When I opened for Nappy Roots recently it struck me on stage like a bolt of lightning that I should start offering free harmonica lessons at shows. Folks just need to bring a decent harmonica down to the shows and I’ll send em’ home smiling with a valuable lesson or two.
It’s good . . . → Read More: Sonny Boy Williamson – Bye Bye Bird, My Younger Days, by Davin Michael Stedman
When the audience for Chicago blues shifted in the 1960′s from working class black to college age white, a good bit of strange and sometimes wonderful music resulted. Electric Mud certainly makes the first category. The second? Well…
Leonard and Phil Chess had already tried to market Muddy Waters to suit the folk craze . . . → Read More: Muddy Waters – The Electric Mud Catastrophe, By John Siscoe
I had the honor to go see Buddy Guy play at his own club recently. I am ashamed to say that I hadn’t ever done this before. Here are some random thoughts.
Scott Holt, who used to play guitar with Buddy warmed up. He led a very tight three piece group through blues originals . . . → Read More: Buddy Guy – Hoochie Coochie Man – Fever – Damn Right, By Ron Swanson
Sorry baby but all I wanted for Christmas was Bonnie Raitt and a bottle of whiskey, right under that tree. I would have done everything John Lee Hooker told her he was going to do, twice. Before breakfast. This **** is BAD.
– Davin Michael Stedman and his band, Staxx Brothers, wish . . . → Read More: Bonnie Raitt – Love Me Like a Man, By Davin Michael Stedman
August 1958, Chess Records, Little Walter’s version of the Big Bill Broonzy classic – Paul Butterfield said that when he heard this, it forever changed his perception of the relationship between the harmonica to the human voice.
- Pat Thomas is the author of the recently released work, Listen, Whitey! The Sights and . . . → Read More: Little Walter – Key To The Highway, By Pat Thomas
When stars start to dim, producers tend to flail about, and strange music can result. By 1975, as Muddy’s sales figures were in decline, he became the first customer for Levon Helms’ Woodstock studio. Backed up by members of his own band, together with Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Paul Butterfield, and some accomplished . . . → Read More: The Muddy Waters Woodstock Album, By John Siscoe and Pat Thomas
There’s no need to worry about coverage or co-pays when you get your health insurance through John Lee Hooker and Van Morrison:
Arguably one of the greatest to ever cross over from blues to jazz to gospel to R&B and back again. Want a taste? Take a listen.
– Peter Olson
At Western Recorders in Hollywood on July 25, 1966, The Monkees recorded Mike Nesmith’s song “Mary, Mary” – meanwhile at nearly the same time, at Chess Studios on 2120 South Michigan Avenue in Chicago, the Paul Butterfield band with Mike Bloomfield was recording it as well. I’ve always loved it when doped up, kick . . . → Read More: The Monkees, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Each Have Take on Mike Nesmith’s “Mary, Mary,” By Pat Thomas
On Easter Sunday when I was 12 I woke up with the mumps. Had a really high fever and couldn’t move my head without severe pain. My Mom said “Since you can’t have candy, what can I get for you?”. My answer was quick. “At Sprouse Reitz, in the middle row of the “Rock . . . → Read More: Al Kooper & Mike Bloomfield at the Fillmore West 1968, By Michael D. Hinton
Otis Spann was an amiable, soft-spoken man who enjoyed a good drink, a good joke, and a good story. At the keyboard he was one of the giants of the blues. He will always be remembered as a driving force in the Muddy Waters band, the go-to session piano player for Chess Records, and . . . → Read More: Otis Spann – The Blues Don’t Like Nobody, By John Siscoe
One can trace a direct line from Louis Jordan to Chuck Berry and Little Richard to rock’n’roll. He is described by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as “the Father of Rhythm & Blues” and “the Grandfather of Rock’n’Roll.”
Jordan usually performed with small, tightly arranged bands and did most of his . . . → Read More: Louis Jordan – Father of Rhythm and Blues, Grandfather of Rock and Roll, By Randy Rendfeld
Otis Rush has been acknowledged as one of the greats of Chicago Blues for so long that his reputation is almost taken for granted. This performance, and the five others from the same session, is a breathtaking demonstration of how great he truly was when he was young and in his prime. This set, . . . → Read More: Otis Rush, Just the Real Stuff, Straight No Chaser, By John Siscoe
It still amazes me that the 60s/70s versions of songs like “Bad Sign” by mega-rockstar/cultural theives remain the most popular. No guitar god can capture the punch of a well-written and well arranged song. Apparently they believe their meanderings are more important than horns, keys and soulful back-up singers. Blame this song on the . . . → Read More: Albert King – Born Under a Bad Sign, By Dennis R. White
“Baby Please Don’t Leave Me” – Buddy Guy. Good god! How much dirty, sexy, soul-wrenching blues can you survive in 7 minutes?
– Alicia Dara – @thevolcanodiary – #100songs100days
Check out Ayron Jones and the Way, Seattle’s only all-black, neo-blues, power-rock trio. They began with some potent Jimi Hendrix/Stevie Ray Vaughan influences and have crafted a sound all their own. They recently won the Seattle leg of the global Hard Rock Rising competition and last year won the “Best in Show” award at . . . → Read More: Ayron Jones and the Way – Baptized – Band to Perform at Portland’s Duff Garage 5/18, the Hoppy Brewer 5/19 and the Good in the Neighborhood Festival 6/24
This clip is an hour long, so get some popcorn beforehand.
I feel sorry for Muddy for several reasons here. One because he looks so tired– this was taped in the late 70s, near the end of his life– and two, because WTTW (the Chicago Public Television station which presented “Soundstage”) felt that they . . . → Read More: Muddy Waters Blues Summit in Chicago