LA HORA DEL
De vez en cuando recomendaremos un video de blues nacional y otro de blues internacional. Los dos vídeos recomendados irán acompañados de una pequeña biografía del artista o banda.
From time to time we will recommend a vídeo of a Spanish blues artist or band and another international blues one, including a small biography of the selected artists.
"The Bluebird Band"
Grupo de versiones Country - Bluegrass, fundado en enero de 2015, cosechando mucho exito de publico y crítica. Incluimos su versión del clásico irlandés "Whiskey In The Jar"
Hooker was born in Clarksdale in 1930 which made him about 15 years junior to
Muddy Waters (who was also from Clarksdale), and 12 years younger than John
Lee Hooker. Earl was John Lee Hooker's first cousin, but that is where the similarity
ended between these two.
Earl moved to Chicago at the age of one, and as a youngster and teenager, no doubt was exposed to the fertile blues scene there. Music came naturally as his parents were both playing musicians. He started playing guitar about 1945 after meeting Robert Nighthawk. Nighthawk had already cut records under the name of Robert Lee McCoy for the Bluebird label, and had been an accompanist for John Lee (Sonny Boy) Williamson on some of his sides for Bluebird.
While Nighthawk became the main influence on Hooker's playing, Earl learned from other guitarists and became adept in several genres aside from the blues, like country & western, jazz, and popular music that would soon become rock and roll.
While still a teenager, Earl left Chicago and became a road-rambler. He returned to the south to play in Ike Turner's band which might account for Hooker making some of his early recordings for Sam Phillip's Sun Records company, since Turner was a talent scout for several of the independent labels. Earl's earliest sides in 1952, were instrumentals, made for the King label (re-issued once on a King LP of mostly John Lee Hooker sides) and were recorded in Florida right in the club where he was playing a job. Earl was to spend much of his life on the move, criss-crossing the U.S.A. (and once to Europe), playing clubs and joints, and making trips to studios in Bradenton, Miami, Memphis, Chicago, Wisconsin, Los-Angeles, and London.
The scarcity of recorded work during the middle and late 1950's (Leadbitter & Slaven's Blues Records 1943 - 1970 lists only a handful of sides), suggests that Hooker was on the road, and could not secure a long-term recording contract. Of the companies he recorded for, most did not stay in business long enough to earn him much income (or recognition).
During the early 60's, Earl returned to Chicago to record some of his finest work for Chess, Chief and Age. This was the time of "Blue Guitar", "Tanya", "Blues in D Natural", and "Universal Rock". Earl was also a sideman on some of Jr. Wells' great sides for Chief, and played on sessions for Muddy Waters, A.C. Reed, Ricky Allen, and Lillian Offitt. Offitt's wailing "Will My Man be Home Tonight" featured one of Earl's searing guitar riffs that became a trademark for him in subsequent recordings. In 1971, Otis Rush paid tribute to Earl by featuring this riff on his own instrumental named "I Wonder Why" from his "Right Place, Wrong Time" sessions (available on Hightone CD -8007). It is Earl Hooker who plays the slide guitar that accompanies Muddy Waters on "You Shook Me", no small deed considering Muddy was one of the great slide guitarists of the blues.
Earl was always self-sufficient and he never had a day job. He made his living full-time playing music, and at one time tried his hand at jazz, and even country. He always returned to the blues however, and we as fans can be grateful that he put down so much outstanding material for the recording machines.
It was during the late 1960's that Zebedee began to get some overdue recognition. Chris Strachwitz, the owner of Arhoolie records, asked Buddy Guy to recommend guitar players from Chicago whom he could record for his fledgling label. Buddy promptly gave Chris Earl's address in Chicago. (The other guitar player that Buddy recommended was Johnny Littlejohn, who also got to record for Arhoolie). In 1968 Strachwitz went to Chicago to meet Earl and subsequently recorded some of Hooker's best work. Around the same time, blues enthusiast Dick Shurman captured some of Earl's club performances in Chicago to tape, and these provide a glimpse into Zeb's jaw-dropping live performances.
In 1969, Earl took a band to California and made additional sides for Arhoolie. Here, Earl got to stretch out beyond the 3-minute length of chart-market single recordings, and cut some great loose improvisations of material heavily based in the blues. Some of the Arhoolie sides feature well-known Chicago sidemen like Louis and Dave Myers, Carey Bell, Andrew Odom (vocals), and Eddie Taylor, and in the company of these players, Earl made great music.
In late 1969, Earl travelled to Europe to play in the American Folk Blues Festival, along with Magic Sam, Carey Bell, Clifton Chenier and others. By this time, he was quite ill with advancing tuberculosis, and after returning to the USA, was admitted to a Chicago sanitarium where he passed away in April 1970. He was just 41.
