Hello. Come on in. The daddy writes about current events, literature, music and, once in a while, drops something on you from back in the day to make you pause and ponder, stop and stare, and begin to wonder. Who knows? You may start to pace the floor, shake your head from side to side, then fall down on bended knees in a praying position and cry, "Lawd, have mercy! What is this world coming to?" Check yourself! But this blog is NOT about the daddy. It's about you: your boos, your fam, your hood, your country...our hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow. So let's make a pact: the daddy will put it on the track if you'll chase it down and hit him back. Together, we can definitely take it to another level. Shall we?"

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

And This is Free: The Life and Times of Chicago's Legendary Maxwell Street," A Film to Check Out

“You used to get out on Maxwell Street on a Sunday Morning and pick you out a good spot, babe. Dammit, we’d make more money than I ever looked at. Put you out a tub, you know, and put a pasteboard in there, like a newspaper. I’m telling you, Jewtown was Jumpin’ like a champ, jumpin’ like mad on Sunday morning.”
-- Hound Dog Taylor, slide guitarist and former regular player on Maxwell Street.

This evening, the daddy is feeling a film called "And This is Free: The Life and Times of Chicago's Legendary Maxwell Street." Maxwell Street was a place my father and countless other black musicians went to pick up some extra cash by playing the blues.

Called "Jewtown" by many (because most of the immigrants in the neighborhood were Jewish), it was also a plac
e to get a bargain on clothes or just about anything else. My father
was one of the many blues guitarists who made a little extra chump change by playing there. So Maxwell Street has a special place for me; and hearing "I Held My Baby" by Hound DogTaylor reminded me of Maxwell Street and the passionate blues played there.

Here's some info about the film:

"After languishing out of print for many years, Mike Shea’s legendary film on Chicago’s Maxwell Street Market, And This Is Free, has finally been reissued by Shanachie and I imagine news of this will stir up quite a bit of excitement in blues circles. Shanachie has done an exemplary job with the packaging; housed in a soft covered fold out set is a two disc set containing the 50 minute documentary And This Is Free, the 30 minute documentary Maxwell Street: A Living Memory, some fascinating archival footage, an interview with sound man Gordon Quinn, a separate CD of performances by artists associated with Maxwell Street plus an illustrated 36 page booklet."

To read more about the film, see Big Road Blues. To see photos of Maxwell Street, check out Maxwell Blues photos.


Anonymous said...

daddy, the film sounds alright, but I just checked out the video called "I held my baby." Slamming!

rainywalker said...

I'm heading right now to order the film on line. Did you ever get to Bucks Red Hots, or was that before your time?

rainywalker said...

$24.97 at Amazon and two left. They are ordering more.

SagaciousHillbilly said...

dwin's essays in a writing class I took in gread school. His style of writing with it's easy flow and beautiful language and his persuasiveness is as good as it gets. He takes you wherever he wants to take you and you follow willingly and with great interest. Man I wish I could do that.

Maxwell Street. Sounds like a great place. One of these days I'm gonna git my pale ass down to Memphis, up to Chicago and down N'orleans just to listen to blues.

SagaciousHillbilly said...

What the beginning of my message should have said.

Hey Mac, I studied Bal. . .

Steven Seers- Hessing said...

hey daddybstrong i was curious about the bucks red hots stand on maxwell do you know of the time frame that it was opened and closed. because i found a picture of it in my basement and it was my moms side of the familys old stand and i would like to find some info on it

MacDaddy said...

Stecen: Sorry, I can't remember red hots from there. I was Muslim. I didn't eat pork. But I'm sure that didn't stop a lot of patrons. Remember: this was more than 3o year ago. Sorry.