Re: [Harp-L] Willie Dixon Controversy

POP ! Thats the sound of my bubble bursting.  Istill like Willie,though.

-------------- Original message -------------- 
From: "jcolbyspell@xxxxxxxx" <jcolbyspell@xxxxxxxx> 

> In my earlier statement about Willie Dixon claiming credit for songs he did not 
> write, I assumed that this was commonly known. I guess not. My source is from 
> am interview with either Buddy Guy or BB King in a guitar magazine. I have been 
> tearing my house apart trying to find that issue. No luck. Some one who is no 
> longer on Harp-l but check the archives e-mailed me off list. He confirmed my 
> statements. He has asked to remain anonymous because, in his words, he doesn't 
> "have any published references to back it up" and knows "that most of the folks 
> on the Harp-l won't accept anything you can't confirm on the internet." And he 
> really doesn't "have time to defend and justify" his comments. I looked into 
> this person, he does have the credentials to speak knowledgeably about this. I 
> will continue to look for sources myself, not to prove myself right, but to 
> prove am not making this up. I have nothing against Willie Dixon. He is a 
> great songwriter and producer and the w! 
> orld of music owes him dearly. He also did some charity work on behalf of 
> blues musicians. Here is the information from my source: 
> I'm not currently signed up on the harp-l so I can't post to the 
> list, but I occasionally look at the online archives, and I saw your 
> note about Dixon. And you are absolutely right, and the people who 
> are disagreeing with you are the ones who need to do their homework. 
> Dixon took credit, and received royalties, for composing many songs 
> that came from other sources. Easy examples are Red Rooster and 
> Spoonful, taken from Charlie Patton records, and Wang Dang Doodle, 
> listed from a 1930s record called Bull Dagger's Ball. 
> If you listen only to Dixon tell it, he wrote every great blues song 
> to come out of Chicago. If you listen to the people who actually 
> worked with him 'back in the day', as I have done in my over 30 years 
> hanging around and chronicling the blues scene here in Chicago, Dixon 
> was the biggest song thief in the history of blues. Stories abound 
> of him offering to use his clout to get people a session to record 
> their original material with Chess (or Cobra/Abco, who he also worked 
> for briefly in the '50s), with one of two outcomes: the resulting 
> record was released, but Dixon's name appeared on the record as 
> composer, or else the session was never released, but the songs later 
> turned up on Howlin' Wolf, Muddy, or whoever's record, with Dixon's 
> name listed as composer. This was the standard operating procedure, 
> and seemed to be accepted as the price one had to pay in order to get 
> hooked up with the prestigious Chess label. Composer royalties were 
> not looked at as a big deal then, but when bands like the Stones, 
> Zep, and others started recording these songs and selling millions of 
> records in the 1960s, there were a LOT of pissed of blues people in 
> Chicago who very much resented Dixon's business dealings, and never 
> forgave him. 
> Since Dixon was the most famous voice telling the inside story of the 
> classic era of Chicago blues, more people heard it and believed his 
> account as the 'true' account, and unfortunately the lesser-known 
> guys who felt they were taken advantage of never had their stories 
> heard. So most people believe the 'Dixon is the man' story these 
> days, but it's wise to remember that there are two sides to every 
> story. 
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