Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Blues is the Roots...Everything Else is the Fruits Part II

I said I'd be back with some more sweet Blues albums and here I am. Nothing more to say except that these are all exceptional, transcendental and most certainly required.

Mississippi Fred McDowell-S/T

Recorded in his home three years after being discovered by Alan Lomax. He was ripped off by all the usual suspects (Page, Richards, etc.) but he always proclaimed "I do not play no rock and roll." I love his progressions and his focus on droning notes in the style of Northern Mississippi Blues. And who can argue with that slide playing? I'll post his sessions with Alan Lomax which are rawer and also has a lot of what sounds like kazoo playing some other time.

Robert Johnson-The Complete Recordings (Disc 1) (Disc 2)

Come on. Everyone's heard of this guy, he's like THE bluesman. While more research reveals the image he's so famous for is actually lifted from less famous bluesman, that doesn't make his an entirely too short career any less important to music as a whole. The man was terrifying in his delivery and his playing was among the best of the Delta musicians. Listen to him belt out "Sweet Home Chicago" and tell me I'm wrong. You're a fool if you don't want this.

Blind Lemon Jefferson-Best of Blind Lemon Jefferson

The man had quite an output before dying in a blizzard in Chicago but this is a great starting point. The originator of Texas Blues, BLJ was one of the few to get rich and famous in his heyday. His very indivdualistic and acute songwriting skills mirrors Skip James in a way and is very strange weaving in and out of different time signatures. At the same time, the music is quite different. By far one of my favorite bluesman.

Charley Patton-Pony Blues

Another one of the originators and recognized as "The Father of the Blues." He was an inspiration to most blues musicians (Robert Johnson first layed guitar at his home, Howlin' Wolf, John Lee Hooker) and one was one of the first to establish the showmanship image as a part of the genre. He was quite proficient and covered many times but this collection has 23 of his most well known songs.

Until next time...

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