; Tangled Up In Blue: Yesterday Was The Anniversary Of Stevie Ray Vaughn's Death

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Yesterday Was The Anniversary Of Stevie Ray Vaughn's Death

It's been 15 years since Stevie Ray Vaughn and four other musicians affiliated with Eric Clapton, died in a tragic helicopter crash. He was only 35 years old. Stevie was one of the most incredible blues guitarists to ever live, in my opinion. I remember when he died and how disappointed I was that such a great talent had been taken from us at such a young age. Although he was sober when he died, Stevie Ray Vaughn had almost died at an earlier date from alcoholism and drug addiction. I remember him saying in an interview that he used to mix whiskey and cocaine in his coffee everyday. The whiskey and cocaine had eaten the inside of his stomach so badly that he actually began coughing up blood. Thankfully, Stevie was able to find peace and get clean. He was probably in the best shape he had ever been in at the time of his death. I guess that is what makes me so mad about his dying like he did. I mean, the guy finally gets it together and then he dies in a stupid helicopter crash. What a tragedy.

By the way, the inspiration from this post came from the fact that our local classic rock station (105.9 The Rock), which has a blues show on Sunday night, is doing a tribute to Stevie right now. I hope they play his version of the Jimi Hendrix tune Little Wing. Stevie's version, which does not include any lyrics, is so awesome that it actually brings tears to my eyes. I can't even begin to explain how good that song makes me feel.

Update: They just played Little Wing. Oh yeah!


Blogger Sharon Cobb said...

Clapton has escaped death on several ocassions. He could have easily been on the same helicopter as Stevie.
Being from Texas, I must have seen Stevie 50 times. his blues guitar influence can still be felt.
Also, yesterday was the anniversary of the death of the man who made The Beatles happen, Brain Epstein. And if memory serves me correctly, one year ago yesterday, singer Laura Brannigan died, too.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Glen Dean said...

You saw Stevie 50 times. That is awesome. You say you are from Texas. Are you from Austin? I heard Austin was a happening music town.

9:32 PM  
Blogger Sharon Cobb said...

I'm from El Paso, Texas, but spent A LOT of time in Austin, where I caught Stevie almost every time I was there.
In the 80s, besides the blues, you probably know of Waylon and Willie and Billy Joe Shavers starting the "Outlaw" movement in country music. Waylon lived here, then moved to Arizona shortly before his death, but Willie and Billy remain in Texas. Kinky Friedman, who is running for Governor of Texas and is formerly "Kinky Friedman and the Texas Jew Boys," says he and Willie will solve the energy crisis once he is elected Governor. (Using grease from fast food restaruants, which Willie does now with his bus) I digress...
Stevie was a regular on the Austin scene, and I had the pleasure of seeing him many times.

10:16 PM  

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