Blues Music: Bugs Henderson

Written by on March 31, 2015

blues music

Guitar Legend of Blues Music

Many of us know Buddy Henderson by his nickname “Bugs” Henderson. But many of us also know him as one of the greatest and most respected blues guitarists of the last 40 years. Henderson was born on October 20, 1943 in sunny Palm Springs, California where he later moved to Tyler, Texas. As a teen he worked at a record store in Texas, which as a result, made him fall in love with music. At the age of 16, he formed his first band called the Sensors. Soon after this he joined his good friend, Ronnie Weiss, in a band called Mouse and the Traps. This is also where he picked up his nickname “Bugs”. Mouse and the Traps charted their first regional radio hit “Public Execution” in 1966.

Even though he played in procession of rock bands and studio sessions for country and rock musicians, by the early 70’s Henderson realized he was only truly passionate for blues music. During the early 70’s he was the lead guitarist for the blues rock band Nitzinger, before forming the Shuffle Kings. His mentor and friend, legendary Freddie King, advised him to form his own band. By 1978 he released his first record, “At Last”, for Texas- based Armadillo Records. Bugs underwent a huge transformation from playing in small clubs to playing on stage opening up for artists such as the Allman Brothers, B.B. King and Leon Russell.

By the late 90’s Bugs Henderson was recording for the Portland, OR-based Burnside Records. He created many legendary albums for this label that included 1998’s “Have Blues… Must Rock” and “Backbop”. Other releases for this label include “Electric Snow”, “Stormy Love”, “Adventures of the Shuffle Kings” and “Gitarbazndrumz”.  During Henderson’s musical career he played with many blues music legends such as B.B King, Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters and Stevie Ray Vaughan. He also played with Rhythm and Blues saxophonist Don Wise and rock guitarist Ted Nugent.

Unfortunately, Buddy Henderson’s life was taken at the age of 69 due to liver cancer. You can still find Bug’s guitar hanging in Hard Rock Café in Dallas alongside instruments donated by Lee Ritenhower and Chet Atkins. Even though our fellow blues guitarist has past, his legendary music still remains today.  There is a new album that is dedicated to Bug’s with all his music “The King of Clubs” produced by Chuck Kavooras, along with many famous musicians including Jorgen Carlison of the Mule!  If you love Bugs Henderson’s famous blues music just as much as we do, then make sure to tune into Deep Jams live stream of awesome music to hear Henderson and many other tremendous musicians!

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