Sunday, 23 February 2014

STAR BLUES on 23rd February 2014 at 22:00 - building the roster of CBA

Just got Eddie Cotton's new album and had no hesitation in putting him onto our list of Current Blues Artists who play in the good old fashioned way. His guitar sounds evoke the best of Albert King and Robert Cray; he is now signed to Grady Champion's new label called Dechamp Records. The imprint also has JJ Thames with a new project that shows off her gospel sensibilities on the selection we made: the opening "Souled Out"; barely 30 she already has a strong presence. A while back there were a number of female blues singers trying to make headway by sounding like Koko Taylor, JJ is different as is Adrienna Marie. Front and centre to her Groovecutters she rubs shoulders with Little Esther, Billie Holiday, Big Mama Thornton and Helen Humes (who did the first version of "I Ain't In the Mood" in 1952).

Other new stuff from Dixie Peach and Blind Mississippi Morris made for a raucous first hour which is not what you'd expect from us. Corey Harris has just had a birthday, Linsey Anderson and Quintus McCormick have been round a few times than could be classed as newbies: they both record for Delmark. We are lucky to follow STAR ROCK in the Sunday night schedules and Buddy Guy and Joe Louis Walker drive awfully close to the boundary (sometimes crashing through the reservation). Joe's album is just out and it is a logical progression from last year's "Hellfire": he is in serious danger of leaving his more purist fans behind. At the other end of guitar playing, Eric Bibb made good use of a guitar which once belonged to Booker White; the Sunday Times says Bibb has the voice of an angel, he ain't no slouch on guitar either.

In a game of two halves, our lineup for hour number two could not have been more  different. Plenty of guitar skills on offer, don't get me wrong, this time from Lonnie Johnson and B. B. King. The Johnny Otis Orchestra backed both Little Esther and Mel Walker and Saunders King turned in a suitably urbane vocal for his song.  1914 marks the centenary of the birth of LC Robinson and we dipped into the work he did for Arhoolie. Snooky Pryor's piece was unissued by J.O.B at the time and Lonesome Sundown's swampy rocker had to wait for a Flyright album before release. Billy Boy Arnold did an album in 1962, we dipped in last night and Jimmy Reed's 1952 go at "I Ain't Got You" was an early hit for Vee-Jay (though Billy Boy's is more famous courtesy of the Yardbirds).

Ruth Brown sparkled, just like always - her contribution is part of an anthology put together by Stuart Coleman marking the hits we had to listen to here in Britain during 1954 and 1955. Our Etta James track wasn't the one I planned but her re-reading of "I Pity the Fool" was just as intense as our initial thought.

Next week's effort will be two vinyl hours and I'd be thrilled to have you along. Until then take CARE of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you.