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Blues Nacional: Johnny
"Tin Pan Alley" y "Dirty Pool"
JOHNNY PEREZ TRIO está formado -en la actualidad- por Johnny Pérez (guitarra y voz), Jordi Jornet "Cobre" (bajo eléctrico) y Xavi Tomàs (batería). Ocasionalmente, la formación cuenta también con la calidad y temperamento de Miki Santamaría o Rod Deville (Rodrigo Villar) al bajo. A finales del 2007, el grupo editó "Life by the drop", un CD tributo a Stevie Ray Vaughan que incluye 13 temas: “Boot Hill”, “Empty “Arms”, “The Sky Is Crrying”, “All Your Love I Miss Loving”, “Let Me Love You Baby”, “Tell Me”, “Honey Bee”, “Tin Pan Alley”, “Chitlins Con Carne”, “Rude Mood”, “Things That I Used To Do”, “Superstition” y “Life By The Drop”. El disco cuenta con la colaboración de algunos artistas destacados del panorama del blues barcelonés como The Walking Stick Man, Hernán Senra "Chino", Demian, Tota, David Sam, Sergi Escriu, David Giorcelli, Miriam Aparicio, Alfredo Aznar e Irene López. Miki Santamaría se encargó del bajo y Marc Molas fue el artífice de la grabación, mezcla y masterización en el estudio "El Tostadero" de Barcelona. En su trayectoria han colaborado con Carlos Segarra y también han compartido escenario con Barrelhouse Chuck, Maceo Parker, Hook Herrera o Raimundo Amador entre otros. Recientemente han participado en la XV edición del Festival de Blues de Cazorla. La potencia y el estallido de fuerza del estilo original de Stevie sitúa a esta banda a la cabeza de cualquier programación de eventos de blues, siempre respaldada por músicos de primera categoría, amplia carrera y reconocimiento de los bajos fondos blueseros de Barcelona.
"Woman You Must Be Crazy" & meddley
electric blues guitar can be traced directly back to this Texas-born pioneer,
who began amplifying his sumptuous lead lines for public consumption circa 1940
and thus initiated a revolution so total that its tremors are still being felt
Few major postwar blues guitarists come to mind that don't owe T-Bone Walker an unpayable debt of gratitude. B.B. King has long cited him as a primary influence, marveling at Walker's penchant for holding the body of his guitar outward while he played it. Gatemouth Brown, Pee Wee Crayton, Goree Carter, Pete Mayes, and a wealth of other prominent Texas-bred axemen came stylistically right out of Walker during the late '40s and early '50s. Walker's nephew, guitarist R.S. Rankin, went so far as to bill himself as T-Bone Walker, Jr. for a 1962 single on Dot, "Midnight Bells Are Ringing" (with his uncle's complete blessing, of course; the two had worked up a father-and-son-type act long before that).
Aaron Thibeault Walker was a product of the primordial Dallas blues scene. His stepfather, Marco Washington, stroked the bass fiddle with the Dallas String Band, and T-Bone followed his stepdad's example by learning the rudiments of every stringed instrument he could lay his talented hands on. One notable visitor to the band's jam sessions was the legendary Blind Lemon Jefferson. During the early '20s, Walker led the sightless guitarist from bar to bar as the older man played for tips.
In 1929, Walker made his recording debut with a single 78 for Columbia, "Wichita Falls Blues"/"Trinity River Blues," billed as Oak Cliff T-Bone. Pianist Douglas Fernell was his musical partner for the disc. Walker was exposed to some pretty outstanding guitar talent during his formative years; besides Jefferson, Charlie Christian -- who would totally transform the role of the guitar in jazz with his electrified riffs much as Walker would with blues, was one of his playing partners circa 1933.
T-Bone Walker split the Southwest for Los Angeles during the mid-'30s, earning his keep with saxophonist Big Jim Wynn's band with his feet rather than his hands as a dancer. Popular bandleader Les Hite hired Walker as his vocalist in 1939. Walker sang "T-Bone Blues"with the Hite aggregation for Varsity Records in 1940, but didn't play guitar on the outing. It was about then, though, that his fascination with electrifying his axe bore fruit; he played L.A. clubs with his daring new toy after assembling his own combo, engaging in acrobatic stage moves -- splits, playing behind his back -- to further enliven his show.
Capitol Records was a fledgling Hollywood concern in 1942, when Walker signed on and cut "Mean Old World" and "I Got a Break Baby" with boogie master Freddie Slack hammering the 88s. This was the first sign of the T-Bone Walker that blues guitar aficionados know and love, his fluid, elegant riffs and mellow, burnished vocals setting a standard that all future blues guitarists would measure themselves by.
Chicago's Rhumboogie Club served as Walker's home away from home during a good portion of the war years. He even cut a few sides for the joint's house label in 1945 under the direction of pianist Marl Young. But after a solitary session that same year for Old Swingmaster that soon made its way on to another newly established logo, Mercury, Walker signed with L.A.-based Black & White Records in 1946 and proceeded to amass a stunning legacy.
