Sunday, 19 April 2015

STAR BLUES on 19th April 2015 at 22:00 with my first ever blues record

... because yesterday was RECORD STORE DAY. In truth there's something off each of the first four vinyl blues I bought. One of my choice cuts however will have to wait: the planned Little Milton version of "Stormy Monday" wasn't playable and a plea for last minute substitute didn't come through ahead of the live show.

From the current crop we went to a Little Freddie King project which got good notices in the new Living Blues magazine, and to the last known sessions by Pops Staples from 1999: his plans were for a Staple Singers album but Mavis recently asked her producer Jeff Tweedy to strip out Pops' voice and guitar to serve as foundation to a new release called "Don't Lose This". An obvious high point is the reworking on Blind Willie Johnson's "Nobody's Fault". It's here in gloriously stark guitar-only form.

Our "eat my socks" candidate is the renowned pairing of Jimmy deBerry and Walter Horton for the instrumental "Easy" - loping guitar versus intense harp. If you hear a better performance before next Sunday's STAR BLUES, the tootsie warmers are toast.

The remenisences came thick and fast for the bulk of the remainder of the playlist. The double vinyl "Blues Jam At Chess" came from Replays in Southampton, something of a rarity on the Sire label (shame about the purple and chocolate brown sleeve). For the Jan 69 date, Mike Vernon and Marshall Chess surrounded the then lineup of Fleetwood Mac with Otis Spann, Honeyboy Edwards, Willie Dixon and the aforesaid Shakey Horton. It was the fourth blues album I bought. That was about a fortnight after I bought the "Anthology" double album on Duane Allman from Replays. I've been a massive fan of Skydog ever since.

The second blues vinyl was the "Best of Chess Blues" mentioned above - Debenhams in Southampton as I recall. One cut apiece from anyone who was anyone at Chess, including the Sonny Boy Williamson number "Your Funeral" which so impressed booklet notesmith Don Snowden. He also remarked upon the McCarthyism that prompted the raid on the offices of Parrot Records before JB Lenoir's classic was licenced to the Chess imprint. The only slight flaw to an immaculate package was the rare photo of Little Walter playing guitar (it is printed across the fold of the gatefold sleeve).

I also touched on listening to Radio Luxemburg 208 under the bed clothes and discovering Roy Buchanan. Before that I'd just bought my first blues vinyl album from Caters Record Shop on Maldon High Street. Twice a day going to school I'd walked past the unassuming shop that barely hinted at the cornucopia of treasures within. The window displays were light bulbs, wiring, heaters, electrical gubbins and bee-keeping equipment. Mrs Cater was a woman of small stature, barely able to see over the counter. Not a talkative woman but knowledgeable on almost everything. She helped me countless times, including pointing me toward "Blues World of Eric Clapton" on Decca. It had performances of John Mayall, Otis Spann and Champion Jack Dupree. Remember this was Eric at his most blues playing as if his life depended on it, he was proud to call himself a purist.

I've never knowingly bought a record because it would be valuable, as a result I've memories which are priceless. Thank you for letting me share them with you on STAR BLUES, I hope Record Store Day did the same for you and that the day rekindled some old passions or sparked newly minted classics. If you'll have me, I'll bring some more STAR BLUES to your place at 22:00 (BST) next Sunday. 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
A Fool (For Hiding My Love From You) Harold Burrage 11 Foxy R&b Various Artists ACE
Mean Red Spider Muddy Waters 6 Rollin' Stone Muddy Waters CHESS
Too Many Cooks Robert Cray 1 The Score Robert Cray CHARLY
How Can You Do It (Sunland 105) Henry Gray 8 45's Collection Prt 037 Various Artists
Chickee Wah-Wah Bobby Marchan 12 Gumbo Ya Ya: The Cosimo Matassa Story Volume 2 Various Artists PROPER
I Feel So All Alone Jody Williams 4 Chicago/ The Blues Yesterday 9 Various Artists
Nobody's Fault But Mine Pops Staples 6 Don't Lose This Pops Staples Anti
Run Here Baby, Run Little Freddie King 5 Messin' Around Tha Living Room Little Freddie King
Watch Out Fleetwood Mac 1 Blues Jam In Chicago Fleetwood Mac COLUMBIA
Easy Jimmy And Walter 8 The Sun Blues Box Sampler - Blues, R&b And Gospel Music In Memphis 1950 - 1958 Various Artists bear family / b&r magazine
Man Ain't Nothin' But A Fool Sonny TerryBrownie McGhee 2 Hometown Blues Sonny TerryBrownie McGhee MAINSTREAM
Mean Ole Gal Johnny Otis Orchestra, Vocal By Esther Jones, The 24 Blues Belles With Attitude Various Artists ACE
Have A Good Time Baby Ursula Reed 7 Old Town Blues - The Uptown Sides Various Artists ACE
Send Me A Man Alberta Hunter 11 Empty Bed Blues : Best Of The Good Time Mommas Various Artists PULSE
Mean Old World Eric Clapton And Duane Allman 4 Duane Allman Anthology Duane Allman POLYDOR
Sweet Dreams Roy Buchanan 1 Roy Buchanan // Second Album Roy Buchanan BGO
You Upset Me Baby B.B. 'Blues Boy' King & His Orchestra 11 Speak Easy - The Rpm Records Story Volume 2 1954-57 Various Artists Ace Records
Madison Blues Elmore James 9 Slidin' Various Artists CHARLY
One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer John Lee Hooker 1 20th Century Masters John Lee Hooker MCA
Your Funeral And My Trail sonny boy williamson 225 Let Me Tell You About The Blues; Chicago - The Evolution Of Chicago Blues 1925-1958 Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Nite Owl Tony Allen & The Champs 24 Jump Blues Jamaica Way: Jamaican Sound System Classics Vol. 3 Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
South Bound Train Various Artists 205 Let Me Tell You About The Blues; Chicago - The Evolution Of Chicago Blues 1925-1958 Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Chicken Baby Boy Warren 21 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: Detroit Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Eisenhower Blues J.B. Lenoir 16 Chicago Bound: Chess Blues, R&b And Rock 'N' Roll Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Pretty Girls Everywhere Otis SpannEric Clapton 1 Clapton Is God: The Cream Of Early Eric Clapton Eric Clapton Castle Music Uk
Third Degree Champion Jack DupreeEric Clapton 3 Clapton Is God: The Cream Of Early Eric Clapton Eric Clapton Castle Music Uk
Bernard Jenkins John MayallEric Clapton 17 Clapton Is God: The Cream Of Early Eric Clapton Eric Clapton Castle Music Uk
t bone shuffle t-bone walker 2 Masterworks Sampler Vol. 2 Various Artists CHARLY
Created: 19/04/2015 23:55:20

