CLOSE
Original image

The Late Movies: The Three Kings

Original image

The "Three Kings of the Blues Guitar" are Albert, B.B. and Freddie King (no relation). The three of them are among the greatest bluesmen and most influential guitarists of the late 20th century and are veritable American institutions (just as, if not more, important than barbecue and baseball). For each of the Kings, we've got three performance videos and a guitar lesson.

Albert King

Nicknamed "The Velvet Bulldozer," Albert King stood 6' 4" and weighed in at 250 lbs. He played his Gibson Flying V ("Lucy") left-handed, upside-down and backwards. In 1966, he signed with the Stax record label and began recording with Booker T. & the MGs. A year later, he released Born Under a Bad Sign, the title track of which would become his best known song. He continued to record (working with Isaac Hayes' backing band, The Movement, during the 70s) and tour for the next few decades and was planning an overseas tour when he died of a heart attack in 1992.

Born Under A Bad Sign

Albert's most well known song, from a 1981 concert.

Why Are You So Mean to Me

Live with John Mayall & The Original Bluesbreakers 1982.

Don't Lie To me

Live with Stevie Ray Vaughn in 1983.

The Albert King Box

Here's a lesson from riffeo.com on playing in the "Albert King box," an area of the fret board where Albert tended to improvise during solos.

B.B. King

B.B. (a nickname, shortened from "Beale Street Blues Boy") King has been called "worldwide ambassador for the blues" by the Blues Foundation and the 3rd greatest guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone. He began his musical career after meeting T-Bone Walker, saying that after that, "I knew I'd have to have [an electric guitar] myself. Had to have one, short of stealing!" His version of Rick Darnell and Roy Hawkins' song "The Thrill Is Gone," released on 1969's Completely Well, became his biggest hit (#3 on the R&B chart and #15 on the Pop chart) earned him a Grammy for Best Male R&B Vocal and became his signature song. For a large part of his career, B.B. performed some 300 concerts a year. In 2006, the year he turned 80, he launched his "farewell tour" and gave some thought to retiring. This spring, he's touring North and South America again adding to the 15,000+ concerts he's performed in his career.

The Thrill Is Gone

B.B.'s signature song, live at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1993.

Sinner's Prayer

Live with Billy Preston on organ and Bruce Willis on harmonica at a tribute to Ray Charles.

Key to the Highway

A little less guitar playing here, and a little more acting like somebody's grandfather telling a story.

B.B.'s guitar tips

A guitar lesson from the man himself done in something of a Q+A format.

Freddie King

Freddie King, nicknamed "The Texas Cannonball," forged his own finger-picked (a plastic thumb pick and a metal index-finger pick, a technique he picked up from Jimmy Rogers) style of playing based on the Texas- and Chicago-style blues he heard growing up. While maybe not as well-known as the other Kings, Freddie was no less influential on the next generation of blues guitarist and has been cited as an inspiration by Stevie Ray Vaughan, Eric Clapton and Peter Green. Freddie King died from heart failure in 1976 at the age of forty two.

Ain`t No Sunshine When She`s Gone

Performing Bill Withers' 1971 hit, which Withers recorded while he was still working a day job at a factory that made toilet seats for 747s.

Sweet Home Chicago/Let the Good Times Roll

This footage comes from a 13 minute video shot and edited by Ric Sternberg (part of the video crew at Woodstock) in the 1976. According to Ric, Freddie was in Austin, TX to play a show and the Jail Arts & Education Project got a hold of him and asked him to come down and play for the inmates at the Travis Co. Jail. Freddie agreed, and it appears everyone had a pretty good time.

Whole Lotta Lovin'

Live in LA in 1970.

Freddie King Guitar Lesson

Andy Aledort from Truefire Guitar Lessons (who kind of talks like a guy I took lessons from in high school), give some tips on the basics of Freddie's style, including pick attack, equipment and a few licks.

twitterbanner.jpg

shirts-555.jpg

tshirtsubad_static-11.jpg

Original image
Little Baby's Ice Cream
arrow
Food
Pizza and Cricket Cake Are Just Some of the Odd Flavors You'll Find at This Philadelphia Ice Cream Shop
Original image
Little Baby's Ice Cream

Ice cream flavors can get pretty out-there, thanks to the growing number of creative scoop shops willing to take risks and broaden their customers’ horizons beyond chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry. Intrepid foodies can cool off with frozen treats that taste like horseradish, foie gras, and avocado, while Philadelphia's Little Baby’s Ice Cream is pushing the boundaries of taste with chilly offerings like everything bagel, Maryland BBQ, ranch, and cricket cake.

Cricket-flavored ice cream, created by Philadelphia-based Little Baby's Ice Cream
Little Baby's Ice Cream

Everything Bagel-flavored ice cream, created by Philadelphia-based Little Baby's Ice Cream
Little Baby's Ice Cream

As Lonely Planet News reports, Little Baby’s Ice Cream launched its first signature “oddball” ice cream—Earl Grey sriracha—in 2011. Since then, its rotating menu has only gotten quirkier. In addition to the aforementioned flavors, customers who swing by Little Baby’s this summer can even try pizza ice cream.

The store created the savory flavor in 2011, to celebrate neighborhood eatery Pizza Brain’s inclusion into Guinness World Records for its vast collection of pizza memorabilia. The savory, Italian-esque snack is made from ingredients like tomato, basil, oregano, salt, and garlic—and yes, it actually tastes like pizza, Little Baby’s co-owner Pete Angevine told Lonely Planet News.

Pizza-flavored ice cream, made by Philadelphia-based Little Baby's Ice Cream
Little Baby's Ice Cream

“Frequently, folks will see it on the menu and be incredulous, then be convinced to taste it, giggle, talk about how surprised they are that it really tastes just like pizza … and then order something else,” Angevine said. “That’s just fine. Just as often though, they’ll end up getting a pizza milkshake!”

Little Baby’s flagship location is in Philadelphia's East Kensington neighborhood, but customers can also sample their unconventional goods at additional outposts in West Philadelphia, Baltimore, and a pop-up stand in Washington, D.C.’s Union Market. Just make sure to bring along a sense of adventure, and to leave your preconceived notions of what ice cream should taste like at home.

[h/t Lonely Planet]

Original image
Warby Parker
arrow
Space
Warby Parker Is Giving Away Free Eclipse Glasses in August
Original image
Warby Parker

When this year’s rare “all-American” total solar eclipse comes around on August 21, you’ll want to be prepared. Whether you’re chasing the eclipse to Kentucky or viewing it from your backyard, you’ll need a way to watch it safely. That means an eclipse filter over your telescope, or specially designed eclipse glasses.

For the latter, you can just show up at your nearest Warby Parker, and their eye experts will hand over a pair of eclipse glasses. The stores are giving out the free eye protectors throughout August. The company’s Nashville store is also having an eclipse party to view the celestial event on the day-of.

Get your glasses early, because you don’t want to miss out on this eclipse, which will cross the continental U.S. from Oregon to South Carolina. There are only so many total solar eclipses you’ll get to see in your lifetime, after all.

SECTIONS

More from mental floss studios