Shindig #46
Ugly Things #34
Ugly Things #38






Since our Second Time Around listings are so popular this list includes some great releases which have been out for a while but you may have missed them the first time we listed them.To avoid you getting possible duplicates we have added  asterisks (**) after these particular titles. We have also included some choice sale items.


Shindig #46 ● BOOK $10.98
98 pages, highly recommended
We have done so well with Ugly Things magazine that we have started carrying this other fine magazine that features vintage Rock, Folk, and other esoteric music. Shindig could easily be called the Ugly Things of the U.K.: similar coverage, but with a wider focus on English and other European acts and culture, as well as featuring more modern acts that are carrying the freak flag for their own generation. This issue, one of the best that I have seen from them, with features, a fine cover story on The Kinks concentrating on their work and lives in 1966, with a whole mess of great photos of the band as well as reproductions of singles covers and magazine coverage of the year. There is also Dickie Peterson from Blue Cheer's final interview, an excellent in depth and quite candid interview with Swamp Dogg, a fascinating excerpt from the book "Season Of The Witch: How The Occult Saved Rock And Roll," an appreciation of Christian Psych band Mind Garage, and much more. Counts as four CDs for shipping. (JM)

Ugly Things #34 ● BOOK $9.98 $7.50
184 pages, perfect bound, essential
Counts as five CDs for shipping. Here's the latest copy of the best music magazine going. This current issue features articles on the coolest of 1960's Garage Rock, the most radical of 1970's Punk, and muchmore. Cyril Jordan ruminates and illustrates on The Beatles; other in-depth features are on The Others, The Haunted, The Spike Drivers, Viletones, The Byrds, and The Bees. Doug Sheppard has some interesting things to say about Record Store Day (he's mostly all for it, as am I.) On top of that, you get the usual massive amount of great reviews of CDs, DVDs, books and more. A great read from start to finish and most issues become collectors items soon after they come out, if that kind of thing moves you. (JM)

Ugly Things #38 ● BOOK $9.98 $7.50
176 pages / perfect bound / full-color glossy cover, highly recommended
Ugly Things is chronicle of cool that we all get to enjoy two to three times a year. They are really cooking with this new issue with a big, exclusive, interview with Dave Davies of The Kinks by Richie Unterberger that's worth the price of admission by itself. Add to that detail rich articles on a wide variety of cool like Texas garage-psych icons The Golden Dawn, the great music journalist Lester Bangs in his early years, Cyril Jordan of the Flamin' Groovies, Dennis Dunaway of the Alice Cooper band, Blue Cheer, legendary DJ Dave Diamond, an extensive unpublished 1978 interview with art Punk legends The Screamers by Jon Savage, and much more. (JM)



JOHNNY CASH Bear Family DVD 20001 At Town Hall Party** ● DVD $24.98
Wow! Here we have Johnny Cash and his group The Tennessee Two (guitarist Luther Perkins and bassist Marshall Grant) filmed live at the legendary Town Hall Party in Los Angeles in 1958 and 1959. Here are the group in their prime doing 24 songs - a couple of them repeated. Includes Get Rhythm/ Don't Take Your Guns To Town/ The Ways Of A Woman In Love/ All Over Again/ Guess Things Happen That Way/ Big River/ I Walk The Line/ Folsom Prison Blues and more including an impersonation of Elvis singing Heartbreak Hotel!
JOHNNY CASH: All Over Again/ Big River/ Don't Take Your Guns To Town/ Don't Take Your Guns To Town/ Five Feet High And Rising/ Folsom Prison Blues/ Frankie And Johnny/ Frankie And Johnny/ Get Rhythm/ Give My Love To Rose/ Guess Things Happen That Way/ Heartbreak Hotel (elvis Impersonation)/ I Got Stripes/ I Got Stripes/ I Walk The Line/ I Walk The Line/ I Was There When It Happened/ I Was There When It Happened/ It Was Jesus/ Pickin' Time/ Suppertime/ The Ways Of A Woman In Love/ The Ways Of A Woman In Love Rising/ You're The Nearest Thing To Heaven



JOHNNY ADAMS Ace CDCHD 1424 I Won't Cry - The Complete Ric & Ron Singles ● CD $18.98
24 tracks, very highly recommended
New Orleans R&B legend Johnny Adams' early career has never been documented all in one place before, until now. His late 50's - early 60's recordings for Joe Ruffino's Ric and Ron imprints are ".the cornerstones on which his career was built." according to the informative liner notes. Kicking off with the well-regarded first single, I Won't Cry b/w Who You Are, the set's tone is set: smooth, sophisticated R&B topped off impassioned vocals. These songs represent Ruffino's pursuit of a hit record for Johnny; local New Orleans and regional hits were achieved with The Bells Are Ringing/ Someone For Me, and Life is Just a Struggle, but the national breakthrough came with A Losing Battle in 1962. From there, after Ruffino's sudden passing in August 1962, Adams' Ric/Ron stint slowly petered out; after a couple of excellent final sides - Showdown/ Lonely Drifter/ I Want to Do Everything For You, and Cold Cold Heart - his days as Ric/Ron recording artist was over. For the next two decades, Adams drifted from label to label until he finished out his career at Rounder Records. But this is where it all began; the career of one of the most compelling singers ever to come out of New Orleans. (GMC)

THE ALLEN BROTHERS JSP JSPCD 77182 And Other Country Brother Acts ● CD $28.98
Four CD set, 97 tracks, highly recommended
The first three CDs of this great set features all the recordings (I think) recorded between 1928 and 1934 by the lively Allen Brothers from Tennessee for Columbia, Victor and Vocalion. The duo featured Austin Allen on vocal and banjo and brother Lee on guitar, kazoo and occasional vocal. Although I'm too fond of the kazoo it must be said that Lee was a true virtuoso and makes this instrument become another voice. Their material is a selection of original songs along with traditional favorites and blues figures strongly on many of their songs - so much so that some of their recordings ended up being listed in the labels race series - much to brothers' displeasure. The duo were immensely popular - so much so that several of their songs like Allen's Lying Blues/ Chattanooga Mama/ Fruit Jar Blues/ Hey Buddy Won't You Roll Down The Line/ Maybe Next Week/ Skipping And Flyin' and ther most popular song Salty Dog Blues were recorded two or three times. The fourth disc features a varied selection of sides recorded contemporaneously or shortly after the Allen Brothers and includes The Kessinger Brothers (fabulous instrumental fiddle and guitar duo), The Shelton Brothers (wonderful trio from Texas that popularized Deep Elem Blues - their fabullous rendition is included here), The Woodie Brothers (really lovely duets with guitar and harmonica - two songs including the wonderfully titled Chased Old Satan Through The Door), The McGee Brothers (Sam & Kirk), The Anglin Brothers (two hauntingly beautiful songs from the duo later to be known as Johnny & Jack), The Ray Brothers and others. Excellent sound quality and informative notes from compiler Pat Harrison.
ALLEN BROTHERS: A New Salty Dog/ Ain't That Skippin And Flyin/ Allen Brothers Rag (1)/ Allen Brothers Rag (2)/ Allen's Lying Blues (1)/ Allen's Lying Blues (2)/ Baby When You Coming Back Home/ Bow Wow Blues/ Chattanooga Blues/ Chattanooga Mama (1)/ Chattanooga Mama (2)/ Cheat Em/ Crossfiring Blues (1)/ Crossfiring Blues (2)/ Daddy Park Your Car/ Drunk And Nutty Blues/ Free A Little Bird/ Frisco Blues/ Fruit Jar Blues (1)/ Fruit Jar Blues (2)/ Glorious Night Blues (1)/ Glorious Night Blues (2)/ Hey Buddy Won't You Roll Down The Line (1)/ Hey Buddy Won't You Roll Down The Line (2)/ I'll Be All Smiles Tonight/ I'll Be Here A Long Long Time (1)/ I'll Be Here A Long Long Time (2)/ I'm Always Whistling The Blues/ I've Got The Chain Store Blues/ Inspiration (1)/ Inspiration (2)/ It Can t Be Done (1)/ It Can t Be Done (2)/ It s Too Bad For You/ Jake Walk Blues/ Laughin And Cryin (1)/ Laughin And Cryin Blues (2)/ Lightning Bug Blues (1)/ Lightning Bug Blues (2)/ Long Gone From Bowling Green/ Maybe Next Week Sometime/ Maybe Next Week Sometime - No. 2 (1)/ Maybe Next Week Sometime - No. 2 (2)/ Mercy Mercy Blues/ Midnight Mama (1)/ Midnight Mama (2)/ Midnight Mama (3)/ Misbehavin Mama/ Monkey Blues/ Mother-in-law Blues/ New Chattanooga Blues/ New Deal Blues/ No Low Down Hanging Around/ Old Black Crow In The Hickory Nut Tree/ Padlock Key Blues/ Pile Drivin Papa/ Please Pay In Advance (1)/ Please Pay In Advance (2)/ Preacher Blues/ Price Of Cotton Blues/ Prisoner's Dream/ Reckless Night Blues/ Red Hot Rambling Dan (1)/ Red Hot Rambling Dan (2)/ Red Pajama Sal/ Roll Down The Line/ Roll It Down/ Rough Neck Blues (1)/ Rough Neck Blues (2)/ Salty Dog Blues/ Salty Dog Hey Hey Hey (1)/ Salty Dog Hey Hey Hey (2)/ Shake It Ida Shake It/ Shanghai Rooster Blues/ Skippin And Flyin (1)/ Skippin And Flyin (2)/ Skipping And Flying (3)/ Slide Daddy Slide/ Slipping Clutch Blues (1)/ Slipping Clutch Blues (2)/ The Enforcement Blues/ The Prisoner's Dream (1)/ The Prisoner's Dream (2)/ Tiple Blues/ Unlucky Man/ Warm Knees Blues (1)/ Warm Knees Blues (2)/ When A Mans Got A Woman (1)/ When A Mans Got A Woman (2)/ When You Leave, You'll Leave Me Sad/ Windowshade Blues (1)/ Windowshade Blues (2)/ ANGLIN BROTHERS: Just Inside The Pearly Gates/ Southern Whoopee Song/ CROWDER BROTHERS: Depot Blues/ I Don t Let The Girls Worry My Mind/ OSCAR & DOC HARPER: Bitter Creek/ Twinkle Little Star/ HATTON BROTHERS: Hook And Line/ Wish I Had My Time Again/ KESSINGER BROTHERS: Kanawha County Rag/ West Virginia Special/ LEWIS BROTHERS: Bull At The Wagon/ Sally Johnson/ MCGEE BROTHERS: C-H-I-C-K-E-N Spells Chicken/ Salty Dog Blues/ MORRIS BROTHERS: Darling Think What You Have Done/ Let Me Be Your Salty Dog/ RAY BROTHERS: Friday Night Waltz/ Jake Leg Wobble/ SHELTON BROTHERS: Deep Elem Blues/ Four Or Five Times/ STRIPLING BROTHERS: Dance All Night With A Bottle In My Hand/ Horse Shoe Bend/ WOODIE BROTHERS: Chased Old Satan Through The Door/ Likes Likker Better Than Me

