Playing on the same bill as music legends would intimidate some. But George Thorogood & the Destroyers have made a career out of it.
“We are the Dirty Harry of rock ’n’ roll — every job nobody else wants, that’s the one we get,” says the Delawareborn Thorogood, 58, who’s best-known for his 1982 hit “Bad to the Bone.” “We started off a long time ago and had to open for Howlin’ Wolf and then Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker. We’ve gone on after Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal, Stevie Wonder. We had to go on once after Little Richard — how do you like that? And we’ve had to go on before the Rolling Stones, before ZZ Top, before Steve Miller ...
“And I’m like, ‘How do I get these?’ People just say, ‘No one else will take it. You’re the Dirty Harry. So we learned how to take things to just another level.”
Thorogood plans to revisit another part of his past for his next album, which will be a sequel of sorts to his 1978 gold release “Move It On Over.” Like that album, the new set will feature all cover songs derived from Thorogood’s influences. “I want to balance it between what I know best — rock, country and blues,” he explains.
Thorogood isn’t revealing titles yet but he says that “we got a few (songs) we’re kicking around that might ring the bell.” And he’s hoping that “we can make history happen again” when it comes out.
“In the ’70s I had a lot of people come and say, ‘You don’t make it unless you write your own stuff,’” Thorogood recalls. “Wrong! You can make a good record of songs you like, as long as the songs are very good and you play ’em really good. ‘Move It On Over’ was a gold record without major distribution — that ought to tell you something.”
George Thorogood & the Destroyers and Buddy Guy perform at 8 p.m. Thursday (Aug. 21) at the Meadow Brook Music Festival on the campus of Oakland University, Rochester Hills. Tickets are $35 pavilion, $15 lawn with a $45 lawn four-pack. Call (248) 377-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.
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