track.title track.artistsort index album.title album.artistsort label
Raffle Ticket Linsey Alexander 3 Delmark 60 Years Of Blues Various Artists DELMARK
D.J. Play My Blues Buddy Guy 18 Can't Quit The Blues Buddy Guy SONY
Rick's Shuffle Dixie Peach 10 Blues With Friends Dixie Peach N/A
Ride On, Baby Joe Louis Walker 8 Hornet's Nest Joe Louis Walker Alligator Records
Crying Blues Corey Harris 1 Fulton Blues Corey Harris Njumba
A-Z Blues Eric Bibb 15 Booker's Guitar Eric Bibb TELARC BLUES
Souled Out JJ Thames 1 Tell You What I Know JJ Thames CDBaby
I Ain't in the Mood Adrianna Marie And Her Groovecutters 2 Double Crossing Blues Adrianna Marie And Her Groovecutters
Get You Some Business Quintus McCormick Blues Band 2 Hey Jodie! Quintus McCormick Blues Band DELMARK
Here I Come Eddie Cotton 1 Here I Come Eddie Cotton CDBaby
good evening blind mississippi morris 4 You know I like That blind mississippi morris n/a
Mojo in My Hand L. C. 'Good Rockin'' Robinson 1 Mojo In My Hand L. C. 'Good Rockin'' Robinson Arhoolie Records
Sunset to Dawn Mel Walker With Johnny Otis Orch 7 That's Your Last Boogie! Johnny Otis Fantastic Voyage
Quit Hangin' Around Saunders King 12 Blues Around Midnight Various Artists ACE
only a fool Etta James 1 Who's Blue? Rare Chess Recordings From The 60S And 70S Etta James Kent
Mistrustin' Blues Little Esther Phillips 16 The History Of Rhythm And Blues Volume Two 1942-1952 Various Artists Rhythm and Blues Records
as long as i'm moving ruth brown 2-14 The Road To Rock And Roll Vol. 3 Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Ride With Me Tonight David 'Honeyboy' Edwards 4 i been around David 'Honeyboy' Edwards 32 blues
Racketeer's Blues Lonnie Johnson 18 Steppin' On The Blues Lonnie Johnson COLUMBIA
Get Out of Here Billy Boy Arnold 9 The Bluesville Years. Vol 12: Jump, Jumpin' The Blues Various Artists PRESTIGE
(Real) Fine Boogie Snooky Pryor 9 An Introduction To Snooky Pryor Snooky Pryor FUEL 2000
I Ain't Got You Jimmy Reed 2 You Don't Have To Go Jimmy Reed ORBIS BLUES COLLECTION
Baby Boogie Woogie Curly Weaver 3 Juke Joint Jump:A Boogie Woogie Celebration Various Artists Blue Label / SPV
b b boogie b b king 3 20 r'n'b hits of the 50s Various Artists ace
california blues lonesome sundown 7 rhythm and bluesin' by the bayou various artists ace
Created: 23/02/2014 23:51:23

Sunday, 16 February 2014

STAR BLUES on 16th February 2014 at 22:00 More CBA entrants

Josh White was born 100 years ago and was a key figure in getting wider acceptance of blues outside the African American audience. Eddie Taylor took the approach of rural pre-war blues into the electric setting to help create a distinctive form of Chicago blues. He's marked in the new issue of Blues & Rhythm magazine and two of his children are now part of the 400-CBA (Current Blues Artist) project. We started out with once upon a time child prodigy Lucky Peterson (he was first in a recording studio age 3) he is a skilled guitarist and keyboard player with an already impressive back catalogue. Tre and Vance Kelly both did stuff on WOLF, and brothers Jimmy and Syl Johnson are of a different vintage and neither reached the fame levels they deserve (Syl always seemed in Al Green's shadow at Hi records and Jimmy just isn't flashy or loud enough to get the column inches his lesser peers could attract). There's a third brother - Mac Thompson - who is a pretty nifty bass player.

Steve Grills did a session with Ernest Lane that has a lovely feel we dipped into the project for a Mercy Dee Walton piece. Kim Wilson is one of my guilty pleasures, he swings like a good' un and few other current harp players get close. A few miles west of here, at Castor, those splendid folks at Shakedown regularly put on gigs by those "real old school blues players". Two of their best - Frank Ace and Wallace Coleman - graced STAR BLUES this week. Wallace played with Robert Lockwood jr; so did Steve Grills (see how this stuff is deliciously linked). If memory serves 80 years young Tomcat Courtney did a Castor gig too.

Our second hour is pure vinyl and guitar got a top class outing from Pete Wee Clayton, hot on the heels of a rare solo side from Pat Hare.  If only life had dealt him a different hand. You may not think you know the name Eddie Taylor but you'll certainly be aware of his gifts on all the big VEE JAY hits on Jimmy Reed and John Lee Hooker. He uniquely straddled the rural pre-war style of Robert Petway and Tommy Johnson into the urban Electric Chicago scene. Both facets were evident in the two choices we had from either end of his canon.

