Monday, 24 June 2013

This week's playlist

Bobby 'Blue' Bland - "Stormy Monday Blues"
Vera Hall - "Death, Have Mercy"
6th Street Rhythm And Blues Revue - "Just Like A Man"
Pokey La Farge - "Sweet Potato Blues"
Charlie Musselwhite - "Just You, Just Blues"
Freeky Cleen Dickey F - "On A Monday"
David 'Honeyboy' Edwards - "Kansas City"
Prairie Ramblers - "Jug Rag"
Bessie Jones - "Hambone"
Laurence 'Luckyman' Beall - "Ten Foot Tall Blues"
Gregg Allman - "I Can't Be Satisfied"
Johnny Lee Moore - "Eighteen Hammers"
Big Bill Broonzy - "Keep Your Hands Off Her"
ZZ Top - "La Grange"
Hobart Smith - "Soldier Soldier"
Aynsley Lister - "Insatiable"
Aynsley Lister - "Sugar"
Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa - "Can't Let Go"
Robert Johnson - "Last Fair Deal Gone Down"
Bessie Jones - "Go To Sleep Litlle Baby"
Status Quo - "Lazy Poker Blues"
John Dudley - "Cool Water Blues"
Tedeschi Trucks Band - "Learn How To Love You"
Ike and Tina Turner- "Ain't Nobody's Business"
Creedence Clearwater Revival - "I Put A Spell On You"

Featured Artist: Alan Lomax

Alan Lomax
January 15 1915 – July 19 2002
Few figures deserve greater credit for the preservation of America's folk music traditions than Alan Lomax. Scouring the backroads, honky tonks, and work camps of the Deep South, he unearthed a treasure trove of songs and singers, documenting the music of the common man for future generations to discover. Through Lomax's pioneering efforts, cultural traditions ranging from the Delta blues to Appalachian folk to field hollers continue to live on, with his invaluable recordings offering a compelling portrait of times and cultures otherwise long gone.
The son of noted folklorist Jon A. Lomax, the nation's preeminent collector of cowboy songs, he was born January 15, 1915 in Austin, Texas; from childhood on he followed in his father's footsteps, assisting in song-gathering missions whenever possible. In 1932, John was contracted to assemble a book of folk songs, and soon he and Alan set out with a crude recording machine Paid for by the Library of Congress; covering some 16,000 miles of the southeastern U.S. in just four months, they collected a wealth of African-American work songs, many of them recorded at various penitentiaries. Among the musicians the Lomaxes encountered during their travels that summer was a Louisiana prisoner named Huddie Ledbetter; they helped obtain his release, employing him as a chauffeur and making his first recordings. Ledbetter went on to fame under the name Leadbelly, and remains one of the true legends of American folk and blues. Beginning in 1933 and lasting through to 1942, Alan -- working alone as well as in conjunction with his father, writer Zora Neale Hurston, musicologist John Work. and others -- recorded folk and traditional music for the Library of Congress throughout the Deep South, as well as in New England, Michigan, Wisconsin, New York, and Ohio. He also recorded in Haiti and the Bahamas, pioneering the archival study of world music which increased in the decades to follow, and in the field made the first-ever recordings of Woody Guthrie, Muddy Waters and Aunt Molly Jackson. Concurrently, the Lomaxes teamed on a number of books, including 1934's American Ballads and Folksongs, 1936's Negro Folk Songs as Sung by Leadbelly, 1937's Cowboy Songs, and 1938's Our Singing Country.
In 1938, Lomax turned to jazz, recording more than eight hours of vocals, instrumentals, and spoken recollections from one of the founders of the form, Jelly Roll Morton. A year later, he premiered "American Folk Songs," a 26-week historical overview broadcast as part of the CBS radio series American School of the Air; Lomax also continued to write and direct special broadcasts promoting the war effort in the months ahead. In 1946, he sat down with Memphis Slim, Sonny Boy Williamson and Big Bill Broonzy to explore the origins and philosophy of the blues, issuing the sessions in 1959 as “Blues In The Mississippi Night”; he spent the remainder of the decade recording prison songs in the Mississippi area, and in 1948 became host and writer of the Mutual Broadcasting Network series On Top of Old Smokey. In 1950, Lomax relocated to England, where he remained for much of the decade; there he documented the traditional music of the British Isles, with his recordings becoming the basis of the ten-disc 1961 series Folksongs of Great Britain. During the same period, he also made extensive field recordings in Spain and Italy.
Lomax returned to the States in 1959, and immediately made another expedition into the South, where he discovered, among others, bluesman Mississippi Fred McDowell. A year later, he published the book Folk Songs of North America; a six-month field trip to the West Indies followed in 1962, and there he recorded traditional musics from the English-, French-, and Spanish-speaking people of the Caribbean, as well as the Hindu culture of Trinidad. In 1967, Lomax teamed with Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger for the book Hard Hitting Songs for Hard-Hit People; Folk Song Style and Culture, the product of his years of world music study, followed in 1968. The advent of new technologies opened up new worlds for Lomax, and in the '70s and '80s he made a series of journeys back to the South to videotape traditional musical performances for the PBS series American Patchwork, completed and broadcast in 1990. At the same time he continued work on the Global Jukebox -- an "intelligent museum" interactive software project -- and put the finishing touches on 1993's The Land Where the Blues Began, which won a National Book Award. Throughout the '90s and into the 21st century, Rounder Records steadily worked toward reissuing a 100-CD series showcasing Lomax's most legendary field recordings, generating a newfound audience for his scholarly efforts in ethnomusicology.
Alan Lomax continued his work lecturing, writing, and working with the Association for Cultural Equity until his death at the age of 87 on the morning of July 19, 2002. Fortunately for archivists and music lovers everywhere, his painstaking documentation of the music and cultures of the world will be educating and enriching the lives of curious listeners for centuries to come.

