I had my I-POD on “shuffle” and Billy Preston’s “Will It Go Round in Circles” came on and I was blown away on how fresh it still sounds, no matter how many times you hear it. This man had so much talent and his career spanned five decades. Did you know that when he was 16 he played on Sam Cooke’s 1963 classic album “Night Beat?” Take a listen to Sam’s “Little Red Rooster” and hear the coolness of Billy on the organ. When was the last time you heard “Outa-Space?”(Buy the video on I-Tunes right now and you’ll be back in the ’70’s in no time). Go back and feel this man’s skills, it really leaves you achin’ for more. So then you head for “Space Race” and it really does just put a smile on your face.
His catalog is endless, if you love R&B- he has done it. If gospel is your love- check out his “Music from My Heart” album. He’s done rock and roll- he is one of only two artists to perform with The Beatles (he’s known as the “5th” Beatle) and The Rolling Stones. One of my favorites is ” I Wrote a Simple Song” because of his passion. For me, passion is the key ingredient for the artists that I love.
Did you know that he wrote the song “You Are So Beautiful” which was made popular by Joe Cocker? His version is fantastic as well. How about “Nothing from Nothing?” I can listen to this song over and over again- it still sounds as good as it did back in the day.
He was very good friends with all of the Beatles and if you want to see Billy Preston live with Clapton and others- check out the “Concert for George” DVD. One of the main reasons that this is my all time favorite music DVD is because of Billy Preston- he is flat out phenomenal.
I could go on and on about the man and his music. Sadly he left us way too early at the young age of 59 back on June 6, 2006. Billy Preston is a legend that can never be forgotten. Please pass down his legacy to all your young children, siblings or friends and tell them to keep passing it on down to the next generation.