How big an influence did blues star Freddie King have on rock and roll? Listen to his riffs in "Have You Ever Loved A Woman," and you tell me. What a sound.
Freddie King is the last to be inducted into the rock hall. But in some ways, his late induction mirrors his career. Freddie is probably the least well-known of the Kings, but he has arguably had the most influence on rock guitarists.
Born and raised in Texas, Freddie King learned guitar basics from his mother and uncle. At first, he soaked up acoustic blues and Texas country, but in late 1949, at the age of 15, he moved to Chicago with his family. It was there that King learned from such electric Chicago blues greats as Jimmie Rodgers and Muddy Waters and eventually came up with his signature sound. King's blues style was fluid, but with biting power that was arguably more forceful than that of many other bluesmen of his day (with the notable exception of living legend Buddy Guy).
King used thumb and finger picks and would just dig into his Gibson 355 — hung precariously over just his right shoulder — creating what are now classic, deeply influential and riveting solos.King's versions of blues classics such as "Key to the Highway," "I'm Tore Down" and "Have You Ever Loved a Woman" have become part of the blues-rock pantheon."We owe a debt of gratitude to Freddie and other original bluesmen for, basically, the songbook they gave us," blues-rock guitarist Joe Bonamassa says. "Freddie was more of a rock guitar player. Freddie always had a dry, immediate sound."While B.B. and Albert King are known for their exquisite, minimalist solos with sinewy bends and telltale vibrato, Freddie King was a little more rock 'n' roll.
Who are your favorite blues guitarists?