Black is Black: #6 "Black Water" Doobie Brothers (1974)
By John Roberts
Los Angeles, California
April 5, 2017 8:57am CST
There were two distinct Doobie Brothers during the band’s glory years of the 70s and early 80s: Tom Johnston led Doobies (1969-75) and Michael McDonald Doobies (1975-82). The group from San Jose, California were pretty big at one time. I confess to being a Johnston Doobies fans prior to getting into punk/new wave. “I’d like to hear some funky Dixieland Pretty mama, come and take me by the hand” That is the memorable a cappella lyric from “Black Water.” From the album “What Were Once Vices are Now Habits,” “Black Water” would become the Doobie Brothers’ first #1 single. The song is all Patrick Simmons (the other major force in the group): he wrote and sang plus played lead guitar. Inspired by Creedence Clearwater Revival, Simmons wanted a song with a New Orleans vibe. “Mississippi woman, won't you keep shinin’ on me Old black water, keep on rollin’”
Part 7 of the HBO Recorded Doobie Brothers Live at Alpine Valley Amphitheater in Wis in 1979.
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