Archive for Little Walter

More Monday Blues

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , on July 25, 2011 by 30daysout

Sonny Boy Williamson II

In most places it is still probably way too hot to feel good about gettin’ up and goin’ to work on a Monday. So let’s blow some blues today.

MP3: “Fattening Frogs For Snakes” by Sonny Boy Williamson

MP3: “Tell Me Mama” by Little Walter

MP3: “Boom Boom” by John Lee Hooker

MP3: “Midnight Special” by Odetta

MP3: “Who Do You Love” by Bo Diddley

MP3: “Evil (Is Going On)” by Howlin’ Wolf

MP3: “Trust In Me” by Etta James

MP3: “I Ain’t Gonna Do It No More” by Jimmie Vaughan

MP3: “Floating Bridge” by Gregg Allman

MP3: “Whipping Boy Blues” (Swamp mix) by Whitesnake

Blues for Monday

Posted in Rock Rant with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2011 by 30daysout

We haven’t done this in a while – just wailed with some blues. Perfect for a Monday, don’t you think?

MP3: “Boom Boom” by John Lee Hooker

MP3: “Forty Days and Forty Nights” by Muddy Waters

MP3: “Make A Little Love” by Lowell Fulson

MP3: “Little Red Rooster” by Sugar Blue

MP3: “Key To The Highway” by Little Walter

MP3: “Gonna Pull A Party” by Lightnin’ Hopkins

MP3: “Rock My Baby Right” by Elmore James & the Broom Dusters

MP3: “I’m A King Bee” by Slim Harpo

MP3: “Stop Breakin’ Down Blues” by Robert Johnson

MP3: “4:59 A.M.” by Magic Slim & the Teardrops

Your Sister’s (Record) Rack: Willie Dixon

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , on August 5, 2010 by 30daysout

My sister’s been sleeping in these days – she didn’t get a job this summer and she’s been hanging around the house all day.  So I haven’t been able to sneak in and see what she has in her record collection.  So today I have a dusty, forgotten album from my own closet, one that I had to reach way in the back to locate.

It’s Peace? by Chicago bluesman Willie Dixon, and it came out in 1971.  Now Dixon is one of the all-time great American songwriters – he penned such blues classics as “Hoochie Coochie Man,” “Evil,” “Spoonful,” “Back Door Man,” “Little Red Rooster,” “My Babe,” “Wang Dang Doodle” and many more.  As performed by Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson, these songs put Chicago and Chess Records on the map in the 1950s and influenced thousands of young rockers in the 1960s.

Willie Dixon’s fingerprint on rock and roll is indisputable.  Not only did he work with seminal rockers like Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley, but songs by Dixon were covered by bands like the Rolling Stones, the Doors and Jimi Hendrix (and stolen by Led Zeppelin).   But while he is considered one of the all-time great songwriters, as a performer he’s not that great.  He can carry a tune and he has a passable sing-shout style appropriate for blues, but when guys like Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf are in the same room a singer like Dixon doesn’t have a chance.

So we get to Peace? which was recorded by Dixon for his own label, Yambo, in the early 1970s.  By this time Chess had gone into decline as a label and in fact it was sold in 1969 to General Recorded Tape (GRT).  The classic blues artists were having a hell of a time getting attention with their albums but people like Muddy Waters and Chuck Berry were doing OK on the revival tour circuit.  Dixon thought it would be cool to get all timely and write songs that had some social significance for the time.

Good idea, but that means the music would have a relatively short shelf life.  “Peace” is an agreeable shuffle and it’s still fairly listenable today because its lyrics are broadly written:  “Peace is what I’m tryin’ to get/Peace I haven’t found it yet/Peace all the world needs/A peace for you, a peace for me.”  And with its sweet female chorus and fat horn section, this is a long way from the Wolf’s electric Chicago blues.

“It’s In The News” gets more topical, name-dropping Richard Nixon and Chiang Kai-shek to tell the story of Nixon’s reaching out to China with his so-called “ping pong diplomacy.”  The song is a mess; Dixon attempts to interpret world events in a down-home language, punctuating his verses with the chorus “It’s in the news/Everybody in the world got some kinda blues.”   And that’s the song message – it comes off about as profound and deep as the local loudmouth down at the corner bar.

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Tuesday Blues Throwdown

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on April 14, 2009 by 30daysout

littlewalter1

Is there a good day to get the blues?  Probably not.  Is there a good day to listen to the blues?  Yes, definitely.  Today looks like the day.

MP3: “I Just Keep Loving Her” by Little Walter

MP3: “Southbound Train” by Muddy Waters

MP3: “Knockin’ At Your Door” by Elmore James

MP3: “You Don’t Treat Me Right” by Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown

MP3: “The Sky Is Crying” by Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble

MP3: “The Leading Brand” by Earl Hooker

MP3: “This Is The End” by Buddy Guy

MP3: “My Head’s In Mississippi” by ZZ Top

MP3: “You Can’t Judge A Book By Its Cover” by the Fabulous Thunderbirds

MP3: “Stroke My Yoke” by Willie Tomlin

MP3: “Let Your Daddy Ride” by John Lee Hooker

MP3: “San Francisco Breakdown” by Doctor Ross