DAVE BARTHOLOMEW Collectables 2883 The King Sides** ● CD $16.98
23 tracks, 64 mins, highly recommended
This is a great way to get the complete DeLuxe and King recordings of trumpeter, bandleader, arranger and producer Dave Bartholomew including two previously unissued alternate takes. Bartholomew is best remembered for sides he did with Fats Domino on Imperial, but between 1949 and 1952 he cut for De Luxe and King under his own name. Although little more than an average vocalist, Dave could blow breath-taking trumpet solos. Many star instrumentalists passed through Dave's band: Frank Fields (bass), Earl Palmer (drums), Todd Rhodes (piano), Herb Hardesty (tenor), and Ernest McLean (guitar), among many others. Includes Stardust/ Gumbo Blues/ Country Boy/ In The Alley/ Twins/ I'll Never Be The Same ad others including the two part Lawdy Lawdy Lord with a vocal by Tommy Ridgley and the original recording of My Ding-A-Ling. Sound quality is fine and their informative notes by Victor Pearlin but no discographical info. (FS)
DAVE BARTHOLOMEW: Bad Habit/ Bum Mae/ Country Boy/ Dave's Boogie Woogie/ Girl Town Blues/ Golden Rule/ Golden Rule (Alt. Take)/ Gumbo Blues/ High Flying Woman/ High Society Blues/ I'll Never Be The Same/ In The Alley/ Lawdy Lawdy Lord (Part 1)/ Lawdy Lawdy Lord (Part 2)/ Mother Knows Best/ Mr. Fool/ My Ding-A-Ling/ She's Got Great Big Eyes/ Stardust/ Stormy Weather/ Sweet Home Blues/ Twins/ Twins (Alt. Take)

PETER BELLAMY Topic TSCD 582 Both Sides Then** ● CD $14.98
15 songs, 57 mins, essential
Peter Bellamy was one of the finest folk song interpreters on the British folk scene and his suicide in 1991 was a major tragedy. Starting his career in the mid 60s as a founding member of the outstanding and influential group The Young Tradition he commenced a solo career when they disbanded and over the years produced one significant recording after another. His unique vocal style earned him the anagrammatic nickname Elmer P. Bleaty - once you heard him you would never forget him. His concertina and guitar playing, while not flashy were alway appropriate to the performance. He loved all kinds of traditional music and this recording - originally issued on Topic in 1979 was possibly the high point in his career drawing together his love of both English and American traditional music by alternating English and American songs - hence the whimsical album title. The result is spellbinding - the choice of songs impeccable, Peter's performances marvelous and he is joined at various times by such sterling musicians as Dave Swarbrick, The Watersons, Louis Killen and others. It's all so good that it's hard to pick favorites though his exquisite treatment of A-Roving On A Winter's Night from the family repertoire of Doc Watson with guitar and harmony vocal accompaniment by Lisa Null & Bill Shute is particularly fine. The Watersons join him on some lovely treatments of American spirituals like The Lord Will Provide and Long Time Travelling. But its all great and this CD release like the previous Fled'gling reissue has added the risque The Maid Of Australia previously issued on a Fellside collection. In addition to Peter's original notes on the songs this reissue features lengthy notes by Leslie Berman and Edward Haber and a warm tribute from Peter's good friend Martin Carthy. Essential indeed! (FS)

BOBBY "BLUE" BLAND Ace CDCHD 323 The Voice - Duke Recordings 1959-69** ● CD $18.98
26 tracks, essential
Bobby's place in R&B is awesome, and I could fill a page with his merit. Simply said, Bland was born in Rosemark, TN. in 1930, sang in the Memphis gospel group The Miniatures. He was a member of The Beale Streeters in the late 40's along with B.B. King and Roscoe Gordon, and his first record was issued by Chess in 1951. Bobby never really came into his own until the (mainly) singles recordings on this CD, which covers some of the man's best blues and soul output back when the rough and smooth aspects of his voice blended most perfectly. A virtual trove covering the years 1959-'69. Includes I Pity The Fool/ Ain't That Lovin' You/ Cry, Cry, Cry/ I'll Take Care Of You/ Turn On Your Love Light/ Stormy Monday/ 2 Steps From The Blues/ Ain't Nothing You Can Do/ I'm Too Far Gone To Turn Around/ Share Your Love With Me and more (26 cuts). After traveling the chittlin' circuit for more than 40 years, this guy's long overdue for a boxed set. Priceless Bland. (OLN)
BOBBY BLAND: Ain't Doing Too Bad (Part 1)/ Ain't No Telling/ Ain't Nothing You Can Do/ Ain't That Loving You/ Ask Me 'Bout Nothin' (But The Blues)/ Back In The Same Old Bag Again/ Blue Moon/ Call On Me/ Chains Of Love/ Cry, Cry, Cry/ Don't Cry No More/ Good Time Charlie (Part 1)/ I Pity The Fool/ I'll Take Care Of You/ I'm Not Ashamed/ I'm Too Far Gone (To Turn Around)/ Share Your Love With Me/ Shoes/ Sometimes You Gotta Cry A Little/ Stormy Monday Blues/ That Did It/ These Hands (Small But Mighty)/ Turn On Your Love Light/ Two Steps From The Blues/ Who Will The Next Fool Be?/ Yield Not To Temptation

B. BUMBLE AND THE STINGERS Ace CDCHD 577 Nut Rocker & All The Classics** ● CD $18.98
24 tracks, 58 min, highly recommended
24 tracks of B. Bumble and the Stingers may be 24 too many for some, but for those who dig the experiments/gimmicks of the early pop era, don't miss this one! Fresh from producing the Hollywood Argyles' Alley Oop, a young Kim Fowley helped mastermind this "group", a piano/ guitar/ drums configuration reworking classical music into teen beat. Fowley was also responsible for the "tack-piano" sound, a bright, harpsichord -like sound that became the groups trademark. Their first assault on the public was '61's Bumble Boogie, a take on "Flight Of The Bumble Bee" which actually made #21 in the US and quickly spawned the follow-ups Boogie Woogie (directly lifted from Pinetop Perkins) and Ellington's Caravan. With the fad already dying, Fowley decided it was time to tell Tchaikovsky the news and the result was Nut Rocker, securing B. Bumble's future when it hit #1 in the UK. The flood of B. Bumble product that followed had many more composers turning over in their graves, but not before giving us such gems as Apple Knocker/ Dawn Cracker/ Rockin' On 'n' Off/ Twelfth Street Rag and the most demented Chicken Chow Mein. This collection also includes the underappreciated B-sides, which in some cases are even weirder than their flips (Bee Hive/ Nautilus), and four previously unreleased tracks. Liner notes clear up the group's confusing history. (GDR)
B. BUMBLE & THE STINGERS: All Of Me/ Apple Knocker/ Baby Mash/ Bee Hive/ Boogie Woogie/ Bumble Boogie/ Bumble Bossa Nova/ Canadian Sunset/ Caravan/ Chicken Chow Mein/ Dawn Cracker/ In The Mood/ Mashed # 5/ Nautilus/ Near You/ Night Time Madness/ Nola/ Nut Rocker/ Rockin' On 'n' Off/ Scales/ School Day Blues/ The Moon And The Sea/ Twelfth Street Rag

THE COKERS Bear Family BCD 16742 We're Gonna Bop - The Complete Coker Family Recordings ● CD $21.98
32 tracks, 72 mins, highly recommended
Contemporaries of acts like Maddox Brothers And Rose and The Browns, The Cokers were the Country Family band that should have been a lot bigger. It certainly wasn't for lack of talent or drive, but maybe just some bad deals and lackluster luck that kept them from becoming a household name. The group is headed by patriarch Alvin Coker, but really starring his daughter Alvadean and her vocals as well as her multi-instrumentalist younger brother Sandy. On this collection you get tracks by Alvin solo, some brother and sister act magic, Alvadean solo, and some with the whole family in tow. Alvadean and Sandy as a duo often played with and were compared to The Collins kids; although quite good, they are never quite as frenetic and wild as the Collins' could be. There's Country, Western Swing, a couple borderline Rockabilly tracks, and a few Pop attempts, so you get a wide variety to enjoy. My favorite part of this package might just be the deep, extensive liner notes that could almost be the start of a fine book. They not only tell the story of The Cokers, but also provide excellent insight into the Country music business and life on the road at the time. (JM)