Sunday, 12 April 2015

STAR BLUES on 12th April 2015 at 22:00 without Andre Rieu but with socks

I will eat them if there is a blues radio show anywhere in the world that is playing better music. In evidence tonight: John Jackson a finger picker of awesome poise and grace

track.title track.artistsort index album.title album.artistsort label
Miss Mercy Michael Burks 5 Best Of Michael Burks Michael Burks Alligator
Room To Move Debbie DaviesJames Cotton 4 Key To Love Debbie Davies SHANACHIE
Stood Up Again Katie Webster 2 Two-Fisted Mama! Katie Webster Alligator
Blues Ball Brandon O. Bailey 1 Memphis Grooves Brandon O. Bailey APO
Spider Eating Preacher Eddie C. Campbell 2 Spider Eating Preacher Eddie C. Campbell DELMARK
Pretty Mama Blues Ivory Joe Hunter 1=17 blues at sunrise ivory joe hunter indigo
ammons boogie gene ammons 2-1 jump blues jamaica way various artists fantastic voyage
coffee grind Hank BallardMidnighters 1 Let's Go Again Hank BallardMidnighters Jasmine
Bye Bye Blues - Arzo Youngblood Arzo Youngblood 2 Living Country Blues Usa Vol. 9 - Mississippi Moan Various Artists  
so glad i'm here in jesus name Shelton Powe 5 So Glad Am Here Shelton Powe  
chesterfield John Jackson 4 front porch blues John Jackson alligator
better off with the blues clarence gatemouth brown 18 no looking back clarence gatemouth brown  
daddy was a jockey John Lee Hooker 1-20 too much boogie john lee hooker indigo
We Got The Winning Hand Little Milton 3 Chicago Radio Soul Various Artists Kent (U.K.)
you got your mojo working eddie bo 6 baby i'm wise eddie bo ace
c c rider Wilbert Harrison 3-27 jump blues jamaica various artists fantastic voyage
cutting out professor longhair 3-22 jump blues jamaica various artists fantastic voyage
Untitled Instrumental Henry Gray & Morris Pejoe 18 Chess Blues Various Artists CHESS
Train Time Blues Cecil Gant 4 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: Nashville Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Barrel House Woman Leroy Carr 1 Let Me Tell You About The Blues: New York Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
Stubborn As A Mule Margie Day 22 Voodoo Voodoo: Feisty Fifties Females Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
The Gallows Pole Odetta 20 Crime And Punishment Various Artists Fantastic Voyage
didn't it rain marie knight 17 shout sister shout Various Artists MC
sugar coated love lazy lester 12 blues masters various artists rhino
steady jerry mccain 13 blues masters various artists rhino
got love if you want it slim harpo 14 blues masters various artists rhino
thats how strong my love is eddie giles 2-6 southern soul shake various artists charly
cummings prison farm calvin leavy 1-16 southern soul shake various artists charly
the freeze albert collins 9 blues masters various artists rhino
Created: 12/04/2015 23:50:58

Sunday, 5 April 2015

STAR BLUES on Easter Day at 22:00 - a golden anniversary

Fifty years ago in April 1965, Blues Unlimited reviewed the new album by B. B. King - "Live At The Regal". Our Easter Sunday STAR BLUES at 10pm (BST) focused on this remarkable project. As well as playing the whole album, we had a full table of other blues recorded live - from Ray Charles to Robert Cray.

e reviewer in #21 of Blues unlimited expressed grateful thanks to the person who had the idea to capture B B King in concert - previous studio pieces only hinted at how good he was when you saw him. The songs were chosen to showcase King at his best and he effortlessly delivered. "Live At The Regal" is often defined as the benchmark for blues in concert - and there are few genuine contenders for it's crown. Previous blogs have mentioned a few but this one is the fan's favourite.

