I attended the Buddy Guy concert on Jan. 30 in Winnetka, Ill. Let's just say I'm the kind of person who will spend 20 minutes yelling at a bar manager for beginning Chicago's merciless midnight January 1 smoking ban three hours early. Watching Buddy seize the moment in a purple suit and matching top hat, with a pink frilled shirt, I didn't even consider walking outside for a cowboy killer.
He let his band start the set on their own, graciously sharing his spotlight with his partners in a cosmic journey deep into the man who casually speaks of his role as keeping the Blues alive.
After seizing the stage with his electrical axe, he shared a story about an artist you might have heard of: Otis Redding. Apparently the first time young Buddy was introduced to Otis, the introducer vouched for him as someone who could "play." Most band members then began an inquisition, picking apart his musical brain seeking validation for the claim. Otis ceased the nonsense saying only, "If he can play, then let him play."
Buddy dedicated the evening to Otis and his wife.
Later sharing his disappointment over the pettiness shown by Columbia college in forcing him to vacate his home club for nearly two decades, a fan yelled:
"This is holy ground!"
"This is a CHURCH"
Buddy only acknowledged the truth with a smile, smoothly continuing with his monologue.
With his next song he put the audience into a time machine powered on musical genius into a time back when women only "wore skirts." The song began, politely asking big women to "keep your back flap down."
It ended describing one leg in the East and a promise the other was in the West ...
with him right in the middle underneath.