Five Firsts: Albert Cummings

Albert Cummings
Albert Cummings

NAME: Albert Cummings
INSTRUMENT: Guitar/Vocals

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … Hank Williams Jr.’s “Man of Steel.” I used to love Hank. I also listened to the Stray Cats, as well as Stevie Ray Vaughan when “Texas Flood” came out.

2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … Waylon Jennings. My dad took my friend and I. I think it was at the Palace. I used to go to a lot of bluegrass festivals as well, but that really isn’t a concert. My best concert was seeing Stevie Ray at the Orpheum Theater in Boston. That was the night I decided to play guitar!

3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … Trumpet. I used to be in the band all thru school. We used to have those suits for the marching band that looked and smelled like 1960.

4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” on my five-string banjo. It was a talent show for the Lions Club. I won the show and got to be on TV in Boston on Channel 5. Very cool for a 12-year-old.

5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … The Swamp Yankees. This was my first group. It is a term used down south that apparently means “white trash.” It wasn’t long after that I learned how fast musicians come and go, so I changed the name to just Albert Cummings.

Williamstown’s own blues guitar hero Albert Cummings – the man and his band – fire up a night of some serious blues-rockin’ at MASS MoCA’s Hunter Center in North Adams at 8pm on Friday. Tix are $15 in advance; $18 at the door; $10 for students.

1 Comment
  1. Joel Patterson says

    I remember recording the Swamp Yankees back in… sheesh… 1994? They were the openers for a Kansas show down in the basement of Mass MOCA… and they lit the place on fire! Whereas the Kansas set was– how to put it– I mean, they were real good and everything– just that– there was something sad and wistful about it all, no matter what they did they would always be rooted firmly in the past, while Albert and the boys were clearly up-and-coming. (Hey, cool pun!)

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