Sunday, 13 May 2012

STAR BLUES on 13th May 2012 at 22:00

In the same STAR BLUES I disqualified myself from the running list for a blues Oscar and I stated a strong claim for a knighthood. The BMAs were awarded last week and we played some winners last night (the Howlin Wolf project on Rhino won reissue album prize, and Charlie Musselwhite and Ruthie Foster won gongs in Traditional Blues (Male and Female) categories. I pointed out that just like the film Oscars it was more about high profile sales than artistic merit with most BMA winners also being suitable to win in a rock category. Bang goes me getting one for radio/broadcast. Like I care.

My forthcoming knighthood was however all but secured by playing Price Phillip singing 'Keep On Talking" from the vaults of the Fame studios as discovered by Kent label. (It might not be the father of our heir to the throne but good enough surely?)

Late breaking news two hours before STAR BLUES was that legendary bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn had died in Tokyo not long after completing two shows there. Though a well known figure after his pipe-smoking laidback cameo appearances in two Blues Brothers films, he was oh so much more than that - the self taught player had his own style that first came to notice as part of Booker T & the MGs and we had two of their instrumentals to showcase his work: "Soul Limbo" and "Time Is Tight". His work with drummer Al Jackson made them the non-pariel engine room for soul/rock/blues in my humble pie. "Born under a Bad Sign" is the title track to the most essential blues album of all time by Albert King - the session is no more than Booker T & MGs plus Albert King. We honoured Duck Dunn by its inclusion as show closer last night on STAR BLUES

Other shock and sadness was the death on Sunday 6th of Michael Burks: a big man with a big guitar sound and warn soulful voice He was just 54 and had just finished work on as fourth album for Alligator, due July. His nickname was "Iron Man" earned from the punishing schedule of live work he took on and the length and quality of his gigs. The essence of his greatness was being able to combine a marvellously fluid solo style with the core of blues, he was never a rock guitarist in disguise. I thought he was the first since Luther Allison to own that corner of blues - I wrote a feature on him for Blues & Rhythm magazine in 1999 which I think was the first UK piece, I can't believe he's gone.........................

Taj Mahal has been celebrating his 70th birthday for a while now, the day is coming up this week and we looked back to his 1971 live recording at the Fillmore East of one of his own songs "Mailbox Blue". The great songster troubadour is alive and well and being practised by Guy Davis, who remarkably turned 60 on Saturday 12th. He is a genuinely nice man with an engaging style of singing and playing; we let him prove it last night on "Madison and the Pigs".

Big Joe Turner's 100th anniversary was a bit swamped last year by the similar milestone reached by Robert Johnson; hopefully his fans will feel the balance was somewhat redressed yesterday on STAR BLUES now he would have been 101.

A slew of new releases has just arrived: RJ Mischo, The Mannish Boys and Mud Morganfield - the latter features a gloriously imperious vocal from Muddy Waters' oldest son, lovely harp and production by Bob Corritore. I also had new projects from Eddie Martin and Maharaja Blues, reissues from the Fame Studios, the King R&B and Mississippi Ace labels. STAR BLUES just ran out of time but there's a good starting lineup for next weeks STAR BLUES. We'll try and squeeze in another quart into our pint pot at 10-pm (BST) Sunday next, until then take care of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you

W.C. Handy Sang The Blues Roy Gaines 6 New Frontier Lover Roy Gaines SEVERN
Ya Ya Sonny Rhodes 7 Disciple Of The Blues Sonny Rhodes Wild Dog
Soul Limbo Booker T & The M.G's 1 Stax Gold Various Artists STAX
time is tight Booker T & The M.G's 7 Stax Gold various artists stax
I Asked For Water Howlin' Wolf 3 Howlin' Wolf / The Wolf Is At Your Door: The Singles 1951-1960 Howlin' Wolf Jasmine
Clarksdale Getaway Charlie Musselwhite 11 The Well Charlie Musselwhite Alligator
(You Keep Me) Movin' On Ruthie Foster 3 Live At Antones Ruthie Foster Blue Corn
goin up the country and paint my mailbox blue Taj Mahal 4 The Real Thing Taj Mahal Blue Label / SPV
Just Blues Carl Marshall 1 Going Back to the Blues Carl Marshall
Shake Rattle & Roll Big Joe Turner 11 greatest hits Big Joe Turner SEQUEL
Blues in The Night Big Joe Turner 3 I dont Dig It Big Joe Turner MR R&B
Put The Hammer Down Gary Primich With Omar Dykes 2 Just A Little Bit More [Disc 1] Gary Primich With Omar Dykes Old Pal
Talk To Me Baby Michael Burks 3 From The Inside Out Michael Burks VENT RECORDS
Hit The Ground Running Michael Burks 1 Make It Rain Michael Burks Alligator
changed man michael burks 12 iron man - best of michael burks alligator
Willie Mae Blues Billy Boy Arnold 7 Billy Boy Arnold Sings: Big Bill Broonzy Billy Boy Arnold Electro-Fi
keep on talkin prince phillip 9 hall of fame various artists kent
you dont know me thomas Reverend Crum 1 screamin Gospel Holy Rollers (Vol 1) Various Artists VEETONE
somethings gotta hold on me soul seekers 18 screamin Gospel Holy Rollers (Vol 2) Various Artists VEETONE
short dress woman mud morganfield 1 seventh son mud morganfield severn
Mean old world Mannish Boys, The 2 Double Dynamite Mannish Boys, The
Up to the Brim R J Mischo 9 Make it good R J Mischo DELTA GROOVE
Madison And The Pigs Guy Davis 8 Stomp Down Rider Guy Davis RED HOUSE
Born Under A Bad Sign Albert King 7 King of The Blues Guitar Albert King ATLANTIC
Created: 13/05/2012 23:54:32

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