Friday Night: Chuck Berry At Nutty Jerry's


Chuck Berry ladies mar7.JPG
"I haven't played "Johnny B. Goode"?" he asked the crowd, who cheered at the mention of the standard. The opening yelp of it would come slowly and methodically, like a beginner fumbling for the chords. He invited most of the women in the crowd to join him onstage to dance.

The stage was a mass of women of all ages, jiving and moving with Berry moving through them with a salacious grin. And just like that, he walked off stage and into his dressing room, still playing, until he unplugged his machine.

The house lights went up, and most of the crowd shrugged and laughed as Caldwell thanked Berry and the audience for such a wonderful evening. Some looked dejected and bewildered, while just a few looked downright angry.

Chuck Berry mar 7 audience.JPG
Maybe seeing Chuck Berry live now while we still can is akin to gazing at the stars in the sky on a bright night, away from the city and the smog. You are just seeing twinkles and dust from a long-dead star, but they shine on just as bright as ever when you lay back and take in their luster, imagining what they must have looked like eons ago when the Earth was still in flux and no one was around to record their beauty in words or song.

But luckily with Berry, we have a hours and hours of music, and the music of the bands directly influenced by him, to remind us what he did to the world. Even if he can't do it himself any longer.

Personal Bias: Not one piece of rock and roll has come through any of your ears these past 60 years that Berry's brain and hands have not given birth to. He's a living Rosetta Stone of Rock.

The Crowd: A few elderly folks from the area who may have seen Berry in his heyday, a few hipster couples soaking in history, and a few rock and roll lifers, young and old, taking notes and pictures throughout the night.

Overheard in the Crowd: "I really thought he was dead," said one of the younger bartenders at the club. Heartbreaking and understanding on too many levels.

Random Notebook Dump: Only 200 tickets were sold to see the man who invented rock and roll, with maybe an extra 100 upon walk-up Friday night.

Chuck Berry mar 7 c.JPG
Bonus Tidbit: We met Berry after the show, sitting with him for five minutes in the dressing room until he grew tired of our presence. We don't blame him. We did ask him how this Texas trip treated him, and he snapped back, "Boy, I've been to Texas before, I'm 84 years old." Well put, sir.

SET LIST

Roll Over Beethoven
Sweet Little Sixteen
Around And Around
My Ding-A-Ling
Nadine (X2)
Little Queenie
You Never Can Tell
Reelin' & Rockin'
Johnny B. Goode


Follow Rocks Off on Facebook and on Twitter at @HPRocksOff.


Location Info

Map

Nutty Jerry's (Winnie)

18291 Englin Road, Winnie, TX

Category: Music

My Voice Nation Help
7 comments
Sort: Newest | Oldest
Joe Driscoll
Joe Driscoll

I thought it was a pretty good show. I saw videos on youtube that didnt sound as good. But I loved it. I wish I could still hold a guitar, let alone play it, by the time I'm his age. And BTW, you forgot Wee Wee Hours in your set list.

larry
larry

if you want to see chuck in his prime check out rock and roll music the toronto show from 1969 on vhs he was 43. the vhs has the best raw sound. it on dvd too, but was digitally remastered which ruined the sound in my opinion.check out the dishwater blonde during reeling and rocking,thats what that 50s preacher was talking about when he called rock the devils rythm ,i was like that at a jerry lee concert once,i could have stopped but it felt so good i didnt, even with people watching me.angus young listens to chuck,jerry lee,little richard,bo diddley to get his pump primed before going out on stage with acdc.i hope nuttyjerrys is very successful. i wish chuck would just sing the songs and let someone else do the guitar playing, there a lot of guitarist that would practically play free for chuck.he does hit a few good licks every once in a while that he doesnt believe he could still do by the expression on his face.maybe god is trying to tell him something.

OldBluesDude
OldBluesDude

This is better than the Borders book tour I was thinking would be more appropriate. Hire a ghost writer, spin some tales of years gone past, do a book signing. This review puts lipstick on a pig. John Lee Hooker got to me years ago at Fitzgeralds. Beware the nostalgic Oldie show. Today's touring artists deserve your support.

Gary Packwood
Gary Packwood

I'm for placing all of these legends on the stage after they reach eighty years old with their music playing - softly- in the background.

Allow tickets to be sold at $500 each which allows for seating on the stage in a special chair that ticket holders will own and take home. Two drinks, thirty minutes of reminiscing with the artists, hand shake and a final personal photograph with the artist by a professional photographer.

Priceless!

LoT205
LoT205

I almost went to this but my friend who was going with my had an emergency and so we couldn't go. It's sad that they didn't sell many tickets. I'm worried about Nutty Jerry's, I want it to stick around. But good review.

Mark C Austin
Mark C Austin

Well put, Mr. Hlavaty. Totally agree with Peter here too. It was tough to watch, but totally worth it. Thanks for everything, Chuck.

peter
peter

This is a really respectful review, which is what he deserves. Good job!

Now Trending

Houston Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...