. The new release features guest appearances by Van
Morrison, Joss Stone, Kim Wilson and Billy Gibbons.

If the blues is all about the crossroads, Jonny Lang is standing in the right place. Lang is the ideal representative of a new and innovative generation of blues artists – one who respects and reveres the traditions of the past, yet isn't afraid to embrace more complex and evolved genres and graft them to the blues foundation to create a hybrid sound that is both traditional and fresh at the same time.

Indeed, on any given night, impressively large crowds at a Jonny Lang performance are likely to hear shades of R&B, soul, gospel, hard rock, funk and more. All of it is packaged in a high-octane guitar-and-vocal attack from an artist who has covered countless miles since his teenage years, and continues to explore new horizons with confidence and enthusiasm.

Lang's trajectory over the past two decades has been fascinating to watch. Born and raised in Fargo, North Dakota he was introduced to the Motown sound early on by his parents. Lang got a taste of something a little more fundamental and powerful at age 12, when his father took him to see the Bad Medicine Blues Band, a mainstay of the Fargo club scene. Suddenly, it was all about the blues – and even more importantly, all about the guitar. Within weeks, Lang was taking lessons from Bad Medicine guitarist Ted Larsen. By the time he was 13, he had developed sufficient chops to land a spot in the band.

The group moved to Minneapolis, renamed itself Kid Jonny Lang and the Big Bang, and recorded the independently-released Smokin' in 1995. Lie To Me, the 1997 follow up album propelled by a hit title track, introduced the 16-year-old Lang to a worldwide audience. The young guitarist's affinity for funk, soul and gospel was already apparent on Lie To Me, as well as the Grammy-nominated Wander This World, released in 1998.

During a five-year recording hiatus, Lang stayed busy on the stage. By the end of his teen years, he had already supported world tours for Aerosmith and the Rolling Stones. Other stage credits include tours and/or performances with Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Jeff Beck, Ron Wood, Bono and Sting.

Lang returned with Long Time Comin' in 2003. An amalgam of blues, rock and soul, the album reflected Lang's growing talents as a songwriter and producer.

It all came together three years later with the gospel-influenced Turn Around, the 2006 release that landed Jonny his first Grammy win. "That was an amazing moment in my career," says Lang. "The idea of winning a Grammy had never been one of those things that really lit a fire under me. But then after it happened, I got an understanding of what it really means to go up against some amazing world-class musicians and win."

That all being said, Lang still considers himself to be very much a work in progress – on all fronts, musical and otherwise. "In my own life, music has been such a powerful force, and I know that's the case for a lot of people. I've seen how music can give people the strength to change. After years of witnessing that, it's become more of a focus for me to write songs that really count. I'm a blues musician, but I'm also much more than that," he says. "I'm still growing as an artist and as a person, and I'm always contemplating different ideas as my world view changes. There's still a lot more to do, and I want to accomplish as much as possible while I can.

Lang is currently in the studio working on a new album (his first in seven years) which is due out this fall.

$45.00 - $125.00

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