RE: [JPL] Robert Jr. Lockwood hospitalized...

Jackson, Bobby Bobby.Jackson at
Thu Nov 9 11:37:20 EST 2006


Bobby Jackson
WCPN/Cleveland, OH

Stroke puts bluesman Lockwood in hospital
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
John Soeder
Plain Dealer Pop Music Critic

Grammy Award-nominated bluesman Robert Lockwood Jr. had a stroke Friday
and is recovering at University Hospitals Case Medical Center.

The singer-guitarist, 91, was in stable condition Tuesday, said his
wife, Mary.

Lockwood, a native of Turkey Scratch, Ark., took guitar lessons from
legendary blues pioneer Robert Johnson. Lockwood has lived in Cleveland
since 1960. A fixture on the local music scene, he has had a regular
Wednesday night engagement at Fat Fish Blue. He performed there last
"He was playing good as ever," said bassist Gene Schwartz, who has
backed Lockwood since 1972.

Schwartz accompanied Lockwood to Europe in July to perform at blues
festivals in England and Finland.

Branching out beyond the Mississippi Delta-style blues he learned from
Johnson, Lockwood developed his own sound, embracing styles ranging from
jump blues to jazz to funk.

After honing his chops on street corners and in juke joints, he became a
musical mentor to B.B. King, who used to listen to Lockwood in the 1940s
on the "King Biscuit Time" radio show broadcast out of Helena, Ark.

Lockwood relocated to Chicago in the 1950s, where he was a sought-after
session musician for Chess Records. He recorded with Little Walter,
Sunnyland Slim, Roosevelt Sykes and other blues musicians.

As a solo artist, Lockwood has had a sporadic recording career. He
earned Grammy nominations for a pair of albums: 1998's "I Got to Find Me
a Woman" and 2000's "Delta Crossroads."

He recently returned to the studio to appear on "The Way Things Go," the
latest album by singer-guitarist Cleveland Fats, aka Mark Hahn.

Lockwood has won four W.C. Handy Awards from the Memphis-based Blues
Foundation, which inducted him into the Blues Hall of Fame. When he
celebrated his 90th birthday in March 2005, the festivities included a
sold-out tribute at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

For Lockwood's band, the show will go on in his honor at 8:30 tonight at
Fat Fish Blue, 21 Prospect Ave., Cleveland. Admission is free.

Well-wishers may send cards to: Robert Lockwood Jr., 7203 Lawnview Ave.,
Cleveland, OH 44103.

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter:

jsoeder at, 216-999-4562

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