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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Greatest American Songwriters., 5 Mar. 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: I Am The Blues: The Willie Dixon Story (Paperback)
Willie Dixon was a big man, not only physically. He was colorful, confident, ambitious and intelligent. And in addition to all that, he had a remarkable talent for writing songs. He wrote such Blues classics as "I'm Ready","Spoonful", "Hoochie Coochie Man", and "I Just Want to Make Love to You.". His contemporaries included Howlin' Wolf, Little Walter, Sonny Boy Williamson and Muddy Waters, all of whom recorded Dixon's songs.
With a title like "I Am the Blues", you can expect Dixon to talk a lot about The Blues. And he does. And there's no one better to provide a first hand account of Blues music and it's evolution from the 1940's through the 1980's. But Dixon also describes his own life in vivid detail. Love and the loss of love. Hard work and hard living. A man of principles, Dixon was arrested on stage in 1941 for evading the draft. As a struggling black man and musician, he refused to go to war for the country that he felt had done nothing for him. Later in his life, Dixon fought for the rights to his own songs, and profits he never made from many recordings of those songs.
In later years, Dixon's songs were recorded by new blues legends like Buddy Guy, and British rock artists like The Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton. Many of his songs remain Blues standards, today. But the best legacy Willie Dixon leaves behind is his human legacy. This is best reflected in the words of his own favorite self-penned song, "It Don't Make Sense (You Can't Make Peace):

"You take one man's heart and make another man live

You even go to the moon and come back thrilled

Why, you can crush any country in a matter of weeks

But it don't make sense you can't make peace."

Amen to that, Mr. Dixon.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He was the Blues....., 23 Aug. 2002
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This review is from: I am the Blues (Paperback)
This is a great account of the life of not only one of the most influential Bluesman, but also a potted history of the Chess record label together with the development of the Blues in Chicago form the 40's onwards.
Each chapter starts off with the words of one of Willie Dixons many songs, and then goes on to explore and explain a particular incedent or period.
Interesting points are made such as the difficulty of getting Howling Wolf to learn new songs becuase he was illiterate, and also the fate of Eli Toscano who ran a rival record label(Cobra) to Chess.
All in all a book I would recomend to any follower of the Blues.
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I Am The Blues: The Willie Dixon Story
I Am The Blues: The Willie Dixon Story by Dixon (Paperback - 1 Aug. 1990)
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