I’ve said that playing the blues is like having to be black twice. Stevie Ray Vaughan missed on both counts, but I never noticed.
B. B. King
More quotes by B. B. King
I think Ive done the best I could have done. But I keep wanting to play better, go further. There are so many sounds I still want to make, so many things I havent yet done. When I was younger I thought maybe Id reached that peak. But Im 86 now, and if I make it through to next month, Ill be 87. And now I know it can never be perfect, it can never be exactly what it should be, so you got to keep going further, getting better.
My dad died, I think, at 87. So I’ll be lucky if I make 87. But in a lot of cases, the younger people live longer than their parents. And they know more. My dad used to tell me he ate the hog from his rooter to his tooter. So do I when I’m not trying to lose weight.
I knew that if I went to town on a Saturday, which I did, and there was two fountains, one said “Black” and one said “White.” I didn’t think other than that if you want to stay out of trouble, leave the white one alone. I also noticed that when I went to the restrooms there was one that said “White Men,” “White Ladies” and “Colored.” That’s all I knew. I grew up with it. It wasn’t like somebody just threw me down there and said, “You don’t bother that…” But I was taught that in my early life. My family would always say – because there was people being lynched around me. I haven’t seen people be lynched, but I’ve seen them after they was. And I was told by some of the elders that, you know, “Unless you do certain things this can happen to you or that can happen to you. You don’t bother the white ladies, you don’t do this, you don’t do that,” and I learned that at an early age and to me it was just part of my training. I think this is why black people never did resist for such a long, long time because if there’s any such thing as being brainwashed I was brainwashed, but it didn’t bother me.
I remember Elvis as a young man hanging around the Sun Studios. Even then, I knew this kid had a tremendous talent. He was a dynamic young boy. His phraseology, his way of looking at a song, was as unique as Sinatra’s. I was a tremendous fan, and had Elvis lived, there would have been no end to his inventiveness.
More quotes about Music
Music is my life, professionally, for nearly 60 years. To be recognized by the academy is still the highest honor.
[In 1972] At the moment, we’re getting the same thrill from seeing the Eagles, Jackson Browne, Jo Jo Gunne, and Judee Sill happen It’s as hard to do it with Jackson Browne as it was to do it with Joni five years ago.
I don’t care about the rules, if I don’t break the rules at least 10x every song then I’m not doing my job.
I listen to all kinds of songs. There’s something to be learned from every type of music and from the one making it, whether it’s pop or jazz or hip-hop.
When I achieved what I thought the musicians were trying to do, the sound sort of bloomed. When it’s right, everything is beautiful.