Saturday, April 18, 2009

Saturday Night At The Liberal Curmudgeon: Peter Green And Friends

Peter Green played lead guitar with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers and founded Fleetwood Mac, originally an outstanding English blues band. Rolling Stone ranked Green as the 38th greatest guitarist of all time, and B.B. King said, "He has the sweetest tone I ever heard. He's the only one who gave me the cold sweats."

Green's brilliant playing was arrested by a 20-year struggle with mental illness and institutionalization, brought on by experimentation with LSD. Emerging with the help of friends, he played with the Peter Green Splinter Group from 1966-2004. He revived his career again with Peter Green and Friends, recently touring in Belgium and Holland. Here the group performs the soaring, dreamy instrumental "Albatross," a Green composition, at a concert in Amsterdam in February 2009 (h/t Harpslide):

At the same show, Peter plays fine riffs to the Freddie King instrumental "The Stumble":

Green is truly a bluesman who has had, in the lyrics of Robert Johnson, a "hellhound on my trail." It is a pleasure to see him smiling and playing those sweet tones again.


fleud said...

Yes, it's good to see Greeny smiling, and he's apparently conquered his demons yet again, but when I think of the fire that used to burn in him, it saddens me.

Jeff Tone said...

Fleud: True. That's the other side of Green's revival. He'll never be able to build up to those intense, long solos again.