Bo & the Duchess

September 17, 2017

Off-topic Sunday. On a Sunday!

 

There I was listening to one of Billy Childish's many bands' version of You Can't Judge A Book. I love the song, knew it was a Bo Diddley original and I'd heard Bo's version of it, but I had a really tight deadline to avoid, so I spent a while looking it up on YouTube (the recording above). I'd never seen it and was mesmerised by the woman playing rhythm guitar front and just off-centre. 

 

I had something much better to do, so I only spent an hour or so finding out who she is/was, and searching for every photo I could find of her. Norma-Jean Wofford, aka the Duchess was the second lady to have such a role with Bo, and after Lady Bo, Peggy Jones. 

 

Those trousers, that hair, that hip-shaking strut in those winklepicker stilettos. 

After the fifth or sixth viewing it was the The Duchess's guitar that I was focussing on. Look at it. It's like a hair metal nightmare, but when slung around a young black woman in the tightest leather trousers I've ever seen, it's a Jetson raygun pointing at my heart. 

 

It turns out it's a Gretsch Cadillac. I can't play a musical instrument, but I love asymmetrical guitars, like the Vox Phantom, but this Cadillac was some fin else. For a while I wanted a Vox Phantom as an ornament. I'm glad I never found one. It would be like me having a beautiful Aleutian Juice surfboard to hang on the wall or a fucking art bike to sit in the corner and never be ridden. These things are made to be used, not hoarded.

 

And guess who else has a Gretsch Cadillac? Billy Childish.

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Please reload

RECENT POSTS

November 12, 2019

November 11, 2019

November 8, 2019

November 8, 2019

Please reload

FEATURED POSTS

World Scoop: The 2018 H-D Factory Team + EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS

January 25, 2018

1/7
Please reload