The immortal "Call It Stormy Monday (But Tuesday Is Just as Bad)" was the product of a 1947 Black & White date with Teddy Buckner on trumpet and invaluable pianist Lloyd Glenn in the backing quintet. Many of Walker's best sides were smoky after-hours blues, though an occasional up-tempo entry -- "T-Bone Jumps Again," a storming instrumental from the same date, for example -- illustrated his nimble dexterity at faster speeds.
Walker recorded prolifically for Black & White until the close of 1947, waxing classics like the often-covered "T-Bone Shuffle" and "West Side Baby," though many of the sides came out on Capitol after the demise of Black & White. In 1950, Walker turned up on Imperial. His first date for the L.A. indie elicited the after-hours gem "Glamour Girl" and perhaps the penultimate jumping instrumental in his repertoire, "Strollin' With Bones" (Snake Sims' drum kit cracks like a whip behind Walker's impeccable licks).
Walker's 1950-54 Imperial stint was studded with more classics: "The Hustle Is On," "Cold Cold Feeling," "Blue Mood," "Vida Lee" (named for his wife), "Party Girl," and, from a 1952 New Orleans jaunt, "Railroad Station Blues," which was produced by Dave Bartholomew. Atlantic was T-Bone Walker's next stop in 1955; his first date for them was an unlikely but successful collaboration with a crew of Chicago mainstays (harpist Junior Wells, guitarist Jimmy Rogers, and bassist Ransom Knowling among them). Rogers found the experience especially useful; he later adapted Walker's "Why Not" as his own Chess hit "Walking by Myself." With a slightly more sympathetic L.A. band in staunch support, Walker cut two follow-up sessions for Atlantic in 1956-57. The latter date produced some amazing instrumentals ("Two Bones and a Pick," "Blues Rock," "Shufflin' the Blues") that saw him dueling it out with his nephew, jazzman Barney Kessel (Walker emerged victorious in every case).
Unfortunately, the remainder of Walker's discography isn't of the same sterling quality for the most part. As it had with so many of his peers from the postwar R&B era, rock's rise had made Walker's classy style an anachronism (at least during much of the 1960s). He journeyed overseas on the first American Folk Blues Festival in 1962, starring on the Lippmann & Rau-promoted bill across Europe with Memphis Slim, Willie Dixon, and a host of other American luminaries. A 1964 45 for Modern and an obscure LP on Brunswick preceded a pair of BluesWay albums in 1967-68 that restored this seminal pioneer to American record shelves.
European tours often beckoned. A 1968 visit to Paris resulted in one of his best latter-day albums, I Want a Little Girl, for Black & Blue (and later issued stateside on Delmark). With expatriate tenor saxophonist Hal "Cornbread" Singer and Chicago drummer S.P. Leary picking up Walker's jazz-tinged style brilliantly, the guitarist glided through a stellar set list.
Good Feelin', a 1970 release on Polydor, won a Grammy for the guitarist, though it doesn't rank with his best efforts. A five-song appearance on a 1973 set for Reprise, Very Rare, was also a disappointment. Persistent stomach woes and a 1974 stroke slowed Walker's career to a crawl, and he died in 1975.
No amount of written accolades can fully convey the monumental importance of what T-Bone Walker gave to the blues. He was the idiom's first true lead guitarist, and undeniably one of its very best. ~ Bill Dahl, All Music Guide
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Blues Nacional: Alex
"Have You Ever Been Mistreated"
ALEX TNT (ALEX ALVAREZ) se interesó en la música gracias a la influencia de su hermano mayor y a los siete años empezó a cantar y tocar la guitarra. Su carrera profesional comenzó a los diecisiete, tocando en clubes Barcelona con su propio grupo llamado The Four Blues. Después de tocar en algunas bandas (Harmonica Zúmel Blues Band), Alex empezó a trabajar junto a Hook Herrera, músico de blues norteamericano afincado en España, con quien estuvo tocando regularmente en los mejores clubs y festivales de España y Europa. En diciembre de 2001, formó su propia banda Alex T.N.T. Con esta banda comenzó a tocar los grandes clubes de Barcelona, empezando a conseguir popularidad entre el público y la crítica especializada. Durante esta época grabó dos cds “Walking Your Way” y “I Feel The Blues Again"- Su último cd titulado “Alex T.N.T” incluye temas originales donde mezcla soul, blues y funk. En directo su banda es poderosa gracias a un plantel de excelentes y potentes músicos. Recientemente ha realizado giras por Bélgica, Luxemburgo, Holanda, Portugal, Alemania y España. Durante los últimos cuatro años Alex ha estado trabajando por Estados Unidos y Canadá con Sam Cockrell & The Groove y, con su banda, telonearon a B.B. King en Minneapolis. Alex T.N.T. ha compartido escenario con Hook Herrera, Lynwood Slim, Larry McCray, Johnny B. Gayden, Sam Cockrell & The Groove, Corey Harris, Alvin Youngblood Heart, Paul Orta, Steve de Swardt, Sheila Weaver, Mike Wheeler, Alex Napier, U.P Wilson (Texas Tornado)… Alex demuestra siempre una enorma madurez y control en el escenario y una gran conexión con el público
International Blues: Howlin' Wolf
"Meet Me In The Bottom"
Chester Arthur Burnett (June 10, 1910 – January 10, 1976), better known as Howlin' Wolf, was an influential American blues singer, guitarist and harmonica player.
