Heartiest congratulations to the Mighty Mark Peters and Lisa this past week, both up late at nights with new son Harrison to ensure his daily routine includes a weekly dose of STAR BLUES. To mark the celebration we had James Armstrong on hand with “Slender Man Blues” and Lady Bianca’s rollicking “Baby’s Boogie”. By that time we’d already heard from Otis Grand, Joe Louis Walker and Johnny Rawls – a starting line-up you’d not match anywhere else.
Earl Gaines, Bobby Rush, and Bob Corritore brought new or recent albums, as did those chaps at the SPV label who have put out a nice anthology of Jump and R&B from 1940’s label Bullet Records. As well as Cecil Gant, Willie Dixon and Walter Davis they gave a start to an earnest young pup by the name of Riley King, wonder whatever happened to him? Johnnie Mae Marshall co-wrote “Gonna Send You Back to Georgia”, Timmy Shaw did it first but our back-to-back feature had versions from James Carr and Hound Dog Taylor about as different as you can imagine. Roy Roberts is a nice player with a warm throaty voice and anything by him is a welcome addition to the playlist and we caught Luther Allison in a rare acoustic mood in his living room. Mahalia Jackson held fast in the gospel tent and Red Miller’s Trio did the honours on a b-side for the piano feature.
Little Smokey Smothers died on Saturday and we passed on the sad news and remarked on his long-lasting friendship with Elvin Bishop – we’ll play something from it on next weeks show along with Elvin’s own album that has at long last arrived here. In the run up to Christmas, I’m putting the finishing, touches to Gary Blue’s Almanac 2011 the follow up to last years volume. As before there’ll be no charge, I’m just asking for a donation to benefit the MusicMaker charity if you like it and decide to keep it. Keep listening for more details. You made me welcome last night and I’d like to do it all again next Sunday at 10pm if you’ll have me – until then take care of your selves and take care of those that take care of you