“First thing I saw was Bo Diddley making movies. Bo’s been making movies–private movies–for over thirty years. Child, Bo’s got him some movies wouldn’t believe. So there he was, going from room to room with his camera, aiming his lens at all the juiciest action. And there I was, with the Shirelles giggling behind me, trying to keep them out of the rooms were they didn’t belong, rooms where I could see the glow of Bo’s horny camera.
The hotel suite was a maze of corridors and hidden corners, and I didn’t know where to look first. With the Shirelles looking over my shoulder I opened a bathroom door, only to slam it closed. “I didn’t know men did things like that to each other,” said one of the Shirelles.
Down at the far end, I saw the glow of Bo’s camera lighting up the transom above an ornate double door. I heard the sound of familiar voices. Something hot was happening. Dying of curiosity, I sent the girls off to the kitchen to fix some coffee while I snuck off to see about the room at the end of the hall. The giggles and groans were getting louder. I tested the door to see if it was locked. It wasn’t. When I looked inside, there was Bo with his camera pointed at Blondene laying on her back on the bed. Except for a French beret cocked ace-duece to the side of her head, the girl was buck naked. Legs wide open. Right next to her was Little Willie John who, talking to the camera, was the tour guide, exploring her privates with his fingers while explaining, “Now this here is so-and-so”. Willie was giving an anatomy lesson….Little Richard was also in the room, enjoying the show….” — from Rage To Survive by Etta James and David Ritz, Villard Books, 1995.
So where are Bo Diddley’s home movies today? Do the executors of his will know what a gold mine they’re sitting on?
Speaking of Bo, I posted a few antidotes about the three times my path crossed with Bo Diddley’s at Boogie Woogie Flu after he passed away last June.
Anyway, I love this clip of Etta James. Dig those eyebrows! Dig that wig! She used to play a lot in the 80’s at the old Lone Star Cafe on 13th St and 5th Ave (a building that’s been empty for years now, landlords would rather let a space rot than rent it at a reasonable price in NYC, they get a tax break for letting it sit vacant!).
One night I stumbled in to catch her late set and Keith Richard came stumbling out of the sparse audience, wobbled onto the stage and jammed for a few songs. Etta was so tickled she kept goosing him! Anyway, thanks to Michele Kozuchowski for pullin’ my coat to the Etta clip.