BOB DYLAN Columbia 76179 The Bootleg Series, Vol. 9 : The Witmark Demos, 1962-64** ● CD $17.98
2CD, 47 tracks, 150 mins, essential
It's been said before but I'll say it again: Bob Dylan is the most influential songwriter of the 20th century, not to mention being one of the most covered. This installment of his Bootleg Series contains the demos that Dylan cut for Leeds Music Co and M. Witmark & Sons publishing companies between 1962 and 1964, with the intent that the songs would be pitched to other singers to record. Many of his early classics were first cut here: Blowin' in the Wind/ A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall/ Masters of War/ Don't Think Twice, It's All Right/ The Times They Are A-Changin', and Mr. Tambourine Man. Some were recorded by Dylan, some were cut by other artists, some were simply forgotten about, and many of these tracks have been heavily bootlegged for years (a couple have even appeared on previous Bootleg Series volumes), but never have all the tracks been collected so comprehensively in one place before and with superb sound throughout. As it says in the extensive liner notes, these songs-known so well by some of us, that we can sing them by heart-are being heard in their formative stages for the first time in chronological sequence. With just voice, guitar, harmonica, and occasional piano, Dylan gives these songs an intimacy and off-the-cuff vibrancy that his early albums lack (it almost makes me wonder who in the world would think other singers would want to cover these very personal songs); when he sings The Death of Emmett Till, every word of this tragic story cuts really deep and never lets you forget that injustice is something that must never be swept under the carpet of history. Some songs like Let Me Die In My Footsteps and Seven Curses are so good that it's puzzling that they weren't recorded by Dylan or anyone else at the time. The 58 page booklet has detailed notes by Colin Escott, loads of great early photos and reproductions of some of Bob's written drafts for some of the songs. It doesn't matter how many times you've heard Girl From the North Country or Baby, Let Me Follow You Down, Bootleg Series Vol. 9 is guaranteed to make these, and other, familiar songs sound brand new again. (GMC/ FS)
BOB DYLAN: Man On The Street (Fragment)/ Hard Times In New York Town/ Poor Boy Blues/ Ballad For A Friend/ Rambling, Gambling Willie/ Talking Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues/ Standing On The Highway/ Man On The Street/ Blowin' In The Wind/ Long Ago, Far Away/ A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall/ Tomorrow Is A Long Time/ The Death of Emmett Till/ Let Me Die In My Footsteps/ Ballad Of Hollis Brown/ Quit Your Low Down Ways/ Baby, I'm In The Mood For You/ Bound To Lose, Bound To Win/ All Over You/ I'd Hate To Be You On That Dreadful Day/ Long Time Gone/ Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues/ Masters Of War/ Oxford Town/ Farewell/ Don't Think Twice, It's All Right/ Walkin' Down The Line/ I Shall Be Free/ Bob Dylan's Blues/ Bob Dylan's Dream/ Boots Of Spanish Leather/ Girl From The North Country/ Seven Curses/ Hero Blues/ Whatcha Gonna Do?/ Gypsy Lou/ Ain't Gonna Grieve/ John Brown/ Only A Hobo/ When The Ship Comes In/ The Times They Are A-Changin'/ Paths Of Victory/ Guess I'm Doing Fine/ Baby Let Me Follow You Down/ Mama, You Been On My Mind/ Mr. Tambourine Man/ I'll Keep It With Mine

FAIRPORT CONVENTION Rockbeat 3187 Live, 1974 - Featuring Sandy Denny ● CD $12.98
11 tracks, 55 mins, strongly recommended
Sandy Denny returned to the Fairport fold in 1974 after going solo for a couple years. The newly re-united line-up dove right into recording a new album - "Rising For The Moon" - and headed out on the road. This live recording was done in the middle of their American tour, their biggest to date, May 8th at the My Father's Place club in Old Roslyn NY. The full line-up at this time featured the three Daves--Pegg, Swarbrick, and Mattacks--plus Trevor Lucas on Vocal and Guitar, Jerry Donahue on guitar, and of course Denny on lead vocals and keyboards. The sound is solid throughout, and besides a clunky bit in the middle of Like An Old Fashioned Waltz, the performance is top-notch. The set list includes Fairport fan favorites like Matty Groves/ Dirty Linen, and Sir B. McKenzie,D> etc. Also includes a Fotheringay song Ballad Of Ned Kelly, and a cool version of It'll Take A Long Time from Sandy Denny's second solo record. (JM)

THE FISK UNIVERSITY JUBILLE QUARTET Archeophone 5020 There Breathes A Hope** ● CD $38.98
Two CDs bound in 108 page 5 1/2"x 5" hardbound book, 49 tracks, 132 mins, very highly recommended
Another superb and incredibly important release from this wonderful label featuring the complete extant recordings of the pioneering and immensely influential Fisk University Jubilee quartet including all nine incredibly rare Edison cylinders and the four recitations of poems by revered African-American literary figure Paul Laurence Dunbar by James Myers. The selections are programmed as four mini-concerts and introduced by spoken excerpts from a 1983 interview with Rev. Jerome I. Wright, one of the last living Fisk students to have sung under John Work's direction. The origins of the Fisk Jubilee Quartet date to 1867 and they were active for many years performing spirituals but by the time John W. Work II joined the University in 1891 spirituals had fallen out of favor as they were considered painful reminders of slavery. Work toiled for three decades restoring the validity of spirituals as a powerful and meaningful expression of African-American songcraft. Although the precise singing of the Jubilee singers may seem "square" to those more used to the looser, more intense sound of gospel quartets, a careful listen reveals the beauty and power of the songs and the emotional resonance of the harmonies and a number of these songs became gospel quartet standards (Roll Jordan Roll/ Swing Low, Sweet Chariot/ My Soul Is A Witness, etc.). As Tim Brooks points out in his recording notes, most of the recorded fare of the previous 20 years with a "jubilee" theme or African-American influence was parodic and often demeaning. With the Fisks, now black art, history, and culture were literally getting a fair hearing. The copiously illustrated book features a lengthy essay based on original research by Doug Seroff (one of the leading researchers on early African-American music) on the history of the group and the life and labors of John Work II. The booklet includes numerous previously unpublished photos, label shots, full discography and an in depth discussion of each session. Remastering is superb and the performances come through with clarity and warmth. If you have any interest in the history of African-American music this release is indispensible or you can just enjoy it for the beauty of the performances. (FS)

ROSCO GORDON Proper Intro 2065 No More Doggin' - A Proper Introduction To Rosco Gordon ● CD $9.98 $6.98
24 tracks, 67 mins, highly recommended
Great collection of early sides by this unique performer from Memphis with his immediately recognizable vocal style, raucous piano and his often, offbeat lyrics. His 1952 hit No More Doggin' (included here) had a distinctive loping rhythm and became very popular in Jamaica when it was played on the radio there some years later and is credited with being one of the musical foundations of ska music. The recordings here cover the period 1951 through 1953 and includes his other hits from this period Saddled The Cow (And Milked The Horse) (I told you he had offbeat lyrics!) and Booted as well other fine sides like Roscoe's Boogie/ Ouch! Pretty Baby/ Dime A Dozen/ Love You 'Til The Day I Die (a duet with Bobby Bland)/ What You Got On Your Mind/ New Orleans Wimmen/ T-Model Booogie/ Three Cent Love (one of Rosco's few records with prominent guitar this includes a hot solo by Pat Hare)/ We're All Loaded (Whiskey Made Me Drunk) and more. Roscoe is accompanied by fine bands with a couple of horns and some of the tracks rock like crazy. Sound quality is generally excellent and there are informative notes by Adam Komorowski. If you like this you might want to check out Ace 694 (18.98) which features a more in dpeth look at his RPM recordings. (FS)
ROSCO GORDON: A New Remedy For Love/ Blues For My Baby/ Booted (Chess version)/ Booted (RPM version)/ City Woman/ Cold Cold Winter/ Dime A Dozen/ Dream Baby/ Hey Fat Girl/ Just In From Texas/ Love You Til The Day I Die/ Lucille (Looking For My Baby)/ New Orleans Wimmen/ No More Doggin'/ Ouch! Pretty Baby/ Roscoe's Boogie/ Saddled The Cow (And Milked The Horse)/ T Model Boogie/ Three Cent Love/ Tomorrow May Be Too Late/ Too Many Women/ Two Kinds Of Women/ We're All Loaded (Whiskey Made Me Drunk)/ What You Got On Your Mind

THE HARLEM HAMFATS Document DOCD 5273 Complete Recorded Works In Chronological Order, Vol. 3 ● CD $15.98 $10.98
23 tracks, 63 min., strongly recommended
Seen as pioneers in keeping the bluesy jazz stylings of the New Orleans area alive during the 30's and as influential in making the vocal an important aspect of small combo jazz, the Hamfats in this third volume of their history are still led by the stellar trumpet and lowdown vocals of Herb Morand, with able back up provided by Odell Rand, Horace Malcolm Joe and Charlie McCoy, and John Lindsay. The vocals on the last seven tracks are provided by the great Rosetta Howard. Among the diverse highlights are Black Gal You Better Use Your Head, Toodle Oo Blues, Let Me Feel It, I Believe I'll Make a Change, Stay On It, and the mournful Delta Bound. Sound quality is solid, and the notes by David Evans of the University of Memphis are impressively knowledgeable. (DH)
THE HARLEM HAMFATS: Black Gal You Better Use Your Head/ Broken Hearted Blues/ Delta Bound (Rosetta Howard, vcl)/ Don't Start No Stuff/ Harlem Jambouree (Rosetta Howard, vcl)/ How Long Baby (Rosetta Howard, vcl)/ I Believe I'll Make A Change/ I'd Rather Be With You/ I'm In So Much Trouble Now/ It Will Never Happen Again (R. Howard, vcl)/ Let Me Feel It/ Little Girl/ Rampart And Gravier Blues/ Root Hog Or Die/ Stay On It (Rosetta Howard, vcl)/ Tempo De Bucket/ Time's A-Wastin'/ Toodle Oo Blues/ Trading Old Love For New (R. Howard, vcl)/ What's On Your Mind?/ You Got The Devil To Pay/ You Got To Be Satisfied/ You Got To Go When The Wagon Comes (Rosetta Howard, vcl)

