Also sitting in the crowd was Jackson Brown, and unlike the booing fans, the two musical legends were impressed. SVR was a nobody but they saw an electric blues musician playing his heart out. Despite the boos SVR didn't flinch and the live recording won him one of six career Grammys - the only Grammy in history with boos on it.
Three years later he returned to the Montreux Jazz Fest and received a hero's welcome. The crowd screamed and cheered for the man who'd become a superstar and was now recognised as one of the best blues/rock musicians in the world. Rolling Stone ranked him the #7 guitarist of all time, but many of the top 100 guitarists still alive claimed that he should have been #1.
He also shares a slice of history with Marilyn Monroe. The story goes that a studio executive once said about Marilyn, "She could even make a potato sack look sexy." 20th Century Fox promptly put together a photo shoot to prove him right (below).
The photos became very famous very quickly and were the subject of discussion between Bowie, Stevie Wonder and a few others sitting backstage at an awards show. SVR's music also came up and Bowie said, "If she could make a sack look good I bet SVR could make Mary had a Little Lamb sound good." SVR was told about their chat and laid down the track a week or so later. It was such a hit that he made it a regular part of his shows. And yes, we know it's funny that Stevie Wonder was talking about photos.
SVR died in 1990 in a tragic helicopter accident. Stevie Wonder, Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt sang "Amazing Grace" at his funeral; Nile Rodgers gave a eulogy; while a member of the Nightcrawlers read chapters five and eleven from The Big Book - a self-help guide by Alcoholics Anonymous. In 1995 the Vaughan family received an undisclosed settlement for his wrongful death. Stupid helicopters.