"Blues with a feeling, that's what I have today," sang Paul Butterfield back on his 1965 debut album, with the great Michael Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop tearing it up on guitars. Those were the days: Amplified, but not over-amplified.
"What a lonesome feeling when you are by yourself." This well-dressed gentleman was certainly by himself tonight, playing very softly while many people passed by on Chicago's river walk, paying no attention to him. Bet some of them will end up in one of those godawful north side blues clubs--"Oh Sweet Home Chicago." We sat and listened for about 25 minutes. For the last number, he pulled out a blues harp (actually two) and serenaded the emptiness as the dusk settled in.
Chicago certainly needs more street musicians and buskers like this gentleman. The solo saxophone played against recorded music and the bucket men don't measure up to the many fine musicians playing in New York's Washington Square and other parks.
Copyright 2016, Jack B. Siegel. All Rights Reserved