The Classic Rock Chronicle

Issue #6 May 12, 2024

Everything Classic Rock... the CRocker's Voice

IIssue #7 - Boston Blazz Trip II... Jethro Tull, Chicago, J.Geils Blues Band, and the Velvet Underground. The early trip to Woodstock to see if all this was real.

Issue #8 - Boston Blazz Trip IV... Albert King and Big Mama Thornton and Jeff Beck with Rod Stewart. Woodstock visit to see a potential new location.

Issue #9 -Boston V... Led Zeppelin 3, Velvet Underground and the Allman Brothers - the Final Woodstock Location?

The Classic Rock Chronicle was created to provide regularly updated Content about the "Goings-on" of the vast, eclectic, and important period of Classic Rock from 1964 to 1984... Come along and enjoy the ride, Mates HOORAH Rock On ♪♪♪

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In this Issue, I cover 2 Trips to Boston to continue my Quest to try and figure out where all this evolution of Rock n Roll was going... coupled with the confusion about the unreal plans for a Concert somewhere near Woodstock (or NOT).

I had never dreamed this Telephone Worker Strike gave me this GIFT but there were no Complaints for this Boy!

Update on Finding a Site

My first venture to Woodstock was in April 1969 after I received a call from my Engineer Friend, Butch, who worked for the Telephone Company in Boston... Someone from New York Telephone Co. had called him to see if he knew where I was and if we could come up there to discuss something about a Concert to be held there in August.

Woodstock was an Artist Colony started in the early nineteen hundreds as a getaway for wealthy Artists... apparently, the Promotors of the Miami Pop Festival in 1968 had made a plan to build a recording Studio there to satisfy Bob Dylan and friends.

All he knew was that the Elders of Woodstock had nixed it and there was much opposition by the Citizens... the Promotors had already starting selling tickets and we were in a monstrous Pickle.

As there was nothing we could help engineer so we spent the night with a relative and really enjoyed the atmosphere of the Town... we did not get to see Bob but the Jazz was great at the Hamlet of Zen. To be continued in Issue #7.

Understanding Where the Evolution of Modern Music February March 1969

Boston Blazz Trip # II


In Issues #3 and #6 I covered my first Trip to Boston where I ran headlong into a crazed and confused Boston scene of what would be called "Sex, Drugs, and Rock n Roll (without the Sex)... I had thought I knew what was going on with the evolution of Rock Music and came away more crazed and confused.

A little history is needed to set the stage for the continuation of my Boston Journey...

I am 13 years young and started Children's University School at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin... although I could not avoid Public School as I needed a Certificate of Education, I only had to attend it on certain days. The Classes at UW were part of an experiment by UW Educators to see how far they could push advanced Science concepts about the future of what would become the "Electronics Revolution" of the 60s. My degree, in 1965, was "Electronics Engineer" from the Wisconsin School of Electronics which would launch a career with AT&T for almost 21 years whereby my main interest was the Sounds that telephone wires could carry over long distances. My School Friends called me WB (Willie bandwidth) and it all dealt with the startup Companies all bidding for the fortunes to be made from it.

Ok, nuff said... so how does all of this translate into the evolution of Rock n Roll?

My classes at UW were in a building next to a Dorm for Music Students where I got to stay on weekends because I wanted to get a Minor in Music. I got a job working at a large Music Store just off campus... I started as a janitor in the am cleaning plus sorting the 45s that were rented to Students for the dozen "Listening Booths" where one could take 3 records in for $1. Every morning there were a hundred or so 45s in a pile that I had to sort into "throw-aways" or "used" for sale...

When I heard about the Rock Concert planned for the Orpheum Theatre in April, I was enthusiastically moved to be a part of it somehow... Bob, Soosie's Husband, was the Manager of the Concert Operations for the Theatre and I begged to be a part of it and became his Gofer in charge. Well, Chuch Berry's manager asked him where he could get his Guitars tuned properly... and guess who got the job? Bob called me asking if I would ride in the Bus out to the Farm the day before the Concert. Holy F'in' Shite!!!

Well, I got to ride up front with the Driver to show him the way for the 40-mile trip... the Sounds in the Bus were outrageous and the MJ was a cloud and all I had to do was breathe to get a mild buzz. I did not know that Buddy Holly was with them until we got off and heard his name in the introductions. The session lasted until after 2 am and everyone left very happy with Mike's work (I will cover the details of all this in a later Issue).