With a booming voice and looming physical presence, Burnett is commonly ranked among the leading performers in electric blues; musician and critic Cub Koda declared, "no one could match [Howlin' Wolf] for the singular ability to rock the house down to the foundation while simultaneously scaring its patrons out of its wits." Many songs popularized by Burnett—such as “Smokestack Lightnin’”, “Back Door Man” and “Spoonful”—have become standards of blues and blues rock
At 6 feet, 6 inches (198 cm) and close to 300 pounds (136 kg), he was an imposing presence with one of the loudest and most memorable voices of all the "classic" 1950s Chicago blues singers. Howlin' Wolf's voice has been compared to "the sound of heavy machinery operating on a gravel road". This rough-edged, slightly fearsome musical style is often contrasted with the less crude but still powerful presentation of his contemporary and professional rival, Muddy Waters - although the two were reportedly not that different in actual personality - to describe the two pillars of the Chicago blues representing the music.
Howlin' Wolf, Sonny Boy Williamson (Rice Miller), Little Walter Jacobs and Muddy Waters are usually regarded in retrospect as the greatest blues artists who recorded for Chess in Chicago. Sam Phillips once remarked, "When I heard Howlin' Wolf, I said, 'This is for me. This is where the soul of man never dies.'" In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked him #51 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
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Blues Nacional: Nasty
"Tell Me What's The Reason" (2009)
Nasty Boogie es una banda de blues nacida en Valencia a mediados del 2006. Aunque es una banda joven, varios de sus componentes tienen una larga trayectoria sobre sus espaldas. Interpretan desde el profundo estilo de Chicago, hasta el ritmo del californiano West Coast, pasando por la intensidad del sonido Texas. Han actuado en algunos de los más importantes festivales de España como el Rock And River en Córdoba (compartiendo cartel con Mark Hummel y Igor Prado Band), o el Almeriblues (junto a José Luis Pardo y Troublemakers). Este año lo harán el en festival internacional de blues de Cazorla (Jaén). En el 2009 publicaron su primer álbum en estudio llamado “Moanin' At Midnight”, en el que han colaborado entre otros Danny Boy, Francisco Blanco “Latino”, Sergi Escriu, Oscar Rabadán o David Giorcelli, consiguiendo muy buenas críticas. Los componentes actuales de los Nasty Boogie son Daniel “Big Shakey” Tena, voz y armónica. Raúl “T-Bonsky” Rabadán, guitarra, coros, Edu Mota, bajo y Juanjo “Malasideas” Semi, batería.
Junior Wells & Buddy Guy:
Blackmore in Memphis, Tennessee, Wells was raised on the other side of the
Mississippi River in West Memphis, Arkansas. Wells learned the fundamentals of
blues harp from another soon-to-be-legend, Junior Parker, before moving to
Chicago in 1946 at the age of 12 with his mother.
An often-repeated story of Wells' youth tells of the young bluesman seeing a $2.00 harmonica in a store. Since he only had $1.50 in his pocket, Wells laid his money on the counter, grabbed the harp and ran. Wells was soon caught by the police, but after the judge heard him play the instrument, he allegedly handed the shop owner the 50-cent balance and told Wells to be on his way.
Upon arriving in Chicago, Wells hooked up with guitarists Louis and David Myers, playing house parties and infrequent club dates as the Three Deuces. They later changed their name to the Three Aces, and finally just the Aces with the addition of drummer Fred Below. In a strange turn of events, when Little Walter quit Muddy Waters' band in 1952, Wells was the harp player that took his place. Little Walter subsequently hooked up with the Aces to launch his own solo career.
A year after Wells joined Waters' band, he was drafted into the army, but he went AWOL shortly afterwards. Wells returned to Chicago, played with Waters and recorded some songs of his own for the States label. Wells eventually fulfilled his military duties and was discharged in 1955. After his brief army career, Wells performed for a while with Waters, and then re-formed a version of the Aces and began touring the country.
