• SumoMe

Freddie King

“Going Down”

While being the youngest “King” of electric guitar (alongside Albert King and B.B. King), Freddie King is certainly not lacking in emotional power. Also referred to the “Texas Cannonball,” because he was a big man from Dallas, Freddie’s music certainly smashes into your chest like a cannonball breaching the hull of a ship.

Showing no mercy, Freddie starts “Going Down” like a ’66 Mustang and never lets off the gas, with the bass line as a fired-up engine and Freddie’s guitar howling like the wind through the grill.

Not only was Freddie made to play the blues, he surrounded himself with some of the greatest bluesmen of all time when he moved to Chicago. Almost as soon as his family had moved to Chicago, King started sneaking into South Side nightclubs, where he heard blues performed by Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, T-Bone Walker, Elmore James, and Sonny Boy Williamson.

King formed his first band, the Every Hour Blues Boys, with guitarist Jimmy Lee Robinson and drummer Sonny Scott. In 1952, while employed at the steel mill, the eighteen-year-old King occasionally worked as a sideman with such bands as the Little Sonny Cooper Band and Earl Payton’s Blues Cats. In 1953 he recorded with the latter for Parrot Records, but these recordings were never released. As the 1950s went on, King played with several of Muddy Waters’s sidemen and other Chicago mainstays, including guitarists Jimmy Rogers, Robert Jr. Lockwood, Eddie Taylor, Hound Dog Taylor, bassist Willie Dixon, pianist Memphis Slim, and harpist Little Walter.

Freddie King is the epitome of what happens when you take a born genius and properly nurture that genius. Listen to “Going Down” and start up your engine.