Remembering Stevie Ray Vaughan
Twenty eight years ago today, the world lost one of the greatest guitarists we've ever seen: Texas bluesman Stevie Ray Vaughan. He was just 35-years-old.
Stevie Ray died in a helicopter crash after a concert at Alpine Valley in Wisconsin. I remember that day like it was yesterday. When I got in the car to come to work, the details were still sketchy on the crash. By the time I got on the air, Stevie's death had been confirmed and the request lines were a non-stop wake for the great musician.
I had the privilege of seeing Stevie Ray twice: in 1984 in the pouring rain at the old Beehive Stadium in New Britain on a triple bill with Gregg Allman and Charlie Daniels, and in 1988 opening for Robert Plant at the Hartford Civic Center.
He was a tremendous showman as well as an amazing musician, and both shows had the crowd on their feet yelling for more.
He was instrumental in keeping the Blues alive on mainstream Rock radio in the 80's, no small feat considering the MTV-influenced New Wave acts that were dominating the charts at the time. His guitar tone is unmistakable, and he will continue to influence guitarists for many years to come.
On any given Saturday night in any town in the US, you can hear a local band ripping up SRV classics like "Pride and Joy" or "The House Is Rockin'."
At the time of his death, he had just completed an album with his brother, Jimmie Vaughan. From that album, here's "Tick Tock." Rock on, Stevie.