JOHN LEE HOOKER Ace CDCHD 405 Blues Brother** ● CD $18.98
24 tracks, essential
For pure intensity, no other blues artist can match John Lee Hooker at his best. And on these 24 Sensation recordings cut in Detroit between 1948-51, he is definitely at his best. His foot is pounding; his guitar is rumbling relentlessly. And when he sings, his emotive wail threatens to take over the world. "Ain't no burnin' hell" moans Hooker in Burnin' Hell, as he puts that question to rest, his guitar and Eddie Burns' harmonica still bickering as the song ends. But most of the time Hook is alone in a universe that's ambivalent at best and malicious at worst. But does that bother him? Damn right it does. Just listen to Three Long Years Today/ Alberta/ Graveyard Blues/ Goin' On Highway 51/ Do My Baby Think Of Me? and just about everything else here. Excellent sound. (JC)
JOHN LEE HOOKER: 21 Boogie/ Alberta/ Alberta - Part 2/ Boogie Chillen/ Boogie Chillen # 2/ Burnin' Hell/ Canal Street Blues/ Do My Baby Think Of Me?/ Find Me A Woman/ Goin' On Highway 51/ Graveyard Blues/ Grinder Man/ Hastings Street Boogie/ Henry's Swing Club/ Huckle Up Baby/ I Need Lovin'/ Momma Poppa Boogie/ My Baby's Got Something/ Rollin' Blues/ Sail On Little Girl/ Sailing Blues/ Three Long Years Today/ War Is Over (Goodbye California)/ Women In My Life

MAHALIA JACKSON Acrobat ADDCD 3006 The Forgotten Recordings ● CD $18.98 $12.98
Two CDs, 36 tracks, highly recommended
The reason for the name is that prior to this double CD these recordings were only available on three rare LPs on the French Vogue label that were issued in the 70s after Mahalia's death. Apparently these were taken from short films shot by Mahalia in the early 60s. They were probably recorded by Mahalia with piano and organ accompaniment with additional accompaniment added on some selection prior to release. Mahalia is in fine form on a selection that includes Give Me That Old Time REligion/ I Asked The Lord/ Only Believe/ Tell It Sing It Shout It/ To Me It's So Wonderful/ Highway Up To Heaven/ It's My Desire/ Never Look Down/ You Can't Hurry God/ God Will Take Care Of You, etc. Sound quality is not the greatest and I'm not sure if that's how the original Lps sounded or as a result of the remastering but I suspect the former. Includes 12 page booklet with affectionate notes by Opal Louis Nations. (FS)

LEAD BELLY Smithsonian Folkways 40201 The Smithsonian Folkways Collection ● CD $99.98
5 CDs in a 12"x12" hardbound book, 108 tracks, very highly recommended
A gorgeous set featuring an extensive selection of recordings from the great singer and 12 string guitarist Huddie Ledbetter aka Lead Belly. One note is in order regarding advertising - this set is promoted as a career retrospective but apart from a few cuts cut for the Library of Congress between 1934 and 1940, the rest is all material from the Folkways collection at the Smithsonian recorded between 1940 and 1948 so it doesn't include any of his ARC, Bluebird or Capitol recordings which would be vital to a true "career retrospective." That being said, this is certainly the best selection of his Folkways recordings. The first three CDs are an overview of Lead Belly's incredible repertoire of blues, folk songs, children's play songs, topical songs with his powerful voice accompanied by his evocative 12 string guitar work. Among them are such favorites as Irene/ Bourgeois Blues/ Midnight Special/ Black Girl/ The Gallis Pole/ Governor Pat Neff/ You Can't Lose Me Cholly/ We shall Be Free/ Bring Me A Little Water Sylvie/ Out On The Western Plains/ Ella Speed/ Good Morning Blues/ Duncan and Brady/ Rock Island Line/ Blind Lemon and many others that have become an integral part of American culture. The fourth disc is devoted to recordings made from radio shows - mostly in 1940 and '41 from the series "Folk Songs Of America" broadcast on radio station WNYC in New York. Many of these are appearing on CD for the first time. The disc opens with two complete 15 minute shows which are really priceless since we get a chance to hear him introduce the songs. The first show is devoted to work and play party song and the second presents a miscellany of songs including the gospel song I Went Up On The Mountain where he is given fine accompaniment by The Oleander Quartet. The rest of the disc features individual songs drawn from other programs - several with introductions. Songs include If It Wasn't For Dickey (derived from an Irish folk song!)/ Packin' Trunk/ One Dime Blues/ Shout On/ Red River and a great version of Memphis Minnie's Me And My Chauffeur he calls I'm Gonna Buy You A Brand New Ford which he had not recorded elsewhere. The first four discs features recordings originally made on acetates but the fifth disc features selections from his only recordings made on tape. In 1948 jazz writer Frederick Ramsey acquired an early tape recorder and was determined to record as much of Lead Belly's repertoire as he could and between September and November recorded around one hundred songs. The selection here is chosen to not duplicate songs that are on the rest of the collection and it includes several stunningly beautiful acapella performances as well as two songs not recorded elsewhere Everytime I Go Out and Princess Elizabeth as well an odd track with Lead Belly singing along with the Bessie Smith recording of Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out. An almost complete collection of these "Last Sessions" are available on Smithsonian Folkways 40068 (Four CD set - $49.98). Set includes a 140 book, printed on heavy paper with an introductory essay by Robert Santelli, a biography by Jeff Place, comments on why he sang certain songs from his niece Tiny Robinson and notes on every song. There is also discographical info along with loads of photos, label shots, concert flyers and other memorabilia. Apart from my quibbles about the promotion this is a fantastic and important set. (FS)
DISC 1:Irene (Goodnight Irene)/ The Bourgeois Blues/ Fannin Street (Mister Tom Hughes Town)/ The Midnight Special/ John Henry/ Black Girl (Where Did You Sleep Last Night)/ Pick a Bale of Cotton/ Take This Hammer/ Cotton Fields/ Old Riley/ Rock Island Line/ The Gallis Pole/ Ha-Ha This a Way/ Sukey Jump/ Boll Weevil/ Scottsboro Boys/ Governor O.K. Allen/ Governor Pat Neef/ There's a Man Going Around Taking Names/ On a Monday/ You Can't Lose Me, Cholly/ Keep Your Hands Off Her/ We Shall Be Free DISC 2: Alabama Bound/ Almost Day/ Fiddler's Dram/ Green Corn/ Sally Walker/ Bring Me a Little Water, Silvy/ Julie Ann Johnson/ Linin' Track/ Whoa, Back, Buck/ Shorty George/ Ham and Eggs (Previously Unreleased)/ Moanin'/ Out On the Western Plain/ Noted Rider/ Meeting at the Building/ Good, Good, Good (Talking, Preaching)/We Shall Walk Through the Valley/ Ain't You Glad (The Blood Done Signed My Name)/ I'm So Glad, I Done Got Over (Previously Unreleased)/ The Hindenburg Disaster/ Ella Speed/ Haul Away Joe/ Old Man/ Sweet Jenny Lee/ Jean Harlow/ Laura/ Queen Mary DISC 3: Good Morning Blues/ Sail On, Little Girl/ Easy Rider/ Poor Howard/ Duncan and Brady/ How Long, How Long/ T.B. Blues/ Jim Crow Blues/ Pigmeat/ John Hardy/ Outskirts of Town/ 4, 5, and 9/ In the Evening (When the Sun Goes Down)/ Red Cross Store Blues/ Diggin' My Potatoes/ Blind Lemon/ When a Man's a Long Way from Home/ Alberta/ Excerpt from The Lonesome Train/ National Defense Blues/ Hitler Song (Mr. Hitler)/ Big Fat Woman/ Been So Long - Bellevue Hospital Blues (Previously Unreleased Original Song) DISC 4 - RADIO SHOWS: WNYC Folk Songs of America Lead Belly (Previously Unreleased): a. Grey Goose, b. Boll Weevil, c. Yellow Gal, d. Ha-Ha This a Way, e. Leaving Blues, f. Irene (Outro)/ WNYC Folk Songs of America Lead Belly and the Oleander Quartet (Previously Unreleased): a. Almost Day, b. Blues in My Kitchen, Blues in My Dining Room, c. I Went Up on the Mountain, d. Good Morning Blues, e. Baby, Don't You Love Me No More, f. T.B. Blues, g. Irene (Outro)/ If It Wasn t For Dicky (Previously Unreleased)/ What's You Gonna Do When the World s on Fire w/ Anne Graham (Previously Unreleased)/ Rock Me - Hide Me in Thy Bosom w/ Anne Graham (Previously Unreleased)/ Packin' Trunk Blues (Previously Unreleased)/ Leaving Blues/ How Come You Do Me Like You Do? (Previously Unreleased)/ One Dime Blues (Previously Unreleased)/ I'm Going to Buy You a Brand New Ford (Previously Unreleased Original Song)/ Jail-House Blues/ Shout On/ Come and Sit Down Beside Me/ Red River (Previously Unreleased) DISC 3 - LAST SESSIONS: Yes, I Was Standing in the Bottom/ Ain't Going Down to the Well No More (Version 2)/ Everytime I Go Out (Previously Unreleased Original Song)/ Go Down, Old Hannah/ Black Betty/ Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out w/ Bessie Smith(Previously Unreleased)/ Stewball/ Ain't It a Shame to Go Fishin' on a Sunday/ Relax Your Mind/ Princess Elizabeth (Previously Unreleased Original Song)/ Silver City Bound/ The Titanic/ House of the Rising Sun/ It's Tight Like That/ Diggin' My Potatoes/ Springtime in the Rockies/ Backwater Blues/ Didn t Old John Cross the Water/ De Kalb Blues/ They Hung Him on the Cross (Version 1)/ They Hung Him on the Cross (Version 2)/ In the World

