of Blues Harp
|This is the bio note on Gary Primich from my harmonica
transcription/instruction book Masters of
the Blues Harp, which has a
transcription of his Caravan from Travelin' Mood
(Flying Fish 70635).
Considered one of the countrys top harp players, Gary Primich was
born in Chicago in 1958 and raised in Hobart, Indiana. While still in
his teens, he was hanging out on Chicagos fabled Maxwell Street
learning blues harmonica and guitar from the older players. By the early
80s, he became unhappy with the Chicagos blues scene, so after
earning a degree in Radio and Television from Indiana University, he
headed south to Austin, Texas to seek his musical fortune. He explained
his reasons for leaving the Mecca of the blues to me in an e-mail:
"When I left Chicago in the early 80's the blues scene was in transition from
the "old sound" to a new, funky, more rock-oriented sound. I'm more of an old
school guy and there just didn't seem to be any room for someone of my musical orientation to grow and thrive there, given the changing climate for blues."
There he met up with former Mothers of Inventions drummer Jimmy Carl Black, where the pair assembled a band, the Mannish Boys, and recorded Primichs first LP with them on the now bygone Amazing label. After another LP with the Mannish Boys, he struck out on his own with a couple of efforts under his own name before Amazing called it quits.
A stint with Chicagos Flying Fish label followed, yielding two fine releases that allowed him to showcase his songwriting, followed by Company Man (1997) and Botheration (1999) on the Black Top label.
Gary also played on the soundtrack of the 1990 movie Ballad Of A Sad Café.
Sadly, Primich passed away at age 49 on September 25, 2007 in Austin of an apparent drug overdose.
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