Monday, September 9, 2019

Documenting Fred’s story in music

Fred is at LITTLE BIG BEAT STUDIOS in the tiny rich nation of Liechtenstein  where he welcomed three key elders from his hometown of Mobile/Prichard, Alabama, to participate in the first of three Live Sessions that will form the crux of a documentary being made about his life. The session, entitled the Early Years, will feature original and popular music from the 1950s and ’60s, the early years of Fred’s musical career. 


Ranging in age from 76 to 83, the four Mobilians traveled up into the mountains to admire the natural beauty in the region and to reminisce a little about old times. Pictured, left to right, are Fred, his friend, saxophonisst and former jazz mentor Joe Lewis; another friend, jazz mentor and vocalist, Fannie Dees Bell, and Theodore Arthur, with whom he’s played music since they both were 15-year-old youngbloods, and who played many years with Bobby “Blue” Bland’s band and also will contribute vocals to the session.

One hundred people wearing headphones will witness the first session on Tuesday, Sept. 10, which will feature tunes including “Minor Coated,” a composition of the late EB Coleman, a former bandmaster of Fred’s, as well as the Bobby Bland hit “Further On Up The Road,” and Ray Charles’ “Drown in My Own Tears.”


The three live sessions will feature the New JBs, Fred’s band for the past 30 years, along with special guests including the three elders, plus Gary “Mudbone” Cooper  a key voice with Parliament Funkadelic and Bootsy’s Rubber Band, and legendary drummer Bernard “Pretty” Purdie. ####