Behind The Music – Bonnie Raitt

on November 9, 2009 No comments

Bonnie Raitt – VH1 Behind The Music – Season 1: Episode 31 – Air Date: June 7, 1998
Produced, Written & Directed by Jason Goodman
Narrator: James Jude Forbes, often credited as James Jude or his better-known name, Jim Forbes.

When I got the assignment to do Bonnie Raitt’s Behind The Music, I didn’t really know a lot about her. But as I did my homework, I fell totally in love with both her slide guitar playing, and with her back story. Bonnie started playing guitar as a teen, but only started taking it seriously when she went to Radcliffe, and fell in love with a local music promoter who was also the manager of Son House. It wasn’t long before Bonnie left college and started a masters course in the blues at the feet of the men who had invented it. She is very much the real deal.

This was also my first Behind The Music where the other interviews were equally famous performers. Thanks to Bonnie, I got to meet and spend time with one of my childhood heroes, Jackson Browne, Ruth Brown (really loved her, RIP, Ruth), David Crosby, Melissa Etheridge and Don Was. Just writing that down reminded me of how much fun it was to hang with them.

I got into a pretty heated conflict with the network execs over this act. VH1 came to think that Behind The Music’s success was based on the excesses of the Rock ‘n Roll life style, not interest in the actual artist. In Bonnie’s case, she’d had a lull in her career, and during that lull she drank too much, and slept with some people she wouldn’t have slept with if she hadn’t been drinking. I gave it the focus I thought was appropriate – it is my favorite act in the show – but the network wanted a lot more wretched excess, and ultimately my boss told me the show was a miss because it was too soft. Silly me, I thought my job was to tell Bonnie’s beautiful and moving story, not to try to create controversy when it wasn’t really there. I guess that really does sound naïve, doesn’t it?

Two little things about Bonnie. First, regardless of what VH1 thought, Bonnie loved the show. And when she found out I was making a film the following summer in Indianapolis, where she was coming through on a tour with Jackson Browne, she invited me to the show and to a barbecue backstage afterwards. They both really made me feel like we were old friends, and I really wish I was. They are very cool people.

The other thing is about her marriage to Michael O’Keefe. Usually when you get to the relationship part of the interview, particularly when you’re talking to a married couple, you expect to get a lot of shiny happy talk. But both Bonnie and Michael were quite open that neither was finding their marriage that easy, and I wasn’t exactly surprised when they announced their divorce less than a year after we taped the interviews.

Jason Goodman is a Peabody Award-winning Director/Writer/Producer specializing in long-form television documentary and reality programming. He is based in New York City.

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Stars align for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 25th anniversary concerts in New York City

on October 25, 2009 No comments


By John Soeder, The Plain Dealer
October 25, 2009

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will mark its 25th anniversary with two all-star concerts this week at Madison Square Garden in New York. Here’s the rundown for each night’s bill (with headliners in bold, followed by their special guests):



•Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
with John Fogerty, Darlene Love, Sam Moore and Tom Morello

•Stevie Wonder
with Jeff Beck, B.B. King, John Legend, Smokey Robinson and Sting

•Paul Simon / Simon & Garfunkel
with Dion DiMucci and Little Anthony and the Imperials

•Crosby, Stills and Nash
with Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt and James Taylor



•Eric Clapton
with Jeff Beck and Buddy Guy

with Ozzy Osbourne and Lou Reed

•Aretha Franklin
with Lenny Kravitz and Annie Lennox

Jerry Lee Lewis also will perform both evenings.

As far as star-studded concerts go, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s back-to-back 25th anniversary shows this week at Madison Square Garden in New York promise to outshine most.

"We're the opening act," says Graham Nash of Crosby, Stills and Nash, set to perform Thursday, Oct. 29, 2009, at Madison Square Garden as part of the Rock Hall's 25th anniversary extravaganza. Seen here in concert last year in New York are, from left, Stephen Stills, Nash and David Crosby. © Diane Bondareff, Associated Press
© Diane Bondareff, Associated Press
“We’re the opening act,” says Graham Nash of Crosby, Stills and Nash, set to perform Thursday, Oct. 29, 2009, at Madison Square Garden as part of the Rock Hall’s 25th anniversary extravaganza. Seen here in concert last year in New York are, from left, Stephen Stills, Nash and David Crosby.

