Bears and Bulls and Blues…

My Brother: Could you buy me a Lakers jacket? the one made of synthetic leather. Purple body, gold sleeves?

Me: That’s like finding a needle in a haystack the size of a coliseum  man! This is Chicago. They have huge sports teams representing them in all major sports. What about the Bulls?

My Brother: Sorry, not a Bulls fan.

Above are excerpts from short email exchanges with my brother who now lives in Australia. I’m sure he have an idea how big local sports is in America, he’s no stranger to that but I was. I would look around sports stores here and see all of  ’em exclusively for the local teams.

I remember a time during a Chicago Bears game when we had to park a few kilometers away from Soldiers Field. In the parking lots, people from across the state came with their grills, hotdogs and beers. These people are camping out early to see the game. That’s how big these sports events are in these parts.

But what’s more important for me was seeing the city that launched Blues music to prominence. From a music that was confined to the farms and get-togethers of African Americans in the 1900’s to being played in bars around the Chicago area to being recorded in Chess records in N. Michigan Ave for the world to hear.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have the money to spend to see blues get played in the iconic Blues bars around (and I promised myslef that next time I’d be more prepard) but just being in the town where everything started was just an awesome feeling.

But Blues in Chicago isn’t the same Blues in the cotton fields. Here the masters plucked their guitars as livelihood. “When I play in Chicago, I’m playing up-to-date, not the blues I was born with. People should hear the pure blues-the blues we used to have when we had no money”, that’s Muddy Waters.

And this tells me that I should go to the Mississippi Delta one of these days.

December 2012


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