The annual awards process on STAR BLUES is our way of marking the ways blues has made our year special - we arbitrarily divide it into four categories:
ARTIST. Jontavious Willis has a rare combination of voice and guitar that rocked me on my heels the first time I heard it. His playing has the same attack I heard in Muddy's Plantation recordings and the phrasing in his singing seems to come from a much older man. His gifts are still evolving, he respects and appreciates what has gone before without artifice.
ALBUM. The high performance style of blues was typical of the James Cotton Band live, Slam Allen played guitar for him for eight years and he is now front and centre for a project in the same vein. "Feel These Blues" is the third album under his own name and it delivers in spades from first to last. The form is often badly played by axe migrants from rock: twenty hard years on the Chitlin circuit ensure Slam Allen can rise above that.
LABEL. With well regarded, and much played, albums from Mississippi Heat, Omar Coleman and Jimmy Burns the Delmark imprint this year enabled and inspired the artists on its roster. That it has done the same thing since 1953 is remarkable. Its canon of work is also treated with loving care and forms an ongoing reissue programme which recently put out JB Hutto's "Hawk Squat".
REISSUE. In an ever competitive arena, the Ace label clearly goes that bit further with its well-tended output. Their "By the Bayou" and Ric/Ron projects mark a historical document not previously attempted; recent anthologies on Wynonie Harris and Tampa Red are everything a fan could want and more: top notch research, rarities, memorobilia and session details. Their ethical treatment of royalties further sets them apart from many others.
|V8 Ford||Eugene Hideaway Bridges||6||Hold on a Little Bit Longer||Eugene Hideaway Bridges||[ 3 mins 51 secs ]||Eugene Hideaway Bridges|
|hustle is on||T-Bone Walker||3||Get the Blues Off Me||T-Bone Walker||Jasmine||[ 0 mins 0 secs ]||T-Bone Walker|
|Dimples||D.C. Bellamy||8||Water to Wine||D.C. Bellamy||Rooster Blues Records||[ 4 mins 43 secs ]||D.C. Bellamy|
|alley cat blues||mississippi heat||2||warning shot||mississippi heat||delmark|
|Big Money Problem||Jimmy Burns||1||It Ain't Right||Jimmy Burns||DELMARK||[ 3 mins 27 secs ]||Jimmy Burns|
|Born and Raised||Omar Coleman||10||Born & Raised||Omar Coleman||DELMARK||[ 4 mins 5 secs ]||Omar Coleman|
|Too Much Pride||J. B Hutto||3||Hawk Squat||J. B Hutto||DELMARK||[ 3 mins 54 secs ]||J. B Hutto|
|Jump Jack, Jump!||Wynona Carr||5||Ain't Gonna Hush: the Queens of Rhythm & Blues||Various Artists||Fantastic Voyage||[ 2 mins 17 secs ]||Wynona Carr|
|Tough Lover||Etta James||17||Ain't Gonna Hush: the Queens of Rhythm & Blues||Various Artists||Fantastic Voyage||[ 2 mins 12 secs ]||Etta James|
|The Madison Shuffle||Buster Brown||4||I'm Going But I'll Be Back||Buster Brown||Jasmine||[ 0 mins 0 secs ]||Buster Brown|
|Lookin' for My Baby||Little Milton||6||Chicago Blues and Soul Via Memphis and St. Louis, His Early Years 1953 - 1962||Little Milton||Jasmine Records||[ 2 mins 53 secs ]||Little Milton|
|Ain't it the Truth Now||Eddie Bo||9||Baby I'm Wise||Eddie Bo||ACE||[ 2 mins 18 secs ]||Eddie Bo|
|Lollipop Mama||Wynonie Harris||10||Don't You Want to Rock? The Acetate Masters||Wynonie Harris||ACE||[ 2 mins 48 secs ]||Wynonie Harris|
|So Crazy About You, Baby||Tampa Red||5||Dynamite! the Unsung King of the Blues||Tampa Red||ACE||[ 3 mins 3 secs ]||Tampa Red|
|Too Proud||Mighty Sam McClain||2||Give it Up to Love||Mighty Sam McClain||AUDIOQUEST||[ 4 mins 38 secs ]||Mighty Sam McClain|
|YOU UPSET ME BABY||B B KING||1-2||BLUES IN TRANSITION||B B KING||JASMINE|
|Outskirts of Love||Shemekia Copeland||1||Outskirts of Love||Shemekia Copeland||Alligator Records||[ 4 mins 5 secs ]||Shemekia Copeland|
|MISSISSIPPI||Eddie Cotton||10||One at a Time||Eddie Cotton||DEChamp||[ 4 mins 42 secs ]||Eddie Cotton|
|Pick a Bale of Cotton||Eric Bibb And Jean-Jacques Milteau||9||Lead Belly's Gold||Eric Bibb And Jean-Jacques Milteau||[ 2 mins 56 secs ]||Eric Bibb And Jean-Jacques Milteau|
|Have You Ever Loved a Woman||Guy Davis||10||Kokomo Kidd||Guy Davis||[ 4 mins 8 secs ]||Guy Davis|
|When the Blues Come Around||Slam Allen||9||Feel These Blues||Slam Allen||AMERICAN SHOWPLACE||[ 3 mins 55 secs ]||Slam Allen|
|The Blues is Back||Slam Allen||4||Feel These Blues||Slam Allen||americN SHOWPLACE||[ 3 mins 27 secs ]||Slam Allen|
|Ain't No Tellin'||Brownie McGhee||3||The Complete Brownie Mcghee||Brownie McGhee||COLUMBIA||[ 2 mins 53 secs ]||Brownie McGhee|
|Big Bill Blues||Duke Robillard||2||The Acoustic Blues & Roots of Duke Robillard||Duke Robillard||Vizztone||[ 3 mins 35 secs ]||Duke Robillard|
|Crow Jane||Jontavious Willis||2||Jontavious Willis||Jontavious Willis||[ 3 mins 8 secs ]||Jontavious Willis|
|LUCY MAE||Jontavious Willis||1||Jontavious Willis||Jontavious Willis||[ 3 mins 22 secs ]||Jontavious Willis|