Wells began playing with legendary blues guitarist Buddy Guy in 1958, forming a creative partnership that would last better than 20 years. Wells became a favored performer at Theresa's Lounge, Chicago's premier blues hotspot, and backed up Guy on his recordings as well as recording a few singles of his own for small labels like Profile and Chief. In 1966, Wells and Guy would make blues history, recording Wells' solo debut, Hoodoo Man Blues for Delmark Records.
Wells' debut album launched a successful career that would roll until the harp player's death in 1998. His raucous, no-holds-barred playing style appealed to young 1960s blues-rock fans, and Wells would later perform his inspired mix of Chicago-styled blues, R&B, and soul alongside rockers like Van Morrison, Eric Clapton, and the Rolling Stones. Wells even lent his talents to southern rap band Arrested Development.
Although he only recorded sporadically during the 1980s, in 1990 Wells teamed up with fellow harp masters James Cotton, Carey Bell, and Billy Branch to record the critically-acclaimed Harp Attack! album. Wells' recorded output in the '90s suffered from the artist's lack of commitment, but his final album - 1997's Come On In This House - won Wells a W.C. Handy Blues Award for Traditional Blues Album. Wells also had a cameo appearance in the film Blues Brothers 2000, which was released after his death.
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"Opossing Poles". (2007)
Estamos ante el punto culminante, la madurez absoluta de esta banda formada en Bilbao a finales de 2003 por un grupo de amigos locos por el Blues. Durante estos 5 largos años Travellin' Brothers ha conseguido gran prestigio en la escena bluesera del país, ha actuado en los mejores locales y festivales -Cazorla, Béjar, Hondarribia o Getxo entre otros muchos-, y ha realizado sus primeras giras por Francia, participando en festivales internacionales como Blues sur Seine en Paris o Cahors Blues Festival y compartiendo escenario con auténticas leyendas del Blues como Buddy Guy, Ike Turner, Jonnhy Winter, Jonh Mayall, Carey Bell, Ten Years After, Canned Heat, Koko Taylor, Otis Grand y un largo etc.
International Blues: Sonny Boy
"Keep It To Yourself" (1963)
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Blues Nacional: Los
Reyes del K.O.
"That's Allright" (2007)
Los Reyes del K.O. son
Marcos Coll y Adrian Costa, dos gallegos que unidos por su afición y dedicación
al blues y a la música negra en general, han mostrado su manera de entender esta
música por medio mundo. En festivales compartiendo escenarios con los más
grandes como Chuck Berry, Solomon Burke, Buddy Guy, John Mayall, The Animals,
The Faboulous Thunderbirds, etc. o en las más importantes salas de este genero,
como el Buddy Guy's Legends en Chicago o el Terra Blues en New York.
Despues de haberse conocido de niños en el colegio, en 1993 deciden formar una banda de "blues" amateur para dar rienda suelta a su devoción por este tipo de música. Después de muchos conciertos de ámbito local en bares, casas okupadas o en la misma calle, Marcos decide irse a Madrid a probar suerte. Después de hacer todo tipo de trabajos durante el día, desde chico de almacén hasta conductor de grúa, y de tocar en diferentes formaciones y jam sessions por la noche, recibe la llamada de la banda decana de blues en España, la Tonky Blues Band. Este hecho cambiaria su vida sobre todo a nivel profesional y mas tarde también la de su "soul Brother" Adrian. Después de muchos conciertos y de acompañar a artistas como Mick Taylor (guitarrista de Rolling Stones), al cabo de un par de años llega Adrian también a la ciudad y pasa inmediatamente a formar parte de Tonky Blues Band, primero como batería, luego de bajista, para ya mas tarde acabar tocando su instrumento natural, la guitarra. Fueron unos años muy intensos, teniendo como momento culminante la gira y grabación con el legendario batería y cantante de Jimmy Hendrix, Buddy Miles. Este hecho cambio su manera de ver las cosas y fue una lección tanto musical como humana que ya nunca olvidarían.
En el 2002 ya estaban preparados para montar su propia banda. Después de reunir a una de las mejores secciones rítmicas, Javier Vacas y Antonio Alvarez, en solo dos meses ya están en el estudio grabando su primer disco “CollvsCosta”, producido por Ñaco Goñi, que más tarde ganaría el premio al mejor disco de blues en España. Los siguientes años fueron de mucho trabajo por toda la geografía nacional Muchos festivales de blues e incluso traspasando la línea entre el blues y lo comercial al tocar en eventos de pop o rock, como el programa de TVE “Musica 1”, siendo la primera banda de blues en hacerlo. Después de grabar el disco “Homemade Blues”, producido por su amigo Dani Alcover en septiembre de 2004, con motivo de su actuación en el festival de blues de Scmoltz, hacen su primera incursión en Alemania. Al ver la gran aceptación que tienen en dicho país deciden mudarse y hacer de Berlín su residencia. Con la ayuda de Michael Maass y sobre todo de Christian Rannenberg, que produce su disco “Hot Tin Roof”, (nominado para los prestigiosos premios Deutsche Schallplaten), consiguen hacerse un hueco en el panorama del blues europeo, actuando en muchos festivales de renombre, así como ganando premios como el Berlin Jazz & Blues Award 2005. En Alemania conocen a grandes músicos de blues que tienen su residencia en Europa, como Sydney "Guitar Crusher" Selby, Angela Brown, Eb Davis, Sugar Blue, Charlie Musselwhite, etc. y empiezan también a trabajar con muchos de ellos. En 2006 graban su directo en Berlín en el club de jazz y blues “Yorcksloschen”, el mítico club donde puedes verlos actuar cuando están en la ciudad.
