Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Lester Williams - Dowling Street Hop

Though little known outside of the Houston blues circuit where he made his home for several decades, vocalist/guitarist Lester Williams was a local phenomenon during the early '50s whose success even led to an appearance at Carnegie Hall. Born in Groveton, Texas on June 24, 1920, he grew up infatuated with the sound of T-Bone Walker, whose style Williams consciously emulated; after serving in World War II, he formed his own combo, and in 1949 signed on with the Houston-based Macy's Records. The label's then-stockboy, Steve Poncio, produced Williams' debut single "Winter Time Blues"; it became a regional hit, although subsequent efforts were less successful. However, by 1951 Poncio owned and operated his own distributorship, United Distributors, and through various channels struck up a business relationship with Specialty Records owner Art Rupe; as a result, Williams joined the Specialty stable, and with Poncio again behind the boards scored his biggest hit in 1952 with "I Can't Lose with the Stuff I Use," a track later covered by B.B. King. The song was another regional smash, and was sufficiently popular on a national basis to land the singer on a February 1953 Carnegie Hall bill which also included Dinah Washington, Billy Eckstine and Nat King Cole. Williams' follow-ups failed to catch on, however, and by 1954 he was regularly performing on Houston station KLVL and touring throughout the South. He later recorded on Duke before one final date for Imperial in 1956; in the years to follow he remained a staple of the Houston club circuit, touring Europe four years prior to his death on November 13, 1990.

Willie Trice - Blue & Rag'd

This LP collects recordings made of the North Carolina singer and guitarist Willie Trice by Peter B. Lowry in the period July, 1971--December, 1973.  The music that Willie Trice plays here is superlatively strong and in a personal style of considerable complexity, to the extent that much of what Willie Trice played can be fairly said to be distinctively his own.  That degree of originality and particularity of voice is very rare, in any style.

At the time at which Peter Lowry and Bruce Bastin found Willie Trice, after a tip from Buddy Moss, Willie had gone through a period in which he had not done a lot of playing. Moreover, he had serious physical challenges, and had recently lost both of his legs from the knee down due to diabetic complications.  That having been said, it is apparent from the first notes that Willie Trice plays on the LP that there is no need to make allowances for his infirmities in listening to his music.  Far from being the pale memory of a once-great player's music, the renditions here are muscular and alertly engaged, from the beginning of the program right through to its end.
How can Willie Trice's sound be characterized?  Willie's singing voice was a light baritone with a bright sort of overtone to it, and his delivery was very country. He was not an urban guy and made no bones about it. His tone on the guitar was big, full, and ringing--not sloppy, but also not being struck carefully to avoid mistakes.  Willie's most distinctive quality, it seems to me, resided in his phrasing and sense of time. In these areas, he was so much his own man, and definitely not a member of the musical herd adhering to formal conventions.  As a result, his phrasing could be angular, metrically irregular and yet swinging and danceable. Indeed, the infectiousness of his rhythm often masks the thorniness of his conception until you listen with an ear to figure out what he's doing, at which point you say, "Wait a second!"  He was fond of inserting chordal resolutions into forms in places where you are not accustomed to hearing them.  He was not a player who relegated the thumb of his right hand to any kind of regular time-keeping; it's the sign of a player very secure in his rhythmic sense, for you don't have to play the pulse for it to be there, ticking away, whether or not you state it explicitly.  In this respect, Willie Trice's playing is like Buddy Moss's or Lemon Jefferson's, and in a couple of instances it shares an even less common trait with Lemon's treatment of time:  a temporary suspension of pulse altogether, so that the musical idea is swimming freely until the time when he chooses to re-introduce the pulse.  It takes confidence to be comfortable choosing such a vertiginous course, but when it works, it's like magic.  Good for Lemon and good for Willie, and may the rest of us keep striving!

Post:     Corrected link

Frits's Tapes Number 67 & 68

Tape 67:

Tape 68:

For the fans of blues and r&b 45's more from the Frits's vault.

