Friday, June 23, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

A few weeks ago we played Hank Sr.’s spooky original of “Ramblin’ Man.” Today have a listen to Junior’s spooky take on it. . . .


Hank Williams Jr. • Ramblin’ Man • 1981

Get it: Rowdy

Monday, June 19, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

This is Lil’ Son Jackson’s second go-round on his hit “Rockin’ and Rollin’, better known in later years as “Rock Me Baby” and recorded from 1952 on by everybody. No bombast here, just easy rockin’ . . . and rollin’.


Lil’ Son Jackson • Rockin’ And Rollin’ #2 • 1952

Friday, June 16, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

Leroy Carr’s biggest hit done up right by Milt and Ray. . . .


Milt Jackson & Ray Charles • How Long Blues • 1958

Get it: Soul Brothers / Soul Meeting

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES


Blind Willie Johnson • If It Had Not Been for Jesus • 1930


Willie B. Richardson, lead vocal; Blind Willie Johnson, vocal/guitar. Atlanta, 20 April 1930

Get it: Sweeter as the Years Go By

Album cover: All Music

Monday, June 12, 2017

BLUE MONDAY


Lightnin’ Hopkins • Ida Mae • 1962

Saturday, June 10, 2017

MERCY NOW

I think we all
Could use a little mercy now
I know we don’t deserve it
Oh but we need it anyhow


Bobby Bare • Mercy Now • 2017

Get it: Bobby Bare

Friday, June 09, 2017

ODDS & ENDS


Here’s a gospel number that finds John Fogerty, late of CCR, trying on Brother Archie Brownlee’s mantle and attempting his own leather-lunged take on the Five Blind Boys classic.


Blue Ridge Rangers • Somewhere Listening (For My Name) • 1973

LP cover: Discogs

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES

Drivin’ around the back roads of Olive Branch, Mississippi, crying the blues with Little Richard. . . .


Little Richard & His Band • I’m Just A Lonely Guy • 1955

Monday, June 05, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

Johnny Shines and Walter Horton magnificent on an early take of “Evening Sun” that went unissued at the time. . . .


Johnny Shines • Evening Shuffle [take 1] • 1953

Sunday, June 04, 2017

WAR SONG


“Timbuktu, situated in the Southern Sahara where the Niger River encroaches on the desert, is ‘the meeting place of the camel and the canoe.’

“The Tuaregs, nomads of the desert . . . are called ‘People of the Veil’ because the men wrap their heads in a native-woven cloth which is never removed, not even for eating. . . . They are fierce, aristocratic people, very proud of the brave deeds of the ancestors.

“In the war song on this record, the old man is singing of the bravery of a chief and his marvelous horse ‘Yali.’. . . .The musician accompanies his song with the tehardent, a three-stringed instrument resembling the ancient Egyptian lute.” —Laura C. Boulton, 1939 notes to Folkways album African Music, 1957



Tuareg Tribe • War Song • 1934

Get it: The Secret Museum of Mankind: Music of North Africa; it can also be found on Gay Life in Dikanka: R. Crumb’s Old-Time Favorites and African Music.

More information: Smithsonian Folkways

Friday, June 02, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

A couple of years ago we presented a more widely heard version of Rev. Anderson Johnson’s classic list of no-nos “God Don’t Like It.” For today’s selection we’ve excavated an earlier version when the Rev was just an elder. It’s pretty much the same list of circumscribed activities but the 
lo-fi recording and Johnson’s completely bonkers lap steel playing make this one prime Odds and Ends material. . . .


Elder A. Johnson • God Don’t Like It • c. 1952

Label photo: Discogs

Monday, May 29, 2017

SO I’M HERE SEARCHING FOR HIS GRAVE


The Stanley Brothers • Soldier’s Grave • 1966

Photo: Crosses at WW2 American Cemetery in NormandyClaudev8/Wikipedia


Originally posted Memorial Day 2016

Sunday, May 28, 2017

BLUE SUNDAY


Ry Cooder • Feelin’ Bad Blues • 1986

Get it: The UFO Has Landed

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES


There are some people
Who say we cannot tell . . .


