By Steve Newton
I watched the 2016 Johnny Winter documentary, Down & Dirty, on Amazon Prime the other night.
I quite enjoyed it; thought it was a fine representation of the albino blues master’s remarkable career, especially his twilight years.
It was a joy to see Winter undertake his final tour, playing the best he has in years thanks to the heroic efforts of close friend and manager Paul Nelson, who got him off methadone and physically able to perform.
But I also came away from it thoroughly irritated by my longheld belief that Winter has been seriously screwed over by the brainless twats at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In case you weren’t aware, music legend Johnny Winter is not in the Rock and Roll of Fame. Shockingly, he’s never even been nominated.
Donna Summer’s in there, though. Not to mention fellow rock ‘n’ rollers Madonna and Whitney Houston.
But for some inconceivable reason the godlike Winter has been totally ignored by Jann Wenner and the other dim bulbs who man the gates of the hallowed Cleveland institution–even though he’s been eligible for 25 years!
The reason Winter’s absence from the Rock Hall hits so hard after viewing Down & Dirty is because the sweet old guy appears so proud of the award that he does get from the Blues Hall of Fame. He is shown in 2013 being presented with a plague marking his induction into the Blues Hall in 1988, and it’s very touching to see how he fawns over the trophy in his trailer afterwards, saying that it almost brings tears of joy to his eyes.
You just know he’d have been equally happy to have joined the likes of his idol Muddy Waters in the Rock Hall.
Sadly, he passed away in 2014 at the age of 70 before that long-overdue honour could be bestowed.
Shame on you, Rock Hall. You really fucked that up.