“If we’re going to bring a blues artist, who is the best?” she said. “That person is Buddy Guy.”
Guy has influenced artists and fellow guitarists like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan, among many others.
John Brackett, a lecturer in the music department, said Guy’s guitar timbres distinguished him from other blues artists at the time and led him to dominate the ’60s and early ’70s.
“Buddy Guy’s playing is dangerous,” he said. “There is an excitement to it, a danger to it, a seductive type of sound to it. And that is the essence to rock.”
The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer has received six Grammy Awards, a 2015 Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award, Billboard’s Century Award for distinguished artistic achievement, the Presidential National Medal of Arts and 34 Blues Music Awards, the most of any artist.
Whyte said Guy’s performance has generated a lot of excitement.
Attendees can expect a high-energy performance with 90 straight minutes of Guy performing. There will be no opening act and no intermission, which will allow concert-goers to delve straight into the music.
Whyte said Guy will likely play a mix of his older hits and new tunes from his latest album.
As of Wednesday night, 98 percent of the tickets had been sold, including all of the $10 student tickets, faculty and staff tickets, which make up about 30 percent of the total.
Although student tickets are sold out, Whyte expects more to become available closer to show time, especially with the forecasted rain this weekend.
“We are fortunate to have a very interested and engaged student body, as well as faculty and staff,” she said.
First-year Malik Jabati plans to attend the event with a group of friends.
“It seems like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” he said. “It’s nice to see a legend alive and in person.”
Whyte said seeing 79-year-old Guy perform could be a life-altering experience.
“This could be seen as history in the making,” she said.