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She Caught the Katy

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by TexasEdition, Dec 10, 2019.

  1. Listening to my work jams on Spotify. Some random blues and soul channel. "She Caught the Katy" form the Blues Brothers soundtrack came on and I have not heard it in years, and not since playing bass.

    Info in this record is sparse, but all things lead to this is the Duck at work. He always had such a nice groove and played some tasty licks without having to be out in front. The tone is fantastic and I would like to know what he was cranking he P-Bass through. What a great tune. Those guys really had something magical there.
    David Jayne likes this.
  2. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    From what I've read he preferred Ampeg amps. B-15 in the studio and SVT live. But would also use whatever was available rather than have to transport a heavy amp by himself.
  3. It does sound ampegy as hell. But I bet he didn't do much lugging around in the later years.
  4. Going down the sonic rabbit hole now with the Bluew Brothers album. Damn that band was tight.
  5. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    Taj Mahal, the writer of She Caught the Katy, is often an overlooked Blues artist, probably because he’s not a guitar hero, but he’s one of my favorites. :thumbsup:
    NG51, jerry, Dave3 and 5 others like this.

  6. I grew up playing this song and many other Choo Choo Train songs, Blues and Country no matter my home town Temple, Texas was a railroad crossroads; Santa Fe, MKT, BNSF, Trinity, ATSF and a lot of others...Boogie Chillun!!

    Duck covers the original line and groove but certainly funkifies and dancifies it up with those slides and octaves and chromatic runs but by Gawsh Awl Mighty How Big Is That Pocket!!
    gebass6, Datsgor, jerry and 2 others like this.
  7. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    Taj is the man!
    jerry, Dave3, Slater and 1 other person like this.
  8. Dave3

    Dave3 Supporting Member

    Sep 11, 2019
    The Taj Mahal version is a great one.
    GrapeBass likes this.
  9. Duck played this with Albert King as well.
  10. JPaulGeddy


    Sep 19, 2007
    South Carolina
    Wouldn't surprise me if there was no amp involved at all. Lots of those (awesome) studio rats just went direct and used the expensive studio compressors and whatnot. I don't hear anything here that Duck couldn't do with just his fingers & a P bass.
    JRA likes this.
  11. gebass6

    gebass6 We're not all trying to play the same music.

    May 3, 2009
    N.E Illinois
    How many here actually know what the “Katy” was?
    We’re a dying breed.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
  12. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    It's a "mule" to ride? I never actually knew what that lyric was... I figured the Katy must be a train or bus, but the rest of the line baffled me. Blues lyrics, man.

    EDIT: I should add, I'm starting with a Blues Bros tribute band and learning Duck's parts. It's impressive, how he takes some really basic 12-bar parts and you think it's all easy and simple, but when you listen to what he actually plays he's off in the stratosphere with some crazy licks.
    alanloomis1980 and Groove Doctor like this.
  13. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    :laugh: ...not dead yet!
    gebass6 and bassbrad like this.
  14. Indeed, in Temple it seemed that every fourth of fifth household had someone working directly for the Rail Roads and everyone was aware of how much the towns prosperity was tied to those jobs on both sides of the tracks. Although that Southernism didn't really apply as there were RR tracks in all directions all over town but there were clear borderlines.

    My house growing up was a few blocks from the big Santa Fe switch yards and we could hear them working all day and night banging, breaking, pushing and pulling, revving up those huge diesel engines. Until the mid seventies Temple was a 24 hour town especially downtown but once truck freight started taking over things started slowing down and things began to change.
    gebass6 likes this.
  15. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    She dumped his ass. She's on the train heading north to begin her new life someplace like St. Louis or Kansas City; he's stuck back home in rural Texas, alone on the farm with his mule. (But he's still crazy about her!)

    It's a breakup song, but there's also a deeper commentary about post Civil War northern migration. They heyday of the Katy rail line was late 1800s.

    That's how I've always interpreted the lyrics, anyway. Taj Mahal is the man. I feel very blessed that I caught his concert with Toumani Diabate a while back.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
    jerry, GrapeBass and hrodbert696 like this.
  16. There is so much soon to be lost cultural history in so many of those bluse and folk lyrics and the lyrically picturesque humor tied up in those colloquialisms. But then I am sure there are college professors doing studies that are 25% correct and 75% government mule droppings.

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