I first heard the term "Earworm" from Mike when Mr. Berry asked him how he could hear those Sounds he made so in-depth... he did not explain but he showed them how he made his decisions on what to do with a Guitar that was not sounding as it should to the player. First, he made him play the full Tune Mr. Berry was working on while smoking a joint and sipping Sour mash... after MB finished, Mike asked him, "What is wrong with the Tar? They discussed his feelings and Mike had him play it again, only louder. "Okay, got it," Mike said, "wrong Strings"... this went on for quite a while he repaired it, rebuilding the Bridge and swapping out Strings.

I had fallen asleep (too much indulging) and woke up and they were gone... over Brek, Mike was joyous as the Customers had paid him $500 and he gave me a C-note as I was crapping in my pants.

Well, little did I know that my adventures were just beginning...


In Issue #3, I witnessed, first hand, the Music Scene in Boston that had evolved from a period of change starting around 1967... Club 47 in Harvard Square was probably the hippest Coffee Shop in America... starting in 1958 with Joan Baez, Bob Dylan in 61, followed by Tom Rush, Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins, Pete Seeger, Taj Mahal, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Lisa Kindred, Bonnie Raitt, Muddy Waters, Paul Butterfield, and Elvin Bishop.

I finally arrived in Madison on Jan 30 after a 5-hour drive from Chicago (normally 3) as Mother Winter was in charge and the temp was way below zero... making Boston seem like the Bahamas (LOL). After catching up with the Girls and a great night's sleep in my wool Jammers, I cut up a half cord of wood, and a Farm breakfast, and sat in the hot tub for an hour with Maryjane. By 2 pm, it was above freezing and the roads were clear so I headed out for the Farm to wish my Grandparents (Bertha and Milo) another 50 years of life together... after Hugs and a smack from Bert, I road my Horse (Annie) out to see my Spanish friends to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in January.

The bonfire was lit, the Sour Mash Java was served and the refried beans were smokin'... I took my stack of Beatles records and I was a f''ing Hero with those kids. I left the quart of Sour and headed back before dark. I found Mike in his Guitar Shop and I was blown away by the number of Guitars hanging in the shed... I counted 33 while I waited for his latest project ( you never interrupted him, or else!) to finish.

"What the Hell is all this!", I said... "Mike, do you have insurance on all these babies?" "Yesseree!"

He rambled on about those stupid Tars (he called Guitarists) that sent me 1 or 2 to repair and I sent them back a letter that I would not touch them until they were here to play it in front of me... after they were here 3 months, he put them in the Trading Pile. Soosie (My Auntie runs the Music Store in Madison where I worked at for 5 years) sends me Tars with problems, or wishes, out and I charge them a fair price to swap... he said that the number of Tars in Madison is F'ing crazy and the Lord passed me a wonderful gift... "ya need a Buck or 2, young Man" (LOL)

"Whatcha been up to, Matey," he asked... "Shoot anyone over there?"

I politely told him that it had been 5 years since Vietnam... even tho I had thought about it!... right.

I asked him if he had heard of Jimmy Page and he said, "Led Zep...?"

"Led Zeppelin," I replied... "They are F'ing awesome and I heard Sounds like never before."

The Supper Bell (Dinner is lunch on the Farm) rang and we sat down to a charred rare Porterhouse, Baked Potatoe with loads of Butter and Mushroom Gravy, Spinach Salad with Blue Cheese and Walnut Dressing, and an ice-cold glass of Buttermilk. Desert was a Pineapple upside-down Cake loaded with Brown Sugar drizzled with hot Butter, and a glass of Peach Brandy... certainly a meal fit-for-a-King, don't ya know.

Precisely at 9 pm, we took the Bones out to his 2 Great Pyrenees who lived in a special Pen on each end of the Barn that had a rubber flap so it looked like, to the Foxes, that they were penned up... little did they know. There were only 6 Horses and 6 prized milking, ancient-bred Herfords to guard... but the most important things to guard were the dozen or so oak-charred barrels full of Sour Mash in the basement that had to be tasted by the Creator every night. (LOL) Also, there was a Maryjane grow Room where he experimented with propagating new strains that the Migrates brought back from Mexico. He had me rig up a new lighting system a few tears ago and you had to wear Army Shade Googles to avoid blindness... of course, we had to test some freshly dried Buds to make sure everything was ok with MJ (LOL)

Note: Living on the Farm full-time until I was 10, I learned how to control Liquor and MJ... to this day, I have never been Inebriated nor Stoned in my life... nor have I ever done anything beyond MJ as the risk in my Profession of doing so is a quick death. many who did so, either died, were fired, or were incarcerated. It just isn't worth it Mates, mark my words! "Take it Easy" and stay in Control!!!

