Bullock Museum honors Stevie Ray Vaughan

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Photo Credit: Joshua Guerra | Daily Texan Staff

Listed by Rolling Stone Magazine as one of the greatest guitarists of all time, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s instruments are having a Texas homecoming at the Bullock Museum.

Beginning March 10, 2017 and continuing through July 23, the Bullock Museum will host the first Texas appearance of the ‘Pride & Joy: The Texas Blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan,’ exhibit in collaboration with the Grammy Museum at L.A Live. The SRV exhibit features an assortment of clothing, handwritten lyrics, electric pedals, drums, guitars and, of course, the famed original Vaughan ‘Number One’ Fender Stratocaster. 

Exploring the exhibit Jimmie Vaughan finds it easy to reminisce about his brother, Stevie Ray. Lining the walls alongside the letters and records are two original 1971 black and white photographs representing one of the earliest breaks for 17-year-old Stevie Ray Vaughan. The first depicts a doubtful blues legend Albert King’s face transitioning to shock at the sound of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s 1960s blues guitar riffs. The second is an amazed Albert King with his arm draped over the young Stevie Ray Vaughan. 

“Albert King is arguably the baddest ass blues guitar player that ever lived and here’s Stevie, he’s 17,” Jimmie Vaughan said. “And here is Albert King with his arm around him after he played.”

Enclosed in a glass display stands Jimmie Vaughan’s 1950’s era first guitar, a gift he later left Stevie after running away from home at 14. This was the guitar Stevie Ray Vaughan first learned to play on. In their youth, Jimmie Vaughan said encouragement always came easy for the brothers.

“Practice. What else do you do all day? My dad didn’t want us to be what he did, he was an asbestos worker,” Jimmie Vaughan said, “I was 13 and I was playing during the summer at $150 a week. That was more money than he was making.”

In 1983, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Albert King would release a blues album together titled, “In Session: Albert King and Stevie Ray Vaughan.”

Away from the 1980s mainstream MTV pop and rock, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s blues-rock guitar riffs in songs like “Pride & Joy” and “Crossfire” electrified both American and international audiences while garnering six Grammy Awards; some of which are on display. The unique sounds coming out of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s Number One Fender Strat always were able to bridge generations old and young. Weldon Ponder, a museum visitor, came to the museum to check out the exhibit before bringing his wife to see it, whom is a big fan of Stevie Ray Vaughan.

“There were big fans of Stevie Ray Vaughan that were a generation younger than me, and I’ve bought a couple albums,” Ponder said. “I kinda got interested in it because people were talking about what a great guitarist he was.” 

While exploring the exhibit, the sound of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s blues melodies and soulful lyrics play over the stereo.

“To bring all of this together from Stevie Ray Vaughan’s music is incredible, seeing what an amazing guitar player Stevie was, he is an inspiration,” Nathan Garcia, a Stevie Ray Vaughan and patron said.