In Memory

Robert Hoddinott

Hi all,

I just received the sad news of Robbie Hoddinott's passing in 2017. Here is a link to an article with more details and another link with some videos.

He was an amazing guitarist for Kingfish and will be missed. RIP, Robbie!

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10/17/21 01:39 PM #8    

Andrew L. Hingston

Rick -- I don't think I know any simple men. We've known each other for roughly 55 years; in that whole time I don't think I have once thought of you as simple. Kind, very generous, enthusiastic, spontaneous, talented, determined, successful, etc. Not simple. 


10/17/21 04:28 PM #9    

Eric F. Weitzmann

Rick and Andrew, even though I was in a different circle of friends than the both of you, it's nice to hear your thoughts and reflections on RH. Congrats to Rick on his sucessful music career. When I worked at Tower Records Mt. View during the 80's I remember seeing Rick's name on a Stevie Nicks solo record. Good for you, Rick. All the best to the both of you! And yes, R.I.P. Robbie Hoddinott

10/18/21 01:34 PM #10    

Andrew L. Hingston

I think this might become an interesting discussion (polemic), but it's no longer about Rob Hoddinott and perhaps we should find another way / place to have it. None of us seems to have known Rob very well or very recently. We all admired his skill at playing guitar. We all seems to have wondered "What happened?" 

I think the direction we were headed was toward trying to ascertain the distinction between popularity and quality. They are not opposites. They often coexist. But just as often then seem very serparate things. And yet, so often, many of us allow ourselves to believe that because something is popular it is also good or just or admirable. This problem (I think it's fair to call it that) arise in all sorts of contexts. Currently, we are witnessing the American democratic experiment come under sustained and corrosive strain along the lines of popularity and quality. The most popular Republican of all time is also the worst -- and not only the worst Republican. And yet a huge swath of America (and many outside America) think he's the bee's knees and the saviour of independence and individuality. The only quality DJT exhibits consistently is one of deceitful tawdriness, a total absence of good manners, responsible thoughtfulness, and good taste. An awful lot of people love it. It is popular.

But it gets complicated at the edges. Cole Porter wrote popular songs -- that have lasted close to 100 years and are still being covered with reverence, wit, and insight by singers today. Bing Crosby was the archetype of popular singers of his generation -- the smooth, obviously privileged, white baritone who definitely knew his chops and acknowledged that much of what he knew he'd learned from infinitely less well known black performers. Into the bargain, he was droll. The Crosby/Hope movies are still funny -- as much because of Crosby's sidelong straightman as because of Hope's loopy manic bursts. 

But how do we describe that sort of quality? How do we distinguish Crosby from Johnny Hartman, or Johnny Hartman from Placido Domingo? Or, turning things on their head, Placido Domingo from Van Morrison (my own nominee for greatest male singer of our age)? 

Are Adele and Beyonce really as good as their popularity suggests? Compared to Billy Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Sarah Vaughn, Elizabeth Schwartzkopf, and Leontyne Price? And what can we say about Aretha Franklin, who was a big start indeed, but nothing compared to Beyonce or Adele. 

I think there is more to this than just what (or who) we like more. But I can't put my finger on it. Perhaps one of you can.

10/18/21 01:42 PM #11    

Karen S. Kaplan

Some people like sushi; some people like spaghetti. Why must you judge? Enjoy it all!


10/18/21 02:37 PM #12    

Andrew L. Hingston

Sorry for typos. I rushed it off without proofreading it. Something my children impose on me. But I am to blame for giving into their pressures -- not for for trying them on.

10/18/21 04:19 PM #13    

Eric F. Weitzmann

I'll just keep my thoughts on the "Music" subject as brief and concise as I can, and that is I feel as though you Andrew, Rick and myself are three people who are very passionate about music. The general public are just what I would call "casual listeners" who will settle for whatever Clear Channel, etc. stations are peddling them. One thing I learned from doing radio at KFJC, and working at Tower Records is that for the most part we were people who loved music, and being around it. It sure wasn't about money, but being around music & musicians. I didn't get somewhat tired of the arguements about "Why do you like so & so, but you don't like.....!?". I learned a lesson from that, and that is don't bother arguing with others about their taste in music, and try not to be so judgemental. Just let it roll, even if does suck! ;)  Andrew, in regards to your comment on Fuhrer 45, I agree. He's an absolute embarrassement  to our country, and I was brought up in a hardcore dyed in the wool Republican family (not bragging, just stating a fact). Trump was/is the P.T. Barnum of politics, with some Huey Long thrown in for bad measure. Alright, that's my two cents worth. Here's to better and brighter days ahead.

10/20/21 05:55 AM #14    

Andrew L. Hingston

Eric -- Whenever I return to California (no plans, but a wedding or a funeral can happen any time), or should you find yourself in Central Europe (Berlin is an outstanding city for music!) let's get together. Same suggestion goes for Rick, of course. 

05/25/22 02:39 PM #15    

Brian A. Paulsen

Rob was definately ahead of the musical pack in high school. And one of the influences that made me realize I had no future as a musician. My one personal recollection of Rob was an afternoon a couple of us went to his house to buy some ganja from him. I remember a huge zip lock bag (2 gallon?) being put on the kitchen table from which our portion was measured out and paid for. Could have gone to prison in those days. How things have changed.

05/26/22 12:13 PM #16    

Eric F. Weitzmann

Andrew Hingston, thanks for the invite and sorry for my typo's. I'll have to proof read my posts from here on in!  ;)

05/28/22 01:15 PM #17    

Mark Petrick (Petrick)

Hello Folks, I find myself strangely pulled to add a note to this string. It may be that Andy and Brian were both friends who I enjoyed in high school, but mostly because Rob Hoddinot was a kind of magical figure for me from that time. I did not know Rob, never spoke with him, or even had a class with him that I recall. He seemed the epitome of hip. His very long blond hair, guitar virtuosity, and then his association with great Bay Area musicians. I recall seeing Rob play with Hot Tuna, am I wrong? That odd sense of being associated with someone famous, even if only because he was from my school, created a kind of charge about him. And so oddly, because I did not maintain any friendships from high school, I would think of Rob now and then, do a Google search, never get anything, and wonder what became of him. And it seems, none of know what became of him? I wonder what sort of life he lead. 

So, hello Andy and Brian, you may not remember me, but I have fond memories of both of you. I won't go into a long and winding story of how my life unfolded. I made some art.

All the best, Mark

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