Chris Kenner - The Name Of The PLace

Born in the farming community of Kenner, Louisiana, upriver from New Orleans, Kenner sang gospel music with his church choir, and moved to New Orleans in his teens. In 1955 he made his first recordings, for a small label, Baton Records, without success; and in 1957 recorded his "Sick and Tired" for the Imperial Records label; Fats Domino covered it the next year and the song became a hit. "Rocket to the Moon" and "Life Is Just a Struggle," both cut for the Ron Records label, were other notable songs from this period.
Moving to another New Orleans label, Instant, he began to work with pianist and arranger Allen Toussaint. In 1961, this collaboration produced "I Like It Like That", his first and biggest hit, peaking at #2 in the Billboard Hot 100 chart (covered in 1965 by The Dave Clark Five) and "Something You Got" (covered by Wilson Pickett, Alvin Robinson, the Ramsey Lewis Trio, Chuck Jackson, Earl Grant, Maxine Brown, Bobby Womack, The Moody Blues on their 1965 debut album, Fairport Convention and Bruce Springsteen). "I Like It Like That" sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.[1] In 1962 he produced his most enduring song, "Land of a Thousand Dances," which was recorded by Cannibal & the Headhunters, Thee Midniters, Wilson Pickett, The Action and Patti Smith.
Kenner continued to record for Instant and for various other small local labels, including many of his lesser-known songs from the 1960s, such as "My Wife," "Packing Up" and "They Took My Money". He released an album on Atlantic Records in 1966; the Collectors' Choice label reissued the LP, Land of a Thousand Dances, on CD in 2007.
Chris Kenner died from a heart attack in 1976, at the age of 46.


Visitors requests....maybe you can help out

From now on I'll be using this post for your requests that I'll copy from the Chatbox. I'll do my best to keep it up te date.You may also leave requests, comments  and replies in the usual way and after moderation they will appear. As this posting will drop down the list with every new posting I will update it once a week to insure that it stays visible and near the top. Comments will be deleted regulary to keep them up to date.
Please do not request new or easy to find CD's as they will not be posted here. There are other excellent blogs that can help you out with your request.
That all been said we will have to start from scratch with the requests.

02-06-2014 Marineband:  Big Joe Turner 'Boss Man Of The Blues' LP with Rod Piazza.
12-06-2014 Gerard Herzhaft/Blue Eye: I'm looking for a .mp3 copy of only one song by Calvin Leavy:Give me your loving loving loving (originally on a Soul Beat 45 116).
Also, I have a copy that was sent to me of a Calvin Leavy number "One minute before midnight" that no discography includes. Is it another title for "It's a miracle" (I feel that but...)
13-06-2014 Owlface: Victoria Spivey and her Blues - Spivey Records LP-1002
18-06-2014: MarcD: Jody Williams - Time for a change / Lonely without you (Yulando 8665) Needed for research
07-07-2014: Steve626: Ronnie Hawkins - Rrrracket Time, with James Cotton
24-07-2104 Anonymous: Guitar Shorty "On The Rampage" Olive Branch Blues LP - this is Guitar Shorty/David Kearney
04-08-2104 HM: Earl Hooker Put Your Shoes On Willie. Checker 45 B side to Tanya
10-8-2014 Bob Mac: Alfred Bolden: His Last and Greatest (King KS-G3-1106)
13-08-2014 Anonymous: George & Ethel McCoy: Early In The Morning - Adelphi AD 1004
18-08-2014 Gerard Herzhaft:
Elmon Mickle & Ernie Pruitt Whatever You're Doing, Keep On Doing It/ Short 'n' Fat (E. M. and E. P. Records 133)Good Morning Little School girl(Wonder 15001) Any kind of .mp3 would fit!
20-08-2014 Rob F: Va - Those old happy days: 1960s blues from the Gulf (Flyright FLY 513)
23-08-2014 Aunt Fin: VA - Take A Little Walk With Me The Blues in Chicago   1948-1957
Boogie Disease
24-08-2014 Fabio: Big Joe Williams - Highway May on Southland once again thanks go to Kempen
01-09-2014 Steve626: Big Joe Turner - The Real Boss of The Blues on Bluestime
05-09-2014: never slim:  Big Bill's Blues' - Jimmy Rogers, Big Bill HIckey & Hubert Sumlin on Atomic Theory Records  Thank you Kempen
07-09-2014 Leroy Slim: VA - Savannah Syncopators (CBS [UK]
12-09-2014: Riley: VA - Orange County Special (Flyright)
15-09-2014: Kempen: Snooks Eaglin: Message From New Orleans (Heritage vinyl)

