Friday, April 27, 2012

Buddy Guy and Junior Wells--Stomach Ache

Maybe I'm just a square, but I'm not exactly sure what Junior Wells means by "stomach ache" in this song.  In fact, the lyrics don't really make much sense at all to me.  I presume that it is some kind of archaic sexual reference particular to South Chicago in the 1960's.  The fact is, however, it's not the lyrics that are important--it's the groove.

Buddy Guy and the rhythm section lay down a cool groove and Junior just raps along with it.  The song really kicks into gear during Buddy's guitar solo.  I'm sure you will like it.

I've never known too many ladies who like blues music, but I've played this number at parties and they seem to dig it.  So if that isn't motivation enough to buy this song, fellas, I'm afraid I'm going to lose respect for you.  So just do the right thing and click on the link below.  Afterall, it's only 99 cents.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Neil Young and the Blue Notes--This Notes For You

Love him or hate him, you have to admit that Neil Young is one of the most diverse stars in Rock N' Roll history.  He played folk rock in his early days as a solo artist.  He could bring on the hippie jams with Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young.  He was a hard rocker with Crazy Horse.  He honored rockabilly and Alan Freed with his Shocking Pinks.  And he didn't leave out the rockin' blues when he formed The Blue Notes.

This particular song is a classic for more than one reason.  First of all, it's a low-down, funky blues with a blaring horn section and some mean-ass riffs from Neil.  It also is a classic MTV video from 1988.  It's hilarious particularly if you get the references to Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and obnoxious advertising campaigns of the late 80's.

The final reason is that, as always, Neil has a serious statement to make.  He's a very serious man.  In this song, he pridefully admonishes other rock or pop stars for selling out to advertisers and politicians.  Artistic integrity was still a bit of a sticking point back in the 1980's.  They sometimes bit the hands that were trying to feed them, but artists didn't typically sell out their integrity completely.  Neil was basically singing about the start of this slippery decline which started back in the late 80's and which has led to where we are now with "artists" selling out their integrity on a daily basis.

Anyway, enough of that.  Take a listen below.  Please note that the first minute or so is part of the music video but not necessarily part of the actual song--so be patient.

It's time to get with it folks.  Once again you have to prove to your friends and potential girlfriends just how artistically inclined you are by adding this cool groove to your music library.  Just do it.  Click on the link below and buy this song.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Evan Johns and the H-Bombs--If I Had My Way

In my view, there is a select group of entertainers who were just simply born to entertain us and Evan Johns is one of them.  Another blogger referred to Evan Johns as the "Lovable Lunatic."  Which is probably why he never transcended out of obscurity.   But that's what makes a true entertainer.  They do what they are compelled to do.  They don't compromise their vision just to make more money.

This enormously talented Good Ole Boy from the Washington D.C. area can swoon the ladies with Baja influenced melody or he can destabilize the structure of the building with a rip-roaring rocker.    Truly gifted, he plays the guitar like it was part of his anatomy.

I can't forget to mention his voice.  His cigarette scarred larynx sounds like a caricature of a stereotype--except it's totally genuine.

Take a listen to this homewrecker, "If I Had My Way."

I suppose you figured it out by now.  I'm going to encourage you to buy a copy of this song.   But I can't help it.  Like Evan Johns I am compelled to do what I do.  I encourage you to check out the whole album.  It's awesome!

Learn more about Evan Johns by clicking here.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Groovin' With Jesus--The Violinaires

Let me tell ya, if church was like this all the time, I would go every Sunday.  The Violinaires are not necessarily a Blues band, they're really a gospel group.   But that's OK, they get a pass because this song is from the famous blues label Chess Records.

I discovered this song surfing YouTube for Humble Pie songs.  I stumbled upon the Humble Pie version which is rather awesome too!  I just love the low-down groove that both groups lay down in this song.  I am also impressed by the vocal stylings of both Steve Marriott of Humble Pie and the singer for The Violinaires.  They lay down a cool 60's soul style rap.

Take a listen to both versions below.   Unfortunately for all you eager buyers, I could not find a site that sold either song.  I suppose an obscure cover by an even more obscure band don't add up to a high demand for product.  

