Monday, November 3, 2008

Sad News...

Detroit rhythm and blues legend Nathaniel Mayer passed on from our world on Sunday, Nov.2/08. Nat had suffered a stroke earlier this spring. It saddened me greatly when I saw the email that Ian Jeans forwarded me this morning. Not that I knew Nathaniel well, I did, as some know, have him on the Birdman Stage at Bluesfest in 2004. I thought he was totally the coolest, lotsa attitude but super genuine and a real card. Jeff Meier (Rocket 455 etc.) had called me months before the festival to urge me to book Nathaniel. I jumped at the suggestion and confirmed his appearance within days. I had heard he had lived pretty rough and had been likely screwed by various people who "handled" him, cashing in of course on the legendary singer status from days gone by ("Village Of Love" early 60's). His performance that day was great and the crowd loved him! Roughly a year or so ago, Nat's "Why Don't You Give It To Me" on the Alive record was released and it's a great one! Backed by a group of the Detroit underground garage rock constabulary this is a fitting tribute to a true legend. I'll never forget shaking Nat's hand late on the night of his bluesfest set and with his white 3-piece suit, ball cap purched on head, cigarette in mouth, he said to me all gravely voiced..."thanks man and I'm taking the rest of the beer back to the hotel, cuz we're gonna party". The image of him heading off in the dark with a green garbage bag full of warm Coors light is something I'll always remember....it was hilarious! Nat I hope you find peace in the valley as well as some cold brews.....to all of his friends and musical accomplices, my deepest sympathies.

1 comment:

Mark said...

sad news indeed. i dig nat.