Earl King: Poet Laureate of New Orleans

Top-notch music journalism from Geoffrey Himes commemorating the birth of Earl King. The article is populated by the equally excellent Michael Smith photographs.

He was living proof that an active, well-stocked mind doesn’t always come with scholarly credentials.

“A lot of New Orleans records didn’t have enough bass on them,” King asserted. “You’ve got to have something that really has that pulsation, and the electric bass is the thing. If you subtract it, you’ll see the difference. The upright has a truer sound to it, but it’s not going to penetrate that nervous system like a Fender bass. When I’m making a record, I think bass before I think anything else.”