Despite the hint of incredulity in his voice, Nash wasn’t complaining. After all, his group will be in stellar company Thursday night, with Paul Simon (performing solo and with Simon and Garfunkel), Stevie Wonder and Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band also on the bill.

The lineup for Friday night’s concert doesn’t want for luminaries, either, with Metallica, Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin and U2 ready to shine.

Joining the main attractions onstage will be a cavalcade of famous guests, including Rock Hall inductees such as Jeff Beck, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Ozzy Osbourne, Smokey Robinson and Sting.

Net proceeds from the shows, which will cost $9 million to put on, are earmarked for the endowment of Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. Organizers hope to raise $4 million. Both nights are nearly sold out, with approximately 13,000 tickets sold for each date. (Madison Square Garden can accommodate 20,000 people, but an extra-large stage will limit capacity.)

For his part, Nash is as excited about catching the other performers as he is about CSN’s performance.

“It’s safe to assume that we won’t be splitting after our set,” he said by phone last week from his home on the Hawaiian island of Kauai.

CSN was enshrined in the Rock Hall in 1997. Nash’s previous band, the Hollies, have been nominated for induction next year.

During their performance, David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Nash will showcase the singer-songwriter tradition in rock ‘n’ roll, with an emphasis on the West Coast’s golden era in the ’60s and ’70s.

They planned their segment with input from Rock Hall officials.

“They wanted Jackson and James, and we suggested Bonnie,” Nash said.

That would be Jackson Browne, James Taylor and Bonnie Raitt, who will make cameo appearances during CSN’s set.

“We’ll probably open with ‘Woodstock,’ which we only did once on our last tour,” Nash said.

“CSN will start rocking, then we’ll invited Bonnie out. We’ll probably do ‘Love Has No Pride’ or ‘Angel from Montgomery.’ We’ll bring Jackson out and do ‘The Pretender.’ We’ll bring James out and do ‘Mexico.’ Then everybody will do ‘Love the One You’re With.’ “

Details are subject to change, Nash added, although this much he knows:

“It’s going to be fun!”

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The Bonnie Raitt Secret

on September 27, 2009 No comments

by Tiffany

While visiting my parents in Alamo this weekend, my mom brought up something I had forgotten.
When i was a young kid, i loved the music artist Bonnie Raite….yes, Bonnie Raitt.
I totally remember my dad making deals with me and using Bonnie Raitt cassette tapes as my incentive. It usually worked. I really wanted those Bonnie Raitt cassette tapes!
I knew every word to every song. I dont remember how old i was, but younger then 10 i think.
Now, here is my little secret. I sometimes listen to “love songs after dark” in my car. (whew, its out in the open now)! Here is my number 2 secret. Now that im almost 26, i still know every word to every Bonnie Raitt song….and she definitely gets played on “love songs after dark”. So guess who’s in her car belting out a little Bonnie Raite? ME!
Now that im an adult, (hm creepy) i actually take notice of what the lyrics really are and what Bonnie is really singing about. And im realizing how strange it really was for me to be singing some of these songs. hahaha

For example: “turn down the lights, turn down the bed. Turn down these voices inside my head. Lay down with me, tell me no lies….i cant make you love me if you dont. I cant make your heart feel something it wont.”

This was always my very favorite song of Bonnie’s….still is. But how weird that I was singing those words at like possibly age 7?! HAHA.

Thanks Dad for making Bonnie Raitt deals with me. And thank you for letting me sing all of her songs even though some werent quite age appropriate. And thank you mostly because i can now sing at the top of my lungs every time she comes on radio in my car!

Ok, now im really hoping my favorite song will come on today! And here is the link to it…ENJOY and know that im currently belting it out as i post this.

Tiffany & Robert

Source: © Copyright Tiffany & Robert

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