Re: [Harp-L] Dick Waterman (was Cyril Davis and Mick Jagger)

The One and Only Jukester (Pete Sheridan) wrote:
Mick credits Cyril Davis with giving him pointers about using certain mics, playing through an amp, etc. for improving his blues harp playing. However, one must not discount the lessons Mick got from Junior Wells when Junior and Buddy Guy were opening for the Stones back in the day. One of these impromptu lessons was documented by a series of photos shot by Dick Waterman in Frankfurt, Germany in 1970. You can view the series at Dick's web site...

Dick Waterman!

Thanks for mentioning Dick Waterman, Pete. Dick is an amazing man. He has done so much to showcase, chronicle and spread the word about blues that I'm challenged to think of any non-musician to match his numerous contributions.

Dick Waterman:
- "Rediscovered" Son House and brought him from his job as a railroad car Porter to the attention of legions of blues fans back in the early 60's. Without Dick Waterman, House would have undoubtedly languished in alcohol-fueled obscurity in upstate New York somewhere.
- Managed too many classic acoustic blue stars to mention. Short list: Son House, Mississippi John Hurt, Booker White, Skip James, Lightnin' Hopkins...
- Managed several classic Chicago blues stars, most notably Junior Wells. They traveled together with Junior's band on a United Nations-sponsored good will mission to Africa in the day. On most occasions, Dick was the only white man for hundreds of miles, yet Junior insisted that the man the Africans openly called "Mr. Charlie" was included in every social event, or Wells would refuse to attend himself. Junior single-handedly turned the tides of racism when the tables were turned on Dick Waterman. How cool is that of Junior Wells? Junior Wells' magnanimous personality and strong inner convictions to me are as important as his music.
- As an extraordinarily talented photographer, Dick has chronicled the folk/blues scene for decades and possesses a priceless archive of black and white and color photographs of nearly all the important figures in classic blues and folk music history since the early sixties. IMO, Dick Waterman is the Ansel Adams of blues history. He wrote my favorite coffee table book: "Between Midnight and Day: The Last Unpublished Blues Archive," which contains about a hundred of his backstage/close-up black and white photographs of a who's who of classic blues figures, paired with a personal monograph about Dick's recollections of each of these amazing and unique characters. It gives insights into the blues masters personalities that simply can't be got by watching them play on old videos (as much as I love that, too). It is a treasure every blues fan should own.

I won't go on about Dick Waterman, though I could. I would just encourage any fan of acoustic blues and folk music to learn more about him. He has a shop in Oxford, MI for you Dirty South Harmonica fans and his website is <>. I'm particulary fond of pictures like the ones on this page: The one of Mississippi John Hurt in the shadows is one of my favorite of ~any~ photograph!

Long live Dick Waterman!


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