The Bo Diddley Interview
Bo on Drugs & Economics
SG: How do you deal with the industry and remain separate? They seem to offer all
this gold and glory but is it really there?
BD: Itís all phony. I see people everyday going from bad to worse. I donít necessarily knock
people that smoke grass. But, Iím down on the pill-poppers and the dummy-dust. I call cocaine and all that other
powdered crap dummy-dust. There are so many other things that you can do rather than sit around somewhere getting
high and ruining your life. When youíre thirty five years old the world did it to you. You adopt this idea that
society fucked you up. Society did nothing to you, you did it to yourself. Itís like a lot of youngsters standing
around, talk shit, talk about whatís happening and saying ďMan you know can have a hit of a...Ē. And I look at them
and say ďHey get off your milk crate and go get yourself a job and try to save you some bread because itís later than
you think. Youíre short time here and a long time gone. Try and make the best of it while youíre here. Why stand on
the corner and try to preach to somebody that ainít listening to you in the first place. You spend twelve years in
school, another ten years bullshitting, and another ten years on street corners. Thirty years are gone already and
you ainít got but twenty more to get something. Because by the time youíre fifty itís all starting downhill if you
ainít got your shit together. When youíre fifty years old everybody starts shying the other way. This is the way
SG: : What about economics?
BD: The average working man really donít know how this mess got this way.
Why? Because his nose is to the grindstone from 8:30 to 4:30 and then on the bus fighting to get home, fall in the chair,
sit down and read the paper, look at the TV, get in the bed, get back up the next morning, heís back out there again, kids
hollering at him, and his old lady is freaking him out. All of a sudden the cat is forty five years old, maybe a couple
of thousand dollars he done scrapped to sneak and save, good education and a good trade. You take this guy with five kids
and another with no kids, maybe heís not married, theyíre both working at the same factory. The one with no kids has got
a little more going upstairs so he moves up to be an executive. The other guy is still a laborer but he has got the trade.
The executive has to come down and tell him, they both got the job at the same time, that he moved up because he took something
else in school which made him a step higher with his trade. Both are considered laborers but one is on a different level. Just
like you take two saxophone players or two guitar players, and I know cats out there that play guitar way better than I do,
they make me put my shit up! And they donít have one thing: Showmanship. You got that showmanship and if it clicks with the
public you got it made. If it clicks with the boss you got it made. The boss is looking for production. When I hit the
stage I try to produce the best I know how. Thatís what I try to give people. I donít go on stage to show off a suit,
or a new square guitar, I go up there to do the best I know how with whatever I got to work with meaning other musicians
and thatís all I can do. If I have some good cats working with me that are smiling
and jumping around on stage Iíll destroy the place. Because energy comes out. Itís the same for the dude working in the
factory. If he shows the boss energy that catís going to go to the meeting and say ďWe need to put him up on the third
floor, cause that guy there can get some work turned out. I believe heíll make it cause the people up there will like it
and theyíll work together.Ē You put a shitty boss where people donít like him the work comes out shitty. Thatís one of
the things that are wrong, the product comes out bad because people are trying slave drive folks today. Thatís all gone.
Slave driving is over.
Computers sounded like a great idea, in fact it was. When they introduced computers into the US as a new machine
that was going to revolutionize everything it sounded great and everybody looked for the day when they didnít have to work
so hard because this machine was going to do the work of ten men. But they werenít thinking about where those ten men were
going after the machine took their jobs. I donít know how to run this country, Iíve said this quite a few times, but it
donít take a genius to tell when somethingís fucked up.