"This is gonna be a short recollection of the day I was transformed. And I'll start at the beginning but nor when I was born. I was 18 years old.
There was a black and white photo on the front cover. It was an old man seated by a jukebox. He was playing an electric guitar while some women, frozen in time, swayed to the music he seemed to be making. I was away at college, in that little Ohio town. There, alone in my room, I was transformed. It was by this man and the music on that CD. I've heard people say this before, that they were forever changed by so and so, by this or that, but I have to tell you truthfully, fuck all that. Nature, humanity, my feet on the floor, the fake wood laminated desktop, the moon and stars, the heat from my body, my reflection in the mirror, my whole existence was flipped on its head and back around twice. I was in a trance for days and I didn't even know it. Very suddenly, I was skipping class to play guitar. Shortly thereafter, I'd be dropping out of college altogether. Setting out to find my own way. The bar had been set impossibly high and there was nothing more those professors could help me with. I'd found a new teacher.
Well, I'm a musician now. It says so on my passport. Though, it's gotta be more than just that. I feel like a man blessed with some sort of mind and heart connection to the vibrations I find in the music I love. Junior allowed me to feel that way, to open that once hidden doorway. My family had steered me in the right direction and pushed me when I needed it but the walls came tumbling down and the earth shook when I locked into Junior's groove. I'll be forever grateful, forever in awe, and forever indebted to Junior Kimbrough. Someday, I'm gonna meet him in the city and I'll shake his hand and maybe he'll play a few songs for me."
David "Junior" Kimbrough was born in 1927 in Hudsonville, Mississippi. He worked at the John Deere dealership in Holly Springs for 18 years. On weekends he played guitar and ran "Junior's," his club. Unfortunately, Junior had died before Dan Auerbach could make the journey. "Junior's" burned to the ground, but his music and his 36 children are still thriving.
If you want to hear from the man himself check out:
"You Better Run: The Essential Junior Kimbrough"
released May 6, 2006
All songs published by Mockingbird Songs administered by Wixen Music. Recorded July 2005 at the Audio Eagle Recording Nest, Akron, Ohio by Patrick Carney and Dan Auerbach. Produced by The Black Keys. Artwork and design: Michael Carney. Management: John Peets, Q Prime, Inc.
Thank you to Junior Kimbrough, Fat Possum, Boche, Elizabeth Gregory, Whitney O'Keefe, Jamie Stillman, Mike Carney, Justin, Matthew, Bruce, and the rest of our friends and families.