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Tag Archives: The Chessmen
The Great Doyle Bramhall died in his sleep. November 12, 2011. Life itself is something we should all be thankful for…
The Great Doyle Bramhall died in his sleep at his home in Alpine, Texas at the young age of 62. Age 62 sounds younger to me every year I’m lucky enough to get older. I wanted to write about him because it is a shame that a lot of people who read this will say “Who was Doyle Bramhall?” This guy was a great blues musician. He grew up with Jimmy and Stevie Ray Vaughn. He was a drummer in several early bands that Jimmy played in like The Chessmen and The Nightcrawlers. Both the Vaughn brothers were in the Nightcrawlers. During this time period Doyle wrote the song “Dirty Pool” that appeared on Stevie Ray Vaughn’s first album “Texas Flood”. He was one of the movers and shakers behind the early Austin music scene. He was a musician’s musician. Other songs he wrote or co-wrote include: Life by the Drop, I’d Rather be Blind, Crippled and Crazy, Marry You, I Wanna Be. There are many more songs you would recognize but didn’t know that Doyle wrote them. Don’t confuse Doyle, Sr. with his son, Doyle Bramhall II, who is also a great musician. Doyle II plays guitar for The Arc Angels. He has play guitar on many famous albums for people like Gregg Allman and Eric Clapton. Here are just a few songs of Doyle Sr.’s that I enjoy. I hope you enjoy them too. It reminds me this Thanksgiving weekend that every day is a gift. God bless Doyle Bramhall and God bless his family and friends. And by the way, God bless all of you too. Happy Thanksgiving.
I’d Rather Be Blind (Crippled and Crazy)
This song is written and performed by Doyle Bramhall, Sr.
This song was written by another famous drummer who also sings: Buddy Miles. For the Jimi Hendrix fans out there this song may sound familar. It appeared on Jimi Hendrix’s live album “Band of Gypsys”.
It Ain’t No Use
There’s not a blues man alive that wouldn’t have wanted to have written this song!
This is pure Texas blues. This song appeared on Stevie Ray Vaughn’s first album “Texas Flood”. A song like this could only be written by someone who had hung out in every “Kinfe and Gun club” in Texas.
Scratch and Sniff
An instant Rockabilly Classic. I dare you to sit still while you listen to this… See? I told you so…
The House is Rockin”
This has always been one of my favorite SRV songs. Once again, any song writter would be proud to have written this little ditty. Am I right? This is one of Doyle’s best known songs. The problem is no one knows he wrote it!
Life by the Drop
Last but not least the powerful song, “Life by the Drop”. This song is written by Doyle and performed by Stevie. They are both gone now and it makes the lyrics even more poignant. Here are the lyrics in their entirety as Doyle pens a song that seems to be about the two of them and their lives:
“Hello there, my old friend
Not so long ago, It was ’til the end.
We played outside in the pouring rain.
On our way up the road we stated over again.
You’re livin’ a dream as thought you’re on top.
My mind is achin’ and Lord it won’t stop.
That’s how it’s happened livin’ life by the drop.
Up and down that road in our worn out shoes,
Talikin’ bout good thangs and singin’ the blues.
You went your way and I stayed behind.
We both knew it was just a matter of time.
Livin’ a dream as though you’re on top.
My mind is achin’ and Lord it won’t stop.
That’s how it happens livin’ life by the drop.
No waste of time. We’re alive today.
Turnin’ up the past, there’s no easier way.
Time’s been between us, a means to an end.
God it’s good to be here, Walkin’ together my Friend.
Livin’ our dream, my mind stopped achin’…
That’s how it happened, livin’ life by the drop.
Well, the two old friends are together again. The music world here on earth just got a little poorer and the band in heaven just picked up a hell of a drummer and song writer…