Su música transita desde el blues mas primitivo, al mas moderno Chicago Blues, con algunas influencias funky, soul e incluso hip-hop o latino. Con su ritmo, energía y humor hacen que nadie se quede quieto, consiguiendo que mucha gente cambie el cliché que tiene sobre lo que es un concierto de blues. "I just finished listening to Los Reyes Del K.O. and it is SMOKING! Great tunes and great playing. I love it. Good for you guys!" -Charlie Musselwhite.
International Blues: Martha Davis
Martha Davis (December 14, 1917 – April 6, 1960) was an African American singer
and pianist whose musical comedy act, "Martha Davis & Spouse", was popular in
the late 1940s and 1950s.
Davis was born in Wichita, Kansas, and raised in Chicago, Illinois. By the mid 1930s she had met and been influenced by Fats Waller, and performed regularly as a singer and pianist in Chicago clubs. In 1939 she met, and later married, bass player Calvin Ponder (October 17, 1917 - December 26, 1970), who went on to play in Earl Hines' band.
In 1948, Davis and Ponder moved to California, and Davis developed her recording career on Jewel Records in Hollywood with a trio including Ponder, Ralph Williams (guitar) and Lee Young (drums). Their cover of Dick Haymes' pop hit "Little White Lies" reached # 11 on the Billboard R&B chart, followed by a duet with Louis Jordan, "Daddy-O", from the movie A Song Is Born, which reached the R&B top ten later that year.
Davis and Ponder also began performing together on stage, developing a musical and comedy routine as "Martha Davis & Spouse" which played on their physical characteristics (she was large, he was smaller). The act became hugely popular, touring and having a residency at the Blue Angel in New York. They appeared together in movies including Smart Politics (with Gene Krupa), and in the mid 1950s variety films Rhythm & Blues Revue, Rock 'n' Roll Revue and Basin Street Revue. Several of their performances were filmed by Snader Telescriptions for video jukeboxes, and they also broadcast on network TV, particularly Garry Moore's CBS show.
In 1957, after a break of several years, they resumed recording for the ABC Paramount label, with whom they cut two LPs. Davis died from cancer in New York in 1960, aged only 42, and Ponder died ten years later, aged only 53.
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Blues Nacional: The
Honky Tonk Blues Bar. Barcelona
El blues, raíz de la música
moderna, ha estado siempre presente desde hace años en nuestro país con músicos
pioneros como Amadeu Casa, Big Mama Montse, Dani Nel.lo, Aldo Munari, Artur
Regada o August Tharrats que han sido o siguen siendo un vivo ejemplo
Con dedicación y devoción absoluta hacia el blues, Víctor y Pere Puertas comienzan en el año 2000 su proyecto más estable, The Suitcase Brothers, Suitcase (pronunciado 'sutqueis' en inglés y que significa 'maleta'), una maleta llena de blues en el caso de estos dos hermanos.
Pere, ha residido cerca de dos años en Austin, TX (USA), interpreta este estilo de música a través de la guitarra y la voz, de forma sorprendente para ser alguien que ha nacido tan lejos del sur de los Estado Unidos. Todo lo que aprendió actuando y viviendo en el país de origne del blues, hizo que volviera con la lección bien aprendida
Por su parte, Víctor es uno de los mejores armonicistas del panorama nacional y esta afirmación la hacen muchos de sus compañeros de profesión como Ñaco Goñi, Mingo Balaguer, Joan Pau Cumellas. Incluso el mismo Jerry Portnoy, armonicista de las bandas de Muddy Waters o Eric Clapton, ha coincido en este reconocimiento. Todo ello hace de este joven multi-instrumentista de gran talento natural, un valor emergente en la escena del blues nacional e internacional.
En palabras textuales de Portnoy, en una entrevista realizada en exclusiva para "la Taberna del Blues", este gran armonicista manifestó: "He conocido músicos excelentes en España. Hay un jóven armonicista de mucho talento, Víctor Puertas, que realmente me ha impresionado".
El resultado de estos años de trabajo y de crecimiento musical y a la vez personal, se plasma en este dúo que es un referente en la escena del blues de nuestro país. Sus conciertos suenan a auténtico blues y te hacen sentir esta música de tal modo que consiguen que el oyente sólo tenga ganas de escuchar más y más blues.