Monday, 17 June 2013

This week's playlist

Norton Buffalo and The Knockouts - "Is It Love"
Vinegar Joe - "Early Monday Morning"
The Unwanted - "The Morning Blues"
Little Walter - "It Ain't Right"
Joe Mystery - "Root Doctor And The Hoodoo Man"
Mark Christopher Band - "Dump Truck"
Memphis Jug Band - "It Won't Act Right"
Jethro Tull - "It's Breaking Me Up"
Guitar Mikey and The Real Thing - "It's A Sin"
Vinegar Joe - "No One Ever Do"
Pete 'Snakey Jake' Johnson - "I've Been Well Warned"
Vinegar Joe - "Whole Lotta Shakin' (Goin' On)"
Al Lerman - "Don't Leave Me Baby"
Al Lerman - "Miss You Like The Devil"
Lisa Lim - "Superstitious Mind"
Grainne Duffy - "In My Arms"
Melissa Bel - "C'est La Vie"
Hugh Laurie - "Swanee River"
Les Dudek - "Delta Breeze"
Vinegar Joe - "Talkin' Bout My Baby"

Featured Artist: Vinegar Joe

Vinegar Joe
1971 - 1974
Vinegar Joe might very easily have been Island Records' answer to the Allman Bros.
Vinegar Joe evolved out of Dada, a 12-piece Stax-influenced, jazz-rock fusion band. Dada released one, eponymous, album in 1970, with a line up including vocalist Elkie Brooks and guitarist Pete Gage. Singer Robert Palmer, formerly with The Alan Brown Set, and bassist Steve York both joined Dada after the album had been recorded, and the four were signed by Ahmet Ertegun of Atlantic Records for USA and Chris Blackwell of Island Records for the UK and rest of the world to form Vinegar Joe in 1971, adding keyboard player Dave Thompson. The band was without a drummer. Conrad Isidore and Rob Tait drummed on the first album. Their debut LP “Vinegar Joe” was released in April 1972 on Island Records in the UK and Atco Records in the U.S.
John Hawken took over from Thompson on keyboards and John Woods became the drummer for live shows. Mike Deacon took over on keyboards. During recording of their second album, “Rock'n Roll Gypsies”, also released in 1972, Keef Hartley played drums. Guitarist Jim Mullen also joined the band for this record and stayed played on the US tour . Drummer Pete Gavin joined the band prior to the US tour and recording of their third and final album “Six Star General” released in 1973. The band dissolved at in the spring of 1974. Alan Powell played drums during the band's final weeks.
Although Vinegar Joe never achieved significant record sales, they received considerable press coverage and toured extensively, playing numerous sell-out concerts, especially on the British university circuit.
Subsequently, Brooks and Palmer went on to enjoy success as solo musicians. Gage became a record producer and arranger, working with Brooks, his wife, until their divorce, and a range of successful musicians like Joan Armatrading and specialising in upcoming rockabilly and punk bands such as Restless, King Kurt and others.
Just to say we sorted the problem , and last week's show is available on 'Listen Again'
Sorry it was late being uploaded (not our fault), and sorry for not letting you know before now (that is my fault)