SARAH MAKEM Topic TSCD 674 The Heart Is True** ● CD $14.98
17 tracks, 69 mins, very highly recommended
A fabulous collection of traditional Irish singing recorded in the 1950s and 60s by this superb and influential singer from Co. Armagh. Sarah, who was the mother of Tommy Makem, does lovely unaccompanied versions of songs like The Banks Of Red Roses/ The Canny Ould Lad/ The Factory Girl/ Jackets Greeen/ Mary Of Kilmore/ I Courted A Wee Girl and others. Beautifully remastered from the original field recordings the CD comes with a 52 page booklet with in depth notes about Sarah and the songs. (FS)

MISSISSIPPI FRED MCDOWELL Rockbeat 3296 Live, 1971 ● CD $12.98
19 tracks, 71 mins, highly recommended
In the interests of full disclosure I should mention that I had the privilege to work on this CD. I sequenced the songs, did the notes and provided a couple of previously unpublished photos. That being said I think this is a superb set of performances by a man I consider to be the greatest country blues artist to emerge in the 1960s. A superb vocalist with an intimacy in his style that really draws you in and an unbelievably magnificent slide guitarist - surely among the greatest of all time. These recordings from 1971 were among his last recordings and although he was already sick from the cancer that would kill him a year later his singing and playing are strong and assured. The first half of the show features him solo and on the latter half he is joined by a second guitarist (possibly Tom Pomposello) and a bass player that do a creditable job. It includes dynamic performances of some of his best known songs Shake 'Em Down/ John Henry/ Kokomo Blues and, of course, You Got To Move. Adding to the pleasure of the set are Fred's delightful comments between songs - his story about You Got To Move is a bit fanciful but utterly charming. Sound quality on this live recording is a bit muffled but very listenable. If you love Fred McDowell as much as I do you'll definitely want this and if you don't know hisl music this is a fine introduction to his genius. (FS)

MCGUINN, CLARK, HILLMAN All Access 119 Live At The Boarding House - The Historic Radio Broadcasts ● CD $14.98
17 tracks, 66 mins, recommended
Legendary live show and radio broadcast from 1978. You get Gene Clark solo for two tracks to start it off; then, Chris Hillman (with Kim O'Kelly) for two tracks; Roger McGuinn for two tracks; McGuinn, Clark and Hillman for three tracks; and then to top it all off and really wake the crowd up, you get all three of them PLUS David Crosby for the last seven tracks--all Byrds classics, which, of course, means three Dylan covers and four Byrds-penned songs. Initial Gene Clark tracks are a little muffled, but by the third track the mix seems to be worked out. Highlights include Chestnut Mare/ Train Leaves Here This Morning/ You Ain't Going Nowhere, and Feel A Whole Lot Better. (JM)

BILL MONROE Bear Family BCD 15423 Blue Moon Of Kentucky** ● CD $65.98
Four CDs, 109 tracks, essential
This four CD compilation is the bluegrass fanatic's dream. This is the complete Bill Monroe discography from the time he joined Decca (now MCA) in 1950 until 1958, 109 selections in all, including three selections never released commercially, all in pristine sound and with a detailed 65 page booklet by bluegrass authorities Charles Wolfe and Neil Rosenberg. Included in the booklet is a detailed discography listing all U.S. 45, 78, Ep, and Lp release information from the period, (and what a period it was), along with detailed session personnel listings. The classic Flatt-Scruggs-Chubby Wise band had by now disbanded, and Monroe had left Columbia for Decca, but his influence on the music he had fathered was far from over. If anything, the period covered here had consequences as far reaching in the history of bluegrass as the previous eras, for it was at this time that the Bluegrass Boys became the training grounds for such future greats as Jimmy Martin, Vassar Clements, Sonny Osborne, Bobby Hicks, Kenny Baker, and countless others, including such unheralded geniuses as fiddler Red Taylor, banjoist Don Stover, and fiddler Tex Logan. Also included here are the only five selections Carter Stanley recorded with the Bluegrass Boys, including the magnificent Get Down On Your Knees And Pray. There is also the Bluegrass Boy-less session run by Owen Bradley in an attempt to "modernize" Monroe's sound, as well as the eight sides cut in an abortive way to record a Jimmy Rodgers tribute album. Also included here are the original recordings of such classics as Wheel Hoss/Roanoke/Uncle Pen/You'll Find Her Name Written There/Scotland Big Mon/Rawhide, and countless others. In addition, this collection illustrates fully how Monroe's music changed to fit the talents and needs of the many musicians who passed through the band during this fertile period. Quite a monument to the man who was rightly called "The King Of Bluegrass" (RP)
BILL MONROE & HIS BLUEGRASS BOYS: A Beautiful Life/ A Fallen Star/ A Good Woman's Love/ A Lonesome Road/ A Mighty Pretty Waltz/ A Voice From On High/ Alabama Waltz/ Angels Rock Me To Sleep/ Ben Dewberry's Final Run/ Big Mon/ Blue Grass Ramble/ Blue Moon Of Kentucky/ Boat Of Love/ Brakeman's Blues/ Brand New Shoes/ Brown County Breakdown/ Cabin Of Love/ Changing Partners/ Cheyenne/ Christmas Time's A-Coming/ Close By/ Come Back To Me In My Dreams/ Country Waltz/ Cry Cry Darlin'/ Don't Put It Off Til Tomorrow/ Footprints In The Snow/ Four Walls/ Get Down On Your Knees And Pray/ Get Up John/ Goodbye Old Pal/ Gotta Travel On/ Happy On My Way/ He Will Set Your Fields On Fire/ Highway Of Sorrow/ House Of Gold/ I Am A Pilgrim/ I Believed In You Darling/ I Hope You Have Learned/ I Saw The Light/ I'll Meet You In Church Sunday Morning/ I'll Meet You In The Morning/ I'm Blue, I'm Lonesome/ I'm On My Way To The Old Home/ I'm Sittin' On Top Of The World/ I'm Working On A Building/ I've Found A Hiding Place/ In Despair/ In The Pines/ Jesus Hold My Hand/ Kentucky Waltz/ Let The Light Shine Down On Me/ Letter From My Darling/ Life's Railway To Heaven/ Lonesome Truck Driver's Blues/ Lord Lead Me On/ Lord Protect My Soul/ Lord, Build Me A Cabin In Glory/ Memories Of Mother And Dad/ Memories Of You/ Molly And Tenbrooks/ Monroe's Hornpipe/ My Carolina Sunshine Girl/ My Dying Bed/ My Little Georgia Rose/ My Little Georgia Rose/ New John Henry Blues/ New Muleskinner Blues/ No One But My Darlin'/ On And On/ On The Old Kentucky Shore/ Out In The Cold World/ Panhandle Country/ Peach Pickin' Time In Georgia/ Pike County Breakdown/ Plant Some Flowers By My Grave/ Poison Love/ Precious Jewel/ Prisoner's Song/ Put My Little Shoes Away/ Raw Hide/ River Of Death/ Roane County Prison/ Roanoke/ Rotation Blues/ Sailor's Plea/ Sally-Jo/ Scotland/ Sitting Alone In The Moonlight/ Sugar Coated Love/ Swing Low Sweet Chariot/ Tall Timber/ The First Whippoorwill/ The Little Girl And The Dreadful Snake/ The Old Fiddler/ Those Gambler's Blues/ Travelin' Blues/ Uncle Pen/ Used To Be/ Wait A Little Longer, Please Jesus/ Walking In Jerusalem/ Wayfaring Stranger/ Wheel Hoss/ When The Cactus Is In Bloom/ When The Golden Leaves Begin To Fall/ White House Blues/ Wishing Waltz/ Y'all Come/ You'll Find Her Name Written There/ You're Drifting Away

HAL LONE PINE B.A.C.M. 477 Winter Time In Maine ● CD $14.98
26 tracks, very good
Hal Lone Pine (real name Harold John Breau) was a country singer from Maine who started performing in the 1930s. In 1938 he met singer Rita Cote and they started performing together with Rita taking the name Betty Cody and they subsequently married and started recording for RCA in 1950 both solo and as a duet. Although theyr didn't achieve much success in the U.S. they were very popular in Canada and after separating in the mid 50s Hal went to live in Canada. These recordinsg were mostly made for the Canadian ARC label between 1957 and 1963. Hal had a pleasant, easy going, voice and was usually accompanied by decent honky tonk bands. His repertoire included original songs, traditional songs and covers of hits by Bill Carlisle, Buck Owens, Tex Owens and others. Pleasant enough but nothing special. (FS)

