Courtesy Washington Post
By John Kelly
It had been a long time since Mike McLaughlin thought about the hot summer night in 1978 when guitarists George Thorogood and the Nighthawks’ Jimmy Thackery crossed a busy Georgetown street and briefly switched places in each other’s bands during a raucous performance of “Madison Blues.”
Then last year Mike was going through some old photos and found himself staring at the past. There he was at the Cellar Door nightclub with Jackie Miles, his future wife, and his DeMatha buddies Mike Morley, Pat Quigley and George Koebke. There was Thorogood, sweatily hunched over a hollow-body Gibson.
“I don’t remember who came up with the idea [to go to the Cellar Door show],” said Mike, of Laurel, Md. “I know we were all big music fans and Thorogood fans.”
The Cellar Door was a legendary spot at 34th and M, across the street from Desperado’s. The two bands — the Nighthawks and Thorogood’s Destroyers — had prearranged the stunt. “The M Street Shuffle” it came to be called. Or “The Duel on M Street.”