Though the Twin Cities lost the local R&B legend Willie Murphy earlier this week, he is far from forgotten. From fans and fellow Minnesotan musicians alike, here are just a few of the tributes to the “godfather” of the Minneapolis music scene that have spread on social media since the musician’s death.
Willie also told us about the history of the West Bank scene after the 400 Bar closed in 2013. https://t.co/NWCw0dhd05
— Andrea Swensson (@SlingshotAnnie) January 13, 2019
Peace out old man…it was cool to do a set or two with you!
Always dug the chat I had with Willie Murphy back in 2012 for that Twin Cities Funk & Soul comp. RIP Brother 🙏https://t.co/VQK7XUagkB
— Danny Sigelman (@paper_sleeves) January 13, 2019
Woke up to sad news today. My old friend Willie Murphy passed away. He played on my first albums, he was Bonnie Raitts first producer and backing band Wilie Murphy and the Bumblebees. R.I.P Wilie Murphy
RIP Willie Murphy. I was just studying his work for the vinyl release at the library. Legend. https://t.co/HoD3zadUl8
— Toki Wright (@mrwrighttc) January 13, 2019
— Dark River Lion (@darkriverlion) January 14, 2019
R.I.P. Willie Murphy: music pioneer, Minnesota music legend, and master musician. Your contribution will not be forgotten.
Willie Murphy was my introduction to Minneapolis' West Bank R.I.P. Willie https://t.co/HhpuCmdLpI
— David Daniels (@rootswriter) January 13, 2019
Damn. The first guy I got into when I happened upon the West Bank music scene. The king of the 400 Bar and a man of impeccable taste in music. RIP Willie.
— Barry Thomas Goldberg (@barrytgoldberg) January 13, 2019
It is with a heavy heart that we share the tragic news that Willie Murphy has passed away. We had turned to him for…
Willie MurphyThank you everyone who checked in yesterday about Willie, either on FB or on the phone. I learned from…
RIP Willie Murphy pic.twitter.com/FYYQ2zRmO0
— Zen Warrior Beret (@zenwarriorberet) January 14, 2019
We lost another great musician the legendary Willie Murphy…RIP https://t.co/LbDhGeJyEH
— RDOLSON (@RDOLSON) January 13, 2019
So sad to hear the news of the passing of Willie Murphy, a Mpls music legend who rubbed elbows with Janis Joplin and so many legends of Rock n Roll! https://t.co/5ad1u5KuMh
— Skydoll (@skydollband) January 13, 2019
I hope you're out there smiling somewhere, Willie Murphy.
— Terry Walsh (@belfastcowboy) January 13, 2019
:( godspeed Willie Murphy 💜
— theyself (@theyself) January 13, 2019
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As a young and very impressionable musician, alone home from college on a winter break, I wandered into the OLD 400 Bar one weeknight, before they had knocked out the wall and made the larger music room. . It was packed wall to wall with the throbbing drinking smoking puking shouting talking singing tapestry of the West Bank at the time. The sound and the smell was indelible. . The only spot in the entire joint, and it was still a true joint then, was the stool just at the end of the bar on the far side of the room, right in front of the tiny stage. I struggled my way to get there, jostling and excusing and poking, and there was a calliope of Actual Folk Blues Boogie oozing and clanking from the tiny stage, accompanying my every bumble and stumble. . I got to the stool, ordered a beer, most likely lit a camel light, swiveled around and after about 3 minutes everything else behind me disappeared. The demon thrashing and dancing solo at the upright piano, drinking directly from his pitcher of beer, assaulting the microphone with stealthy power had enthralled me completely. I later found out it was Willie Murphy. . It was a flat-out tour de force of musical history and a passionate fusion of musical traditions. It both honored all those traditions, but then set them on their ear at the same time. I loved that. I internalized that. It was The Real Thing. . Thank you Willie Murphy. Rest In Peace. No. Maybe Remain Restless In Peace. . 🖤 #fathomlane #williemurphy #legend #rip #minneapolis #minneapolismusic #minnesotamusic #inspiration #therealdeal #willieandthebees #tribute #hero
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Minneapolis icon Willie Murphy has passed on. This double 45 was my introduction to his work. Found it years ago before I knew anything about him or his place in the Minneapolis music scene. So long Willie, and thanks for all the great music! . . . . . #williemurphy #willieandthebumblebees #willieandthebees #minneapolismusic #minneapolismusicscene #minneapolismusicians #66highwayparts12and3 #toomanydrivers #records #vinyl #vinylrecords #recordcollectors #recordcollecting #vinyllove #vinylcommunity #diggininthecrates #レコード #blues
— Chemisty Set Mpls (@ChemistrySetMN) January 14, 2019
Palmer's Bar posted on Facebook that Willie Murphy has died. Pour one out. – "A musician has always been a marginal person in society, I think, which is why I don’t get any Social Security. I’ve never had a job.” https://t.co/B0io5PNtyp
— Matt Helgeson (@MattHelgeson) January 13, 2019
— Brett Anderson (@BrettEats) January 14, 2019
— Sofie Reed (@SofieReed) January 13, 2019
Gonna listen to as much of the Willie Murphy canon as possible today. This is a great place to start, a really fun record!
Wow some sad news Coming out of Minnesota's Blues Seen this Morning…Mr West Bank himself has Passed Away..The White…