With a couple of Josh White pieces from his blues repertoire and another pair of rollicking slices of a Ivan jamboree we were done for another week. You were absolutely magnificent and I was Gary Blue - we can be again this upcoming Sunday at 10 until then take care of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you

track.title track.artistsort index album.title album.artistsort label
Repo Man Lucky Peterson 4 Triple Play Lucky Peterson Alligator
Born to Love the Blues Tre 4 I'm Through With The Blues Tre WOLF
Dog on a Chain Vance Kelly 12 Call Me Vance Kelly WOLF
Two Johnsons Are Better Than One Syl JohnsonJimmy Johnson 1 Two Johnsons Are Better Than One Syl JohnsonJimmy Johnson EVANGELINE
one room country shack steve grills feat. ernest lane 1 after hours steve grills toogaloo
Get on Line, Baby Frank Ace 1 Get On Line, Baby Frank Ace CHUEFFA
Going Down Slow Wallace Coleman 17 Mr. Coleman & The Blues Wallace Coleman  
Lookin' for Trouble Kim Wilson 12 Lookin' For Trouble Kim Wilson M.C.
Trying to Make a Living Demetria Taylor 10 Bad Girl Demetria Taylor DELMARK
Welfare Blues Eddie Taylor Jr. 2 So Called Friends Eddie Taylor Jr.  
Shake it Up Baby TomcAt Courtney 4 Downsville Blues TomcAt Courtney Blue Witch Records
Walking Through the Park Eddy 'The Chief' Clearwater 12 West Side Strut Eddy 'The Chief' Clearwater Alligator
gonna find my baby john and Sylvia embry 8 john and Sylvia embry john and Sylvia embry DELMARK
Bonus Pay Pat Hare 22 Sun Records - Ultimate Blues Collection Various Artists VARESE
Bop Hop Pee Wee Crayton 7 20 R'n'b Greats Of The 50's Various Artists CASCADE
Stroll Out West Eddie Taylor 5 I Feel So Bad Eddie Taylor Advent
Ride 'em on Down Eddie Taylor 3 Bad Boy Eddie Taylor CHARLY
Catfish Blues Robert Petway 18 The Blues Roots Of The Rolling Stones Various Artists complete blues
Big Road Blues Tommy Johnson 7 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: Memphis Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
St James Infirmary Josh White 19 The Roots Of The Doors Various Artists SNAPPER MUSIC
Prodigal Son Josh White 17 Great Blues Guitarists- String Dazzlers Various Artists Blue Label / SPV
My Sweet Woman Drifting Slim 9 Rpm Blues Story Various Artists one day
Bomp and Stomp Blues Mercy Dee 10 20 R'n'b Greats Of The 50's Various Artists CASCADE
Hey girl, hey boy Oscar maclollie 22 Jivin' Jamboree Various Artists ACE
Created: 16/02/2014 23:38:24

Sunday, 9 February 2014

STAR BLUES on 9th February 2014 at 22:00 adding more Curent Blues artists to 400-CBA

The project, which started on the internet, to find as many current artists still purveying the blues in that good old fashioned way is rolling on this edition of STAR BLUES. From the 23 year old Marquise Knox through to Eddie Cusic there's a rich seam of artists to draw on; in all likelihood the 400 crowd size will be getting on for twice that number.

I first heard Eugene Hideaway Bridges as lead guitarist for Memphis Joe Turners Blues Caravan (they supported B B King at the Royal Albert Hall and he set the bar so high only B could get anywhere near it) - Bridges sings with the sweetness of Sam Cooke and has that effortless fluidity of T-Bone Walker. Big Bill wears his dad's mantle with jowl shakin' lasciviousness (according to Lady Blue who knows about these things, he is sex on a stick). John Primer played with Muddy and is just getting better and better: we dipped into his self-financed project from a couple of years ago to pull out a slice of Chicago's finest.

The first couple of albums Otis Grand did marked him out as a player, writer, arranger of some stature and his "Blues 65" album from last year saw him stand square front and centre with punchy 3 and half minute songs, guitar recorded LOUD but with generous space for others to shine in the spotlight. His next outing is on a live DVD  on JSP from a couple of years ago and if you've seen him live you're in for a treat. Little Freddie King and Bishop Dreary Manning got a lift from the non profit MUSIC MAKER outfit,  Joe Jonas is a stalwart of the current live scene on smaller labels meaning the promo budgets have been unfortunately thin for his wares. Eddie Cusic is a  marvellous player though he is on WOLF so you'll at least have seen his name about the place. Dip into either man's work you won't regret it.

