Photo by Chris Gray
This bear of a man goes by "Brother-in-Law," and Rocks Off had the pleasure of making his acquaintance while touring the new Lightnin' Hopkins-inspired Thunderbolt Special installations at Project Row Houses in Third Ward this afternoon. Look for a slideshow soon.
Turns out Brother-in-Law, who lives nearby, was a friend of Hopkins'. "We'd chase women and drink and shoot dice," he says."We had a lot of fun together."
Hopkins, it turns out, had interesting taste in women - "He didn't want no woman with hair longer than mine," says his friend - as well as automobiles. "All he ever talked about was getting a Cadillac. He got that Cadillac too."
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Brother-in-Law, who snuck into local "honky-tonk cafes" to see Hopkins in the '50s before befriending him in the late '60s, remembers Hopkins as constantly coming up with songs, peaceful and reclusive. "I never knew him to fight nobody - he stopped me from fighting a few times," he says. "He didn't hang out with too many people." - Chris Gray