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The Blues Brothers

Whether celebrated as a sincere tribute or derided as a tongue-in-cheek put-on, the Blues Brothers -- Joliet Jake and his silent brother Elwood -- was among the most popular groups of the late '70s; what started as a skit on the hit NBC television sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live quickly snowballed to become a true phenomenon, complete with hit records, a sold-out concert tour, and even a feature film. Clad in vintage black suits, narrow ties, fedoras, and omnipresent wrap-around sunglasses, the Blues Brothers delivered spirited renditions of classic soul hits in the tradition of the signature Stax-Volt sound; purists may still cringe, but if nothing else the group deserves credit for introducing any number of soul and blues classics to a new generation of listeners while also allowing some of the most gifted session men in the business a chance to shine on-stage and -screen.

According to "Don Kirshner" (actually Saturday Night Live bandleader Paul Shaffer in disguise), the Blues Brothers' history was as follows: "In 1969, Marshall Checker, of the legendary Checkers Records, called me on a new blues act that had been playing in the small, funky clubs on Chicago's South Side....Today they are no longer an authentic blues act, but have managed to become a viable commercial product." In reality, however, vocalist Jake and harpist Elwood Blues were music lovers John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, two of SNL's brightest stars who created their respective aliases in early 1976 to warm up crowds before performances of the hit series. The Blues Brothers made their national TV debut with Belushi and Aykroyd outfitted in the bee costumes they often wore for another sketch, performing (naturally enough) Slim Harpo's "I'm a King Bee," and in the months to follow they grew in popularity, appearing on the program with increasing regularity.

The Blues Brothers' band included top Memphis session men like guitarist Steve Cropper and bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn, who together appeared on many of the original Stax label recordings of songs in the group's repertoire; later incarnations also featured notables like bluesman Matt "Guitar" Murphy. While opening for comedian Steve Martin in Los Angeles in 1978, the Blues Brothers recorded their debut live LP, Briefcase Full of Blues; the album quickly went platinum, launching Top 40 hit covers of "Soul Man" and "Rubber Biscuit." They also toured in 1980 to promote their feature-length movie, The Blues Brothers, a sprawling musical comedy featuring cameos by everyone from Cab Calloway to Aretha Franklin, as well as their second LP, Made in America; two more Top 40 hits -- "Gimme Some Lovin'" and "Who's Making Love" -- appeared that same year.

In 1981, The Best of the Blues Brothers was released, further solidifying their massive popularity; however, on March 5, 1982, Belushi died in Hollywood of an accidental drug overdose, and the Blues Brothers' saga was effectively over. Or so it seemed; as the movie remained a cult favorite and old Saturday Night Live sketches continued to run in syndication, the group's "legend" continued to grow, and, in 1988, Cropper, Dunn, Murphy, and other players re-formed the Blues Brothers Band for a world tour, often backing singer Eddie Floyd. In 1992, they even cut a new LP, Red White and Blues, which featured a guest appearance from Aykroyd/Elwood. Around the same time, Aykroyd also mounted his House of Blues franchise, an international chain of upscale blues joints; he, actor John Goodman, and Belushi's brother Jim also appeared on occasion in a new Blues Brothers lineup. Finally, in 1998 a second movie, Blues Brothers 2000, was released to negative reviews and poor box office returns. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Comments

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Lot of the comments are about blues brothers 2000. I did like the b.b.2000 music better than b.b. First film.
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jack655605
Yes i see the light!!!.... The Band Elwood! The Band!
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dougieyellow j a c k e t
Can you see the light!!!!... . . . . . .
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alewon7
i hate illinois natzis
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ndeorio0
Orange whip?...thre e orange whips
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we play two kinds of music, country and western. also wrong glass sir many more but this is all
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Everybody!!!
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Excuse me gentlemen, I don't think there's anything wrong with this piano. Ray Charles. Cab singing minnie the moocher. john lee singing walk that walk, talk that talk.
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I liked 2000 almost as the first. I felt sad a lot of the originals had passed.
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a lot of space in this mall-
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we'll come here for breakfast, lunch and dinner...
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iam2themax4u
We miss you john, you left us too soon. RIP
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You forgot the dry white toast
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jayrodgers65
I'll have 4 fried chickens and a COKE !
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jayrodgers65
I'll have 4 fried chickens and a COKE !
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On Pandora, they play more than both kinds of music.
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No mam, Were Musician's!
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It has a cop motor!!!
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Hey mike.aylward 9 I'm from Chicago you jack a**
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fix the cigaret lighter
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mike.aylward 9
I hate Illinois Nazis!
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The Good old boys. Sing that song, the Blues Brothers
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I love the movie I always watch it
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blueyedmom00 7
Remember them singing the only country song they knew? The theme "Rawhide," from TV.
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Is gooo
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We're on a mission from God!
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You get me my cheez whiz boy?
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Already own the album; & also could dance to all the songs: Curtsy of my 65 yr age pop.. Who taught me every dance at the age of two for the entertainmen t to say the least! .... &
I Just LOVED! Being the muse, & did preform!!!!! !
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Correction Papabob6 ITS JOHN AND DAN THAT ARE THE COOLEST!
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JAKE & ELWOOD ARE THE COOLEST!!!!!
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Now flip, flop and fly
I don't care if I die!!!
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Don't you say a F***in' word!
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jimmyde31
While working as a bouncer at Keystone Palo Alto met John and Gerry Garcia backstage AWESOME
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wooh
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One of my favorite movies!
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EFF the "purists", the "critics", & the "cringers"-- - - - - - - - I ' m a BLUES BROTHERS FAN 4 LIFE!!!!!!!! ! :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D
Luv u, John; Luv u, Duck; We miss u.:'(
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S**t. - What? Rollers!. No! Yup S**t
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cowdog68
Wonderful. Still can't believe these guys were this good
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Elwood: It's a hundred and six miles to Chicago. We've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses.

Jake: Hit it!
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Got my CheezWhiz boy?
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One of my very few regrets in life is missing their live show in San Carlos, California. Just my bad luck that John (Jake) passed away just after that performance. I'll always feel bad about missing that show. R.I.P. John, you will always be missed. From Tiny S.F. mission.
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amye45
rawhide
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A hot little Blue Eyed Soul Band
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marcleissner
The Blues Brothers were so hot, they could turn goat piss into gasoline
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the real deal, started as a goof or not the boys were hot as it gets.
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We're on a mission from god......
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731103081
One of the greatest movies lol. Love these guys always<3<3<3
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gdleighton
want to see how good john was, watch the skit where he sang with joe cocker on SNL.
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I love the blues brother music?
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I did soul man for the talant show and got 1st place
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