Monday, 4 April 2011

STAR BLUES on 3rd April 2011 at 22:00

Our playlist on last night's STAR BLUES gave us a chance to congratulate two independent record labels on remarkable anniversaries - I only hope we did them justice, with all the tracks being alternately from Alligator (now 40 years in the business) and Arhoolie (with an additional ten years).

The link back to last week's "Fake ID" took us to one of the biggest selling blues albums of them all: "Showdown!" by Robert Cray, Johnny Copeland and Albert Collins. The Hop Wilson composition "Black Cat Bone was something Collins and Copeland laid down on the first night before Cray showed up". Our closing link featured Shemekia Copeland, Johnny's daughter and the end of the chain so far...

The "You Me & 1001 Blues" piece we did at half past ten told the tale of Bruce Iglauer's passion to record Hound Dog Taylor that lead to Alligator's birth. It was fitting we had another piece at half past eleven looking into Chris Strachwitz' quest to record Lightnin' Hopkins in a juke joint that took a diversion by way of some lovely playing from Mance Lipscomb. In addition to sharing a hard won independence, both labels have strong communal spirit with small staff rosters and big family spirit. Mavis Staples and Fred McDowell held down the gospel tent and Professor Longhair and Robert Shaw showed off fabulous keyboard skills for the piano feature. Longhair's album proved to be his last while R L Burnside was on hand with one of his earliest pieces gathered on an anthology of 1960's Mississippi Blues. Chris couldn't spell the French name of Clifton Chenier's song so they settled simply for "Louisiana Blues" and Alligator was happy to act as the American outlet for a French album recorded by the old sparring partners Buddy Guy and Junior Wells.

There were folks I'd ear marked to play (Koko Taylor, John Jackson etc) that will have to await a catchup selection - both labels had fascinating stories to tell. Our music is immeasurably richer for their contributions and I hope last night's STAR BLUES gave a small taster. I've another white tee-shirt for next Sunday's show, until then take care of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you.

Black Cat BoneAlbert Collins&Johnny Copeland[1-3]The 20th Anniversary Collection - Various Artists{- -}
Pontiac BluesSonny Boy Williamson (Aka Rice Miller)[1-1]American Masters Vol. 2 : Urban Blues - Various Artists{- -}
Been Gone Too LongBilly Boy Arnold[1-16]25th Anniversary Collection - Various Artists{- -}
Anna LeeEarl Hooker[1-4]American Masters Vol. 2 : Urban Blues - Various Artists{- -}
Going HomeSon Seals[1-11]Alligator Records 40th Anniversary (2Xcd) - Various Artists{- -}
Poor Black MattieR. L. Burnside[1-14]American Masters Vol. 1 : Country Blues - Various Artists{- -}
Ain't Got NobodyHound Dog Taylor[1-1]Deluxe Edition - Hound Dog Taylor{- -}
Wild, Wild WomanJohnny Young[1-1]Chicago Blues - Johnny Young{- -}
Burn Your BridgesCephas & Wiggins[1-7]Crucial Harmonica Blues - Various Artists{- -}
Mercury BluesK. C. Douglas[1-2]Journey Of Chris Strachwitz (40 Years Of Arhoolie Records) - Various Artists{- -}
When A Guitar Plays The BluesRoy Buchanan[1-10]The Alligator Blues Sampler - Various Artists{- -}
Louisiana BluesClifton Chenier[1-25]Journey Of Chris Strachwitz (40 Years Of Arhoolie Records) - Various Artists{- -}
Red Beans aka I Got My Mojo WorkingProfessor Longhair[2-8]Alligator Records 40th Anniversary (2Xcd) - Various Artists{- -}
The Ma GrinderRobert Shaw[1-7]Arhoolie Presents American Masters, Vol. 8: 15 Piano Blues & Boogie Classics - Various Artists{- -}
Step Into The LightMavis Staples[2-11]Alligator Records 40th Anniversary (2Xcd) - Various Artists{- -}
'bout A SpoonfulMance Lipscomb[1-5]American Masters Vol. 1 : Country Blues - Various Artists{- -}
Give Me My Coat And ShoesBuddy Guy & Junior Wells[1-12]Alligator Records 40th Anniversary (2Xcd) - Various Artists{- -}
Keep Your Lamp Trimmed And BurningFred McDowell & Johnny Woods[1-13]15 Down Home Gospel Classics - Various Artists{- -}
Better Not TouchShemekia Copeland[1-6]Deluxe Edition - Shemekia Copeland{- -}

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