JOHNNIE RAY Columbia (UK) 513550 Hysteria - The Singles Collection ● CD $17.98
Three CDs, 60 tracks, strongly recommended
Before Elvis Presley there was Johnnie Ray - a young white singer strongly influenced by black blues and rhythm and blues who performed his material in an emotional and uninhibited manner that drove young girls wild. Although producer Mitch Miller sanitized Ray's music for an early 50s pop audience with orchestras and choruses the basic power of Ray's singing still shines through. Ray was also influential: he was apparently a major inspiration on Elvis Presley, while Bob Dylan was quoted as saying that Ray was the first singer whose voice and style he "totally fell in love with." Although prone to theatrical histrionics when he performed, Ray has been regarded by some as the "missing link" between the old-school crooners (Frank, Perry et al) and the first generation of sexually galvanizing rock 'n' rollers (Elvis and all of his imitators). Certainly, Ray's vocalizing has innovative: he was one of the first white singer to use melisma, which was primarily a Blues/ R&B vocal trick. He also worked with black R&B musicians, and played to black audiences something few white performers did at the time. This collection features both sides of every single that was in the U.S. and U.K. charts starting with the bluesy jazzy self composed Whiskey and Gin and including Please Mr Sun/ Walkin' My Baby Back Home/ Don't Blame Me/ Walking My Baby Back Home/ Glad Rag Doll and many more including his giant hit Cry/ The Little White Cloud That Cried which also went to number 1 in the rhythm & bleus charts. Included are his provocative (for the time) Such A Night and Yes, Tonight Josephine, some fine versions of blue and R&B songs - Flip, Flop & Fly/ Just Walkin' In The Rain (his biggest hit) /Endlessly along with pop standards, country songs, duets with Frankie Laine and Doris Day and even a version of Sister Rosetta Tharpes' Up Above My Head. Sound is excellent and the first CD has a booklet with notes in tiny print.
JOHNNIE RAY: (Here I Am) Broken Hearted/ A Full Time Job (with Doris Day)/ A Sinner Am I (with The Four Lads)/ Aint Misbehavin/ Alexanders Ragtime Band/ All Of Me/ As Time Goes By/ Because I Love You/ Build Your Love (On A Strong Foundation)/ Candy Lips (with Doris Day)/ Coffee And Cigarettes (with The Four Lads)/ Cry/ Don't Blame Me/ Don't Take Your Love From Me/ Endlessly/ Faith Can Move Mountains (with the Four Lads)/ Flip Flop And Fly/ Gee But I'm Lonesome/ Give Me Time/ Glad Rag Doll/ Good Evening Friends (with Frankie Laine)/ Goodbye Au Revoir Adios/ Hernandos Hideaway/ Hey There/ I'll Make You Mine/ I'll Never Fall In Love Again/ If You Believe/ Johnnies Comin Home/ Just Walkin In The Rain/ Lets Walk That A Way/ Look Homeward Angel/ Love Me (Baby Cant You Love Me) (with The Four Lads)/ Ma Says Pa Says (with Doris Day)/ Miss Me Just A Little/ Mountains In Moonlight (with The Four Lads)/ No Wedding Today/ Papa Loves Mambo/ Paths Of Paradise/ Pink Angel/ Plant A Little Seed/ Please Dont Talk About Me When I'm Gone/ Please Mr Sun/ She Didn't Say Nothin At All/ Soliloquy Of A Fool/ Somebody Stole My Gal/ Song Of The Dreamer/ Such A Night/ Tell The Lady I Said Goodbye/ Texas Tambourne/ The Little White Cloud That Cried/ Up Above My Head (I Hear Music In The Air) (with Frankie Laine)/ Up Until Now/ Walking My Baby Back Home/ What More Can I Say/ Whens Your Birthday Baby/ Whiskey And Gin/ Who's Sorry Now/ Why Should I Be Sorry/ Yes Tonight Josephine/ You Don't Owe Me A Thing

ARTIE SHAW Fabulous 2048 The Artie Shaw Collection ● CD $9.98
2 CDs, 43 tracks, 142 mins, highly recommended
Artie Shaw was definitely the coolest guy to ever pick up a clarinet. He discovered (or at least helped make famous,) Billie Holiday, Mel Torme, and Buddy Rich, among many others; he married Lana Turner, AND Ava Gardner (plus an additional five women); and he did the coolest version of Begin the Beguine. This fantastic collection covers Shaw's busiest and best years, right at the heart of the golden era of swing. This collects the best of his Orchestra recordings, and highlights from his Gramercy Five recordings, as well as early recordings with the likes of Roger Wolfe Kahn, Adrian Rollini, and Wingy Monroe. Highlights are many; some of my favorites are Nightmare/ Sobbin' Blues/ Moonglow, and Take Your Shoes Off, Baby. (JM)

GEORGE SIBANDA Sharp Wood 026 The Legendary George Sibanda - 1948 '49 '50 '52 ● CD $17.98
24 tracks, 61 mins, very highly recommended
Another superb collection of music from the Hugh Tracey archives - this time featuring singer/ guitarist George Sibanda who Tracey found in 1948 in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe (then known as Rhodesia) and recorded him over the next four years. Many of these recordings were issued commercially by Gallo and together with his appearances on radio led to him becoming the first real music star in sub-Saharan Africa. He sang in the Sindebele language which is very close to Zulu and he attracted a large following in South Africa. He sang catchy songs, mostly about love, in a beautiful vopice and accompanied himself with intricate and lyrical finger picked guitar that, at times. brings to mind ragtime guitar. On his magnificent Chuzi Mama there is one line in English "When I die my money will go for ragtime melody." In the 1960s a couple of his songs were featured in a stage show put together by Hugh's sons Andrew and Paul that played to great acclaim around the world. His song Guabi Guabi, featured in the show, was picked by American musicians like Rambling Jack Elliot and Jim Kweskin. There are lots of other fine and memorable songs here. Sadly, Sibanda died in the late 50s as a result of alcohol poisoning and much about his life is unknown and no photos exist. This lovingly compiled collection has been superbly mastered and comes with detailed notes and English transcriptions of all the lyrics. (FS)

SLIM HARPO Bear Family BCD 17339 Buzzin' The Blues - The Complete Slim Harpo ● CD $115.98
Due end of month. Now we're talking! Bear Family is issuing the complete recordings of the great swamp bluesman Slim Harpo. Five CDs in an LP sized box with 142 tracks and and a 104 page hardbound book. The first two discs features all the singles and LP tracks issued by Slim Harpo during his too brief lifetime. Discs 3 and 4 features unissued songs, alternates and his out of contract four track session for Imperial. Includes the many tracks discovered when Bruce Bastin explored the Jay Miller vaults in the 1980s - most not on CD before. The fifth CD features a rare live recording from 1961 most of which was previously issued on an Ace CD but this set includes four previously unissued live songs. Order now and be the first on your block to be the proud owner of this great set.
DISC 1; I'm A King Bee/ I Got Love If You Want It/ Wondering And Worryin'/ Strange Love/ You'll Be Sorry One Day/ One More Day/ Buzz Me Babe/ Late Last Night/ What A Dream/ Blues Hangover/ Don't Start Cryin' Now/ Rainin' In My Heart/ Snoopin' Around (Instrumental)/ Bobby Sox Baby/ Dream Girl/ My Home Is A Prison/ Moody Blues (Instrumental)/ I Love The Life I'm Living/ Buzzin' (Instrumental)/ My Little Queen Bee (Got A Brand New King)/ I Need Money (Keep Your Alibis)/ We're Two Of A Kind/ Still Rainin' In My Heart/ What's Goin 'On Baby/ Sittin' Here Wondering/ Harpo's Blues/ Please Don't Turn Me Down/ Baby Scratch My Back/ I'm Gonna Miss You (Like The Devil)/ Shake Your Hips/ Midnight Blues/ I'm Your Breadmaker, Baby/ Loving You (The Way I Do) DISC 2: Tip On In (Part 1)/ Tip On In (Part 2)/ I'm Gonna Keep What I've Got/ I've Got To Be With You Tonight/ Te-Ni-Nee-Ni-Nu/ Mailbox Blues/ Mohair Sam/ I Just Can't Leave You/ That's Why I Love You/ Just For You/ Folsom Prison Blues/ Mutual Friend/ I've Got My Finger On Your Trigger/ The Price Is Too High/ My Baby She's Got It/ I'm So Sorry/ I've Been A Good Thing For You/ Hey Little Lee/ Jody Man/ Rainin' In My Heart (Overdubbed)/ Stick Your Chest Out Baby/ The Music's Hot/ You Can't Make It/ The Hippy Song/ Dynamite/ Boogie Chillun/ Rock Me Baby/ Baby Please Come Home DISC 3: One Of These Days/ That Ain't Your Business/ I'm A King Bee (Alt)/ This Ain't No Place For Me/ I Got Love If You Want It (Alt)/ Things Gonna Change/ Wondering And Worryin' (Alt -1)/ Strange Love (Alt -1)/ Wondering And Worryin' (Alt -2)/ One More Day (Alt -1)/ Late Last Night (Alt -1)/ Cigarettes/ One More Day (Alt -2)/ Bobby Sox Baby (Alt)/ Buzz Me Babe (Alt)/ Late Last Night (Alt -2)/ That Ain't Your Business/ Things Gonna Change/ Talking Blues (Aka Blues Hangover)/ What's Goin'on/ You Ain't Never Had to Cry (aka Don't Start Cryin' Now)/ That's Alright (You'll Be Sorry One Day)/ That's Alright (Alt)/ Yeah Yeah Baby/ Dream Girl (Alt)/ Don't Start Cryin' Now (Alt)/ Blues Hangover (Alt) DISC 4: Moody Blues (Instrumental) (Alt)/ Rainin' In My Heart (Alt -1)/ Rainin' In My Heart (Alt -2)/ Wild About My Baby/ That's Alright Baby (Don't Start Cryin Now)/ Lover's Confession/ Something Inside Me/ Still Rainin' In My Heart/ A Man Is Crying/ Tonite I'm Lonely/ I Love The Life I'm Living (Alt -1)/ Buzzin' (Instrumental) (Alt)/ I Love The Life I'm Living (Alt -2)/ My Little Queen Bee (Alt)/ Little Sally Walker/ Boogie Chillun/ Blueberry Hill/ I'm Waiting On You Baby (-1)/ We're Two Of A Kind (Alt)/ I'm Waiting On You Baby (-2)/ You'll Never Find A Love (As True As Mine)/ I Don't Want No One (To Take You Away From Me) (-1)/ Baby Scratch My Back (The Scratch) (Alt)/ I Don't Want No One (To Take You Away From Me) (-2)/ Baby You Got What I Want/ Your Love For Me Is Gone/ I Gotta Stop Loving You/ Stop Working Blues/ I Just Can't Leave You/ There's Nothing As Sweet As Making Up DISC 5 - LIVE: Star Time - Theme And Introduction/ Hold Me Tenderly/ Little Liza Jane -1/ I'm A King Bee (-1)/ Buzzin'/ I Got Love If You Want It (-1)/ You Know I Love You/ Lottie Mo/ Everybody Needs Somebody/ Big Boss Man/ I'll Take Care Of You/ Boogie Chillun/ Moody Blues (Instrumental)/ Sugar Coated Love/ Last Night/ Matilda (Unk. Vocalist)/ Talk To Me Baby (Unk. Vocalist)/ Star Time - Theme And Introduction (Second Set)/ I'm A King Bee (-2)/ I Don't Play/ I Got Love If You Want It (-2)/ Little Liza Jane -2/ When The Saints Go Marchin' In/ Rainin' In My Heart

