I Drink Alone… Bluesman, George Thorogood

Imagine a 30 year old, cask-strength Laphroaig (I’ve more an imagined one) and now add 30 years of the blues, aged by George Thorogood, and you have a perfect pairing. Pour your favorite whisky or bourbon–should be on the smoky side–and watch and listen to a great black ‘n white video, especially if you are not familiar with the song.

Only problem for me is I don’t like drinking alone. And he doesn’t either, really. When he drinks, his bottled up friends show up.

Every morning just before breakfast
I don’t want no coffee or tea
Just me and good buddy Wiser

The other day I got invited to a party
But I stayed home instead
Just me and my pal Johnny Walker
And his brothers Black and Red

“Thorogood’s music is loud, simple and direct,” says Stephen Thomas Erlewine at citybeat.com. His playing style comes right out of the 50s Chicago blues via Chess Records. Thorogood’s inspirations are Elmore James, Hound Dog Taylor and Chuck Berry, among othersg.

Chess Records was central to his success. What Sun Records is to rock ‘n roll, Chess Records is to the blues. It was an American record company based in Chicago specializing in blues, R&B, soul, gospel music, and some early rock and roll.

Thorogood tells us, “I remember as a teenager reading about Mick Jagger meeting Keith Richards on a train. Jagger had a Chuck Berry record, and he said he wrote to Chess Records and got a catalog sent to him. Just out of curiosity, I took out one of my Chess records, got the address, and I wrote to Chess Records. And they sent me a catalog of the complete Chess library, and I started buying up these Chess records. I bought every single one of them I could possibly get.”

“And I remember reading the backs of those Chess records and seeing the address, 2120 South Michigan Avenue, and I said, ‘That’s the same address as the Rolling Stones’ instrumental!’ And I started putting one and one together and coming up with a big two.”

“That was my school, the college that I had to learn my trade in,” he says. “I had to figure out how these people did these things. The people who helped me out were all the guys in Muddy Waters’ band, all the guys in Howlin’ Wolf’s band. They were wonderful to me, and they wanted to help me. They saw what I was trying to do.”

And he has been doing it for 30 years and still going strong.

This song came to our attention from Paul McLean, one of our Drambassadors, who also likes to drink alone (in a crowd), not with Jim and Jack, but his Scottish friends, the Glen brothers–Livet, Morangie, Fiddich. Slainte, Paul


About Author

Josh is an author, former blogger, media critic, x-Capitol Hill legislative aide and White House assistant, business consultant, idea marketing specialist, a squatter at the global village virtual bar and an alpine rock gardener where he lives in Woodstock, NY.