Festivales de Blues nacionales e internacionales en los que han participado:
Blues Cazorla, Fuerteventura. Blues en Roses, Blues Cerdanyola, Blues en Reus, Hondarribia. Blues en Sevilla, Rock and River. Washington DC, Maryland,Blues Festival en el Kennedy Center, Takoma Park Festival, Dallas, Austin, San Angelo, Bedford (Bedford Blues Festival).
Entre sus colaboraciones destacan:
Amadeu Casas, Big Mama Montse, Dani Nel.lo, Artur Regada, August Tharrats, Aldo Munari, Pep Pascual, Blas Picon, Mario Cobo, Ivan kovacevic, Balta Bordoy, Jordi Llaurens, Nestor Busquets, Marc Ruiz, Gary Primich (R.I.P), Jerry Portnoy, Miss Lavelle White, Ben Andrews, John Cephas and Phil Wiggins, Paul Rishell & Annie Raines y Steve James.
Los Suitcase Brothers han grabado algunos de los temas de la banda sonora original de la película "El Bola" del director Achero Mañas (2000), film que fue galardonado con cuatro premios Goya, de los cuales uno fue para el mejor sonido. Más tarde participaron en la seguna película del mismo director (noviembre 2003).
Tienen editados dos discos: "Living With The Blues" y "Walk On".
Actualmente siguen actuando en clubs, fiestas privadas y festivales y viajan regularmente a los Estados Unidos y preparan su tercer disco
International Blues: Freddie King
"Boogie Funk Live" (1973) y
"Ain't Nobody's Business"
Freddie King, born Billy Myles, September 3 , 1934, in Gilmer, Texas. Freddie (aka
Freddy) was one of the triumvirate of Kings (the others being B.B. and Albert)
who ruled the blues throughout the 60s. He was the possessor of a light,
laid-back, but not unemotional voice and a facile fast-fingered guitar technique
that made him laid-back, but not unemotional voice and a facile fast-fingered
guitar technique that made him the hero of many young disciples. He learned to
play guitar at an early age, being influenced by his mother, Ella Mae King, and
her brother Leon.
Although forever associated with Texas and admitting a debt to such artists as T-Bone Walker he moved north to Chicago in his mid-teens. In 1950, he became influenced by local blues guitarists Eddie Taylor and Robert Lockwood. King absorbed elements from each of their styles, before encompassing the more strident approaches of Magic Sam and Otis Rush. Here, he began to sit in with various groups and slowly built up the reputation that was to make him a star.
After teaming up with Jimmy Lee Robinson to form the Every Hour Blues Boys he worked and recorded with Little Sonny Cooper's band, Earlee Payton's Blues Cats and Smokey Smothers. These last recordings were made in Cincinnati, Ohio, in August 1960 for Sydney Nathan's King/Federal organization. On the same day King recorded six titles under his own name, including the influential instrumental hit "Hideaway." He formed his own band and began touring, bolstering his success with further hits, many of them guitar showpieces, some trivialized by titles such as "The Bossa Nova Watusi Twist", but others showing off his "crying" vocal delivery. Many, such as "(I'm) Tore Down", "Have You Ever Loved A Woman" and particularly "The Welfare (Turns Its Back On You)", became classics of the (then) modern blues. He continued to record for King Federal up until 1966, his career on record being masterminded by pianist Sonny Thompson. He left King Federal in 1966 and took up a short tenure (1968-69) on the Atlantic Records subsidiary label Cotillion.
Ironically, the subsequent white blues-boom provided a new found impetus. Eric Clapton was a declared King aficionado, while Chicken Shack's Stan Webb indicated his debt by including three of his mentor's compositions on his group's debut album. The albums that followed failed to capture the artist at his best. This was not a particularly successful move, although the work he did on that label has increased in value with the passage of time. The same could be said for his next musical liaison, which saw him working with Leon Russell on his Shelter Records label. Much of his work for Russell was over-produced, but King made many outstanding recordings during this period and a re-evaluation of that work is overdue.
There was no denying the excitement it generated, particularly on Getting Ready, which was recorded at the famous Chess Records studio. This excellent set included the original version of the much-covered "Going Down." Live recordings made during his last few years indicate that King was still a force to be reckoned with as he continued his good-natured guitar battles with allcomers, and usually left them far behind. Burglar featured a duet with Eric Clapton on "Sugar Sweet", but the potential of this new relationship was tragically cut short December 28, 1976 when King died of heart failure at the early age of 43. His last stage appearance had taken place three days earlier in his home town of Dallas.