Monday, 10 June 2013

Sorry :-(

Due to circumstances beyond our control, I have been unable to upload the show to the Mixcloud/ Listen Again facility.
Hopefully we will be able to rectify the situation in the near future.
Sorry about that but, like I say, it's not our fault
In the meantime, there are some great shows from previous weeks, if you want you dose of the blues.

This week's playlist

Cats And A Fiddler - "I'd Rather Drink Muddy Water"
Son House - "Death Letter"
Rod Stewart - "I'd Rather Go Blind"
Robert Johnson - "If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day"
Bert Deivert - "Big Road Blues"
Clarence 'Hound Dog' Jackson - "Country Swing"
Corey Harris - "If You Leave Me"
Mississippi Sheiks - "The Jazz Fiddler"
Dr. Feelgood - "Roxette"
Ben Reel - "Darkness And The Light"
Son House - "Pony Blues"
Bo Diddley - "I'm A Man"
Free - "I'm A Mover"
Son House - "Empire State Express"
Mr. Groove - "Rocket 88"
Jack Derwin - "Chemistry"
Tippy Agogo and Bill Bourne - "Mud Bears Park"
Maria Muldaur and Alvin Youngblood Hart - "I'm Going Back Home"
Jeff Olson - "Look For The Headlines"
Wily Bo Walker - "I Want To Know"
Tim and Roddy Smith - "Louisiana Women"
Canned Heat - "I'm So Tired"
Son House - "Grinning In Your Face"
Soulstack - "In My Time Of Dying"