track.title track.artistsort index album.title album.artistsort label
Jump the Joint Eugene 'Hideaway' Bridges 4 Jump The Joint Eugene 'Hideaway' Bridges ARMADILLO
Left Hand Blues Big Bill Morganfield 2 Rising Son Big Bill Morganfield BLIND PIG RECORDS
Blues on Solid Ground John Primer 3 Blues On Solid Ground John Primer Blues House Records
two can play your game marquise knox 3 here i am marquise knox APO
Those Days Are Gone Otis Grand 12 Blues '65 Otis Grand MAINgate
He's Gone (Let Him Go) Joe Jonas 10 Hog Wild For The Blues Joe Jonas PINK PIG
STOP ARGUING OVER ME Eddie Cusic 12 Leland Mississippi Blues Eddie Cusic WOLF
HOOCHIE COOCHIE MAN Eddie Cusic 13 Leland Mississippi Blues Eddie Cusic WOLF
BABY PLEASE DON'T GO Big Joe Louis 2 Solo (Demo) Big Joe Louis
Black Angel Blues Robert Nighthawk 8 Reborn And Remastered Robert Johnson ROUGH GUIDES
Mean Old Train Papa Lightfoot 24 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: Atlanta Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
I WANT YOUR PICTURE HOWLIN' WOLF 9 Reborn And Remastered Robert Johnson ROUGH GUIDES
I can't quit you baby otis rush 2-8 chicago the blues today various artists vanguard
dynaflow blues johnny shines 3-7 chicago the blues today various artists vanguard
married woman blues j. b. hutto 1-9 chicago the blues today various artists vanguard
Pickin' the Blues Vaan ShawEddie Shaw 8 Morning Rain Vaan ShawEddie Shaw WOLF
Crosscut Saw U. P. Wilson 2 Lone Star Blues Series : On My Way U. P. Wilson FEDORA
Jimmy Burns Leaving Here Walking 06 Shake Your Boogie Jimmy Burns 6 Leaving Here Walking Jimmy Burns DELMARK
Don't Stop Loving Me Eugene Church 12 Jiving Jamboree Various Artists ACE
Created: 09/02/2014 23:31:25

Sunday, 2 February 2014

STAR BLUES on 2nd February 2014 at 22:00 including the 400-CBA roster

In June 1968 at the Avant-Garde Club in Milwaukee, Magic Sam cut the most complete live blues album of all time. The tapes lay dormant for 45 years and the album is now out on Delmark - our playlist proves the gifts Magic Sam showed that Saturday night at the club upstairs at 2111 Mt Pleasant. It was hot, smoky, cramped and loud. There was just enough room to place the reel-to-reel recorder by the front of the stage, ruggedised mics placed round the room, no chance to mix the inputs: it was a case of pressing record and capturing everything Sam and his band played. We're not told how many folks were there but we can see from the pictures the table layout was cafe style with barest comfort in the chairs. Magic Sam's guitar rang true, loud and clear, Mojo Elem's pulsing bass lines never faltered and Richey's drums fell in line. Most other gigs such as this suffer from over busy rhythm section with metalwork dominating voice and guitar. Not that night. We chose two pieces from this remarkable album. Within a few weeks the club closed and Sam died the next year aged just 32.

Delmark has just celebrated 60 years and deftly retains a healthy roster of current and upcoming players as well as an enviable back catalogue. Their celebratory disc gave us a Tail Dragger track as an entry onto our list of 400-CBA (Current Blues Artists) - his given name is James Yancey Jones, the "Tail Dragger" replacement came courtesy of the mighty Howlin' Wolf. Just about everyone in that first hour of the show is eligible for  the list, which is proud to welcome Drink Small and Brandon Bailey (in their own way distinctive and uncompromising). Cool John Ferguson plays hot guitar and found himself at Music Maker as did the young aggregation going out under the name Carolina Chocolate Drops. Buddy Guy tarries a mite too long with rock acolytes for most purists these days but he still pulls it out if the bag when he's a mind. Earnest Guitar Roy just notched up a second album and a positive nod from Living Blues Magazine: Big George Brock was a boxer and Aron Burton started as  a part of Albert Collins band (these days he's out under his own name). Eddie C. Campbell has had a few health worries which started during a German jaunt, he's home now.

