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Fats Domino dies, the kind voice of rock 'n' Roll

New Orleans singer and pianist billed a formidable chain of successes between 1949 and 1963

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Fats Domino dies, the kind voice of rock 'n' Roll
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Antoine Fats Domino passed away yesterday Tuesday in vicinity of his hometown of new Orleans. The 89-year-old singer and pianist overcame disaster of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when his house was flooded and was given away by disappearance. Domino had refused to be evacuated by his wife's health; He must have been rescued by helicopter.

Humanly and musically, we must consider Domino as a genuine product of new Orleans. Born in 1928, his was a humble family where French were spoken of Creoles of Louisiana and music was practiced with instruments that passed from parents to children. Still under age, Antoine decided to play his piano professionally without giving up his day job. In honor of his copulation and remembrance of recently deceased Fats Waller, he was named Fats Domino. He had No complexities regarding his obesity; In fact, his first success, 1949, was titled The Fat Man (ie, fat). He had been signed by Californian label Imperial Records and formed tandem with Dave Bartholomew, trumpeter and producer who would help him to compose many of his first successes, but n broke.

The formula was simple: Boogie woogie slowed down, blues accelerated, all sung with warmth and playfulness in two-minute pills. Domino learned to surround himself with solid instrumentalists – Alvin Red Tyler, Earl Palmer, Lee Allen-who would define sound of new Orleans ' rhythm and blues during 1950s. It was recorded in studio of Cosimo Matassa, a local who-showed it TV series Treme-is now a laundromat.

Jerry Lee Lewis, Fats Domino and James Brown in June 1986 in new York. G. PAUL BURNETT AP

Fats had achieved a respectable regional popularity when rock and roll earthquake occurred and industry discovered that that music, exclusively for black market, could be sold to public. It was not an easy process for Domino: Some of his recordings were accelerated to bring m closer to fashion frenzy. Besides, racial segregation still existed: its Ain't That a Shame (1955) was eclipsed in sales by decaffeinated version of white vocalist Pat Boone. At least, Elvis Presley did publicly acknowledge that Fats was pioneer of "new rhythm."

The issue of cultural appropriations did not concern Domino: He recalled that his greatest success, Blueberry Hill (1956), was work of a composer of Sicilian origin and, in fact, had already been recorded by an illustrious peasant, Louis Armstrong. Then re would be impacts like Blue Monday (1956), I'm Walkin' ' (1957), Whole Lotta Loving (1958), My Girl Josephine (1960) and, in that same year, what would become one of hymns of her city: Walking to New Orleans.

His good streak lasted until 1963, when he left Imperial by ABC-Paramount, a more powerful but less imaginative company. True that Domino was not exactly a flexible artist, who could adapt to any new trend: his repertoire basically had two models, fats fast and fats slow; Both were intoxicating but had exploited m to satiety, as revealed Out of New Orleans, voluminous integral edition of Imperial stage published by German company Bear Family.

Fats worked perfectly as a live artist and took refuge in Las Vegas. It turned out to be a bad idea: he liked game, lost a lot of money and went through trouble. The decline in popularity lasted until end of Sixties, when Rock acquired a sense of its history and began revival phenomenon. The Beatles recognized him as one of his influences; In fact, he was honored directly at Lady Madonna.

That was one of modern mes he recorded for his great comeback album, Fats Is Back (1968), made by producer Richard Perry with first-rate musicians and a generous budget. Commercially, nothing happened. Although Domino did some or studio album, he relived from concerts, wisely spaced. Without neglecting glamour: he traveled with tons of costumes, shoes and his famous rings.

A very homemade man, stuck to his neighborhood roots, tried not to get far away from his abundant children, grandchildren and great. From 1995, Domino left tours and could only be seen punctually in new Orleans scenarios or circulating with his famous pink Cadillac.

He was one of first veterans to join Rock and Roll Hall of Fame but did not attend ceremony. He also avoided going to White House to pick up arts medal. Outside of official honors, in vaporous areas of cool, his laughing music was overshadowed by vital turbulences of contemporaries like Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis or Elvis himself: he was not protagonist of scandals.

That feeling that has not been treated fairly is mitigated with appearance of Goin' Home: A Tribute to Fats Domino, a tribute of 2007 where thirty of his songs were recreated by a multitude that included cream of artists of new Orleans and superantistress Those like Paul McCartney, Neil Young, Tom Petty, Elton John, Willie Nelson or John Lennon, present with ir version of Ain't That a shame. Of or participants, blessed be, Fats Domino recognized not knowing much.


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