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Buffett Reminisces About Time in Chicago with Goodman

July 18th, 2011

The Chicago Sun Times has an interesting article/interview with Jimmy Buffett where he reminisces about the time he spent in Chicago with Steve Goodman and others:

“I had just gotten into Chicago and was told we were going to have dinner at Steve’s place,” Buffett said in a Tuesday phone conversation. “And we were going to shoot this album cover.” Buffett had met Goodman at the Earl of Old Town. In the early 1970s, Buffett was an opening act at Richard Harding’s Quiet Knight, adjacent to the L tracks on West Belmont Avenue.

Buffett had his first major market success in Chicago. He opened for Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks, Neil Sedaka and others at the Quiet Knight. “I was loyal to Richard,” Buffett said. “He played me there many times, and I stayed when I started getting a following. That’s how it was then.”

Buffett was the outsider who was born in Pascagoula, Miss.

“It is a Chicago style not necessarily identified with the city,” Buffett explained. “There were just so many good people doing solo acoustic guitar shows. The Holstein brothers, Bonnie Koloc, Mike Smith. And those singer-songwriters also had to be comedians and emcees. I had to do that in my early New Orleans days. Stephen Stills and [Eric] Clapton were the guitar players I idolized. My natural strength seemed to lie in the ability to bulls— on stage. I had that talk with myself. I thought, ‘It’ll take a lot of hard work and practice, so if I’m successful, I can hire a good guitar player.’ After New Orleans, when I got to Chicago I worked places that were minor league ballparks, the Steak & Ale circuit. So meeting all those people in Chicago was a renaissance for me.

“They were great storytellers, bulls— artists on stage and performers. I gravitated toward that. I found my place.”

Read the full article here.

(hat tip Jahfin)

Tagged in Interviews