JOHNNY WINTER, ST GEORGE’S HALL, Bradford 1993.
July 16th 2014, legendary blues musician Johnny Winter died in his hotel room in Zurich, Switzerland at 70 years old. Winter was one of the first blues rock guitar virtuosos, releasing a string of popular and fiery albums in the late Sixties and early Seventies, becoming an arena-level concert draw in the process.
Winter, from little Beaumont, Texas, afflicted with albinism and 20/400 eyesight in one eye and 20/600 in the other, made an iconic life for himself by playing the blues, using a piece of plumber’s pipe while playing slide guitar.
He also resurrected the career of blues legend Muddy Waters, producing three Grammy Award winning albums, starting with Hard Again, in 1977. The 64 year old Muddy, a man not averse to boasting about his virility, heard the playback of the completed album and exclaimed, “That’s made me hard again!”
As well as producing that wonderful comeback record, Winter is credited on the cover as: ‘Guitar and miscellaneous screaming,’ something that he does with style and great enthusiasm for the blues.
Johnny Winter was once asked how he’d liked to be remembered. He answered, simply, “As a good blues player.” He was much more than that.