George Hendricks was born in Alabama in 1942 and moved to Cleveland at the age of 7. He is a singer with The Hesitations and has been performing music since he was a teenager. This 2009 interview discusses his long career as a professional R & B musician in Cleveland, describing the bands and the places in which he played, his struggles to make money playing music, and how he feels the nature of both the musicians and the music industry as a whole have changed since the 1960s. A recurrent theme in the interview is the issue of racism, which Hendricks experienced both in the South and in Cleveland. He argues strongly about the ability of music to bring whites and blacks together, seeing his experiences playing music to interracial crowds as proof of this.
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This collection of interviews covers topics of race relations and rock and roll music in Cleveland between 1952 and 1966. The interviews were conducted by Dana Aritonovich as she researched her thesis – The Only Common Thread: Race, Youth, and the Everyday Rebellion of Rock and Roll, Cleveland, Ohio, 1952-1966 – in pursuit of a Master of Arts in History at Cleveland State University, which was successfully completed in 2010. Interview subjects are music fans, musicians, and disc jockeys from…