Nope, not a misspelling. I was trying to tie together my last name [Hazeltine] with an element common to both photography and music [tones]. Mash together Hazeltine and Tones and you get.... www.HAZELTONES.com!
I may just be the luckiest guy in the whole world.
So as much as I feel fortunate to have made this collection of images over the years, it is the people I've met and befriended that have made the journey rich. These friendships, built around the scene, keep me alive.
In my early blues rat days I ventured out with Johnny, but that soon changed for a reason I can't recall... he might have moved or I might have had a girlfriend I was going to shows with... or some combination of the two. It wasn't until I joined the Boston Blues Society that I started to meet like-minded folks who
i'd see on a regular basis all over town. A fellow committee member on the BBS board told me that he had a friend that was just like me.... taking his camera to all the shows, went to Chicago every year for the blues festival.... and I thought well then, why haven't our paths crossed? Eventually I met his friend Jim Saley, and instantly we hit it off. A straight shooter with a wicked sense of humor and a no nonsense take no bullshit attitude, we became insuperable in the years when the House of Blues in Cambridge was in full swing. There's nobody like him and I feel blessed to call him my friend. I love him like a brother.
Earlier I mentioned that by joining thr Boston Blues Society my life had been forever changed. I credit Holly with the influence to get me on board at the BBS. We've remained friends since the late 1980's (seems impossible to think it was that long ago). Thank you Holly.
If you were a blues fan in Boston and didn't know Mai and her show, Blues After Hours, then you had to be living in a vacuum. When Johnny and I first started listening and going to shows, we'd catch the beginning of her show on our way out and then again to the end on our way home. In those days we didn't know the difference between any of the Kings; Albert BB nor Freddie. But we'd listen and try to guess. Eventually I went from being a quiet kid in the back of the room to joining the Boston Blujes Society doing some photography and a bit of writing (that was around 1989). One Friday night while listening to Mai's show I heard her put out the call for volunteers. I called and left my name. Soon, I got a return call, from Mai! A week or so later I was in the studio for a test run. I stayed for 10 years, until Mai's passing in 2002.
Johnny 'Bluesboy England' Horton English
Johnyy's BluesOur initial meeting was a one Johnny used to retell often. People would often remark that Johnny and I seemed like a mismatch. Johnny would tell them that we met in boyscouts. The reaction was always similar: "I can see Tommy in boyscouts, but not you!".
In 1978 Johnny and I, through a mutual friend ended up working for a small machine shop just outside of Central Square in Cambridge. We were young, 19-ish, and fully enjoying being able to legally get into clubs and have a drink or two. I was splitting my time between little blues bars and arena rock. Johnny was all in for R&B, soul and Blues.
Johnny found the Speakeasy one night, and became a regular visitor. That's where he met Dawna Rae. They soon paired up. The rest as they say, is history.
Johnny's 'Bluesboy" moniker came from Little Joe Cook himself. We'd attend those early years at the Cantab, and Joe Cook's jam. Johnny told Joe that he wanted to play, Joe asked him his name, Johnny English became Bluesboy England.