Archive for the ‘Jimmy Reed’ Category

Gus Jenkins

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Listen: Chittlins / Gus Jenkins

Damn, I wish I knew more about Gus Jenkins. I know he recorded as early as ’56, under the name Gus Jinkins, and he’s up there as one of the most mysterious raw blues obscurities around.

Someone at Capitol decided to release ‘Chittlins’ via their newly formed subsidiary, Tower, in late ’64.

The Tower label went on until ’68, amassing a small, but fairly collectable bunch of releases, the most famous of course being all the very early US singles by The Pink Floyd. But there were more, Joe Meek masters by Heinz and Tom Jones, Ian Whitcomb & Bluesville, The Chocolate Watch Band, The Standells…pull up a Tower discography sometime. Nice stuff.

Even on first listen, you’ll agree, a wonderfully noticeable amount of Gus Jenkins’ swagger may have influenced The Cramps just a bit, and even more, The Rolling Stones, sounding not unlike any number of tracks from their first few albums.

According to BILLBOARD’s November 14, 1964 RnB DJ Roundup below, along with Jimmy Reed’s ‘I’m Going Upside Your Head’, Ed Wright at WABO Cleveland was spinning it, Ed Hardy over at KDIA in San Francisco chose ‘Chittlins’ as well as Little Jerry Williams’ ‘I’m The Lover Man’, a filthy sleaze fest of a single, a no fucking around must for every collection. And let’s not forget WYLD’s Ed ‘Screaming’ Teamer in New Orleans, who was not only jamming Gus Jenkins and Little Jerry Williams, but was playing the mad great ‘My Country Sugar Mama’ by Howlin’ Wolf.

Jack Dupree

Friday, November 19th, 2010

Tongue Tied Blues / Jack Dupree

Listen: Tongue Tied Blues / Jack Dupree

This was a bizarre discovery from that very first pile of singles I blagged off WMCR, claiming to be from the local Children’s Hospital and needing donations. There were many greats in that stack of about fifty (The Others, The Pretty Things, Inez & Charlie Foxx, The Mickey Finn, The Hullaballoos, Ike & Tina Turner, Jimmy Reed), but this earned an immediate spot.

I played it for everyone, all as baffled as myself on first listen. We were feeling confidently hip to this blues music The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds and The Kinks claimed as their influences, even though we simply were not. A true and pure example had yet to be served our way until that very first spin of ‘Tongue Tied Blues’. Just listen and you’ll understand.

The Megatons

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

megatonsshimmysue, megatons, island, sue records, chris blackwell, guy stevens

Listen: Shimmy Shimmy Walk (Part 1) / The Megatons MegatonsShimmy.mp3

Sorry but isn’t this the ‘Wang Dang Doddle’ riff? I’m expecting to hear Jimmy Reed start singing any second.

But these are all good things. I think it’s what’s called a scorcher. Deep studio funk was an inviting description I read recently as well. It’s the soundtrack to a black and white, smokey club segment whereby the music always ends to early – and before the days of Shazam, so you’d never know who the fuck it was.

Didn’t hurt that ‘Shimmy Shimmy Walk’ released on Sue. You just know for sure Guy Stevens played it at those romantic sweat boxes off Wardour Street in the 60′s.

Slim Harpo

Saturday, November 29th, 2008

I'm A King Bee / Slim Harpo

Listen: I'm A King Bee / Slim Harpo I_m A King Bee.mp3

Slim Harpo, real name: James Moore, might as well have been granted a patent on mid 60′s electric blues. Yeah yeah, there were a bunch of great players then, definitely Jimmy Reed, Freddie King, etc, so it’s admittedly a personal pick. His calm voice sat suggestively in every song and those lyrical double entendres were a riot. This one takes the cake. The Rolling Stones recorded a superb version for their first album, so it was nice to find the original was even sleazier. No surprise it was not a commercial hit, but certainly it’s a classic, one of the many of examples written about in THE LONG TAIL.