Today we will tell you about the legendary guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Here are 36 facts (in fact 27 you will find out why exactly 36), about this perfect guitarist:
1. He was born on October 3, 1954, in Dallas Texas. As a child, his parents took him to blues artists' performances.
2. At an early age he began playing the saxophone and drums. At age 7 he started playing guitar after being influenced by his older brother Jimmie.
3. Vaughan did not know how to read notes and did not even know in which key the songs he wrote were played.
4. His first guitar was a "Gibson Messenger" he received from his older brother Jimmy.
5. At the age of 13 he had already started performing in clubs.
6. Stevie Ray Vaughan named Jimi Hendrix and Albert King as the most influential artists.
7. Beyond the great influences of blues guitarists on Vaughn, he was also influenced by jazz artists like Wes Montgomery, Django Reinhardt, and George Benson who added jazz touches to his playing as well.
8. Before becoming a guitarist he played bass with his older brother Jimmy's band called the "Texas Storm".
9. In 1971 he left his studies and a year later he had already moved to Austin Texas in search of a musical career.
10. At the end of 1971 he formed the band "Blackbird" which was a local success and among others got to warm up "Wishbone Ash".
11. During the 1970s Vaughn continued to perform in pubs and clubs in Austin under various lineups and gained local success and recognition. During these performances, Stevie Ray Vaughan got to play alongside the heroes of his youth including Buddy Guy, Jimmy Rogers, and Albert King.
12. In 1977 he formed the band "Triple Threat Revue" which included singer Lou Ann Barton, bassist W. C. Clark and drummer Freddie Pharaoh" Walden. They recorded 4 songs in 1978, including the song "I'm Cryin'" written by Vaughan.
13. In 1978 Clark left the band and Stevie Ray Vaughan changed the band name to "Double Trouble", the name taken from a song by Otis Rush.
14. In December 1979 Vaughn was arrested for cocaine use and possession. At the time, the band "Double Trouble" served as the opening show for Muddy Waters who said of Vaughn that he could become the best guitarist who ever lived, but he would not be able to pass the age of 40 if he did not stop using cocaine.
15. Vaughn's big break came during the 1982 Monterey Jazz Festival, David Bowie spotted him and asked him to play with him on his next album.
16. Vaughn did contribute his skills to David Bowie's "Let's Dance" album, his best-selling album to date.
17. In 1982 the Rolling Stones hired "Double Trouble" to play at their private party in New York.
18. The first "Double Trouble" album was released in 1983 and was called "Texas Flood". It included the successful hit "Pride and Joy".
19. In 1985 Vaughn became the first white artist to be named W.C. Handy Blues Foundation Artist of the Year.
20. That same year he was awarded the title of Admiral from the U.S. Navy in Texas.
21. He played drums in the "Soul to Soul" album version of the song "Empty Arms".
22. Stevie Ray Vaughn tends to play with the pick upside down, i.e. the thick and wide side up front.
23. Vaughn had a very powerful and unique style of playing, occasionally playing the roles of rhythm and solo simultaneously, as Hendrix did.
24. In 1988 Vaughn appeared in an advertisement for a television station in New Zealand.
25. In 1989 Vaughn played at the coronation party of President George W. Bush.
26. Vaughn always wanted to release an album with his brother Jimmy that was his inspiration for playing guitar. In 1990 he recorded with him 10 songs released after his death as part of the album "Family Style".
27. Stevie Ray Vaughan was killed on August 27, 1990, in a helicopter crash, 36 days before celebrating his 36th birthday.
28. Among the last people to see him before he was killed was Eric Clapton who played with him at the Alpine Valley Music Festival "Theater". Clapton gave up his seat in the helicopter that crashed because Vaughn wanted to get off the first helicopter out of four, since he was tired. Two Eric Clapton crew members died along with Vaughn in the helicopter crash.
29. Rumor has it that the night before the tragic accident Vaughn woke up from a nightmare after seeing himself present at his own funeral.
30. In 1994 the city of Austin declared an annual memorial day in honor of Stevie Ray Vaughan.
31. Musician John Mayer noted that Vaughan is his guitar hero. He has his tattoo of Vaughan on his hand.
32. In 2003 Vaughan was ranked seventh on Rolling Stone magazine's 100 greatest guitarists of all time.
33. He also reached number 8 on "Guitar World" magazine's list of the greatest guitarists of all time.
34. In 2000 Stevie Ray Vaughan was inducted into the "Blues Hall of Fame".
35. In 2005 Vaughn entered the "Rock and Roll Hall of Fame" and his brother Jimmy was there to receive the award.
36. During his short career Vaughn has managed to release 6 studio albums, 7 live albums, and 4 EPs.