by Robert Wilkinson
Today is the birthday of the great John Hiatt and one of the all-time greatest pedal steel pickers, Sneaky Pete Kleinow!
John Hiatt (August 20, 1952) is a thoroughly American singer-songwriter. One of my favorites for years, he’s won numerous Grammys and played with the best of the best. He’s done 21 albums, and had his songs covered by the biggest stars in the world, from BB King and Eric Clapton to Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris, and Linda Ronstadt. He’s generally considered one of the best in the world at what he does, so if you haven’t had the privilege of listening to his amazing music, get ready to enjoy a treat!
From 1987 in Germany, here’s John Hiatt, Sonny Landreth, and the Goners playing “Radio Girl”
From the same gig, “Memphis in the Meantime”
An amazing live performance by John and Sonny doing John’s tune “Riding With the King”
Now some treats from "Little Village," featuring John, Ry Cooder, Nick Lowe and John Keltner! First, a live performance of "She Runs Hot," and from the same concert, "Don't Bug Me When I'm Working." Here Little Village rocks out in 1992 Dusseldorf on "Thing Called Love." From The Late Show in 1990, Little Village doing "Don't Think About Her," and from the Late Show in 1992, the number they lead off their show with, "Fool Who Knows."
Live in 1993, 18+ minutes of “John Hiatt Live in Holland pt. 1”
Here’s part 2 coming in at 23+ minutes! “John Hiatt Live in Holland” pt. 2
Here’s John solo doing one of my favorites, the driving “Cry Love”
From Rockpalast in 1997, a great electric version of “Cry Love”
From Farm Aid 2000, Bonnie Raitt and John performing “Thing Called Love”
Live in 2010, John performing “Wrote it Down and Burned It”
Here are a few of his tunes made into hits by other bands. Live in 1974, here are Three Dog Night doing John’s tune “Sure As I’m Sittin’ Here”
Live via satellite for the 1986 Farm Aid concert, the great Bob Dylan performing John’s “Across the Borderline”
From 1990, a live audio only performance by Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, and Jackson Brown of “Across the Borderline”
Here’s the music video that won a Grammy in 2000! Featuring the great BB King and Eric Clapton, here’s the very grooved out performance of John’s iconic tune “Riding With the King”
We’ll close this brief birthday tribute with John performing one of my favorites! “Shredding the Document”
May you have many more years of rocking out, Mister John Hiatt! You’re cranking out some of the best music ever made!!
Here we also send up a big happy birthday to one of the best steel guitar players ever to pick a note! Peter E. "Sneaky Pete" Kleinow (August 20, 1934 – January 6, 2007) was a pedal steel guitar master, as well as a songwriter and motion picture special effects artist. While I don’t have the time to do a complete tribute this year, he is known for his work with the biggest of the big. For now, a few!
From 1969, a full concert of 1 hour 11 minutes live at the Avalon Ballroom featuring the steel magic of Sneaky Pete, The Flying Burrito Brothers Live at the Avalon Ballroom 1969
Here’s a full 45 minute concert from November 1970! The Flying Burrito Brothers at the Fillmore East 1970
And from June 1971, live for over an hour in a radio studio, The Flying Burrito Brothers Live in Philadelphia
Thanks for the memories, Pete. In rock and roll heaven they truly have one helluva band!
© Copyright 2013 Robert Wilkinson