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    Sahm, Doug (6 November 1941 - 18 November 1999)

    Multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter whose musical career began at the age of five when he sang "Teardrops in My Heart" on San Antonio's KMAC radio station.  He continued to perform on the radio, doing a two-year stint on The Mutual Network and at the age of eight joined The Louisiana Hayride radio show.  So versatile was this child prodigy, who played fiddle, mandolin, and steel guitar, he often appeared with big-time country music artists like Webb Pierce, Hank Thompson, Hank Williams, and Faron Young.  He recorded his first single, "A Real American Joe", at age eleven.  He was even invited to play in The Grand Ol' Opry in his teens, but Mom laid down the law and made him finish school.  Fair enough:  Between his studies he managed to front The Dell-Kings, The Markays, and The Pharaohs.  In 1964, when Beatlemania was at its height in the States, a record producer by the name of Huey P. Meaux, whom Doug had been hounding for a record deal, finally succumbed on the condition he let his hair grow.  Meaux was obsessed with coming up with an American equivalent of The Beatles, noting two of The Fab Four's strong suits were their infectious rhythms and the way they constructed their songs to be sung on the beat.  A Cajun man himself, Meaux encouraged Doug to write something in Cajun two-step.  Sahm, along with longtime friend Augie Meyers and members of their respective bands at the time, formed The Sir Douglas Quintet, a moniker bequeathed on them by Meaux, who tried to market them as an English band.  They stepped into the studio in January 1965 and laid down "She's About A Mover", which went top twenty in the U.K. and the U.S.  The Sir Douglas Quintet had staged their own mini-American Invasion.  They were not, however, The Beatles.  The band split after Sahm was arrested for marijuana possession.  It seemed like the right time to get out of Dodge, or in this case, Corpus Christi, and Doug emigrated to San Francisco and started up The Honkey Blues Band and eventually re-formed The Sir Douglas Quintet, with Augie Meyers in tow.  They managed another hit, the title track from their album Mendocino.  It was around this time that Doug's solo career began to take off a little bit.  He was doing session work for the likes of The Grateful Dead and Willie Nelson and in 1973 Jerry Wexler lured Sahm from Mercury to Atlantic with his own ideas of a supergroup, which also shared the name of the LP, Doug Sahm and Band.  The "band" in this case comprised David Bromberg, Dr. John, Bob Dylan, and Flaco Jimenez.  Jimenez would continue to collaborate with Sahm and Meyers, along with another one of Doug's longtime friends, Freddy Fender, under the moniker The Texas Tornados, about sixteen years later.  An earlier incarnation of the band, including Atwood Allen, Jack Barber, Harry Hess, Harvey Kagen, Augie Meyers, Frank Morin, George Rains, and Doug Sahm, released an album in 1976 called Texas Rock For Country Rollers.  Sahm and Meyers continued to be joined at the hip in the '80s, when they signed with, of all labels, Swedish Sonnet, and surprised themselves by scoring platinum with a song called "Meet Me in Stockholm", one of the biggest hits ever recorded in Scandinavia.  A couple of years later, Doug was involved in an automobile accident and decided to move back across the Atlantic to Canada, eventually returning to Texas.  In 1989, he rejoined Fender, Meyers, and Jimenez at a concert in San Francisco as The Tex-Mex Revue.  It was not long after that they reverted to their old name, The Texas Tornados.  In this reincarnation, they managed to record four albums, two of them live, and won a Grammy for Best Mexican/American Performance for their recording of "Soy de San Luis".  They were much in demand in the '90s, invited to Farm Aid, The Montreaux Jazz Festival, and Bill Clinton's Presidential Inauguration.  Unfortunately, Doug Sahm would not live to see the end of Clinton's term.  He died of a heart attack in his sleep in a New Mexico motel room on 18 November 1999.

     

    Doug Sahm & The Texas Tornados recordings

    Cowboy Peyton Place (Doug Sahm)

    I Love You The Way You Love (The Way I Love You) (A. Allen)

     

    Sources:

    1.      http://www.dougsahm.com/

    2.      http://www.laventure.net/tourist/sdq_hist.htm

    3.      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_Tornados

    4.      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doug_Sahm

    5.      http ://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/5924301/texas_rocker_doug_sahm_found_dead_in_new_mexico/

       

    Here he is leading the Sir Douglas Quintet on their "Nuevo Laredo"...

     

            

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     



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