Johnny Cash • I Was There When It Happened • 1957

LP cover: Discogs

Monday, May 22, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

It has long been said that “Monday is a mess” so we will endeavor to do our best to help you wend your way through the muck with upbeat tunes like Lightning Hopkins’ “Happy Blues for John Glenn” and other oldies of similar sentiment. And as it is Monday, we will be bookending this chapter of Blue Monday with two work songs that embody just that. It may start off “Stormin’ and Rainin’” but by month’s end you’ll be “Feelin’ Bad” no longer. Let’s catch that train and ride. . . .
—Irving Snurd, Blue Monday director of cosmetic consciousness


Lowell Fulsom • Stormin’ and Rainin’ • 1948

Friday, May 19, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

“In 1954, Christer Falkenstrom made his first radio broadcast accompanying himself on the cittra (zither) at the age of ten in Stockholm. That same night, he and his father were approached by a representative of HMV records, resulting in the recording of this song the following day. . . .”*


Christer Falkenstrom • Baklandets Vackra Maja • 1954

Get it: Black Mirror

*from the liner notes by Ian Nagoski

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES


Here’s one by the great Simon “Mahlathini” Nkabinde and the Mahotella Queens. Mahlathini, who was known in South Africa as “The Lion of Soweto,” sounds to these ears an awful lot like a close cousin to Howlin’ Wolf. . . .


Mahlathini Nezintombi Zomgqashiyo • Kwa Volondiya • 1987

LP cover: Discogs

Monday, May 15, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

Fred McDowell recorded this tune a number of times over the years usually with a variation on the “write me a few of your lines” lyrics heard here. Today’s version was released originally on The Blues Roll On, one of Alan Lomax’s “Southern Journey” collections that appeared on Atlantic records in 1960. The songs Fred McDowell sang for Lomax during his southern field trip in 1959 and subsequently issued on LPs documenting that field trip by both Atlantic and Prestige International were his recorded debut. Another version with completely different lyrics appeared in 1965 on Fred’s second Arhoolie LP, Fred McDowell Vol. 2, where it was titled “Frisco Lines.”


Fred McDowell • When You Get Home, 

LP cover: Discogs

Sunday, May 14, 2017

ARE ALL THE CHILDREN IN?


Johnny Cash • Are All The Children In • 1959

Get it: Hymns by Johnny Cash

Friday, May 12, 2017

ODDS & ENDS


Merle Haggard • Travlin’ Blues • 1969

Monday, May 08, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

Some tough bottleneck guitar on this one. . . .


Casey Bill • Rooster Blues • 1937

Get it: Cluck Old Hen

Sunday, May 07, 2017

LORD I COME TO THEE

Back in 2012, The Singing Bones posted an awesome quartet version of an old lining hymn, “A Charge to Keep” by the Echoes of Zion. The Echoes’ song is reminiscent of an earlier quartet record by The Pilgrim Travelers, “I Love the Lord” (also recorded by Rev. Robert Crenshaw in a congregational version). All of these records bring to mind another really fine congregational lining hymn recorded in a Chicago church service by Deacon Leroy Shinault around 1957. Alan Lomax writes, in his notes to Negro Church Music (Atlantic LP 1351), “The most vigorous survival of early black religious folk culture is the lined-out psalm, which is not black in origin, but goes back to the beginning of the Reformation in Europe. . . . The early Protestant leaders needed hymns by means of which they could teach their radical doctrines to an illiterate congregation. Therefore their song leaders intoned the psalms line by line. After each line was given out, the song leader led the congregation in singing it.” Though the Deacon Shinault record is rarely seen (or heard) in its original incarnation on Ping, and it certainly isn’t here, it (and its flip) has been reissued over the years on LP and CD and should be relatively easy to find.


Deacon L. Shinault • Lord I Come To Thee • 1957

Originally posted April 28, 2012

Friday, May 05, 2017

ODDS & ENDS


Adam Hebert & The Country Playboys • I Am So Lonely • 1963

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES


Can there be any blues as head-bangingly thrilling as those recorded at B. B. King’s 1952 Houston session? (“Woke Up This Morning,” “Past Day,” “Highway Bound,” “Please Love Me.”) We think not. . . .


B. B. King • Highway Bound • 1953


LP cover: Discogs

Monday, May 01, 2017

BLUE MONDAY


Boyd Gilmore • Believe I’ll Settle Down • 1953



Source: Sun Records: The Blues Years 1950–1958

Friday, April 28, 2017

ODDS & ENDS


Doug Sahm with the Sir Douglas Quintet • Colinda • 1973

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

DINOSAURIC PRECEPTION ROADMAP BLUES


We’re back with another dozen installments in our long running “cradle-to-grave” Dino series, picking up where we left off in January with Buck Owens’ endorsement of “pure pork.” Stick around for twelve more weeks as we take up our “nine pound hammer” and work our way through what’s left of one period of musical excavation and into a new one filled with “thrills, spills, and the sport of kings.” Well, maybe not that last bit. Up first . . . Merle Travis with his folk music “of the hills.”