JIMMY SMITH Acrobat 7079 The First Decade ● CD $24.98
4 CDs, 42 tracks, 295 mins, highly recommended
Was playing the organ cool before Jimmy Smith? Even if it was, he sure made it cooler. The expansive collection gives you a heaping helping of some of the funkiest work that Jimmy Smith ever did. Hip covers ranging from Big Bill Broonzy's See See Rider, Dizzy Gillespie's A Night In Tunisia, and Charlie Parker's Yardbird Suite, to selections from the American Songbook like Ol' Man River/ Summertime, and My Funny Valentine. Jimmy Smith wasn't just a cover artist, though, many of his best original compositions are here as well like; Slightly Monkish/ Plum Nellie/ Back to The Chicken Shack, and many more. This would be perfect for someone who doesn't own much or any Jimmy Smith. With this, you get a vast selection of his early catalog, with fantastic sound throughout. I've had a copy of (The Incredible) Jimmy Smith's "Home Cookin'" for about twenty years now, have always dug his Jazz bordering on Rhythm & Blues sound and have meant to get more for a long time, now I am very happy to get a copy of this collection for myself. Hopefully this is just the first installment, Smith put out about 50 albums by 1970, so I know there is a lot more cool stuff out there. (JM)
JIMMY SMITH: A Night In Tunisia/ After Hours/ All The Things You Are/ Back At The Chicken Shack/ Bashin'/ Bayou/ Blues After All/ Confirmation/ Cool Blues/ Falling In Love With Love/ Gracie/ Honeysuckle Rose/ I Can't Get Started/ Imagination/ It Could Happen To You/ Joy/ Judo Mambo/ Jumpin' The Blues/ Lonesome Road/ Midnight Special/ Moonlight In Vermont/ Motoring Along/ My Funny Valentine/ Ol' Man River/ Plum Nellie/ Round Midnight/ See See Rider/ Since I Fell For You/ Sister Rebecca/ Slightly Monkish/ Soft Winds/ Sonotone Bounce/ Step Right Up/ Summertime/ The Champ/ The High And The Mighty/ The Preacher/ The Sermon/ The Swingin' Shepherd Blues/ Walk On The Wild Side/ What's New/ Yardbird Suite

THE STAPLES SINGERS Epic 306501 Freedom Highway Complete ● CD $10.98
18 tracks, 78 mins, very highly recommended
Considerably expanded version of 1965 LP featuring the great Staples Singers recorded live at their home church Chicago's New Nazareth Church on April 9, 1965. This new version includes several songs left off the original, full length versions of songs edited for the original LP, spoken introductions and outros from Pops, a request for donations from Rev. Hopkins and more. Joining the Staples on several numbers are the church choir. The recordings have all been remixed and remastered to capture more of the ambience of the church and the end result is a terrifically exciting and moving set of performances. The title song was a new Pops Staples composition written in response to the Selma, Alabama march the month before. The rest is traditional and original gospel songs like When The Saints Go Marching In/ Build On That Shore/ What You Gonna Do?/ When I'm Gone/ Jesus Is All/ View The Holy City, etc. Brother Pervis does the narration on The Funeral, originally written by Hank Williams with the rest of the family providing wordless harmonizing behind. Pops' gorgeous bluesy tremolo guitar is strongly in evidence joined by Phil Upchurch on bass and Al Duncan on drums. A wonderful and important release with informative notes by Robert Gordon. (FS)

VARIOUS ARTISTS Ace CDCHD 602 Teen Beat, Vol. 3** ● CD $18.98
30 tracks, 70 mins, highly recommended
An exceedingly hot collection of rockin' instrumentals from the late 50s and early 60 (with the occasional smoocher). It includes one of my all time favorites - the two part You Can't Sit Down by Philip Upchurch Combo plus Quite A Party by The Fireballs, Mau Mau by The Wailers, Walking With Mr. Lee by Lee Allen, Stick Shift by The Duals, Ramrod by Al Casey, the wonderful chaotic and bluesy Heat by The Rockin' R's, Baja by The Astronauts, Hot Pastrami by The Dartells, Wolf Call by LOrd Dent & His Invaders, I Want To Know by Buddy Lucas plus The Ventures, The Ramroads, Rock-A Teens, Duane Eddy, Plas Johnson, Arthur Lyman, The Rondels, Bumps Blackwell, The Atmospheres and many more. Superb sound - almost all from original master tapes, detailed notes from Stuart Coleman, original U.S. and U.K. issue numbers and chart positions. (FS)
LEE ALLEN & HIS BAND: Walking With Mr Lee/ THE ASTRONAUTS: Baja (pronounced Ba-ha)/ THE ATMOSPHERES: Telegraph/ BUMPS BLACKWELL: Sumpin' Jumpin'/ OWEN BRADLEY QUINTET: Big Guitar/ AL CASEY: Ramrod/ THE CHAMPS: Too Much Tequila/ THE CHANTAYS: Pipeline/ THE DARTELLS: Hot Pastrami/ LORD DENT & HIS INVADERS: Wolf Call/ JIMMY DORSEY ORCHESTRA: Jay-dee's Boogie Woogie/ THE DUALS: Stick Shift/ DUANE EDDY: Moovin' 'n' Groovin'/ THE FIREBALLS: Quite A Party/ PLAS JOHNSON: Blue Jean Shuffle/ BUDDY LUCAS: I Want To Know/ ARTHUR LYMAN: Yellow Bird/ THE MEGATRONS: Velvet Waters/ THE RAMRODS: (Ghost) Riders In The Sky/ THE ROCK-A-TEENS: Woo-hoo/ THE ROCKIN' R'S: Heat/ THE RONDELS: Back Beat No.1/ THE STRING-A-LONGS: Brass Buttons/ THE SURFARIS: Wipe Out/ TROY & THE T-BIRDS: Twistle/ THE TEEN BEATS: The Slop Beat/ PHILIP UPCHURCH COMBO: You Can't Sit Down (part 1)/ You Can't Sit Down (part 2)/ THE VENTURES: Perfidia/ THE WAILERS: Mau Mau

VARIOUS ARTISTS Ace CDCHD 1427 Hung On You - More From The Gerry Goffin & Carole King Songbook ● CD $18.98
26 tracks, 67 mins, recommended
Yet another installment in Ace's excellent songwriters series, this being the fourth from the deep well of Goffin & King tunes. Highlights include: Dusty Springfield's sultry version of That Old Sweet Roll (Hi-De-Ho); a couple of great tracks by The Cookies: Will Power, and You Turn Me On Boy, the later released under The Honey Bees moniker; The Sheik by the always reliable Clovers; Little Eva's masochistic single Please Hurt Me; and probably the best track on the whole CD, Keep Your Hands Off My Baby by The Orlons. There are a few tracks by the likes of Tony Orlando, and Connie Stevens that keep me from giving this a "highly recommended" rating, otherwise this is great stuff. (JM)

VARIOUS ARTISTS Acrobat 3011 New Orleans R&B Crescent City Classics ● CD $18.98 $11.98
2 disks, 50 tracks, 129 mins, highly recommended
An expansive collection featuring all of the stalwarts of the New Orleans Blues and R&B music scene from the last 60 years or so. Classic tracks by Fats Domino, Shirley & Lee, Roy Brown, Professor Longhair, Guitar Slim, Alma Monday and many, many other greats. Dave Bartholomew and his band contribute She's Got Great Big Eyes (and Great Big Thighs) and Country Boy under their own name, but also back up other artists on a large percentage of the other tracks. This pulls heavily from the Imperial, Aladdin, Atlantic & Mercury labels and also cherry picks some choice cuts like Fats Mathews I'm Thankful on Bayou records, Overboard and Jock a Mo from Sugarboy Crawford on Checker, etc. Not a lot in the way of songs that aren't represented on other releases, but a great compilation presented as it is from Acrobat. (JM)
ARCHIBALD: Shake Shake Baby/ DAVE BARTHOLOMEW: Country Boy/ She's Got Great Big Eyes/ THE BEES: Toy Bell/ ROY BROWN: Long About Midnight/ Rockin' At Midnight/ ROY BYRD: Bald Head/ Hadacol Stomp/ Her Mind Is Gone/ Hey Now Baby/ RAY CHARLES: Feelin' Sad/ I Wonder Who/ SUGARBOY CRAWFORD: Jock-A-Mo/ Overboard/ LARRY DARNELL: Pack Your Rags & Go/ FATS DOMINO: Going To The River/ The Fat Man/ You Done Me Wrong/ LITTLE JOE GAINES: She Won't Leave Me No More/ CLARENCE "BON TON" GARLOW: New Bon Ton Roulay/ PAUL GAYTEN: Cow Cow Blues/ It Ain't Nothing Happening/ I'll Never Be Free/ GUITAR SLIM & HIS BAND: Cryin' In The Mornin'/ GUITAR SLIM & HIS PLAYBOYS: Standin' At The Station/ THE HAWKS: I-Yi/ JEWEL KING: 3x7=21/ SMILEY LEWIS: Caldonia's Party/ Tee-Nah Nah/ The Bells Are Ringing/ FATS MATHEWS: I'm Thankful/ GEORGE MILLER: Boogie's The Thing/ BOBBY MITCHELL: 4x11=44/ Rack ‘em Back/ ALMA MUNDAY: Miss Lollipop's Confessions/ Street Walkin' Daddy/ PROFESSOR LONGHAIR: Mardi Gras In New Orleans/ She Walks Right In/ Tipitina/ TOMMY RIDGLEY: Looped/ SLIM SAUNDERS: Let's Have Some Fun (Honey)/ THE SHA-WEEZ: No One To Love Me/ SHIRLEY & LEE: I'm Gone/ Why Did I/ THE SPIDERS: I Don't Want To Do It/ I'm Slippin' In/ BILLY TATE: Single Life/ BIG JOE TURNER: Crawdad Hole/ Honey Hush/ EARL WILLIAMS: If You Ever Had The Blues

