The way people come into your life when you need them, it’s wonderful and it happens in so many ways. It’s like having an angel. Somebody comes along and helps you get right.
Stevie Ray Vaughan
So today I was working a double shift at a Tom Thumb handing out my lovely samples of food product. It was some soda the first half and chicken and rice the second half, which was my 3 day of sampling chicken. Please don’t make me do chicken and rice any more.
There was a gentleman in the store that visited me for a bit and continued to converse with me; because I have that personality that is so easy going (I must, because I never meet a stranger). Anyway, this man, Tom, happened to be a drummer and lived in this area his whole life.
He went on to tell me when he was in Junior High and High School, he went to the same school as Stevie Ray and he was in a band with him in Junior High. Now, I know what you’re thinking- it crossed my mind too. Yes, he was trying to flirt with me, but little did he know, I am a writer and guess what? What a great story! I did politely decline his offer, but, here I am, writing. Bad punctuation and all
Born on October 3, 1954 in Dallas, Texas, Stevie Ray Vaughan played guitar as a child and became lead singer for the Texas band Double Trouble, which led to work with David Bowie and Jackson Browne. Vaughan had hit albums with his band before the 1989 release of In Step, for which he earned a Grammy. He also recorded with his brother Jimmy. Vaughan died in a late night helicopter crash on August 27, 1990, at 35.
Inspired by his older brother Jimmie’s guitar playing, Stevie picked up his first guitar at the age of 10, a plastic Sears toy that he loved to strum. With an exceptional ear, (Stevie never learned to read sheet music) Stevie taught himself to play the blues by the time he’d reached high school, testing his stage skills at a Dallas club any chance he could.
Well into his junior year, Vaughan had already played with several garage bands. But lacking any kind of academic drive, Stevie struggled to stay in school. Following a brief enrollment at an alternative arts program sponsored by Southern Methodist University, Stevie dropped out of school, moved to Austin and concentrated on making a living as a musician. To make ends meet, Vaughan collected soda and beer bottles for money and couch-surfed at various friends’ houses. The rest of the time he was playing music, jumping in-and-out of various bands that had semi-regular gigs in the Austin area.
In 1975, Vaughan and a few others formed Triple Threat. After some reshuffling, the group was renamed Double Trouble, inspired by an Otis Rush song. With Vaughan on lead vocals, the group developed a strong fan base throughout Texas. Eventually their popularity spread outside the Lone Star State. In 1982, the group caught the attention of Mick Jagger, who invited them to play at a private party in New York City. That same year, Double Trouble performed at the Montreux Blues & Jazz Festival in Switzerland.
While there, Vaughan’s musical abilities caught the attention of David Bowie, who asked the musician to play on his upcoming album, Let’s Dance. With some commercial viability behind them, Vaughan and his band mates were signed to a record deal with Epic, where they were put in the capable hands of legendary musician and producer, John Hammond, Sr.
Whether or not my new friend actually went to school with Stevie in Oak Cliff or not; one can only speculate, but, what a nice tribute to a talented musician from Texas.
Info on Stevie Ray Vaughan was acquired from biography.com