Merle Travis • Nine Pound Hammer • 1947

Monday, April 24, 2017

BLUE MONDAY


Johnny Young’s South Side Blues Band • Tighten Up On It • 1966

Get it: Chicago The Blues Today

LP cover: Discogs

Sunday, April 23, 2017

I’LL RUN ON TO HIS THRONE

Here is a beautiful “lining” type hymn from the ever harmonious Pilgrim Travelers. A while back I posted a congregational lining hymn by Deacon Shinault which was inspired by a post on The Singing Bones that featured another quartet version of a lining hymn by The Echoes of Zion. This one by the Pilgrim Travelers is a real shiver-me-timbers affair with leads Kylo Turner and Keith Barber leading the way; the rest of the Travelers keep the cold chills meter on high: J. W. Alexander (tenor), Jesse Whitaker (baritone), Raphael Taylor (bass). Recorded in Hollywood, 
July 21, 1950.



The Pilgrim Travelers • I Love the Lord • 1950


Label photo: Record Connexion/Tom Kelly

Originally posted 6/9/2013

Friday, April 21, 2017

ODDS & ENDS


Carlos Malcolm & His Afro-Jamaican Rhythm • Bonanza Ska • 1965

Monday, April 17, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

Oh well, would you hear me weep and moan. . . .


Sunnyland Slim & His Boys • Big World • 1951

Floyd Jones, vocal/guitar; Billy Howell, trumpet; Sunnyland Slim, piano; Moody Jones, bass; Alfred Wallace, drums. 
Chicago, 22 March 1951.

CD cover: Floyd Jones is pictured top center.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Monday, April 10, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

This is The Killer speakin’


Jerry Lee Lewis • No Headstone On My Grave • 1973

Get it: Fireball! The Jerry Lee Lewis Collection

LP cover: Discogs

Friday, April 07, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

Odds and Ends Volume 14 is upon us at long last. We began our Odds & Ends run nearly four years ago with the fabulous Cowboy Church Sunday School and since that inaugural entry we have walked often on the odd side. Oddness, of course, does not necessarily equate with greatness but hopefully you will agree that we have indeed flirted with such these past many Fridays. Please stay tuned as we dust off another dozen underheard odds and ends. . . . 
—Irv “Odd Man Out” Snurd         



Get it: RCA Country Legends

Thursday, April 06, 2017

KERN RIVER BLUES

Merle Haggard passed away one year ago today. This would have been his 80th birthday. He recorded one final song in February of last year, a seeming reflection on his impending leave taking; it’s moving and on point. “There used to be a river here, running deep and wide. . . .”


Merle Haggard • Kern River Blues • 2016

Get it: Kern River Blues - Single

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

GIRL GROUPS DOWN FOR THE COUNT


Angelique Kidjo • Lonlon (Ravel’s Bolero) • 2007

Get it: Djin Djin

Monday, April 03, 2017

BLUE MONDAY


Charley Booker • Walked All Night • 1953


Source: Sun Records: The Blues Years 1950–1958

Friday, March 31, 2017

IT’S JUST LIKE HEAVEN . . .

RIP Rosie Méndez Hamlin. . . .

One of the few consolations to being in the 8th grade in the early ’60s was listening to the latest tunes on a little desktop radio after school. “Angel Baby” by Rosie & The Originals was one of the highlights of 1960–1961. Something about Rosie’s wistful, high-pitched vocals, the shambling Originals, and especially, the almost completely airless sax solo by bass player Tony Gomez, really made this song stand out, one you hoped would come on at least once during your afternoon listening session. (And then there was the rumor that she was attending your local high school but you wouldn’t be going there for two more years and by then she’d probably already have graduated. . . .)


Rosie & The Originals • Angel Baby • 1960

Originally posted April 22, 2015

ODDS & ENDS


Elvis Presley • I Was Born About Ten Thousand Years Ago • 1972

Get it: Walk a Mile in My Shoes: The Essential 70’s Masters

Monday, March 27, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

The first time I heard the original single version of this song on a reissue LP back in the mid-60s it caused “total destruction to [my] mind”; fifty years later it retains that power. Recently I was comparing that version with an earlier attempt and apart from an unfortunate faded ending I think this early version gets my vote for being the most dangerous of all Elmore James’ “Dust My Broom” iterations.


Elmore James • Please Find My Baby (Version 1) • 1952


Image: booklet to Ace ABOXCD 4

Friday, March 24, 2017

ODDS & ENDS

Here’s a haunting Bill Monroe “quartet” recording from 1951, with just Bill and Carter Stanley on mandolin and guitar respectively, and on the “get down”s Gordon Terry, Rudy Lyle, Carter, and Bill, in that order.


Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Quartet


Monday, March 20, 2017

BLUE MONDAY

609 Boogie!



John Lee Hooker • Six O’Nine Boogie (Take 1) • 1949

Source: Danceland Years