|Spivey, Victoria - A Basket of Blues|
(Spivey LP-1001 US-62 EX 300:-)
Victoria Spivey was one of the more influential blues women simply because she was around long enough to influence legions of younger women and men who rediscovered blues music during the mid-'60s U.S. blues revival, which had been brought about by British blues bands as well as their American counterparts. Spivey could do it all: she wrote songs, sang them well, and accompanied herself on piano and organ, and occasionally ukulele.
This LP, the first release from the Spivey label, has quite a grab bag of performers. Victoria Spivey and Hannah Sylvester (her only recordings after 1923) take four vocals apiece, while Lucelle Hegamin has three (the trio were all classic blues veterans of the 1920s); the backup band includes tenor saxophonist Buddy Tate (who is featured on the lone instrumental "Swingin' Away"), Eddie Barefield on alto and clarinet, pianist Sadik Hakim and (on one song) trumpeter Dick Vance. With the exception of the instrumental and the standard "He May Be Your Man," all of the music was composed by Victoria Spivey. An interesting if increasingly difficult-to-find blues set.
|Ace, Johnny - Memorial Album|
(Duke DLP-71 US-6? EX 300:-)
In the weeks and months following Johnny Ace's tragic passing on Christmas Eve 1954, demand for his songs was at an all-time high. The resulting Memorial Album gathered a baker's dozen of Ace's most memorable selections, documented between the spring of 1952 and the summer of 1954. There are no unissued numbers here, as each of the tracks had previously surfaced on a variety of 78s. However concurrent audiences no doubt saw this as an opportunity to obtain any of the platters they may have previously missed.
Second issue on the orange/yellow Duke label.
|Austin, Sil - Everything's Shakin' |
(Mercury MG-20320 US-58 EX 400:-)
Though jazz remained his first love, tenor saxophonist Sil Austin recorded in a variety of genres over the course of his long career, including R&B, jump blues, country, pop, and even (on one occasion) disco-ish funk.
|Bostic, Earl - Earl Bostic and his Alto Sax|
(Parlophone PMD-1016 UK-54 VG+ 375:-)
Alto saxophonist Earl Bostic was a technical master of his instrument, yet remained somewhat underappreciated by jazz fans due to the string of simple, popular R&B/jump blues hits he recorded during his heyday in the '50s. This copy is overall in Very Good+ conditon; the sleeve has a bit of loosening of the laminate and the vinyl a few small marks.
|Carter, Cal - Twist Along with Cal Carter|
(Vee Jay VJLP-1041 US-62 EX 500:-)
|Dupree, Champion Jack - Natural and Soulful Blues|
(Atlantic 8045 US-61 EX 400:-)
Champion Jack Dupree had a very long and successful carreer making many albums for many labels. His zenith may have come in the late fifties and sixties when he was signed to the Atlantic label. This album finds Jack's strolling piano and booming voice backed by bass and drums. He sings a touching tribute to his friend in "Death of Big Bill Broonzy" and does a very nice version of the standard "How Long Blues".
|Dupree, Champion Jack - When You feel the Feeling|
(Blue Horizon 7-63206 UK-69 VG+ 600:-)
A formidable contender in the ring before he shifted his focus to pounding the piano instead, Champion Jack Dupree often injected his lyrics with a rowdy sense of down-home humor. But there was nothing lighthearted about his rock-solid way with a boogie; when he shouted "Shake Baby Shake," the entire room had no choice but to acquiesce. The first of Jack Dupree's two albums on the Blue Horizon label. This one features Duster Bennett (harmonica), Paul Kossoff (guitar), Stan Webb (guitar) and Simon Kirke (drums). The sleeve is graded Very Good, the vinyl is Excellent!
|Glenn, Lloyd - After Hours|
(Imperial LP-9175 US-62 VG+ 400:-)
As an integral behind-the-scenes fixture on the L.A. postwar blues scene, pianist/arranger/A&R man Lloyd Glenn had few equals. His rolling ivories anchored many of Lowell Fulson's best waxings for Swing Time and Checker, and he scored his own major hits on Swing Time with the imaginative instrumentals "Old Time Shuffle Blues" in 1950 and "Chica Boo" the next year. This album contains a solid collection of instrumentals recorded in the mid '40s and '50s.
|Harris, Peppermint - Blues/Folk Series, vol 5|
(Time N90P-1388 US-62 EX 800:-)
By the time he was in his early twenties, Harrison Nelson, Jr. was lucky enough to have found a mentor and friend on the Houston blues front: Lightnin' Hopkins took an interest in the young man's musical development. After "I Got Loaded" lit up the charts in 1951, Harris indulged in one booze ode after another: "Have Another Drink and Talk to Me," "Right Back on It," "Three Sheets in the Wind."
|Hogg, Smokey - same |
(Time 6 US-62 wos EX 500:-)
Smokey Hogg was a rural bluesman navigating a postwar era infatuated by R&B, but he got along quite nicely nonetheless, scoring a pair of major R&B hits in 1948 and 1950 and cutting a thick catalog for a slew of labels. During the early '30s, Hogg, who was influenced by Big Bill Broonzy and Peetie Wheatstraw, worked with slide guitarist Black Ace at dances around Greenville, TX. Both his chart hits -- 1948's "Long Tall Mama" and 1950's "Little School Girl" -- were issued on Modern, but his rough-hewn sound seldom changed a whole lot no matter what L.A. logo he was appearing on. Hogg's last few sides were cut in 1958 for Lee Rupe's Ebb label
|Hogg, Smokey - Smokey Hogg sings the Blues|
(Ember EMB-3405 UK-71 EX 300:-)
Smokey Hogg was a rural bluesman navigating a postwar era infatuated by R&B, but he got along quite nicely nonetheless, scoring a pair of major R&B hits in 1948 and 1950 and cutting a thick catalog for a slew of labels. During the early '30s, Hogg, who was influenced by Big Bill Broonzy and Peetie Wheatstraw, worked with slide guitarist Black Ace at dances around Greenville, TX. Both his chart hits -- 1948's "Long Tall Mama" and 1950's "Little School Girl" -- were issued on Modern, but his rough-hewn sound seldom changed a whole lot no matter what L.A. logo he was appearing on. Hogg's last few sides were cut in 1958 for Lee Rupe's Ebb label.
|Hopkins, Lightnin' - The Blues of Lightnin' Hopkins|
(Storyville SLP-174 UK-72 NM 500:-)
Sam Hopkins was a Texas country bluesman of the highest caliber whose career began in the 1920s and stretched all the way into the 1980s. Along the way, Hopkins watched the genre change remarkably, but he never appreciably altered his mournful Lone Star sound, which translated onto both acoustic and electric guitar. Hopkins' nimble dexterity made intricate boogie riffs seem easy, and his fascinating penchant for improvising lyrics to fit whatever situation might arise made him a beloved blues troubadour.
|Jefferson, Blind Lemon - Classic Folk Blues|
(Riverside RLP-12-125 US-57 VG 500:-)
Country blues guitarist and vocalist Blind Lemon Jefferson is indisputably one of the main figures in country blues. He was of the highest in many regards, being one of the founders of Texas blues (along with Texas Alexander), one of the most influential country bluesmen of all time, one of the most popular bluesmen of the 1920s, and the first truly commercially successful male blues performer.
|Johnson, Ella - Swing Me|
(Mercury MG-20347 US-56 VG+ 400:-)
Ella Johnson made her mark as the vocalist with Buddy Johnson's big band during the '40s and '50s, and it is in that context she really shines. Although many of Ella's hits are uptempo, it is on ballads and torchy blues that she really brings it together. At her best, Ella sounds like a pouty, vulnerable, and very sexy young girl. Like so much of her life, it was no affectation. The comparison to Billie Holiday is inevitable, but Ella was her own singer.
|Jordan, Louis - Somebody Up There Digs me|
(Mercury MG-20242 US-57 VG+ 600:-)
Effervescent saxophonist Louis Jordan was one of the chief architects and prime progenitors of the R&B idiom. His pioneering use of jumping shuffle rhythms in a small combo context was copied far and wide during the 1940s. Black audiences coast-to-coast were breathlessly jitterbugging to Jordan's jumping jive (and one suspects, more than a few whites kicked up their heels to those same platters as well).
|King, Albert - Live Wire/Blues Power|
(Stax SXATS-1002 UK-68 VG+ 375:-)
Live Wire/Blues Power is one of Albert King's definitive albums. Recorded live at the Fillmore Auditorium in 1968, the guitarist is at the top of his form throughout the record -- his solos are intense and piercing. The band is fine, but ultimately it's King's show -- he makes Herbie Hancock's "Watermelon Man" dirty and funky and wrings out all the emotion from "Blues at Sunrise". The sleeve of this copy shows some creasing; the vinyl is in Excellent condition!
|Lenoir, J B - Crusade|
(Polydor 2482-014 UK-70 VG+ 375:-)
Newcomers to his considerable legacy could be forgiven for questioning J B Lenoir's gender upon first hearing his rocking waxings. His exceptionally high-pitched vocal range is a fooler, but it only adds to the singular appeal of his music. His guitar playing is full of subtlety, deceptively simple and effective. Like Jimmy Reed his playing was both percussive and hypnotic. Even the move to acoustic guitar didn't remove his edge. This album combines songs from his last recording session with comments by his wife, Ella Louise.
|Mayall, John - A Hard Road|
(Decca SKL-4853 UK-67 VG+ 375:-)
Eric Clapton is usually thought of as John Mayall's most important right-hand man, but the case could also be made for his successor, Peter Green. The future Fleetwood Mac founder leaves a strong stamp on his only album with the Bluesbreakers, singing a few tracks and writing a couple, including the devastating instrumental "Supernatural". Original UK pressing - both vinyl and sleeve are graded Very Good+.
|Mayall, John - A Sense of Place|
(Island 842 795-1 US-90 SS 375:-)
A Sense of Place represents Mayall's full-fledged return to major-label record-making, with all the good and bad things that implies, from a high-profile producer, R S Field, to the introduction of such cover material as Wilbert Harrison's "Let's Work Together" and J J Cale's "Sensitive Kind." Field uses a spare production style, light on atmosphere and heavy, as is the current fashion, on unusual percussion.
Original US issue - Still Sealed in its Original Shrinkwrap!
|Mayall, John - Looking Back|
(Decca SKL-5010 UK-69 EX 350:-)
Reasonably interesting collection of non-LP singles from 1964 to 1968, featuring almost all of the notable musicians that passed through the Bluesbreakers throughout the decade. "Sitting in the Rain" (with Peter Green) showcases fine fingerpicking, the haunting "Jenny" is one of Mayall's best originals, and "Stormy Monday" is one of the few cuts from 1966 that briefly featured both Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce.
Original 1969 UK unboxed Decca logo blue 'ffss' label 9-track stereo vinyl LP compilation, front laminated gatefold picture sleeve.
|McDaniles, Gene - The Wonderful World of Gene McDaniels|
(Liberty LBY-1179 UK-63 EX 650:-)
Gene McDaniels had some early-'60s success with a pop-flavored R&B style. Born in Kansas City, he sang in Omaha choirs during the '40s and attended the Omaha Conservatory of Music. McDaniels led his own band in the '50s, then signed with Liberty. He had a Top Ten pop and Top 20 R&B hit in 1961 with "A Hundred Pounds of Clay," but the follow-up single, "A Tower of Strength," was his biggest.
|Price, Lloyd - This is my Band|
(Double L SDL-8301 US-63 EX/EX 300:-)
Not entirely content with being a 1950s R&B star on the strength of his immortal New Orleans classic "Lawdy Miss Clawdy," singer Lloyd Price yearned for massive pop acceptance. He found it, too, with a storming rock & roll reading of the ancient blues "Stagger Lee" and the unabashedly pop-slanted "Personality" and "I'm Gonna Get Married" (the latter pair sounding far removed indeed from his Crescent City beginnings).
|Ross, Isaiah - Call the Doctor|
(Bounty BY-6020 UK-66 EX 500:-)
Doctor Ross (1925–1993) was an American Blues singer, guitarist, harmonica player and drummer — a one-man band — who was born Charles Isaiah Ross, in Tunica, Mississippi. Ross played various forms of the blues that have seen him compared to John Lee Hooker and Sonny Boy Williamson I, and is perhaps best known for the recordings he made for Sun Records in the 1950s, notably "The Boogie Disease" and "Chicago Breakdown".
|Rush, Otis - This One's a Good 'un|
(Blue Horizon 7-63222 Hol-7? VG+ 375:-)
Otis Rush is a left-handed guitarist who became one of the most highly regarded urban blues players of the 1950s & '60s.This compilation features unissued alternate take of his 1950's Cobra sessions.
|Shines, Johnny - Country Blues|
(Xtra 1142 UK-74 EX 350:-)
Best known as a traveling companion of Robert Johnson, Johnny Shines' own contributions to the blues have often been unfairly shortchanged, simply because Johnson's own legend casts such a long shadow. In his early days, Shines was one of the top slide guitarists in Delta blues, with his own distinctive, energized style; one that may have echoed Johnson's spirit and influence, but was never a mere imitation. Shines eventually made his way north to Chicago, and made the transition to electrified urban blues with ease, helped in part by his robust, impassioned vocals.
|Smith, George - No Time for Jive|
(Blue Horizon S7-63856 UK-70 VG+ 800:-)
Laidback L.A. session from 1969 produced by Mike Vernon for his Blue Horizon label that's dominated by a mellow feel. There are a few upbeat items -- "Before You Do Your Thing (You'd Better Think)" and "Soul Feet" -- but mostly George sits back and blows with a relaxed ease. His sidemen include guitarists Pee Wee Crayton and Marshall Hooks, pianist J D Nicholson, and drummer Richard Innes.
|Sunnyland Slim - Slim's Shout|
(Bluesville BVLP-1016 US-61 EX 800:-)
You wouldn't think that transporting one of Chicago's reigning piano patriarchs to Englewood Cliffs, NJ would produce such a fine album, but this 1960 set cooks from beginning to end. Sunnyland Slim's swinging New York rhythm section has no trouble following his bedrock piano, and the estimable King Curtis peels off diamond-hard tenor sax solos in the great Texas tradition that also mesh seamlessly.
|various artists - Nothing but the Blues|
(CBS 66278 UK-71 VG+ 350:-)
Rare 24-track double LP compilation, featuring the likes of Otis Spann, Big Walter, Otis Rush, Slim Harpo, Doctor Ross, Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Lightnin Slim and many more. Both sleeve and vinyls are graded Very Good+.
|various artists - On the Road again / Chicago Blues 47-54|
(Xtra 1133 UK-72 EX 700:-)
|Waters, Muddy - Warsaw Session|
(PolJazz 2-SX-0634/5 Poland 1982 EX 500:-)
Recorded live at the Congress Hall during the "Jazz Jamboree Festival" on October 22, 1976. This is the 1982 re-issue in two separate sleeves with insert
|Williams, Big Joe - Piney Woods Blues|
(Delmar DL-602 US-60 VG+ 500:-)
Between the boards of this album will be found the music and the personality of Joe Lee Williams, traveler, musician, vocalist, composer, lover of life, teller of tales and dealer in mysteries. When this album was first released in 1960 his exact whereabouts were unknown. On this album, his first as a leader, Joe played a battered six-string guitar with one of the tuning pegs damaged beyond repair. He added a flange with four additional pegs to make his unique 9-stringed instrument. The important thing is that Joe knows where to find the notes he wants - and that he always seems to want the right one for the emotional content of the lyrics he happens to be singing.
|Williamson & the Yardbirds, Sonny Boy - same|
(Fontana 858.025-FPY Hol-68 VG+ 300:-)
Sonny Boy Williamson & the Yardbirds is a live album by Chicago blues veteran Sonny Boy Williamson II backed by English blues-rock band The Yardbirds. It was recorded in England at the Star Club in Croydon on 7 December 1963 and the Crawdaddy Club in Richmond, Surrey on 8 December 1963. After Williamson finished a European tour with the American Folk Blues Festival, he stayed over for a small club tour of England. There he was backed by several local rock bands, including The Animals with whom a similar live album was recorded. Original Dutch blue and silver Fontana label 9-track STEREO vinyl LP, recorded live at the Crawdaddy Club on December 8th 1963, housed in a unique back pasted colour picture sleeve. Both sleeve and vinyl of this copy is graded Very Good+.
|Witherspoon, Jimmy - At the Monterey Jazz Festival|
(HiFiJazz J-421 US-59 EX 400:-)
Arguably one of the greatest albums ever cut by Jimmy Witherspoon -- recorded live at an early Monterey Jazz Festival, and done in a style that shows the strong link between jazz and blues in Jimmy's work! The group on the set includes Ben Webster, Roy Eldridge, Coleman Hawkins, and Woody Herman -- and the longish tracks on the set give them all more than enough room to solo alongside Jimmy's bluesy vocals. The album's also one of the first to be produced by a young David Axelrod -- and shows a clear respect for both the singer and the musicians, in a combination that would come out even more strongly on Axe's later productions for Capitol. Titles include "No Rollin Blues", "Big Fine Girl", "Good Rockin Tonight", "Ain't Nobody's Business", and "When I Been Drinkin".