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Blues Nacional: Tota
"Champagne & Refeer" (Hondarribia 2008)
Tota, armonicista y cantante de blues, lidera desde 1995, TOTA BLUES, recreando así el blues más tradicional del 'southside' de Chicago de los años 50, 60 y 70, interpretando obras de autores tales como Willie Dixon, Muddy Waters, B.B.King, Louis Jordan, Little Walter y otros. Además cuenta con composiciones en español de su propia autoría, sin descuidar el estilo de aquellos años. TOTA BLUES ha participado en distintos eventos y festivales de blues por toda España, como el Festival de Blues, Gospel y Jazz de Roses, Festival de Blues de Reus, Festival de Blues de Cazorla, Almeriblues o el Festival de Blues de Nou Barris (Barcelona) entre otros. Cabe destacar la presencia de TOTA BLUES, ya sea compartiendo cartel como telonero o bien acompañando como "banda base" a auténticos 'bluesmen' de Chicago, artistas de la talla de Buddy Guy, Louisiana Red, Rod Piazza, John Primer, Dave Myers, James Wheeler, Raful Neal, Eddie C. Campbell, Aron Burton, Phil Guy, el británico John Mayall, etc.
"Browskin Woman" (1976)
was born in Bolton, Mississippi, on January 10, 1899 (some sources say 1897,
but his grave and his comments on The New Mississippi Sheiks album say 1899)
on John Gettis's plantation near Jackson. Chatmon's family was well-known in
Mississippi for their musical talents. His father Henderson Chatmon, a native
of Terry, Mississippi, was an ex-slave who played the fiddle for square dances.
He lived to be 105 years old and had nine sons and two daughters, all of whom
seemed to have his musical ability. Chatmon's mother played the guitar.
Chatmon became interested in the guitar at the age of six, taking it down off the wall to play while his family worked in the fields and replacing it before they came home. His famous older brothers (Sam was the ninth child) Lonnie Chatmon and Bo (Armentor Chatmon) Carter performed with Walter Vinson as the Mississippi Sheiks. Sam became a member of the family's string band at a young age. The family played, according to Robert Palmer, ballads, ragtime, spirituals, popular Tin Pan Alley songs and country dance music. At the end of World War I, the Chatmon brothers formed a string band, perferring to play blues and waltzes on a regular basis for white audiences in the 1920's because it paid better. Sam also played with the Mississippi Sheiks occasionally.
In 1928 the Chatmons moved to the Delta to a town named Hollandale. The band disbanded in 1935, but in 1936 Sam and Lonnie Chatmon recorded twelve duets for Bluebird.
After the death of his brothers, Sam Chatmon became part of the New Mississippi Sheiks and played with Walter Vinson, Carl Martin, and Ted Bogan. Sam did not record during the 1940's. Instead he worked on area plantations around Hollandale. He was rediscovered in 1960 by Ken Swerilas, who talked Sam into performing again. Sam Chatmon became known primarily then as a folk blues artist. He recorded on the Arhoolie label and later with others.
Chatmon's wife was Elma Lue Chatmon. Their son later became known as Singing' Sam and was a bass guitarist who played with Elmore James.
In addition to the guitar, Sam Chatmon played the banjo, bass, mandolin, and harmonica. He toured extensively during the 60's and 70's, and played many of the largest and best-known folk festivals that included the Smithsonian Festival of American Folklife in Washington, D.C. in 1972; the Mariposa Fest in Toronto in 1974; and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in 1976.
Of note, Sam played with Charley Patton, whom he sometimes called his half brother. Others have stated that the two were cousins, but Anna Patton, Charley's mother, and surviving Patton relatives have disputed this relationship. It is known that Charley Patton's father was a "man of God" who believed music to be evil, so Charley often slipped out of his own house to play with the Chatmon family.
Sam Chatmon was one of the few bluesman to perform with Fingers Taylor on the Blues Caravan in the 1970's and went on tour with Jimmy Buffet. Sam Chatmon continued to perform until his death on February 2, 1983. He is buried in Hollandale, MississippiI.
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El Programa de Radio/The Blues Radio Show - La Programación/Playlist - Novedades Cds/Cds Received - Criticas de Discos/Actual Cd Reviews - Criticas Discos Antiguas/Old Cds Reviews - Reconocimientos/Show Aknowledgements - Links de Interés/Logo Links - Posters Blueseros/Blues Posters
Quien es Zúmel/Who is Zumel - Las Fotos/Blues Gallery - La "Harmonica Zúmel Blues Band"/The late "Harmonica Zúmel Blues Band" - La Sociedad de Blues de Barcelona S.B.B/Barcelona Blues Society SBB
Los Conciertos de Blues/Blues Gigs Calendar - Las Noticias Nacionales/Spanish Blues News - Los Artículos/Articles - Colaboraciones/Contributions - El Diccionario de Blues - Las Entrevistas/The Interviews
Las Noticias Internacionales/International Blues News - Articulos Internacionales/International Articles - Entrevistas desde USA/USA Interviews