Get Jack Dempsey - Page 4
“Back in the 1930’s,” he told me, “That was the street where New Orleans Jazz and Jewish Klezmer music met to form the Chicago Blues sound. By the time I started hanging around there, that sound had influenced rock and roll in a way that no other derivative of guitar music ever could.”
“Are you from that area?” I ask.
“Nope.” He replies and then starts in on another blues riff, which begins where he left off with She’s Out of My Life and steps up to You Shook Me - the Muddy Waters version.
This guy may have said he wasn’t Jack Dempsey, but sitting before him and hearing the familiar precise slur between notes that first got him recognition in the music industry, I knew what was happening: I was being treated to the most intimate of concerts with a man who helped shape the modern sound of roots rock and roll; and if I wanted to continue being a welcomed audience, I needed to shut the fuck up.
He gets through the intro, and to my delight, grumbles through a few verses.
“You know you shook me, you shook me all night long, you know you shook me, pretty mama, you shook me all night long. Oh, you kept on shakin' me darlin', oh you messed up my happy home.”
When he finishes the song, he rests his hand on the strings and lowers his head even further. It’s as if he’s letting the remaining vibrations of the guitar waft into his skin and settle inside him. He is motionless, as we all are, and at the moment the hard rain starts to fall on the roof above us, he stands, walks out of the room and exits the store without a word.
“Yeah,” Piper Moon tells me after I’ve shared this anecdote with her, “Jack can’t handle goodbyes, so he just bails.”
Piper Moon is Jack’s bass player and as far as I can tell, his only connection to the real world. She is shockingly down to earth and completely unaware of her devastating beauty. Imagine if Bridgette Bardot and Claudia Schiffer had a baby; and that baby was raised by Captain America (not the super hero; Peter Fonda’s character in Easy Rider). This kid is classic cool.
Continued on the next page
“Oh God,” she tells me after I’ve gushed about her appearance and persona, “That’s sweet; but you should see me right now. I look terrible!”