Photo Courtesy of Home of the Groove
It saddens me to hear it, but we’ve lost another great artist. Edwin Bocage aka Eddie Bo has passed at the age of 78. I’ve been a fan from the time I heard “Hook and Sling” in my earlier DJ and digging days. His records were hard to come by in the field, but when you found them, man did it feel good. A lifelong New Orleans resident, piano player, producer, and ambassador for the City, Bo was a legend. He came from a Jazz family (who were key players in the New Orleans jazz scene before World War II), and went on the become a noted musician not only in the Crescent City, but throughout the world as well. Not only did he contribute to the rich Nawlins scene, he produced and wrote songs for artists such as Irma Thomas, Art Neville, Johnny Adams, Robert Parker, and others. He has recorded more 45’s than anyone in New Orleans other than Fats Domino. He’s contributed to some of the heaviest New Orleans Funk records to come out of the city (Hook and Sling, Pass The Hatchet, Lover and a Friend, We’re Doin’ It and the list goes on). He will be sorely missed. As I write this, I’m listening to a live version of Eddie Bo doing “Check Your Bucket” from 1998 with musicians Snooks Eaglin and George Porter Jr. A telephone rings in the middle of the performance, and 62 year old (at the time) Snooks breaks a guitar string. Porter kills it on stand up bass, as Bo proclaims him the “funkiest man in town”. Eddie does not ever miss a beat the whole song. A professional through and through. In his own words: “If it’s good to you, it’s good for you.” Music sure was good to him, and good to him as well. He will be sorely missed. Rest in Peace Eddie Bo, Keep on Slingin’. You guys Keep Diggin’.
The Hook and Sling with Snooks Eaglin