We spent the next few hours rapping about the past, especially that Rock Concert in 1958 at the Orpheum Theatre in Madison where I got to spend time backstage during warm-ups and went to the highest part of the balcony to take it all in. Seeing these Bands live was like a Dream come true (#1 of over 500 Concerts to date).

Mike said, "I want to hear that Led Zep Album you brought, Mate." The acoustics in Mike's Studio were awesome and hearing it in quiet surely allowed us to evaluate their Sounds. I played the Album all the way through and Mike's words were "Holy F'ing Shite"... things are a changin'... unbelievable... Chuck and Muddy must be proud"!... they are taking Blues and Folk Music to another level."

I left for madison quite exhausted

Willie’s Top 10 Personal Classic Rock Songs:

1. “Take it Easy” (1972) Eagles - Jackson Brown and Glen Fry

2. "(I Can't Get NO) Satisfaction" (1965) Rolling Stones - Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

3. "Free Bird" (1974) Lynyrd Skynyrd - Allen Collins, Ronnie Van Zant

4. “Proud Mary” (1969) Credence Clearwater Revival - John Fogerty... covered by Tina Turner

5. "Roll Over Beethoven" (1956) Chuck Berry - Chuck Berry... covered by ELO

6. "Kashmir" (1975) Led Zeppelin - Jimmy Page with Robert Plant and Jon Bonham

7. “Evil Woman” (1975) Electric Light Orchestra - Jeff Lynne

8. "American Woman" (1970) Guess Who - Band Members with Randy Bachman

9. "Hotel California" (1977) Eagles - Don Felder, Don Henley, Glenn Frey

10. "Layla” (1971) Derek and the Dominos - Eric Clapton, Jim Gordon

Community Voting as of 5/19/2024

1. "Stairway To Heaven" (1971) Led Zeppelin Jimmy Page and Robert Plant

2. "Hotel California" (1977) Eagles - Don Felder, Don Henley, Glenn Frey

3. "(I Can't Get NO) Satisfaction" (1965) Rolling Stones - Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

4. "Bohemian Rhapsody" (1975) Queen - Freddy Mercury

5. "Free Bird" (1974) Lynyrd Skynyrd - Allen Collins, Ronnie Van Zant

6. "Won't Get Fooled Again" (1971) The Who - Pete Townshend

7. "Dream On" (1973) Aerosmith - Steven Tyler

8. "Smoke On The Water" (1973) - Ritchie Blackmore and Band

9. "Purple Haze" (1967) - Jimi Hendrix

10. "Comfortably Numb" (1980) Pink Floyd - David Gilmore

Now, never in my wildest Dreams do I expect ANYONE to agree with my List... and that is the Point!

So, here is how to play this Game... you must sign up for the free Chronicle Newsletter... you will receive a form to submit your Classic Rock Profile to get a password that will be used to access future Member Content... you will then receive a form to enter your Top 10 personal Classic Rock Songs to submit.

My system will collate all submissions and publish a new List weekly for 4 weeks until the final List is tabulated and placed in the List Archives where new Members can post theirs and I will repost it in a future Newsletter so we all can see how it evolves. Also, in a June Issue, I will post my Top 10 Classic Rock Bands to all existing subscribers to repeat the process... I will do one a Month after that to build a File for all Members to access.

I am certain there will be discussions in the Newsletter Blog that is planned to be ready by July I... Enjoy, Mates...

Willie Rock On ♪♪♪

Upcoming Issues of the C hronicle

This a partial list and by no means final... send your request over Messenger on my Facebook page... William W. Nelson

  • The Woodstock Series

  • The J. Geils Blues Band evolution

  • The Eagles Series

  • The Santana Series

  • The Led Zeppelin Series

  • The Aerosmith Series

  • Credence Clearwater Revival

  • Lynyrd Skynyrd

  • The Allman Brothers

  • Fleetwood Mac

  • Blues/Jazz Rock (Blazz) Fusion Evolution

  • Proto-Punk Evolution

  • The History of Modern Music

  • Country Rock/Christian Rock/Souther Rock Fusion

  • Music Theory III (Listening)

  • How Wannabee Musicians Deal with the Music Industry

  • The Elements of Good Songs

  • How to Remaster a Song by Listening

  • Top 10 and Top 40 All-time Classic Rock Themes (Voting)

  • The Electric Light Orchestra

  • George Harrison and the Traveling Wilburys

  • Eric Clapton

  • The Guess Who

  • Steely Dan

  • Buddy Holly

  • Chuck Berry and the Influencers of Classic Rock


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