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Big Joe Turner - Still Boss Of The Blues

Big Joe Turner was the brawny-voiced “Boss of the Blues.” He was among the first to mix R&B with boogie-woogie, resulting in jump blues - a style that presaged the birth of rock and roll. Indeed, Turner’s original recording of “Shake, Rattle and Roll,” cut for Atlantic Records in 1954, remains one of the cornerstones numbers of the rock and roll revolution. Turner’s lengthy career touched on most every significant development in popular music during this century, taking him from the big bands of the Swing Era to boogie-woogie, rhythm & blues, and rock and roll. James Austin of Rhino Records noted that “[Turner’s] raucous style first blended R&B with boogie-woogie. The result was jump blues, and Joe was its foremost practitioner.”
But how important was he to the development of rock and roll?
“Rock and roll would have never happened without him,” opined legendary songwriter Doc Pomus.
Turner was a huge man with a husky, booming voice who could out-shout a big band without amplification while projecting clarity and control. He was born in Kansas City, and it was in that freewheeling city’s jumping nightspots that he began his career as a bartender and singer. Kansas City was, in those days, a hotbed of jazz and blues whose many clubs rocked around the proverbial clock. As a young man, Turner worked at various of these joints - including the Backbiter’s Club and the Sunset Café - as a bouncer, bartender and singer. It was here that he hooked up with pianist Pete Johnson (nominally referred to in the songs “Roll ‘Em Pete” and “Johnson & Turner Blues"). Turner also sang with the big bands of Count Basie and Benny Moten when they came through town.
Turner and Johnson helped popularize boogie-woogie and jump blues in the late Thirties and early Forties.  “Everybody was singing slow blues when I was young,” Turner told Rhino’s James Austin, “and I thought I’d put a beat to it and sing it uptempo.” Crowds would clamor for Johnson to play some boogie - “Roll ‘em, Pete!” Make ‘em jump!” - and he’d oblige. Thus did this duo help ignite a musical trend in the nightclubs of Kansas City and beyond. The songs Turner sang (and sometimes wrote) were often risqué, employing coy slang words and metaphors for sex in ways that would amusing a partying club crowd.

The duo brought their routine to New York in the late Thirties, and their appearance at the “Spirituals to Swing” concert in December 1938 proved to be a major turning point. Turner sang without a microphone, his forceful pipes carrying into the furthest reaches of the sold-out hall with ease. In New York, Turner and Johnson became regulars at the Cafe Society nightclub and signed to Vocalion Records, cutting some seminal versions of “Roll ‘Em Pete” and “Cherry Red” for the label.

Turner recorded prolifically in the Forties for various labels, including Decca, National and Aladdin. He worked with Johnson as well as a number of other pianists, including such giants as Albert Ammons, Willie “the Lion” Smith and Meade Lux Lewis. In 1946, Turner had his first R&B hit, “My Gal’s a Jockey,” released on Herb Abramson’s National label. Abramson would go on to co-found Atlantic Records with Ahmet Ertegun 1948.  Meanwhile, Turner - who recorded for a bewildering variety of labels during this period - charted again in 1950 with “Still in the Dark,” issued on the Houston-based Freedom label.
In 1951, Ertegun brought Turner to Atlantic Records, where he cut a string of rhythm & blues and early rock & roll classics over the next decade. Among them were “Chains of Love,” “Sweet Sixteen,” “Honey Hush,” Shake, Rattle and Roll,” “Flip Flop and Fly,” and “Corrine Corinna.” Pianist Fats Domino accompanied Turner on the romping “TV Mama.” “Shake, Rattle and Roll” and “Honey Hush” were particularly massive hits, topping the R&B charts for three and eight weeks, respectively. For a spell Turner was a bonafide rock and roll star, cutting such songs as “Teenage Letter” for the burgeoning youth market and appearing in the teen flick Shake, Rattle and Rock. No other figure straddled rock and roll and rhythm & blues with such authority as Turner. Capitalizing on his reputation as a pioneer, Turner shuttled easily between the two worlds, sharing stages with Fats Domino, the Clovers, Bo Diddley and a variety of other acts on Alan Freed’s package tours.
But Turner’s musical roots were too deep to limit him to the faddish teen market. Turner’s definitive work for Atlantic came in 1956, and the title said it all: The Boss of the Blues: Joe Turner Sings Kansas City Jazz. A sequel of sorts, Big Joe Rides Again, appeared in 1960. In the Sixties, after the first wave of rock and roll had died down, Turner returned to blues and boogie-woogie. He moved to Los Angeles, where he recorded with jazz legends like Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie and Roy Eldridge for some well-received albums on the Pablo label. He also schooled a young backup band that eventually became the Blasters.
The 1983 album Blues Train, on which he was backed by Roomful of Blues and produced by Doc Pomus, was a late-career gem. Having outlasting trends until his sound had became timeless, Big Joe Turner continued to record and perform until his death in 1985.
- See more at:

