Sunday, October 20, 2013


First time I heard Wright Holmes he scared me a little bit. I didn’t know what to make of the intense craziness of “Alley Special” heard on a Blues Classics LP many years ago. Many years after that, I heard his other two issued performances and was pretty well convinced we had a real Texas madman on our hands here. I believe I read somewhere that he later gave up blues for the church . . . hope that helped! Anyway, here for your Sunday listening is the great and not famous Wright Holmes as he sounded in a Houston recording studio in 1947 singing his blues and cranking out some really unhinged guitar solos.

Wright Holmes • Alley Special

Photo: Wright Holmes, 1967, courtesy of American Music.

1 comment:

  1. the blasphemous stuff in Alley Special is a repetition of some lines in a blues recorded by Texas Alexander around 1930. Alexander delivered the same words in his drier way. He also had a cryptic verse about a man gets hairy and needs a shave, a woman gets mustard and needs to bathe, which suggests an attitude to fornication and abortion in keeping with the medical interest of Alexander's own 1950 recording, where the voice shows effects of tertiary syphilis.

    I suspect Wright Holmes just wanted to sound fierce, which he would have done without the less polite than Richard Dawkins lyric. He doesn't growl as much on the other items. Some of the material might be traditional and might have been old by 1947, but the man was an original dramatically and musically. He does also sound a little more human than in the slightly muffled BLUES CLASSICS transfer I know of old