Clarence

Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown

Blues Texas Blues Rhythm And Blues Country New Orleans
Born in Vinton, Louisiana, Brown was raised in Orange, Texas. His professional musical career began in 1945, playing drums in San Antonio. He was nicknamed "Gatemouth" for his deep voice. He received note, and his fame took off, during a 1947 concert by T-Bone Walker in a Houston nightclub. When Walker became ill, Brown took up his guitar and played "Gatemouth Boogie," to the delight of the audience. He soon played guitar and other instruments, living primarily in Texas. More Info »

Top Albums

  • Pressure Cooker
    Pressure Cooker
  • The Original Peacock Recordings
    The Original Peacock Recordings
  • Standing My Ground
    Standing My Ground
  • Down South in the Bayou Country
    Down South in the Bayou Country
  • Back To Bogalusa
    Back To Bogalusa
  • Timeless
    Timeless
  • No Looking Back
    No Looking Back
  • Texas Swing
    Texas Swing
  • Essential Blues
    Essential Blues
  • American Music, Texas Style
    American Music, Texas Style
  • Just Got Lucky
    Just Got Lucky
  • Long Way Home
    Long Way Home
  • The Man
    The Man
  • Bogalusa Boogie Man
    Bogalusa Boogie Man
  • Gate's On The Heat
    Gate's On The Heat
  • Gates's On The Heat
    Gates's On The Heat
  • Alright Again!
    Alright Again!
  • Gate Swings
    Gate Swings
  • Blackjack
    Blackjack
  • San Antonio Ballbuster
    San Antonio Ballbuster
  • Clarence
    Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown in Concert
  • Real Life
    Real Life
  • Okie Dokie Stomp
    Okie Dokie Stomp
  • American Music Texas Style
    American Music Texas Style
  • Gate Swing
    Gate Swing
  • A Long Way Home
    A Long Way Home
  • His first recordings
    His first recordings
  • Flippin' Out
    Flippin' Out
  • Cold Storage
    Cold Storage
  • Black Jack
    Black Jack
  • Just Got Lucky (The Blues Collection disc 35)
    Just Got Lucky (The Blues Collection disc 35)
  • One More Mile
    One More Mile
  • Flippin' Out: Essential Recordings
    Flippin' Out: Essential Recordings
  • Man
    Man
  • Hot Times Tonight
    Hot Times Tonight
  • 1947-1951
    1947-1951
  • The Definitive Black & Blue Sessions: Sings Louis Jordan
    The Definitive Black & Blue Sessions: Sings Louis Jordan
  • 1952-1954
    1952-1954
  • His First Recordings 1947-1951
    His First Recordings 1947-1951
  • Alright Again
    Alright Again
  • Okie Dokie
    Okie Dokie
  • Midnight Hour
    Midnight Hour
  • Real Life
    Real Life

Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown. Artist Bio

Born in Vinton, Louisiana, Brown was raised in Orange, Texas. His professional musical career began in 1945, playing drums in San Antonio. He was nicknamed "Gatemouth" for his deep voice. He received note, and his fame took off, during a 1947 concert by T-Bone Walker in a Houston nightclub. When Walker became ill, Brown took up his guitar and played "Gatemouth Boogie," to the delight of the audience. He soon played guitar and other instruments, living primarily in Texas.

In the 1960s he moved to Nashville to participate in a syndicated R & B television show, and while he was there recorded several country singles. He struck up a friendship with Roy Clark and made several appearances on the television show Hee Haw. By the late 60s he had decided to leave the music business and he moved to New Mexico and became a deputy sheriff.

However, in the early 1970s several countries in Europe had developed an appreciation for American roots music, especially blues, and Brown was a popular and well-respected artist there. He toured Europe twelve times, beginning in 1971 and continuing throughout the 1970s. He also became an official ambassador for American music, and participated in several tours sponsored by the U.S. State Department, including an extensive tour of Eastern Africa. He moved to New Orleans in the late 1970s.

In September 2004, Brown was diagnosed with lung cancer. Already suffering from emphysema and heart disease, he and his doctors decided to forgo treatment. His home in Slidell, Louisiana, was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and he was evacuated to his childhood home town of Orange, Texas, where he died September 10 at his brother's home at the age of 81.

During his career, he played a wide variety of guitars, including Gibson L-5s and Fender Telecasters, but his trademark guitar was a mid-60s 'non-reverse' Gibson Firebird, customized with an embossed-leather cover featuring a rose and "Gatemouth," amongst other designs. His guitar style influenced many other blues guitarists such as Albert Collins, Guitar Slim, J.J.Cale, and Johnny "Guitar" Watson. Frank Zappa named Brown as his all-time favorite guitarist. He is also considered as one of the first guitarists to use a capo in his guitar technique. Although well-known in the American South and Southwest, Brown had trouble reaching a national audience, and recorded for several different small labels in the early part of his career. His most recent album, Timeless, was released in late 2004.

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