As a youth, I was often a supporter of the radio because I grew up in the 90s. There was a local radio station called ’90.5 The Flavor Station; the radio station is home to classic and today’s Hip Hop and R&B but what separated it from other radio stations was the Jazz, Blues and Reggae segments that they played on the weekends. Every Sunday afternoon I would turn on my radio to hear some Southern Soul music on a show called ‘Blues Time in The City. I would often hear some local blues acts like the ‘Billy Rigsby Band, Sir Charles and I would even listen to some of the greats in Blues music such Otis Redding and Buddy Guy!
George Guy, also known as “Buddy Guy” was born on July 30, 1936, in Lettsworth, Louisiana. George’s parents were both sharecroppers in Louisiana and at the age of six George began picking cotton. When George was thirteen, he taught himself how to play the guitar by mimicking the sounds of blues players like John Lee Hooker playing on the radio. George would often play in the clubs of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. George once performed in Chicago where was discovered by Muddy Waters, who helped him find work at the ‘708 Club; George also met other great blues acts such as B.B. King and Willie Dixon. In 1960 to 67, George recorded several hits for the Chess label, including “Leave My Girl Alone” and “Stone Crazy.” He also worked as a sideman for such acts as Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, and Koko Taylor just to name a few.
During the 1970s and ’80s, George continued his musical journey to record and perform with other great blues acts like blues harmonica player Junior Wells. George even made several Grammy-winning albums in the 90s, such as ‘Damn Right, ‘I’ve Got the Blues in 1991, ‘Feels Like Rain in 1993, and ‘Slippin’ In 1994 just to name a few. George was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1985 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005. George is not married but he has some amazing children that ventured off into the music industry; Shawnna, from the Hip Hop group ‘Disturbing The Peace is his daughter. In 2012 George was honored as a Kennedy Center honoree. George once owned two blues clubs in Chicago such as the ‘Checkerboard Lounge in 1972 to 1985 and ‘Buddy Guy’s Legends. In 2012 he published an autobiography ‘When I Left Home: My Story.’
George did not have a solid education growing up but his music created an opportunity for him to do what he loves each and every day while traveling the world. He is a living legend of a great genre called the Blues. His children are his legacy and they are carrying his love and passion for music; music is definitely a language that everyone can feel and the Blues is something everyone can relate to.