Triple Played: For some musicians, talent runs in family
It is not uncommon for children to follow in their parents’ footsteps.
You see it in many different aspects of life. Professional, political, business, family, sports and entertainment come to mind.
I don’t know if it will happen at Triple Play Records, but you don’t have to look very far from 530 Main St. to see it. Sometimes the pupil is better than the teacher and sometimes it is the other way around.
Business-wise, you hope that your protégé will take it to another level and that is often the case. Just look at Page-Parsons Jewelers, Benge’s Shoe Store and Enstrom Candies.
There are many examples in family, politics and sports, but today I want to focus on the entertainment side, especially music.
Nancy Sinatra and her brother Frank were the first children of a famous entertainer that I became aware of when a classmate brought her “These Boots are Made for Walkin’ ” LP into our fourth- or fifth-grade class. That was a cool song!
Nancy Sinatra was an OK singer, and those around her tried really hard to make her look good, but she got attention only because she was the daughter of “old blue eyes.”
Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin both had sons with modest success in the 1960s. There was Gary Lewis and the Playboys with “This Diamond Ring,” and Dino (Dean Martin Jr.), Desi and Billy with the “Rebel Kind.”
All of the Beatles have children who are musicians to modest success.
Blues artists John Lee Hooker and Luther Allison have sons who have played locally.
Almost all of Bob Marley’s numerous children are musicians with Ziggy, Damien and Stephen the most well-known.
Kevin Welch, Willie Nelson, Glen Campbell and James McMurtry all have children who are musicians, and the list goes on and on.
It’s when I thought about who has been the most successful protégé of a famous parents that it became interesting.
Hank Williams, Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan are three of the most influential figures in all of music, and their children and in two cases grandchildren “aren’t too shabby,” either.
Hank Williams influenced everything from country to blues, rock and Cajun music in his very short life and is still doing so. His son Hank Williams Jr. was a very successful country music recording artist in his own right, but not a lot like his father. Hank III is an excellent artist and a lot more like his grandfather than his father.
Woody Guthrie was the most important and influential folk artist of his generation and an influence on everyone from Johnny Cash and the Grateful Dead to Billy Bragg, Wilco, Uncle Tupelo and Bob Dylan.
Arlo Guthrie has been performing since the 1960s, and his classic “Alice’s Restaurant” has been played on Thanksgiving all over the world since its release in 1967. Arlo’s son Abe plays in his father’s band and has recorded a few discs on Arlo’s label, Rising Son Records.
Bob Dylan’s influence on popular music is immeasurable. Everyone from the Beatles to Adele have come under his spell, and he is still relevant 50 years after his first recording.
Bob’s son Jakob Dylan has had a pretty good start to his career that began as a member of the Wallflowers, named after one of his dad’s songs.
Releasing five records between 1992 and 2005, the Wallflowers were a force in the roots rock scene. Jakob began a solo career shortly after the Wallflowers broke up and has released two excellent recordings, “Seeing Things” in 2008 and “Women + Country” in 2010.