While Dan LaFontaine might be getting all the press, it was learning that Jerry Reed passed away at the age of 71 last night that really put me on the floor. While best known as The Bandit’s sidekick, Snowman (not to mention a little something called one of the best movie themes of all time), Jerry Reed’s career started at 18, and he’s held the spot of one of country music’s greatest pickers ever since.
Beyond a picking skill that makes me want to smash my fingers in frustration, he had one of my all time favorite country voices. So much so that I would have done near anything to hear a duet between Reed and Levon Helm. If that’s not enough, he proved himself a talent capable of deftly jumping from genre to genre, and he had a way of making every song his own that I’ve long admired.
So g’night, Jerry Reed. Thanks for all those years of astounding musicianship and talent.
With that in mind, please enjoy a little Jerry Reed action courtesy of the Porter Wagoner Show, as he takes on “Wabash Cannonball”:
Or this phenomenal cover of Steve Goodman’s “The City of New Orleans“:
Or sitting down with pickin’ great Chet Atkins in 1992 for a take on “Georgia on My Mind“:
And what kind of man would I be if I left off Amos Moses?
Well, I know what’s going to be playing non-stop in Casa de Mono tonight….