Sunnyland Slim (1977) She Got That Jive (LP) Airway Records 4275

Sunnyland Slim

She Got That Jive 

1977

Airway Records 4275

*** Noteworthy


While he’d headed north to Memphis in the late 1920s, when he was in his early 20s and settled in Chicago in the late 1930s (Dahl), this 1977 outing is still soaked in the Mississippi mud of his rural birthplace.  It’s just dripping with it.


While he played with on countless classic Chicago blues dates and played alongside nearly every Chicago blues legend, and had in fact released plenty of his own sides, he never really became a household name for the casual listener.  Eventually he set up his own label, Airway, which released this set.  Likely they didn’t have all the latest studio technology and that just helps give this recording some nice basement sound that fits the blues like an old piano in the corner.

Mostly Slim and the band stick with slow and mid tempo numbers but get the thing chugging along like a fast train on the instrumental “Station Break.”  Along with the piano, Slim offers vocals on most of the cuts, Bonnie Lee lending her pipes to “Standing on the Corner.”  Fans of electric Chicago blues will likely find plenty to enjoy on this set.

— winch (author of )

Dahl, Bill.  “Sunnyland Slim.”  AMG to the Blues. 2nd Edition. 1999.

Piano Red: Rockin’ With Red

William Lee Perryman…aka Piano Red…aka Dr. Feelgood…an essential part of the story of American music…1950 “Rockin’ with Red” and “The Wrong Yoyo” the next year, years before Bill Haley…rock and roll was mostly just a racist term trying to convince people that white artists had invented something…Red’s boogie woogie and barrelhouse blues (as well as Louis Jordan’s jump blues) clearly giving Haley his cues…Red’s music clearly showing a bridge back to ragtime…and while the so-called rock and roll is said to have brought black music to white audiences, ragtime had done that in a big way over fifty years earlier…and Red recorded for and played for white audiences years before the so-called rock and roll hit the charts….if Red don’t put a grin to your chin and a tap to your toes you might as well give it up and give up the ghost. — winch

Big Bill Broonzy (LP) Last Session Part One (1957) Verve 3001 (1959)

Big Bill Broonzy
Last Session Part One
Verve 3001
Released 1959
Recorded July 1957
Produced & Directed by Bill Randle  

 

Recommended ****


The first of three sets Verve released in 1959, all recorded July 1957.  The day after the sessions, Broonzy would enter the hospital with lung cancer, and he’d be gone before the release of these albums.

Classic collection of acoustic blues, all good with several highlights including “Southbound Train,” “Joe Turner Blues,” and “I Ain’t Gon’ Be Treated This Way.”