However, that's usually the sign that it's a hidden gem.  Enjoy.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Don & Dewey--Bim Bam

Once again I discovered this obscure early rock n' roll duo from Pasadena, California in the dusty record stacks of KFAI Community Radio in Minneapolis.  As you may recall, I was a volunteer DJ there off and on for several years.  My first regular shift was overnight from 2A-6A.  I would put on some long jam like The Allman Brothers "Mountain Jam" and then finger through the stacks looking for some nuggets of musical gold.

I hit the mother lode when I stumbled upon Don & Dewey's "Rockin' Til Midnight, Rollin' Til Dawn" album.  This album has a couple of slow romance numbers that are pretty good such as "Leavin' It All Up To You."  But it also has some some good foot-stompin', old style rock n' roll songs like "Mammer Jammer", "Pink Champagne" and the original "Farmer John."  There is another song on the album (not my favorite) called "Koko Joe" which was produced by none other than Sonny Bono.

This song "Bim Bam" has a fast walkin' rhythm and the honking tenor sax solo just the way I like it.  I hope you like it too.

Now that you've heard raw, early rock n' roll and your adrenaline is flowing, you may want to consider purchasing this song.  Nay, you should buy the whole CD.  It has "Bim Bam" and all the songs mentioned above.  So get with it.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Magic Slim & The Teardrops--Wonder Why

Back in the day (this is for the younger audience now) people used to go to record stores and buy albums. What often made the record store experience so great was that the employees would often play promotional copies in the stores.  I enjoyed perusing the record stacks while listening to what the person had chosen to play.  Sometimes it was pretty good and I would buy it.

This often happened to me when I hung out at the famous Electric Fetus record store in south Minneapolis.  In fact, it was just such an occasion when I got my first introduction to real Chicago Blues.  One day the Fetus's cashier was playing Magic Slim's "Raw Magic" album.  I was hooked immediately.

Magic and the Teardrops are a real gritty and gravely Chicago Blues.  It's raw stuff but that's the way I personally like it.  I like it tight, but not polished (That's what she said, I know).

This song is not from the "Raw Magic" album, but it has that raw Chicago Blues appeal.  Take a listen.

Now that you're feeling a little like you could call Maxwell Street home, you might want to invest in some real blues music.  Afterall, you have to impress your friends with your diverse musical tastes, right?

The song "Wonder Why" can be bought on the compilation CD below.  This particular CD has several good blues tunes.  In addition to that, I have posted a link to the "Raw Magic" album too.  I highly recommend that one.

Learn more about Magic Slim. Click here.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Buddy Miles--Memphis Train

I am personally unaware of any other popular musicians that hail from Omaha, Nebraska.  Buddy Miles is the only one.  He had a great set of pipes and played some mean fatback drum.  Buddy first hit the big scene back in the Summer of Love era with his stint as drummer for a group called The Electric Flag.  Buddy knows his Blues.  In The Electric Flag he played alongside a couple of solid bluesmen, Nick Gravenites and Michael Bloomfield.

As you probably know, Buddy advanced beyond The Electric Flag and became part of Jimi Hendrix's Band of Gypsies.  He later released several solo albums.  On his "Them Changes" album from 1970, Buddy cover's Rufus Thomas' "Memphis Train."  It really is more of a Soul song, but who really cares

A relatively unknown bit of trivia about Buddy Miles is that he was the original voice of the lead raisin singing "Heard It Through The Grapevine" for the California Raisin TV campaign of the 1980's.

Anyway, take a listen below to Buddy Mile's version of "Memphis Train."

I know you're thinking that it has been a long time since my last post.  You may have thought I went out of business.  Not yet.  You can support the cause by adding this awesome soul tune to your personal collection.  Just click below.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Ike and Tina Turner--Contact High

Some credit Ike Turner's old song "Rocket 88" as being the first actual Rock N' Roll song.  That is open to debate.  But what isn't up for debate is how groovy this song "Contact High" is.  I found the LP with this song on it perusing the dusty record stacks of a thrift store in San Diego.  What a gem.  How could anyone resist this beat.  Judge for yourself.

Unfortunately, neither the song nor the CD of this album is available for sale unless you want to buy a Tina Turner solo album along with it.  I will leave that choice up to you.  There are a couple other good tunes on the "Come Together" CD.  I can't vouch for the Tina Turner solo thing.