The Lucky 13
During the 1960s, rock ’n’ roll—and, specifically, the British Invasion—took the world by storm. One of the big British Invasion bands was the Animals, led by Eric Burdon. Burdon not too long ago released a new album, ’Til Your River Runs Dry, and the Animals will be appearing at Stagecoach on Sunday, April 26. For more information, visit www.ericburdon.com or www.facebook.com/officialericburdon. Here are his answers to the Lucky 13.
What was the first concert you attended?
Count Basie, with Joe Williams on vocals.
What was the first album you owned?
The Boss of the Blues, Joe Turner.
What bands are you listening to right now?
Calexico is constantly on my iPod. Eric Bibb, Ben Harper, Michael Jerome Browne and, of course, all the usual suspects: Ray Charles, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Little Richard, Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Nina Simone, among many others.
What artist, genre or musical trend does everyone love, but you don’t get?
Honestly, I can’t think of any artist everyone loves. Genre? I do get the artist’s need to express himself or herself, whether it’s punk, hip hop, country, rock or blues. It’s all valid.
What musical act, current or defunct, would you most like to see perform live?
Little Richard, with his original band.
What’s your favorite musical guilty pleasure?
The Hot Spot movie soundtrack, featuring John Lee Hooker, Miles Davis and Taj Mahal. Also: The soundtrack for the film Underground (1995) by Emir Kusturica.
What’s your favorite music venue?
The Olympia in Paris, and The Fabrik in Hamburg, among others.
What’s the one song lyric you can’t get out of your head?
“The Road Is Dark,” Michael Jerome Browne.
What band or artist changed your life? How?
Nina Simone. The truth is that she scared a lot of people, but she embraced me as a young artist. Her strong personality and voice inspired me musically.
You have one question to ask one musician. What’s the question, and who are you asking?
“Do you understand dynamics?”—to ANY musician out there.
What song would you like played at your funeral?
The Neville Brothers version of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken?”
Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
Ray Charles at Newport, Ray Charles.
What song should everyone listen to right now?
“I Don’t Believe a Word You Say,” Ben Harper with Charlie Musselwhite. (Scroll down to hear it.)