Jimmy does “The Rumble”

So here’s the roundabout way this post came about.

Back on 12 August, I read a terrific post, over on Vinyl Connection, about Nuggets: Original Artyfacts from the First Psychedelic Era, a compilation of mid-60’s American rock singles, many of which could be categorized as ‘garage rock’.

nuggets-original-artyfacts-0081227971113_0

The notion of ‘garage rock’ put me in mind of great guitar riffs (of which, regular readers may remember, I’m a big fan), and this in turn reminded me of a piece I’d heard on NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday back on 6 August, about a new documentary, Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World (the “Rumble” in question being the classic Link Wray recording from 1958.)  I wanted to listen to the story again, so went to NPR’s web site, navigated to the appropriate page and got ready to press Play.  Before doing so, I scanned the accompanying text, in which the word “Rumble” was hyperlinked.

What does one do when faced with a hyperlink embedded in a story of interest?  More often than not, at least in my world, one clicks.  Which I did.  Thus, was I whisked on over to YouTube and a recording of that groundbreaking riff.

link-wray-and-his-ray-men-rumble-1958-7

So I listened and, as I did so, scanned YouTube’s offering of related videos stacked along the right hand side of the screen.  And in doing so, I excavated a wonderful memory from several years ago.

Sometime back in 2010, I watched a fantastic documentary, It Might Get Loud, that profiled three rock guitarists spanning three generations: Jack White, the Edge, and Jimmy Page.

cropped-it-might-get-loud

The three are interviewed, both alone and together, and talk about, among other things, their musical influences.  And nestled in among that stack of videos related to “Rumble”, was a clip of Jimmy Page picking that ’45 from his collection, putting it on the turntable, listening to it, and blissing out.  That was my favorite scene when I first saw the movie–had I been blogging back then, I certainly would have posted about it–and how great it was to see it again…to watch one of the great rock guitarists, of any era, taking such joy in someone else’s playing, complete with goofy smiles, self-conscious nose rubs, and air guitar strums.  He was 63 or 64 when this film was made, but his joy is that of a kid.  I just love it.


Fun extra, also from It Might Get Loud: Page’s youthful pursuits in the realm of skiffle music.  (Check out, right at the end, what his career aspirations were before he opted for guitar legend).

10 comments

  • Two and a half million years ago right after electricity was invented I rushed home with Rumble by Link Wray that I bought at our local record shop. I played it over and over. That was way before headsets so it drove my mom up a wall. But I played it (lower volume) but with my ear to the single speaker on my Webcor record player.
    Fast forward to 10 years ago. A couple of friends from the UK were visiting and I thought it would be nice to take them to an Irish pub, The Old Dublin, here in Wallingford. Unbeknownst to me they were having a guest artist that night who was going to play some skiffle music. My Brit and Irishman guests were delighted but I had to admit I had never heard of skiffle music. Then they were even more awe struck when it was announced the guest artist was none other than Hilton Valentine of the Animals, who as it turns out lives here in Wallingford. Skiffle was interesting…simple, fun, and light; not something that required one to focus. All you had to do was enjoy.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Great story, Ray! I’d be curious as to how an Animal ended up in, of all places, Wallingford! I’d read about skiffle somewhere, but I’m quite sure the first time I actually heard any of it was during that snippet of Page in the documentary (which, if you haven’t seen, I bet you’d like).

      Like

  • Great fun, JDB. Jimi’s somewhat self-conscious delight is indeed infections. Must track down ‘It might get loud’ some day.
    Skiffle was a bit like home-made rockabilly, or DIY pop for a simpler time. The Quarrymen were a skiffle group; one that managed to turn it into a career of sorts.

    Liked by 1 person

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