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Staples of American Music: Mavis Staples and "I'll Take You There"

Tuesday, April 29: 1 p.m.
Posted by Greg Kot
Author Greg Kot will present and do a short reading from his most recent book, I’ll Take You There.

The song was there amid the highs and lows of the top 40, tucked among "Kung Fu Fighting," "Me and Mrs. Jones," "Maggie May," and countless other 70s one-offs, novelties and classics. The Staple Singers’ "I’ll Take You There" was in the air, like oxygen. Years after I first heard it in my parents’ kitchen on a transistor radio, it always seemed to be part of my life – I would find myself humming the bass line while waiting for an elevator or muttering "Ain’t no smiling faces" as I walked down a downtown Chicago street at rush hour. A few decades later, after hearing the song dozens if not hundreds of times, it dawned on me: There are only about five lines of verse in the entire song, spanning more than 4 minutes. The rest is just a magic act between the band (the Muscle Shoals rhythm section) and Mavis Staples, backed by her family.

In interviewing the people in the studio when "I’ll Take You There" was recorded, they all still sound in awe of what happened that day.

"The ‘I’ll Take You There’ session rates as high as any we ever did," guitarist Jimmie ...


continue Categories: Inductee, History of Rock and Roll, History of the Blues, Event, Rolling Stones, Hall of Fame, Library and Archives

Graham Nash Gets High with Jimi Hendrix and Brian Jones at a Frank Zappa Concert

Wednesday, November 27: 2:30 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
Exclusive interview with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Graham Nash

 

In this exclusive Rock and Roll Hall of Fame interview with Hall of Fame Inductee Graham Nash, the musician talks about his experience getting high with Jimi Hendrix at a Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention concert, looking for Rolling Stones member Brian Jones.

"Jimi Hendrix and I once went to the Royal Albert Hall to see Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention. During the intermission, we spotted Brian Jones up in one of the boxes, and we wanted to go and get high with Brian. So, we got up from our seats, and we started to move along the seats and a spotlight found us. Now, quite frankly we were both on acid, so this bright light hitting us in the face when we thought that we were invisible was quite shocking to us, but we managed to make it all the way to Brian, to the box that Brian was in, and we managed to get higher than we were."

 


continue Categories: Inductee, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Rock's Greatest Guitar Players, Jimi Hendrix, Rolling Stones, Hall of Fame

Rolling Stone's First Issue: "A Rolling Stone Gathers No Moss"

Saturday, November 9: 9:01 a.m.
Posted by Alexandra Fagan
John Lennon as Private Gripeweed on the cover of Rolling Stone's first-ever issue.

You're probably wondering what we are trying to do. It's hard to say: sort of a magazine and sort of a newspaper. The name of it is Rolling Stone, which comes from an old saying: "A Rolling Stone gathers no moss." Muddy Waters used the name for a song he wrote; The Rolling Stones took their name from Muddy's song, and "Like A Rolling Stone" was the title of Bob Dylan's first rock and roll record.

We have begun a new publication reflecting what we see are the changes in rock and roll and the changes related to rock and roll. Because the trade papers have become so inaccurate and irrelevant, and because the fan magazines are an anachronism, fashioned in the mold of myth and nonsense, we hope that we have something here for the artists and the industry, and every person who "believes in the magic that can set you free."

Rolling Stone is not just about music, but also about the things and attitudes that the music embraces. We've been working quite hard on it and we hope you can dig it. To describe it any further would be difficult without sounding ...


continue Categories: Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Exhibit, Today in Rock, The Grateful Dead, Rolling Stones, Inductee, Hall of Fame, History of Rock and Roll

Interview with Bill Janovitz, author of "Rocks Off: 50 Tracks That Tell the Story of the Rolling Stones"

Tuesday, October 22: 4 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall

Tonight, Bill Janovitz will discuss his recent book Rocks Off: 50 Tracks That Tell the Story of The Rolling Stones at Cuyahoga Community College’s Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts in the Black Box Theater (adjacent to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Library and Archives, 2809 Woodland Avenue, Cleveland). The event is part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum's 18th annual Music Masters series, honoring the music of the Rolling Stones. For the complete schedule of Music Masters events, including Saturday's Rolling Stones tribute concert, click here.

In Rocks Off, Janovitz – also singer, guitarist, and songwriter in the band Buffalo Tom – shares the story of the Rolling Stones as told through 50 of their most representative songs. Janovitz is also the author of Exile on Main Street (from the critically acclaimed 33 1/3 series) about the iconic Stones album. 

In advance of tonight's event, Janovitz toured the Museum in Cleveland, including Rolling Stones: 50 Years of Satisfaction. He sat down with the Rock Hall to discuss how he came up with Rocks Off concept, how he narrowed down the Rolling Stones' catalog to just 50 songs and why ...


continue Categories: Inductee, History of Rock and Roll, Event, Rolling Stones, Hall of Fame, American Music Masters, Education, Exclusive Interviews

A Surprise Performance

Thursday, November 10: 3 p.m.
Aretha Franklin on stage with (l-r) Ronald Isley and Dennis Edward

Our agreement with Aretha Franklin for this year’s American Music Masters program was that she would attend the tribute concert but would not perform. Of course, I always hoped that she would decide to sing a song, but I never pressed the issue. After all, hasn’t Aretha given us enough? We were gathered to honor what she has accomplished, not to demand more. We wanted to recognize, in professor Daphne Brooks’ words, “her brilliant body of work as a musician who materially and emotionally connected with mass audiences in complex ways that went unmatched by her peers.” The night’s fantastic performers did her justice and then some, as Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees Jerry Butler, Dennis Edwards and Ronald Isley, in addition to Cissy Houston, 2012 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominee Chaka Khan, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Twinkie Clark, Carla Cook, Melinda Doolittle and Mike Farris all brought their A-game.

After Dr. Franklin received her honorary degree from Case Western Reserve at the beginning of the evening, she watched the show from the audience with her family. We worked it out that she would return backstage during the last song of Ms. Lauryn Hill ...


continue Categories: American Music Masters, Hall of Fame, Inductee, Event

The Soul of Dr. Franklin

Sunday, November 6: 2:30 p.m.
Posted by Dr. Mary Davis
Dr. Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin now holds the Doctor of Humane Letters degree, honoris causa, from Case Western Reserve University. Have I had a prouder moment in the 13 years I’ve been at CWRU than when I saw her in her blue robe, onstage with the university delegation, beaming as she received the award?  I don’t think so.  A more exciting introduction than the one that involved shaking Aretha’s hand and paying my respects? Definitely not. In the 16-year life of the American Music Masters series, CWRU has partnered with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum to honor some great artists, all of them influential beyond the realm of music; from Woody Guthrie to Sam Cooke to Janis Joplin, they made our world a better place and shaped our lives. But with Aretha – and I write this listening to my favorite record, I Never Loved A Man, even though I’ve been steeped in her music over the past months, because I can’t get enough – we had the great chance and good fortune to also recognize one of the amazing, transformative figures of our time with a CWRU degree. This was serious business: the university doesn ...


continue Categories: American Music Masters, Inductee, Education, Event
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