Q&A with bluesman Freddie Dixon, son of Willie Dixon, co-founder of the legendary band, Sons of the Blues

"The impact of Blues on the socio-culture implications is expression. The Blues teaches society that it’s okay to hold nothing back. If you’re unhappy, sing. If you’re happy, sing. Let it out. I want Blues to affect people by making them curious. Where did it come from? Why?"

Freddie Dixon: My Business is Blues 

Freddie Dixon is the embodiment of the Blues. The second son of the world-famous Seventh Son Willie Dixon, Freddie has been surrounded by the Blues since the day he was born. His father is a Blues legend as a songwriter, producer, and musician, at the helm of Chess Records for many of the sides cut in the 1950's, 60s, and into the 70's. Freddie began his career learning his chops playing with many musicians in Chicago's numerous South-side Blues clubs. He was soon hired to play in his father's band, The Chicago Blues All-Stars, and traveled around the world spreading the Gospel of the Blues. He continues to perform as Freddie Dixon and the Chicago Blues All-Stars.

(Freddie Dixon / Photo by Peter Hurley)

The proverbial torch was handed to Freddie in the early 1990's when Willie Dixon passed away. Since then, Freddie has continued as a Blues Ambassador, playing in front of crowds from Europe to Australia, as well as locally in Chicago. In 2020, Freddie -- along with Chicago Blues legends John Watkins and Maurice John Vaughan -- produced a well-received two-disc CD called 3By3. Freddie Dixon is a proud member of the Chicago Blues Hall Of Fame.

Interview by Michael Limnios     Special Thanks: Freddie Dixon & Doug W. Deutsch

How has the Blues (and people of) influenced your views of the world and the journeys you’ve taken?

The Blues and people of the Blues have influenced my views of the world and journeys by letting me know how small the world really is. By this I mean people have the same issues, dreams, ideas, and blues, no matter where they’re from. 

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned from your experience in the music paths?

Some of the most important lessons I have learned from my experience in the music path are, again, most people have the same things in common, the golden rule, “Do unto others . . .” can and should be applied to everyone, and that love is universal.

Why do you think that Willie Dixon blues/music continues to generate such a devoted following?

I think that Willie Dixon blues/music continues to generate such a devoted following because his music is the true facts of life.

Which meetings have been the most important experiences for you? What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?

Every meeting was an important experience for me; but, the one that stands out the most is my meeting with Lafayette Leake. He gave me the best advice anyone ever gave me. It was that music is not everything. Lafayette spoke of values, honesty, and ethics.

"What I miss most nowadays from the Blues from the past I would have to reframe those questions to “who” I miss. The old Blues artists are who I miss from the past. My hopes and fears for the future of the blues are I hope it stays alive, and I fear it will not. I hope it could have a bigger platform on the radio etc." (Freddie Dixon / Photos by Peter Hurley)

Are there any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions which you’d like to share with us?

The memories I’d like to share from gigs are the ones from the first time I played with my father on stage. To say I was a nervous wreck would be putting it mildly. Suffering through sweaty palms and a bone-dry throat, I was able to appreciate the fact, for the first time in my life, how big my father was. When he came out on stage, the crowd went wild. I had no idea how famous and popular he was. It completely blew my mind and knocked the nerves right out of me. It was amazing, something I will never forget.

What do you miss most nowadays from the blues of the past? What are your hopes and fears for the future of?

What I miss most nowadays from the Blues from the past I would have to reframe those questions to “who” I miss. The old Blues artists are who I miss from the past. My hopes and fears for the future of the blues are I hope it stays alive, and I fear it will not. I hope it could have a bigger platform on the radio etc. These small stations that play the Blues for a couple of hours, and the ones that play one Blues song a certain time of the day need help. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for any Blues to be played anytime.  I’m just saying it would be great to have more Blues played. Once people hear it, they mostly appreciate it.

What is the impact of Blues on the socio-cultural implications? How do you want the music to affect people?

The impact of Blues on the socio-culture implications is expression. The Blues teaches society that it’s okay to hold nothing back. If you’re unhappy, sing. If you’re happy, sing. Let it out. I want Blues to affect people by making them curious. Where did it come from? Why? 

"The Blues and people of the Blues have influenced my views of the world and journeys by letting me know how small the world really is. By this I mean people have the same issues, dreams, ideas, and blues, no matter where they’re from."

(Photo: Willie Dixon & His Chicago Blues All-Stars, 1981 / John Watkins, Freddie Dixon, Butch Dixon, Willie Dixon, Billy Branch, and Jimmy Tillman)

What has made you laugh and what were the most important things you learned from your late great Willie Dixon?

What made me laugh are the jokes my father used to tell on the road. Many people don’t realize how funny my father actually was. He was hilarious! One of the most important things I learned from my father is that Blue was the most important music in the world.

Freddie Dixon - Home

Views: 56

Comments are closed for this blog post

social media

Members

© 2022   Created by Michael Limnios Blues Network.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service