Saturday, January 26, 2008

'Cause I can play this here guitar, Pt. 20

Lots of people have heard this guy's name, mostly in connection with electric guitar pickups often referred to as "Charlie Christian" pickups. And while most educated guitarists know something about Charlie landing a job with Benny Goodman's band in 1939, many musicians don't quite get it, especially in historical context. And then factor in the erroneous belief that rock'n'roll really only started in the '50s and before that electric guitar players were country bumpkins and uneducated blues players, and suddenly, a whole thread of musical history is lost.

Watch this short bio piece, and listen, and you'll likely see what Charlie was all about, almost 70 years ago:

And here's another showcasing Charlie's groundbreaking jazz style, with definite indications of rock to come later: