Tag Archives: Blues

And You Thought Michael Jackson Had Moves

His real name was James Isaac Moore but he adopted the stage name Slim Harpo. Just a shade behind Lightnin’ Slim in local popularity, Harpo played both guitar and neck-rack harmonica in a more down-home approximation of Jimmy Reed, with a few discernible, and distinctive, differences. Harpo‘s music was certainly more laid-back than Reed‘s, if such a notion was possible. But the rhythm was insistent and, overall, Harpo was more adaptable than Reed or most other bluesmen. His material not only made the national charts, but also proved to be quite adaptable for white artists on both sides of the Atlantic, Moore never really dedicated his life full-time to music, he owned and operated a successful trucking business in the 60’s, even while several of his songs took off and made the charts. His style was called the electric swamp blues and included elements of Delta Blues, swamp rock, and Country and Western.

Elmore James was born Elmore Brooks in Richland, Holmes County, Mississippi, the illegitimate son of 15-year-old Leola Brooks, a field hand. His father was probably Joe Willie “Frost” James, who moved in with Leola, and Elmore took his surname. He began making music at the age of 12, using a simple one-string instrument (diddley bow, or jitterbug) strung on a shack wall. As a teen he performed at dances under the names Cleanhead and Joe Willie James.During World War II, James joined the United States Navy, was promoted to coxswain and took part in the invasion of Guam. Upon his discharge, he returned to central Mississippi and settled in the town of Canton with his adopted brother Robert Holston. Working in Holston’s electrical shop, he devised his unique electric sound, using parts from the shop and an unusual placement of two DeArmond pickups

He is known as the King of the Slide Guitar.

And last but not least – Sonny Boy Williamson -He first recorded with Elmore James on “Dust My Broom“. Some of his popular songs include “Don’t Start Me Talkin’“, “Help Me“, “Checkin’ Up on My Baby“, and “Bring It On Home“. He toured Europe with the American Folk Blues Festival and recorded with English rock musicians, including the Yardbirds, the Animals, and Jimmy Page. “Help Me” became a blues standard.


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Posted by on August 2, 2017 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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I’ll Play the Blues For You

Just because it’s Thursday – The Blues in different generations

Ain’t no Love in the Heart of the City –

Little Milton – Make Me Cry

Albert Collins – If Trouble Was Money-

Otis Rush –

Non-electric blues – Lightnin Hopkins for the early 60’s –

From the early 50’s – Son House –

And Mississippi John Hurt – “Cocaine Blues”

And lastly at the edge of R&B – Howling Wolf


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Black Joe Lewis – Blues/Rock

Something to listen to – again just a bit off center. Just discovered this group. Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears, who actually have been around about 10 years. Interesting fusion of blues, rock, and a little funk with a big band reminiscent of Tower of Power. Lewis is originally from Austin, Texas.

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Posted by on October 7, 2016 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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A Little Blues From the Heyday

Just for the fun of it, some old time Blues…


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Mississippi John Hurt – The Ballad Of Stagger Lee

Just for the fun of it…


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New Music – Fantastic Negrito

Ok…Strange choice of a name, but listen to the guy. Raw, unadulterated talent – with a rawness reminiscent of some of the old Mississippi bluesmen like Pinetop Perkins and John Lee Hooker. The following vid has 4 songs, as part of the NPR Tiny Desk Performance Series.

America Has Lost Its Soul. This Unforgettable New Singer Has Found It.

How a busker with a “claw” became Fantastic Negrito.

The man now known as Fantastic Negrito is wearing a three-piece checkered suit with a crisp, mustard-yellow shirt. Two small holes mark the knees of his pants, and orange striped socks flow into his tan leather shoes. The 47-year-old singer-songwriter hammers away on his Goodwill-bought guitar in a ravaged section of downtown Oakland, California, talking about how this is the place “where the real shit comes from.” Need to test a song? “Hit the streets. It’s very unsafe, and that’s good—strangers tell you the truth.”

Xavier Dphrepaulezz (his real name) isn’t supposed to be here, not really. Ever since he made it to what people keep telling him is “the big time,” he’s had to sneak out. Last February, he beat nearly 7,000 contestants competing for a chance to perform in an NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert, and he’s been on a meteoric rise ever since: His EP of raw, impassioned roots music reached No. 7 on Billboard‘s blues charts in February and was iTunes’ No. 7 blues album in August. His managers want him to save his voice for the paying gigs. They’re asking him: Why would a venue pay 10 grand if you keep playing in the streets for free?

But this is where it all began—at train stops and doughnut shops—before the “international sensation” talk, the courtship from major record labels, and invitations to play music festivals like South by Southwest and Outside Lands. His success happened so fast, seemingly overnight: “I throw up before every show, man. Terrified.”

The road to becoming Negrito could have started in his childhood: a troubled upbringing in the hood, a stint “slinging crack for the CIA” in the ’80s, the death of his brother and a friend, some time in foster care during his teens. There was the beginning of a music career: a million-dollar deal with Interscope Records and a polished but failed studio album that, he says, “didn’t connect with anyone.” But it really began with a car accident one late night in Los Angeles in 1999.

Dphrepaulezz doesn’t remember the impact, only that there was a pretty girl in the passenger seat, then what felt like a lifetime of vivid dreams. The coma lasted three weeks, until he emerged to a stale hospital room where steel rods pinned his broken bones together. His strumming hand was permanently locked at the wrist, creating what he calls “the claw.”

After the coma, he didn’t pick up a guitar for five years, partly because of his injuries, partly because he was disillusioned with his first try at a career. But he did get grounded, got married, had “a beautiful child.” One night, when his 18-month-old son was inconsolable, Dphrepaulezz found an old beat-up guitar, played an open G chord, and, as he told SFGate, “the look on his face was the most honest and committed expression of joy I had seen in my life.”…Read the rest here

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Posted by on November 1, 2015 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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Gary Clark – “Shake”

Gary Clark, Jr is about the hottest rising star in Rock/Blues in the industry right now…

To my ear, he needs some work on his band (this doesn’t appear to be his tour band, Omar and the Howlers)…New drummer…new guitarist to back him…Bass guitar is solid.

He is the next superstar!

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Posted by on October 6, 2015 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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The Next BB King…

Gary Clark Jr is the next big thing in music…Here with the Albert Collins Classic – “If Trouble Was Money”

And his newest release “Church”

The Original – Albert Collins “If Trouble was Money”

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Posted by on August 22, 2015 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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This is Why You are Fat!

Eddies Harris! Thanks Brotherbrown!

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Posted by on April 7, 2012 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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Musical history of the blues found in juke joints – CBS News

A few of the old Juke Joints still survive. Wynton Marsalis takes on a trip down History Lane finding several Juke Joints still operating.
Vodpod videos no longer available.

Musical history of the blues found in juke joints

In a downhome neighborhood on the outskirts of Birmingham, Ala., Rita James bought an abandoned building and built a happy home for the blues. Her tiny, unmarked Red Wolf club invites the entire community.

Just four years old, The Red Wolf is a real juke joint. It’s roots go all the way back to Emancipation. In the old South, poverty made life more extreme. So folks found barns, shacks, anywhere – to play, sing and dance their sorrows away. Over time, these places became known as juke joints. Within their walls the blues were born.

Every Wednesday night, Wilson takes the microphone and gets the people on their feet. But it’s the music that brings them together.

“I just make them feel good,” Wilson said. “That’s just me period. Anywhere. I make the crippled feel good – make them think they can walk again.”

First-timer BJ Miller drove 500 miles from St. Louis for a chance to blow her trombone in a place where spirits are served, and freed.

“It’s not that they just serve alcohol,” Miller said. “It’s that they are serving musicians the opportunity to express themselves – and that’s not everywhere.”

“The blues has good and sad, so it’s for good too,” Wilson said. “And you know I like the blues. I like music period, I like all music, so music cheer me on and make me feel good.”

The blues are good for the soul. Their rhythms are inseparable from the American identity, and they’re not naive. The blues tell us bad things happen all the time, and they do, and we can engage with them. The blues are like a vaccine. If you want to get rid of something, give yourself a little bit of it, and when the real thing comes – you’re ready for it.

If Rita has any say in the matter, they’ll be an integral and constant part of the future. Wilson said her club will stay open, “until I drop.”


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Last of the Delta Bluesmen – David “Honeyboy” Edwards

The first century of blues came to a close with the death of the last of the great Delta Style Bluesmen.

David Honeyboy Edwards, Delta Bluesman, Dies at 96

David Honeyboy Edwards, believed to have been the oldest surviving member of the first generation of Delta blues singers, died on Monday at his home in Chicago. He was 96.

His death was announced by his manager, Michael Frank.

Mr. Edwards’s career spanned nearly the entire recorded history of the blues, from its early years in the Mississippi Delta to its migration to the nightclubs of Chicago and its emergence as an international phenomenon.

Over eight decades Mr. Edwards knew or played with virtually every major figure who worked in the idiom, including Charley Patton, Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. He was probably best known, though, as the last living link to Robert Johnson, widely hailed as the King of the Delta Blues. The two traveled together, performing on street corners and at picnics, dances and fish fries during the 1930s.

“We would walk through the country with our guitars on our shoulders, stop at people’s houses, play a little music, walk on,” Mr. Edwards said in an interview with the blues historian Robert Palmer, recalling his peripatetic years with Johnson. “We could hitchhike, transfer from truck to truck, or, if we couldn’t catch one of them, we’d go to the train yard, ’cause the railroad was all through that part of the country then.” He added, “Man, we played for a lot of peoples.”

Mr. Edwards had earlier apprenticed with the country bluesman Big Joe Williams. Unlike Williams and many of his other peers, however, Mr. Edwards did not record commercially until after World War II. Field recordings he made for the Library of Congress under the supervision of the folklorist Alan Lomax in 1942 are the only documents of Mr. Edwards’s music from his years in the Delta.

Citing the interplay between his coarse, keening vocals and his syncopated “talking” guitar on recordings like “Wind Howling Blues,” many historians regard these performances as classic examples of the deep, down-home blues that shaped rhythm and blues and rock ’n’ roll.

Mr. Edwards was especially renowned for his intricate fingerpicking and his slashing bottleneck-slide guitar work. Though he played in much the same traditional style throughout his career, he also enjoyed the distinction of being one of the first Delta blues musicians to perform with a saxophonist and drummer.

David Edwards was born June 28, 1915, in Shaw, Miss., in the Delta region. His parents, who worked as sharecroppers, gave him the nickname Honey, which later became Honeyboy. His mother played the guitar; his father, a fiddler and guitarist, performed at local social events. Mr. Edwards’s father bought him his first guitar and taught him to play traditional folk ballads.

His first real exposure to the blues came in 1929, when the celebrated country bluesman Tommy Johnson came to pick cotton at Wildwood Plantation, the farm near Greenwood where the Edwards family lived at the time.

“They’d pick cotton all through the day, and at night they’d sit around and play the guitars,” Mr. Edwards recalled in his autobiography, “The World Don’t Owe Me Nothing” (Chicago Review Press, 1997). “Drinking that white whiskey, that moonshine, I’d just sit and look at them. I’d say, ‘I wish I could play.’ ”…

And play he did –


Posted by on August 30, 2011 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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The Damn This Snow Blues!

BTx3 had been planning to see one of the last standing Blues legends tomorrow night – 96 year old Pinetop Perkins…

But his flight got canceled by the snowstorms!

Pinetop is 96 years old, and still performing – but at 96, you have to take any possible opportunity to see him, if you love music.

They got me checking back weekly …

For a reschedule.


Posted by on February 11, 2010 in Music, From Way Back When to Now


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Black History – Blues Legends 1925-1979

Continuing on the theme yesterday to the soundtrack –

“As The Years Go Passing By”
Albert King & Rory Gallagher – Montreux 1975

For those of you who would like to do some exploration, the artists shown include:

Jimmy Reed,BB King,Clifton Chenier, Dr Isaiah Ross,RL Burnside,Guitar Slim, Big Mama Thornton,Fred Below,Chuck Berry, A.C. Reed,Lester Kinsey,Amos Milburn, Smoky Babe,Mighty Joe Young,Alexis Korner,
Koko Taylor,Bo Diddley,Jimmy Johnson, Eddie Kirkland,Lonesome Sundown, Lafayette Thomas, Earl Hooker, JB Lenoir, Matt “Guitar” Murphy,Louis Myers, Big Smokey Smothers,Otis Spann,Little Walter, Junior Kimbrough,Ray Charles,Bobby Blue Bland, Hubert Sumlin,Long John Hunter,John Littlejohn, Ike Turner,Junior Parker,Albert Collins, John Mayall,Byther Smith,Lonnie Brooks, Earl King,Otis Rush,Freddie King,Little Milton, Junior Wells,Little Mack Simmons, Johnny “Guitar” Watson,James Cotton, Fenton Robinson,Billy Boy Arnold, Eddy Clearwater,Sam Myers,Buddy Guy, Jimmy Dawkins,Louisiana Red,Carey Bell, Johnny Copeland,Magic Sam,Magic Slim,
Bobby Parker,Johnny Heartsman,Eddie Shaw, Phillip Walker,Spider John Koerner, Luther Allison,Roy Buchanan,Luther Jr Johnson, Little Smokey Smothers,Dr John,Lonnie Mack, Taj Mahal,Son Seals,Jimi Hendrix, Paul Butterfield,John Hammond Jr, Mike Bloomfield,Walter Washington, Charlie Musselwhite,Johnny Winter,Eric Clapton,
Danny Gatton,Duane Allman,Peter Green, Benoit Blue Boy,Percy Strother,Stan Webb, Ry Cooder,Bill Deraime,Rod Piazza, Rory Gallagher,Duke Robillard, Sherman Robertson,Hans Theessink,Zora Young, Bonnie Raitt,Patrick Verbeke,Joe Louis Walker, Billy Gibbons,Paul Personne, Jean-Jacques Milteau,Angela Strehli, Walter Trout,Sonny Landreth,Jimmie Vaughan, Eric Bibb,Keb’ Mo’,Robben Ford,Coco Montoya, Gary Moore,Tom Principato,john Campbell, Debbie Davies,Billy Branch,Larry Garner, Ronnie Earl,Jimmy Thackery,Robert Cray,
Stevie Ray Vaughan,Otis Grand,Sugar Blue, Michael Coleman,Michael Burks,Kenny Neal, Lurie Bell,Mem Shannon,Melvin Taylor, Arthur Neilson,Popa Chubby,Larry McCray, Lucky Peterson,Bernard Allison,Jeff Healey, Tab Benoit,Corey Harris,Eric sardinas, Ana Popovic,Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Joe Bonamassa,Matt Schofield, Shemekia Copeland.


Posted by on February 6, 2010 in Black History


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Black History – Blues Legends 1873-1924

This is a diorama of the Legends of Blues including a soundtrack with –

“Nobody’s Fault but Mine” : Blind Willie Johnson
“Worried Life Blues” : Big Maceo Merriweather
“Country Blues” : Muddy Waters



Posted by on February 5, 2010 in Black History


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JD Hill – Livin’ The Blues

JD Hill is one of the folks who helped keep alive the New Orleans Blues tradition, and is considered one of the best blues Harmonica players in the bsuiness. A resident of the 9th Ward, he lost his home during Hurricane Katrina, along with a lot of other folks. As part of the propaganda effort to show America how the Bushit cared about New Orleans, JD was allowed to buy a house in Musician’s Village in the upper 9th Ward, followed by a well publicized visit by the the Bushit…

JD Hill has plenty of experience playing the blues. Now, the respected harmonica player says that he is living them.

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Posted by on June 17, 2009 in You Know It's Bad When...


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