Tuesday, January 31, 2006


Johnny "Guitar" Watson, Space Guitar.

Ask and ye shall receive. No less than two dedicated readers sent on to me the wild "Space Guitar" by Johnny "Guitar" Watson (AKA Young John Watson), after I admitted that I didn't have it. So thanks to them, here it is, in all its reverb and twangy glory.

Watson, born in 1935 in Houston, became a top R&B sideman by the early '50s, playing with the likes of Amos Milburn (two decades later, Watson would be playing with Frank Zappa). Consider Watson's "Space Guitar" the wild, uncouth cousin to Bryant and West's "Stratosphere Boogie"--the sounds the man wreaked from his Stratocaster are frightening.

Released as Federal 12175 (b/w "Half Pint of Whiskey"). Though the single flopped, "Space Guitar" would resound on through the decades. Eddie Van Halen, Jimmy Page, Johnny Winter, et al, are inconceivable without it. Find it on Very Best of.

Thanks to: Jason Smith and Ray Davis.

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