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Old 03-27-2013, 11:34 AM
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Default Cuttin heads?

Is it still done on the blues scene?

Todd
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:36 AM
PorkPieGuy PorkPieGuy is offline
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What do you mean by "Cuttin heads?" Can you elaborate?
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:59 AM
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Basically two bands or two players getting on stage for a bet and trying to outperform each other.

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Old 03-27-2013, 12:01 PM
Tone Gopher Tone Gopher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoneDigger View Post
Basically two bands or two players getting on stage for a bet and trying to outperform each other.

Todd
Yes, there are still people who fail to check their egos at the door.

Is that a desirable trait? Your call.

FWIW, it used to be popular among some in the jazz scene but, more often that not, can lead to people getting loud and "technical" and losing any musicality they might otherwise possess.
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:04 PM
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The only time I've heard of this practice was in the movie "Crossroads" w/ Ralph Machio having to beat Steve Vie, ( the Devil's guitarist), in a duel for his soul. It was the best scene in the movie because Steve Vie was actually playing his parts. Of course Machio wins by tripping Vie up w/ a complicated classical piece.
I don't know if this scene is based on an actual practice among Blues guitarist or not, but it made for good cinema.

Here is a clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djIXHfh5GcE
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:07 PM
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I've never heard of this being done in real life. Perhaps at Guitar Center between to post-pubes but then again....
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:13 PM
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The story is that Clapton got his butt handed to him by Hendrix once in this way. But, I hear this was really popular in Chicago blues for a time and Muddy Waters was the king of it. Anyway, just wondering if it still happens? Seems like it might make for an interesting show!

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Old 03-27-2013, 12:23 PM
PorkPieGuy PorkPieGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WmRob View Post
I've never heard of this being done in real life. Perhaps at Guitar Center between to post-pubes but then again....
I'm so glad I wasn't drinking anything when I saw this...
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:52 PM
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The term and practice goes back to the early 1920s-1930s walking bluesmen who might stand at opposite street corners vying for an audience and the coins they throw down...
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:57 PM
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I've never been able to wrap my head around the whole "musician as gunslinger" ethos... maybe that's why I never made it BIG?!!!

Music, and art in general, aren't a competition... at least not in my book, they aren't. Sure, I want people to like what I play and what I write and to want to hire me for great gigs... but I don't feel excluded or "cut out" if another player gets the gigs they want. The more folks who are getting hired to play live music, the better, in my opinion...

As far as "cutting heads"? Sure, it still happens with jazz and blues - personally, I wouldn't willingly choose to play in that environment...

And, as far as the Jimi Hendrix/Eric Clapton reference? I don't believe that was "cutting heads" so much as Eric not really knowing who Jimi was and how he played... a phenomenon that caught more than a few guitarists of the day "out of their comfort zone"!!!
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Old 03-27-2013, 01:15 PM
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The Search for Robert Johnson http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OiHjyWhZzmk shows a simulated "head cuttin'" competition between John Hammond Jr. and sometime playing/traveling companion of Robert Johnson, Johnny Shines @4:45-5:50 and 6:35-7:35...
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Old 03-27-2013, 01:16 PM
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In the early 70's my Jersey band was touring the South. The ladies were very friendly, the local boys "not so much", there were a few fights (luckily our drummer was 6'5" and happy to oblige).

A few times there were guys in the building, these were mostly very large bar gigs, pushing their buddy who plays to jump on stage and show us how to "play right", basically cutting heads. Our sound tech was a former biker and he was pretty good at talking folks out of jumping on stage.

A few did sit in with us when it was better than a riot starting, they were sometimes better, sometimes not, but always better than beer bottles flying at the stage full of "Yankee boys".

The 70's were something..................
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Old 03-27-2013, 02:41 PM
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Played for laughs as a staged, sorta-rehearsed bit, it could be a blast.
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Old 03-27-2013, 02:51 PM
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I'll take Eddie Van Halen against Ralph Machio any day anywhere!
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Old 03-27-2013, 03:36 PM
Liz_in_PA Liz_in_PA is offline
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I saw it with banjos -- Bela Fleck and Tony Trischka -- but that wasn't really the same and it was more a challenge than a smackdown.

And there's that whole banjo thing.
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