Monday, 20 June 2011
Clarence Clemons 1942-2011
Another light goes out with the death of E Street Band saxophonist (and lots of other things too) Clarence Clemons. I've never thought of the saxophone, tenor or otherwise as particularly rock and roll but Clemons could do things with that instrument that were very special indeed. Okay working with Springsteen would have to give anyone a huge running start (yes I know that there are people in this world - even readers of this blog among them - who don't think Springsteen is a genius but I say he is) but Clemons brought a very special gift to the party. His size (he wasn't commonly known as 'Big Man' for nothing) and startling taste in suit colours made him stand out but mostly the verve and raw honesty of his saxophone playing stood out - raw, moody and eloquent. Try his playing here on Drive All Night - a rabbit Springsteen favourite - something very special...
Two random Clemons related facts (1) He was married five times - which to some may seem like overdoing it, and (2) his middle name was Anicholas. Don't ask me why.