Thank you HM for filling Gerard's request.


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Model "T" Slim - "T" Model Ford & Burnt Out

If you want any info on Elmon Mickle a.k.a Model "T" Slim, Driftin' Slim who brought us Flatfoot Sam, who if I remember was in a jam. Well, it seems my memory has been ruined by to much monkey business as it was T.V. Slim who recorded Flat Foot Sam.
Read the liner notes to the LP that I posted years ago and is still available for downloading.
Photo credit:  Frank Scott


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Hokum Boys - You Can't Get Enough Of That Stuff

The word "hokum" is believed to have descended from the English term "hokey-pokey," denoting both ridicule and the ridiculous; for more than a century "hokey-pokey" has also been used, on both sides of the Atlantic, to describe low-grade ice cream sold on the streets. Hokum can mean flattery, insincerity, derision, deception, nonsense, cheapness, or any sort of stage gimmickry used to elicit a response from jaded audiences. Musically, hokum conveys and deserves most if not all of these meanings. Between the years 1929 and 1937 several different Chicago-based blues/jazz ensembles made records as the Hokum Boys or the Famous Hokum Boys. During the summer of 1929 pianist Alex Hill and guitarists Dan Roberts and Alex Robinson made records for the Paramount label under the name of the Hokum Boys. By early autumn the group consisted of pianist Jimmy Blythe, guitarist Bob Alexander, and a banjoist named Bob Robinson who also played clarinet. In November and December 1929 Ikey Robinson made a series of records for OKeh, first with Jimmy Blythe, then with Alex Hill. Throughout the second half of 1929 these men collaborated with pianist Leroy Carr and guitarist Scrapper Blackwell and made a number of recordings that were issued under the name of the Famous Hokum Boys. The Famous Hokum Boys name was adopted (or hijacked) by Big Bill Broonzy, first in 1930 and 1931, then again between 1935 and 1937 when he made records with various tough customers including Washboard Sam, Black Bob, Casey Bill Weldon, clarinetist Arnett Nelson, bass saxophonist Bill Settles, and a trumpeter named Mr. Sheiks. The only member of the original Hokum Boys to participate in Broonzy's Hokum sessions was Bob Robinson. Various labels have made a point of reissuing every recording known to have been made by these entertaining little bands.
(Allmusic - Artwulf Artwulf)
Thanks go to Jillem for the rip.

Willie Mabon - Shake That Thing

This album was recorded in Toulouse, France and Amstelveen, Holland in 1973 and shows Willie Mabon in top form on vocals, piano, and harmonica playing all originals. He's backed by The Aces (Louis Myers, lead guitar; Dave Myers, bass; Fred Below, drums) and Jimmy Rogers (rhythm guitar) and what a great band they make! Solid performances throughout, and the recording quality is superb.
Thanks go to Blue Eye for providing the rip of the LP. It has been re-released on CD with 7 extra tracks so that's worthwhile looking for. I was at the the Amstelveen concert in the Bajes(?) and can remeber that I enjoyed it very much and I think Willie also enjoyed playing.


Elmore James - History Of Vol. 1 & 2

Vol 1.:

Vol. 2:

Just filling a request but if you really need a track list before downloading I suggest visiting Discogs.