Listen: Son Of A Preacher Man / Mel Brown MelBrownSonPreacher.mp3
I recall seeing Mel Brown playing guitar with Buddy Guy in a small club near the RIT college campus. Saw Freddie King there quite soon afterwards as well. For the life of me, I can’t remember the name of the place. It was not glamorous by any stretch and must have made any one of these national acts think ‘how did I end up here?’. But in the well known tradition of blues guys, they’d just blister through it all, eyes closed. It was on that night my interest in Mel Brown was sparked.
I’d seen a few of his Impulse albums in the college station’s library, logically tucked away (as all Impulse releases immediately were) in the jazz section. Most of those albums were in close to mint condition as very few college radio dj’s knew jack about jazz, me included – and certainly none of us played the stuff on our tomorrow’s hip rock music today programs. Wouldn’t be surprised if they’re all still sitting there….clean as a whistle.
Thing was he’s really a blues player, as I discovered that evening. I dug around the piles of singles in the ‘free – take what you want’ boxes back at the station right after the show, positive I’d seen at least one of his in there and sure enough – bingo.
I was a bit bummed discovering it to be a cover of the Dusty Springfield hit, ‘Son Of A Preacher Man’ and it sounded all muzak-y, but held on to it anyways. Now I’m glad I did. It makes for a nice breather, and through the years my penchant grew for instrumental covers of big pop hits.
Listen: Eighteen Pounds Of Unclean Chitlings (Part 1) / Mel Brown MelBrownChitlins.mp3
Along comes this single with a hip title. Like many before it, who can pass up one called ‘Eighteen Pounds Of Unclean Chitlings’. First spin reminded me of just about any track from Ten Years After during their STONEHENGE period. Not a bad thing.
Warning: initial listen might sound a bit ho-hum. Give it a few plays – it really sticks.