Greetings from St. Louis, where the Cardinals are struggling to keep up with the Cubs, the humidity is rising, and there’s a new documentary website for “Johnnie Be Good”.
Please check out http://www.JohnnieBeGoodTheMovie.com. There’s a link at the top of this page. The site has new photos like Johnnie hanging out with Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and Joe Perry. There’s also new video, including frequently asked questions on the Director’s page. We’re still adding new material and new features. I’ll keep you posted when new stuff shows up.
Keith Richards: I Came This Close…..
Those of you who have been following my blogs for awhile know that Keith Richards has been first on my interview list. I had hope that this week would be the week I’d finally get the elusive Mr. Richards to talk about his good friend Johnnie Johnson. But Monday I got the phone call that this week wouldn’t work after all. I prepped all last weekend, browsing Richard’s biography, where he compared the songwriting team of Chuck Berry and Johnnie Johnson to Jagger-Richards and Lennon-McCartney. Can’t wait to get the man on tape. But that will have to wait for another day.
DC: On The Road Again
My trip to Washington DC earlier this month was interesting in a variety of ways, including a close encounter with two deer. More about that later. I interviewed Chairman John Conyers, the congressmen from Michigan, at his office on Capitol Hill. The purpose of the Conyers interview was for the chairman to talk about his 1999 proclamation honoring Johnnie Johnson. That proclamation was entered into the Congressional record and was part of the strategy to get Johnnie into the rock ‘n roll Hall of Fame. Thanks to Conyers and his helpful staff.I also interviewed keyboardist Daryl Davis, who lives in the DC area. Davis had a unique story because he was mentored by Johnnie and has performed with Chuck Berry over a hundred times. Davis invited me to his home, where he shared stories and opinions: the first time he met Johnnie; what’s it’s like to play piano with Chuck Berry; the way early rock and roll helped break down racial barriers. To top it all off, he sat down at the keyboard and showed off some of the licks he learned from Johnnie. As soon as Daryl opened his door, i recognized him from photos and video I had shot at Johnnie’s funeral. He was one of the pallbearers. Thanks for being a great host, Daryl!Earlier I mentioned my close encounter with some deer. I was driving home through the state of Kentucky win during a span of fifteen minutes, I counted ten deer either near or on the highway. Two of the deer were actually in my lane of a highway. I hit my brakes and honked numerous times before the deer calmly jumped over the guardrail into the woods. The scary part about my close encounter with these animals was that I couldn’t switch lanes because there was an SUV in the passing lane, which meant I couldn’t change lanes to avoid the deer.It never gets dull, people. Thanks for all your support and encouragement. The journey continues…..Art HollidayDirector