B&L: What animal do you associate yourself with (given our ties to oxen)?
John Hammond: A work horse.
B&L: Why music? Why do you seek it? What keeps you inspired to keep at it after all these years?
Hammond: It’s one of those things you can’t explain. It has always been with me even as a child and it’s always been something that has to come out of me.
B&L: You’ve long been a purveyor of the Blues, and, in many ways serve as the elder statesman/historian when it comes to keeping tradition/spirit alive. Do you appreciate this role? Or perhaps you don’t really see it as a role, but more of an inherent trait in “what you do”… In any event, what’s the state of Blues music in these contemporary times?
Hammond: I don’t necessarily consider myself a purveyor of the Blues. I have been a Blues player all of my adult life and would consider it something I do and have always done. As with anything I believe there has been as evolution of the Blues. However, the Roots of it are so strong that they will never die no matter how much it may change over the years.
There are always new Blues players coming out. How long they last is up to their inherent ability.
B&L: What’s the making of a great show? What do you look or hope for as you step foot on that stage?
Hammond: Connecting with the audience and taking them on a journey
B&L: What’s one tune (or, heck, a couple) that exists out there in the ether that blows you away that you kind of wish you had written yourself?
Hammond: “Steady Rollin Man” – Robert Johnson, and “Walking Blues” – Son House.
B&L: Question six: If you could have a half-dozen of anything, what would that half-dozen of something be?
Hammond: Good friends.
John Hammond will visit the Firehouse Center for the Arts on Sunday, April 8th. Tickets still remain, but are nearly sold out. For more information and to secure your spot, click here.