Featured Artist: Son House

Son House
March 21 1902 – October 19 1988
Son House's place, not only in the history of Delta blues, but in the overall history of the music, is a very high one indeed. He was a major innovator of the Delta style, along with his playing partners Charley Patton and Willie Brown. Few listening experiences in the blues are as intense as hearing one of Son House's original 1930s recordings for the Paramount label. Entombed in a hailstorm of surface noise and scratches, one can still be awestruck by the emotional fervor House puts into his singing and slide playing. Little wonder then that the man became more than just an influence on some white English kid with a big amp; he was the main source of inspiration to both Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson, and it doesn't get much more pivotal than that. Even after his rediscovery in the mid-'60s, House was such a potent musical force that what would have been a normally genteel performance by any other bluesmen in a "folk" setting turned into a night in the nastiest juke joint you could imagine, scaring the daylights out of young white enthusiasts expecting something far more prosaic and comfortable. When the man hit the downbeat on his National steel-bodied guitar and you saw his eyes disappear into the back of his head, you knew you were going to hear some blues. And when he wasn't shouting the blues, he was singing spirituals, a cappella. Right up to the end, no bluesman was torn between the sacred and the profane more than Son House.
He was born Eddie James House, Jr., on March 21, 1902, in Riverton, MS. By the age of 15, he was preaching the gospel in various Baptist churches as the family seemingly wandered from one plantation to the next. He didn't even bother picking up a guitar until he turned 25; to quote House, "I didn't like no guitar when I first heard it; oh gee, I couldn't stand a guy playin' a guitar. I didn't like none of it." But if his ambivalence to the instrument was obvious, even more obvious was the simple fact that Son hated plantation labor even more and had developed a taste for corn whiskey. After drunkenly launching into a blues at a house frolic in Lyon, MS, one night and picking up some coin for doing it, the die seemed to be cast; Son House may have been a preacher, but he was part of the blues world now.
If the romantic notion that the blues life is said to be a life full of trouble is true, then Son found a barrel of it one night at another house frolic in Lyon. He shot a man dead that night and was immediately sentenced to imprisonment at Parchman Farm. He ended up only serving two years of his sentence, with his parents both lobbying hard for his release, claiming self defense. Upon his release -- after a Clarksdale judge told him never to set foot in town again -- he started a new life in the Delta as a full-time man of the blues.
After hitchhiking and hoboing the rails, he made it down to Lula, MS, and ran into the most legendary character the blues had to offer at that point, the one and only Charley Patton. The two men couldn't have been less similar in disposition, stature, and in musical and performance outlook if they had purposely planned it that way. Patton was described as a funny, loud-mouthed little guy who was a noisy, passionate showman, using every trick in the book to win over a crowd. The tall and skinny House was by nature a gloomy man with a saturnine disposition who still felt extremely guilt-ridden about playing the blues and working in juke joints. Yet when he ripped into one, Son imbued it with so much raw feeling that the performance became the show itself, sans gimmicks. The two of them argued and bickered constantly, and the only thing these two men seemed to have in common was a penchant for imbibing whatever alcoholic potable came their way. Though House would later refer in interviews to Patton as a "jerk" and other unprintables, it was Patton's success as a bluesman -- both live and especially on record -- that got Son's foot in the door as a recording artist. He followed Patton up to Grafton, WI, and recorded a handful of sides for the Paramount label. These records today (selling scant few copies in their time, the few that did survived a life of huge steel needles, even bigger scratches, and generally lousy care) are some of the most highly prized collectors' items of Delta blues recordings, much tougher to find than, say, a Robert Johnson or even a Charley Patton 78. Paramount used a pressing compound for their 78 singles that was so noisy and inferior sounding that should someone actually come across a clean copy of any of Son's original recordings, it's a pretty safe bet that the listener would still be greeted with a blizzard of surface noise once the needle made contact with the disc.
But audio concerns aside, the absolutely demonic performances House laid down on these three two-part 78s ("My Black Mama," "Preachin' the Blues," and "Dry Spell Blues," with an unreleased test acetate of "Walkin' Blues" showing up decades later) cut through the hisses and pops like a brick through a stained glass window.
It was those recordings that led Alan Lomax to his door in 1941 to record him for the Library of Congress. Lomaxwas cutting acetates on a "portable" recording machine weighing over 300 pounds. Son was still playing (actually at the peak of his powers, some would say), but had backed off of it a bit since Charley Patton died in 1934. House did some tunes solo, as Lomax asked him to do, but also cut a session backed by a rocking little string band. As the band laid down long and loose (some tracks went on for over six minutes) versions of their favorite numbers, all that was missing was the guitars being plugged in and a drummer's backbeat and you were getting a glimpse of the future of the music.
But just as House had gone a full decade without recording, this time after the Lomax recordings, he just as quickly disappeared, moving to Rochester, NY. When folk-blues researchers finally found him in 1964, he was cheerfully exclaiming that he hadn't touched a guitar in years. One of the researchers, a young guitarist named Alan Wilson (later of the blues-rock group Canned Heat) literally sat down and retaught Son House how to play like Son House. Once the old master was up to speed, the festival and coffeehouse circuit became his oyster. He recorded again, the recordings becoming an important introduction to his music and, for some, a lot easier to take than those old Paramount 78s from a strict audio standpoint. In 1965, he played Carnegie Hall and four years later found himself the subject of an eponymously titled film documentary, all of this another world removed from Clarksdale, MS, indeed. Everywhere he played, he was besieged by young fans, asking him about Robert Johnson, Charley Patton, and others. For young white blues fans, these were merely exotic names from the past, heard only to them on old, highly prized recordings; for Son House they were flesh and blood contemporaries, not just some names on a record label. Hailed as the greatest living Delta singer still actively performing, nobody dared call himself the king of the blues as long as Son House was around.
He fell into ill health by the early '70s; what was later diagnosed as both Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease first affected his memory and his ability to recall songs on-stage and, later, his hands, which shook so bad he finally had to give up the guitar and eventually leave performing altogether by 1976. He lived quietly in Detroit, MI, for another 12 years, passing away on October 19, 1988. His induction into the Blues Foundation's Hall of Fame in 1980 was no less than his due. Son House was the blues.