My Saturday breakfast listening was B B King's "Rock Me Baby" out on Modern Records, label mates Hadda Brooks, Mickey Champion and Young John Watson were along for our ride too. Hambone Willie Newbern reached across the ages, while Mercy Baby and Joe hill Louis went rural and raw. We balanced a couple of choices from opposite ends of Lazy Lester's work so far - he's been to the Cambridge Folk Festival and we also caught him in a live session done for radio. Wilson Picket was down at Fame for one of his best vocals even if it's not as well known as the radio friendly hits. Johnnie Taylor was effortless and Johnnny Dyer's mill is broken but he is still eligible for 400-CBA even at the end of the playlist.

That 400-CBA register is building quite nicely now and it's a fabulous chance for you and me to hear some of the genuine old fashioned stuff, perhaps for the first time on British commercial FM radio. There's more planned for our next get together on Sunday at 10 pm (GMT), until then take care of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you

track.title track.artistsort index album.title album.artistsort label
Well I Done Got Over It Buddy Guy 7 Rhythm & Blues Buddy Guy Sony Music Entertainment
shake for me Big George Brock 8 round two Big George Brock
You Found Another Lover (I Lost Another Friend) Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite 5 Get Up! Ben HarperCharlie Musselwhite STAX
Soul Thing Brandon O. Bailey 9 Memphis Grooves Brandon O. Bailey APO
Southbound Train Aaron Burton 7 Past, Present, & Future Aaron Burton Orchard
I Do Eddie C. Campbell 1 Spider Eating Preacher Eddie C. Campbell DELMARK
somebody's gotta give earnest guitar roy 7 goin down to clarksdale earnest guitar roy n/a
Straight Church Cool John Ferguson 4 Guitar Heaven Cool John Ferguson MUSIC MAKER
Out on the Road Lazy Lester 12 Broadcasting The Blues! Various Artists Southwest Musical Arts
Black-Eyed Daisy Carolina Chocolate Drops 11 Dona Got A Ramblig Mind Carolina Chocolate Drops MUSIC MAKER
So Sweet Drink Small 2 Hallelujah Boogaloo Drink Small MUSIC MAKER
tend to your business tail dragger 14 60 years of blues various artists DELMARK
I'm a lover not a fighter lazy lester 16 Mojo Working : Best Of Ace Blues Various Artists ACE
Rock Me Baby B. B. King 17 Mojo Working : Best Of Ace Blues Various Artists ACE
Well'o Well'o Well'o Baby Earl King 14 Earl's Pearls Earl King WESTSIDE
Space Guitar Young John Watson 10 The History Of Rhythm & Blues, Volume 3 - The Rocknroll Years Various Artists Rhythm and Blues Records
Three Time Loser Wilson Pickett 15 Have Mercy! The Songs Of Don Covay wilson pickett rhino
Pleadin' Mercy Baby 22 4th & Beale And Further South - Ace (Ms.) Blues Masters Vol. 2 Various Artists WESTSIDE
Get Up Off it Joe Hill Louis 5 4th & Beale And Further South - Ace (Ms.) Blues Masters Vol. 2 Various Artists WESTSIDE
its all your own fault Magic Sam 5 Live 1968 avant-garde Magic Sam delmark
come on in this house Magic Sam 8 Live 1968 avant garde Magic Sam delmark
Good for Nothin' Man Mickey Champion 25 Blues Belles With Attitude Various Artists ACE
Ridin' the Boogie Hadda Brooks 11 Modern Music: 1945 Various Artists ACE
Boogie Woogie Amos Milburn 48 Blues Barrelhouse And Boogie - The Best Of Amos Milburn Capitol
The Chicken Mississippi John Hurt 15 Theme Time Radio Hour - Series 2 Various Artists ACE
Shelby Country Workhouse Blues Hambone Willie Newbern 2 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: Atlanta Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
You Can't Keep a Good Man Down Johnnie Taylor 10 Raw Blues Johnnie Taylor FANTASY/STAX
Can't Get No Grinding (What's the Matter Mill) Johnny Dyer 3 Rolling Fork Revisited Johnny Dyer Mountaintop
Created: 02/02/2014 23:26:34