Cal. Green. (CALVIN HENRY GREEN) Born June 22, 1935 Died July 6, 2004
Texan Cal Green was a talented and versatile guitarist who started out imitating his favourite local Blues players, then got a gig playing with one of the biggest R&B acts of the 50s, co-wrote a worldwide hit, then switched to Jazz in the 60s but returned to the Blues in later life.
Cal was born in Dayton Texas in 1937 and in the early days he would copy the guitar style of his hero Clarence ‘Gatemouth’ Brown while his classmate Roy Gaines would copy T-Bone Walkeras the kids would imitate the ‘cutting contests’ of Chicago club legend.
Cal was skilled enough to be asked to record some tracks with pianist Connie McBooker for the Modern label, but his big break came when Hank Ballard and the Midnighters came to town in 1954. Their guitarist Arthur Porter had just been drafted, so 17-year-old Cal stepped in. He played on all Hank’s big hits after ‘Roll With Me, Henry’ and his catchy solo lines on hits like ‘Tore Up Over You’ and ‘Open Up the Back Door’ led Duke/Federal to release Cal’s double-sided instrumental ‘Big Push’/’Green’s Blues’ and a couple of vocal tracks in 1958.