It's probably about two years since I listened to the whole album straight through - STAR BLUES gave me that privilege this week. Only when you get the full context can you appreciate the power and majesty of King's performance. His modest brief introductions tee up some fierce fills - case in point "Worry Worry". Then there's "How Blue Can You Get?" ... 

That November 1964 date in Chicago is but one gig from the Windy City to feature on STAR BLUES this time out. Luther Allison was consummate master of all he surveyed and was the obvious choice to get our show started where everything was done in front of a live audience. Big Jack Johnson and Johnny B. Moore had gigs there out on live albums; Magic Sam, Otis Rush and Jimmy Burns were done for Chicago label Delmark.Travelling a bit further to our side of the pond: Larry Garner was in Germaby, London played host to Taj Mahal and Professor Longhair (the latter album coming out more recently through the Orbis Blues Collection magazine series). Jimmy Burns is one of Detroit's finest; he was but one of a number of men with gigs recorded and issued through Delmark. The Magic Sam gig was thought to be lost and caused quite a stir when issued for the very first time last year. Big Jack Johnson took no prisoners and must have been a top draw wherever he played.

Both Ray Charles and Muddy Waters reached wider audiences than just blues, partly through strong performances at various Neport festivals. The Robert Cray selection came from early in his career - at time he eschewed live recording - Austin Texas was the place for him. These days he's a much more relaxed performer who's warmed to the environment quite nicely.Roger "Hurricane" Wilson's two-hander with Willie "Big-Eye" Smith has a lovely relaxed feel and Smith relishes the setting to return to his first instrument, his harp.

All in all, our Easter Day STAR BLUES was something we'd not tried before and it proved to be a treat to hear our music played where it should be heard: in front of a crowd. We had the large Hadron Collider on standby just in case there were socks to eat. Not tonight Josephine. As for next Sunday, you'll need to be ready at your place at 10pm (BST) to find out - until then take care of yourselves and take care of those that take care of you

Soul Fixin' ManLuther Allison2Live in ChicagoLuther AllisonRUF
Buzz MeOtis Grand6Live AnthologyOtis GrandMYSTIC
Phone BoothRobert Cray14Authorized Bootleg - Live, Outdoor Concert, Austin, Texas, 5/25/87Robert CrayUMI
Hello JosephineLuther 'Guitar Junior' Johnson8Live At The RynbornLuther 'Guitar Junior' JohnsonM.C. RECORDS
Eyesight To The BlindWillie 'Big Eyes' Smith And Roger 'Hurricane' Wilson1Live Blues Protected By Smith & WilsonWillie 'Big Eyes' Smith And Roger 'Hurricane' WilsonBLUESTORM
Everyday I Have The BluesB. B. King1Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Sweet Little AngelB. B. King2Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
It's My Own FaultB. B. King3Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
How Blue Can You GetB. B. King4Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Please Love MeB. B. King5Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Catfish BluesMuddy Waters10Live At Newport // Sings Big BillMuddy Waterssoul Jam
You Gonna Miss MeJohn Lee Hooker9Live At Sugarhill Vols. 1 And 2John Lee HookerACE
night time is the right timeray charles1at newportray charlesatlantic
all my whole lifeJohnny B. Moore5Live At Blue ChicagoJohnny B. MooreDELMARK
the twistBig Jack Johnson6Live In ChicagoBig Jack JohnsonEARWIG
where the blues turn backLarry Garner6Embarrassment To The Blues? (Live In Europe)Larry GarnerRuf
mailbox bluetaj mahal2live at ronnie scottstaj mahalsanctuary
Whole Lot Of LovingProfessor Longhair3Live In LondonProfessor LonghairORBIS BLUES COLLECTION
i gotta find my babylittle arthur duncan13live at rosa's blues loungelittle arthur duncandelmark
You Upset Me BabyB. B. King6Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Worry, WorryB. B. King7Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Woke Up This MorningB. B. King8Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
You Done Lost Your Good Thing NowB. B. King9Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Help The PoorB. B. King10Live At The RegalB. B. KingMCA
Still A FoolMagic Sam10Live At The Avant Garde 1968Magic SamDELMARK
Feel So BadOtis Rush10All Your Love I Miss Loving Live At The Wise Fools Pub ChicagoOtis RushDELMARK
Wild About You, BabyJimmy Burns11Live At B.L.U.E.S.Jimmy BurnsDELMARK
hot tamale babyJoe Louis Walker10Live At SlimsJoe Louis WalkerDEMON
Created: 05/04/2015 23:47:28