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Half of 60s Phoenix soul duo plucked from obscurity


Half of 60s Phoenix soul duo plucked from obscurity

“I’ll need to get a ride with you," said Ernie out of the middle of nowhere. We were waiting for his turn to sing Karaoke at the AmVet Post #15 at 7th St. and Broadway in South Phoenix Wednesday night. "I live at 13th and Pima on the west side,” he followed. "I wish I would have known you were going to need a ride, Ernie," I said. "I have to leave early, before you sing the last time, sorry."

He walked from there and would walk "home" - more like a backyard to put his stuff and sometimes a night on the couch in the house - a round trip of nearly 7 miles. I left without taking him since I needed to quickly get back to Phoenix to watch another band play before the bars shut down. The next day I asked him if he was able to find a ride and he said, "I started walking and a friend of mine saw me and picked me up. He said, Man you walk fast. Aren’t you tired? I said no, I walk this 2 or 3 times a day."

..........can find rest of a long and lengthy article here complete with  photos


...... ending with the footnote

When he asked if I was going to pay him for interviewing him I explained that the interview wasn’t going to be broadcast so there would be no gratuity, but hopefully the story might generate a few sales of the CD, which would trickle down to him eventually. To this he said rather cryptically “Yeah, somebody should hear and feel and know.”

Pan out on the Wednesday night Karaoke at the AmVet Post #15 where Ernie Sweetwater Johnson can be found, working the room in more ways than one and enjoying the momentary spotlight. Picture he and I, seated at a long table waiting for his turn, when an impressive female singer starts tearing it up on the mic. Sweetwater turned to me and said, “She can sing good too. Sweetwater and you aint the only superstars in the house

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