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John Lee Hooker, Jr. has a simple plan for celebrating the inauguration.

“I’ll have a box of tissues here—no, a handkerchief—but I’ll be sitting on the couch, man, and relaxing and watching history be made.”

The son of the Boogie Man knows a thing or two about “change we can believe in.” After a precocious childhood on the Detroit blues circuit—and backing up his dad on tour and on wax—the would-be bluesman fell off the wagon, hard, and languished through broken relationships and crippling addiction for what he describes on his Web site as “many, many years.”

In 2004, though, he came back with a vengeance—Blues with a Vengeance, to be precise, the Grammy-nominated debut record that marked his return to the path of righteousness.

Now, with his ’08 album All Odds Against Me he’s up for another Traditional Blues Grammy, and has crafted a new superhero persona for himself: Bluesman.

“Ever since I was a kid I always wanted to fight for truth and justice—fighting the pimps and rescuing the prostitutes and the damsels in distress,” Hooker Jr. said in a phone interview from his home in California. “Ironically, I got on the wrong side of justice. So I thought how fulfilling it would be for my dream to come true through animation.”*

[Video and more below the jump.] “People Want a Change,” one of the animated music vids off the enhanced verson of All Odds, features Hooker Jr. as Bluesman leading a grassroots movement to the lawn of the White House (where George W. Bush, styled like a James Bond-type villain, waits, flaccid and apprehensive). With an opening horn flourish that drops like post-Superfly blaxplo-funk, the song rallies the grassroots and bemoans the recession with lines like “Tax cuts for the rich / Ain’t that a bitch?” and “Is there a casket on craigslist?”

“This video shows the other side of Bluesman—he’s not just a hero, he’s an activist for national issues,” Hooker Jr. said.

As for the Grammy nomination—which pits him against heavyweights like B.B. King and Buddy Guy—Hooker doesn’t sound too stressed. “I’ll just say it like this, man: It’s great to be a little person in the company of giants. Just imagine this: an itty-bitty man up against B.B. King and Buddy Guy.”

And true to the sentiment of his album title, Hooker is finding inspiration from a familiar role model. “That’s the name of the CD: All Odds Against Me. And you may laugh, but that’s what the country did during the campaign—picked the best person in the country. Against all odds.”

Trouble viewing? Try callicore.com!

*Hooker Jr. also made a delicate admission about Bluesman: “Actually, I don’t know why they call him a superhero—if Bluesman gets shot in the leg, he’ll have to go to the hospital. Everyone knows he’s not inhuman.”