November 8 ~  Feel Things in Extreme American Roots Music

"I would rather feel things in extreme than not at all." ~ Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt Talented musician Bonnie Lynn Raitt (1949-) was born on this day in Burbank, California, the daughter of famed Broadway musical star John Raitt (Oklahoma!, Kiss Me, Kate, Carousel).

At age eight, she fell in love with folk music at summer camp and received  her first guitar for Christmas. Thirteen years later, she landed her first recording contract with Warner Brothers.

"No one was more surprised than I to get a record contract at 21," she said. "Suddenly my hobby was my career."

With a range of blues, Rock and Roll, and country, Raitt became a formidable slide guitarist who sang the blues with throaty passion. After years of critical acclaim and little commercial success, she collected four Grammy Awards for the 1989 multi-platinum breakthrough Nick of Time.

"It means so much for the kind of music that we do," she said of the recognition. "It means that those of us who do rhythm & blues are going to get a chance again."

Raitt has played on hundreds of albums by other artists, including the Grammy winning Healer (1990) with her mentor John Lee Hooker. "I'm a vehicle for the old songs people ought to know or the new ones that haven't had a fair hearing," she said.

In 1996, Raitt collaborated with Fender guitars to develop her Signature Stratocaster and became the first female artist so honored. All profits are donated to her guitar program and pay for lessons targeted at young girls in the inner cities through 120 Boys & Girls Clubs throughout the United States.

Celebrate Music!Be honest with your feelings.