Friday, September 22, 2006


I know this is an awfully public place to talk about psychic awareness, deja'vu and "spooky" stuff like that but in this business, creativity goes hand in hand with inspiration. It's part of the synchronicity. Watching an awakening such as with Our Lady Of Perpetual Encouragement and getting to participate in that enthusiasm is really kind of a voyeuristic thrill for me. It increases my own awareness as it does for us all. Good morning again.

I woke up this morning (great title for a blues song - eh?) with a train of thoughts that led me right up to someone VERY important in all our lives. The message was clear; "Make your salutes for Chuck Berry now. Say your prayers for him now".

No one on this planet has had such a powerful influence on society, I dare say. I grew up listening to "nigger music" on KNOK in Ft. Worth and Chuck Berry was one of the first to "cross over" into my world. This is BEFORE transistor radios, boys and girls, back when the music came out of a plastic or wooden box with glowing glass things inside that looked like lightbulbs on a charcoal grill. You could stick a radio under the covers and use it as a foot-warmer in those days.

Muddy Waters, Jimmy Reed and always, ALWAYS the Fun Music of Chuck Berry would keep you warm. "Maybeline" and the story of the highway pursuit in that V-8 Ford. And later when we could see him on TV, The Chicken Walk.

Chuck Berry is still here. After all these years. The Main Ingredient in our Rock'n Roll Stew. Many of us who connected big time with his music.. probably three generations of us now..... are simply dying off naturally while Chuck Berry rocks on.

THINK ABOUT IT The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, THOUSANDS of garage bands and TENS OF THOUSANDS of would-be poets have copied as best they can.... Chuck Berry
. An absolute Original.

His Bio [click the headline for more] reads like The Bible - it is that thick. But the shame that baptizes us all is the unspoken evilry that was done to him back in the 1980's when Chuck Berry was (in my opinion) set up and busted.

The very nature of Rock'n Roll is sexuality. Louis Armstrong once said to a young girl who asked him to explain Jazz to her; "Honey, if somebody has to EXPLAIN it to you, you ain't never gonna get it".

Chuck Berry was set up in my opinion, by some "Snow white, uptight do-right" (Thanks, Jerry Riopelle) who had something to prove and was willing to use an under-age Pound Of Flesh to do it. And it was in my opinion in direct response to this song;

CHUCK BERRY lyrics - "My Ding A Ling"

When I was a little bitty boy
my grandmother bought me a cute little toy
Silver bells hangin' on a string
she told me it was my ding a ling

My ding a ling, my ding a ling
I want to play with my ding a ling
My ding a ling, my ding a ling
I want to play with my ding a ling

And then mother took me to Grammer School
But I stopped all in the vestibule
Every time that bell would ring
catched me playin' with my ding a ling

Once I was climbing the garden wall
I slipped and had a terrible fall
I fell so hard I heard bells ring
but held on to my ding a ling

Once I was swimming cross Turtle creek
many snappers all around my feet
Shure was hard swimming cross that thing
with both hands holdin' my ding a ling

This here song it ain't so sad
the cutest little song you ever had
those of you who will not sing
You must be playin' with your own ding a ling
My ding a ling Your ding a ling, your ding a ling
We saw you playin' with your ding a ling
My ding a ling everybody sing
I want to play with my ding a ling

The actual RECORDED version uses the words "you" here and there and is of course more suggestive but it got a LOT of airplay. Chuck Berry got a lot of jail time for being an Honest Man. A real human being. And legal or not, a person driven by natural desire that somehow, must be guided by Love.

A salute to who is musically, the Daddy of us all. Chuck Berry.

Wave your ding a ling as you pass by.


Liz Boyle said...

Yeah, Ron ! Let's appreciate the greats while they're still on the planet. It's almost sickening how the media plucks our legends out of obscurity as soon as they die, to hail them .

All the sheeple wearing the Ramones T-shirts they bought at Wal-Mart will be the first to hop on board the death watch tribute train. Sheesh.

Hail hail Rock and Roll.
Hail hail Chuck Berry ! said...

GREAT GOOGLIE-MOOGLIE! I just spoke with Daniel on his cellphone and he is having Deja'Vu to the level of feedback! He's in Phoenix with Bruce and they have been hitting all the places that were Home to these crazy hippie-types back when. Encanto Park, South Mountain and well, you know The Route.

He and Bruce were over at Kathy Grieger's house visiting. I remember Kathy (C?) as a tall beutiful brown-haired Girl Of The Constant Hat and Rebirh Tribe. She always had a suede or leather-ish brown hat that gave her a charmingly boyish look. She was beautiful and remains so - at least on the phone. She became a CHIROPRACTOIR of all things, and did LA for about 20 years.

Synchronicity anyone? wow.

Got toll-free access by phone. If you would like a call from the central time zone, Zap me your number by emails so's we don't feed the spoooks and telemarketers.


Anonymous said...

Bought my first 45rpm record in the fifties. Have since considered Chuck Berry to be the REAL
King of Rock and Roll...
The song was :

"Rock and Roll Music"
Go figure...

Bob Gately said...

Yeah Ronnie...We spent a few weeks with Chuck at JD's Nightclub on the Scottsdale Strip in 66 or so...We had to pay him in cash everynigh befire he went on in spite of the big ($500 a night advance on contract) up front to the agency. Took a young reporter for a high school paper in to interview him, the kid asked if he liked the Beatles and Stones. Chuck say, "Yeah, I love them boys...One day I walked down the road from my Berry Farm to the mailbox, an their in da box was a envelope from BMI an I opened it up an there was a check inside...Then I went into St Loouie and bought myself a Rolls Royce ! Yeah, I love them boys..."

Never forget what ya cant remember !

Anonymous said...

Did Chuck hire a local band to back him up, or was he traveling with his own backup band ?
I'm told he was too "cheap" to travel with his own band.
Money first...

Bob Gately said...

Yes indeed Chuck Berry did hire a local band, Condello, and he drove Mike nuts. Chuck kept goofing with them by changing the key in the middle of a riff, changing tempo, changing lyrics...he seemed to get a big charge with messing with the poor local musicians...Mike, to his credit was not too intimidated and just blew through the rehersals and was on guard all through the performances for the goof...

An yes, he was way cheap...Even cheaper then Jerry Lee Lewis...

Liz Boyle said...

Great stories, Bob. Thanks for sharing them.

More ! More !

Marty said...

I watched a great Chuck berry tribute show recently which was actually done around his 60th b'day
(1987?) featured a live performance with an all-star band led by Keith Richards. There's a great moment where Check tells Keith they're gona change key after the first verse of Roll Over Beethoven and Keith gives him a very emphatic NO! shake of the head. And Keith won, but Chuck was "chucklin'"