Throwback Thursday: John Lee Hooker

John Lee Hooker 1997This week for Throwback Thursday, WERS is playing a set of songs from the late John Lee Hooker to celebrate what would have been his 96th birthday.

John Lee Hooker was born in Coahoma County, Mississippi, the youngest of eleven children whose father was a Baptist preacher. Hooker and his siblings were only allowed to listed to religious songs sung in church until his parents separated and his mother was remarried to blues singer William Moore. This was his first introduction to blues guitar, and William Moore was a distinct influence on Hooker’s guitar style. At the age of 15, John Lee Hooker ran away from home never to see his family again. Hooker worked in Memphis and Detroit throughout a majority of the 1930’s. He would perform in the different Detroit clubs and his popularity grew extremely quickly, so he decided to buy an electric guitar because it was a louder instrument. John Lee Hooker’s recording career began in 1948 when he recorded a demo with the Bihari Brothers. The resulting song, “Boogie Chillen,” soon became a No. one  hit on the Billboard R&B chart in 1949. The guitar riff from “Boogie Chillen” has been called “the riff that launched a million songs” as it had inspired many other blues songs. Even though he was illiterate, Hooker was an amazing lyricist and due to a recording contract he would record many songs under different pseudonyms. Hooker rarely played on a standard beat, so it was difficult for backing musicians to known what he was going to do next. John Lee Hooker has released over 100 recordings that have been covered by the likes of Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Buddy Guy, The Doors, The White Stripes, Jimi Hendrix, and Eric Clapton.

Celebrate the life of John Lee Hooker with us today at 5pm for Throwback Thursday only on 88.9 WERS!

By Blaise Fritsche

If you liked this, check out:
This Week In Music History
Throwback Thursday: Woodstock

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Emerson College

The Emerson Acappellooza Fundraiser

Come celebrate our school with performances from our own four a cappella groups: Acapellics Anonymous, Noteworthy, Treble Makers, and Achoired Taste. It will be a night filled with school spirit, positive energy, and fun for any person who loves Emerson College. Proceeds will go to Emerson Scholarships and Emerson A cappella. Sponsored by Acappellics Anonymous with The Spirit [...]

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