Monday, 3 June 2013

This week's playlist

The Chicago Blues Summit and Sunnyland Slim - "I Can't Stop"
Blodwyn Pig - "Drive Me"
Bobby Blue Bland - "I Don't Want No Woman"
Bare Bones Boogie Band - "Love In Vain"
J.J. Cale - "I Got The Same Old Blues"
Camille! - "Desperate"
Ted Hawkins - "I Got What I Wanted"
King David's Jug Band - "Rising Sun Blues"
Doc Watson and Clarence Ashley - "Honey Babe Blues"
Etta James - "I Just Wanna Make Love To You"
Blodwyn Pig - "Mr. Green's Blues"
Lil Johnson - "I Lost My Baby"
Narvel Felts - "My Babe"
Blodwyn Pig - "Summer Day"
Detroit Memphis Experience - "Just A Little Bit"
Detroit Memphis Experience - "Let's Straighten It Out"
David Migden and The Dirty Words - "I Can't See Her Face"
The Rev Jimmie Bratcher - "Check Your Blues At The Door"
Creedence Clearwater Revival - "I Put A Spell On You"
Blodwyn Pig - "Slow Down"

Featured Artist: Blodwyn Pig

Blodwyn Pig
A quirky detour of late-'60s British progressive/blues rock, Blodwyn Pig was founded by former Jethro Tull
guitarist Mick Abrahams, who left Tull after the “This Was” album. Abrahams' falling-out with Anderson was said to have originated in differences between the two on original materia - Abrahams wishing to stay close to Jethro Tull's blues and jazz roots, Anderson wishing to develop less overt blues and jazz material.
Abrahams was joined by bassist Andy Pyle, drummer Ron Berg, and Jack Lancaster, who gave the outfit their most distinctive colorings via his saxophone and flute.
On their two albums, they explored a jazz/blues/progressive style somewhat in the mold of (unsurprisingly) Jethro Tull, but with a lighter feel. They also bore some similarities to John Mayall's jazzy late-'60s versions of The Bluesbreakers, or perhaps Colosseum, but with more eclectic material. Both of their LPs made the British Top Ten, though the players' instrumental skills were handicapped by thin vocals and erratic (though oft-imaginative) material.
With Abrahams and Lancaster in the lead, Blodwyn Pig recorded two albums, “Ahead Rings Out” in 1969 and “Getting To This” in 1970. Both reached the Top Ten of the UK Album Chart and charted in the United States; “Ahead Rings Out” displayed a jazzier turn on the heavy blues–rock that formed the band's core rooted in the British 1960s rhythm and blues scene from which sprang groups like The Yardbirds, Free and eventually Led Zeppelin.
Saxophonist–singer Lancaster (who often played two horns at once, like his idol Rahsaan Roland Kirk) was at least as prominent in the mix as Abrahams; some critics thought this contrast bumped the band toward a freer, more experimental sound on the second album.
The single "Summer Day" from “Ahead Rings Out” failed to chart, but the quartet became something of a favourite on the underground concert circuit.
Largely due to Abrahams's disillusionment with the business side of music, Blodwyn Pig eventually became an on-again, off-again concern; Lancaster at one point became a record producer, and Pyle eventually joined Savoy Brown.
Over the years since their original formation, Blodwyn Pig reformed several times, usually with Abrahams and Lancaster leading the group, and recorded two more albums in the 1990s.