VARIOUS ARTISTS B.A.C.M. 475 Kentucky Round-Up ● CD $14.98
27 tracks, strongly recommended
Excellent collection of recordings from the musically fertile state of Kentucky. It open with two exellent honkly tonkers from Don Epperson from 1961 with a sound very reminiscent of Bakersfield country. Pee Wee King band vocalist Gene Stewart is featured on four fairly bland titles but Bob Rourk is an excellent honky tonk singer and one of his songs is a trbute to Kentucky singer Jimmy Osborne who comitted suicide in 1958. There are six excellent songs from the late 50s by the excellent Ginger. There are four superb cuts by Merle Travis from his classic LP "Walking The Strings." The entire LP along with the LP "The Merle Travis Guitar" are available on Raven 299 ($22.98). Other artists include Bill Johnson, Jimmy Murphy, Cliff Gross & The Texans and The Kentucky Boys (an old time brother duo). Fine music with gnerally fine sound. (FS)

VARIOUS ARTISTS Chess (Europe) 10398 Chess Blues Guitar : Two Decades Of Killer Fretwork** ● CD $10.98
23 tracks, highly recommended
The first disc of Chess 9393 surveying some of the great blues guitarists who recorded or Chess and affiliated labels between 1949 and 1969 including rare and unissued sides. This first disc covers the period 1949 through 1958. It opens with Robert Nighthawk's slide guitar masterpice Anna Lee and includes sides from Johnny Shines, John Lee Hooker (an alternate of Walkin' The Boogie without the overdubbed speeded up guitar), Morris Pejoe, John Brim, Eddie Boyd (with Robert Lockwood on guitar), Howlin' Wolf (the great Willie Johnson on guitar), J.B. Lenoir, Bo Diddley, Jody Williams (two tracks including the originally unissued What KInd Of Gal Is That?), Lafayette Thomas and more. Sidmen on these sessions is a who's who of great Chicago musiciasn including Little Walter, Big Crawford, Henry Gray, Elgin Evans, Louis Myers, Ernest Cotton, Eddie Chamblee, Lafayette Leake and others. (FS)
CHUCK BERRY: Guitar Boogie/ BLUE SMITTY & HIS STRING MEN: Date Bait/ EDDIE BOYD: Just a Fool/ JOHN BRIM: It Was a Dream/ BO DIDDLEY: Who Do You Love?/ LOWELL FULSON: Reconsider Baby/ Rollin' Blues/ EARL HOOKER: Frog Hop/ Guitar Rumba/ JOHN LEE HOOKER: Walkin' the Boogie (alternate take)/ HOWLIN' WOLF: I've Got a Woman/ J.B. LENOIR: Give Me One More Shot/ JOE HILL LOUIS: When I Am Gone (Treat Me Mean and Evil)/ ROBERT NIGHTHAWK: Anna Lee/ DANNY OVERBEA: Forty Cups of Coffee/ MORRIS PEJOE: Tired of Crying over You/ JIMMY ROGERS: That's All Right/ JOHNNY SHINES: So Glad I Found You/ LAFAYETTE THOMAS: Old Memories/ MUDDY WATERS: Loving Man/ Sad, Sad Day/ JODY WILLIAMS: Lucky Lou/ What Kind of Gal Is That?

VARIOUS ARTISTS Eardrum 105 Yesterday Is Gone - 21 Soul Country Rarities ● CD $16.98
21 tracks, highly recommended
Like the previous volume the title and inside notes are confusing - it gives the impression we are getting soul singers doing country songs and while this is mostly true there are also songs that are not country oriented. Still there are some great soul performances including sides by Jimmy McCracklin (the great bluesman with the countryish Yesterday Is Gone), Ketty Lester (the gorgeous One Day At A Time which is a gospel song with a country flavor that is from 1984 though sounds like it is from much earlier), Benjamin Joy (very obscure but superb), Bobby Powell, James Phelps (a great hard driving soul rendition of the Ernest Tubb classic Walking The Floor Over You), Tim Chandell (English Caribbean soul singer), Rodge Martin, Arthur Alexander (a superior rendition of the Freddie Hart song She'll Throw Stones At You) and more. A great collection if not exactly what you might expect. Many of these tracks are making their first appearance on CD (FS)

VARIOUS ARTISTS Jasmine 298 Good Times: The Early Career Of Mac Rebennac aka Dr. Jo ● CD $13.98
28 tracks, 66 mins, highly recommended
Dr. John (Mac Rebennack,) has always seemed like an artist that just loved being immersed in the music, and as a young man he wanted to be a part of every cool session that he could get on. So tenacious was his talent and passion for music, that at the tender age of 16 he was made a producer for Ace Records. Early on in his session work, Mac was primarily a guitar player, but that ended after being shot in a finger at a club; after that there was a period on the bass, then, thankfully for all of us, he started concentrating on the piano. This fine collection concentrates on his earliest days in the studio with Mac either writing, arranging, producing or playing guitar on all of the tracks (occasionally doing all of those on the same track.) Highlights include Lights Out by Jerry Byrne (which is an absolute barn burner), Morgus The Magnificent by Morgus And The Ghouls for you fans of classic horror hosts, and Storm Warning, a great, lo-fi instrumental by the man Mac Rebennack himself, with some fantastic sax work from both Lee Allen AND Red Tyler. It certainly helped that Mac had some of the best New Orleans Rhythm & Blues musicians at his disposal. Many more great tracks throughout. If you are a fan of Dr John and/or New Orleans music in general, you won't want to pass this one by. (JM)
JERRY BYRNE: Lights Out/ CHUCK CARBO: Lucy Brown/ Out On A Limb/ Picture Of You/ BAT CARROL: Aw Who?/ IKE CLANTON: Show Me The Way/ SUGAR BOY CRAWFORD: Have A Little Mercy/ I Cried/ THE ENDS: It Ain't No Use/ Row Row Your Boat/ FRANKIE AND MAC: Lonely Boy/ GENE AND AL'S SPACEMEN: Mercy/ CARL GREENSTREET: Hey Mama/ GERRI HALL: I'm The One/ JOE AND ANN: Curiosity/ Gee Baby/ MORGUS AND THE GHOULS: Morgus The Magnificent/ BIG BOY MYLES W/MAC REBENNACK ORCHESTRA: New Orleans/ Put On Your Old Grey Bonnet/ MAC REBENNACK: Foolish Little Girl/ Good Times/ Sahara/ Storm Warning/ RONNIE AND THE DELINQUENTS: Bad Neighborhood/ Keeps Dragging Me On/ ROLAND STONE: Desert Winds/ Down The Road/ Something Special

VARIOUS ARTISTS Official 1201 Hidden Gems, Vol. 6 - Aladdin Records ● CD $16.98
24 tracks, very highly recommended
The Official label is back with another superb collection of obscure blues and R&B - this time drawn from the extensive output of Eddie & Leo Mesner's Aladdin label. These sides were recorded between 1950 and '56 and most are making their first appearance on CD. Aladdin was one of the labels who made some tentative inroads into the vibrant New Orleans scene and recorded a number of sides at the studio of the legendary Cosimo Matissa. This set includes both sides of three singles by Lee Allen (two great instrumentals with an all star group with Red Tyler, Justin Adams, Earl Palmer and others), Jesse Allen and the first recordings of Bobby Marchan. The Jesse Allen and Marchan sides feature some superb guitar work who is unidentified but it sounds like Justin Adams. The remaining cuts were made in Los Angeles and San Francisco and includes great urban blues sides from little known artists accompanied by excellent bands like Freddy Strong, Richard Lewis, Cledus Harrison and Great Gates. There are also two early sides from the criminally underrated Ray Agee including the superb minor key blues Deep Trouble. Jimmy Nolen was of the greatest guitarists on the West Coast and is featured here on two sides issued as by Monte Easter & His Band - New Orleans Hop is a hard driving instrumental with sensational guitar work and Blues In The Evening features Nolen on both vocal and guitar on a stellar version of Lowell Fulson's Blue Shadows. The set is rounded out with tracks by tenor sax giant Chuck Higgins, Mari Jones with Johnny Moore & The Three Blazers and Patty Anne. An exceptional release with superb sound. (FS)
For more gems from the Aladdin catalog check out Aladdin 200 Aladdin Magic: The Early Years, Vol. 1 (16.98) Aladdin 201 Aladdin Magic: The Early Years, Vol. 2 (16.98) One Day 180 Let The Good Times Roll - The Aladdin Story (Two CD set with less obscure material - $11.98)
RAY AGEE: Deep Trouble/ The One I Love/ JESSE ALLEN: Gonna Move Away From Town/ Rock This Morning/ LEE ALLEN & BAND: Rockin' At Cosmo's/ Shimmy/ PATTY ANNE WITH MAXWELL DAVIS & HIS ORCH.: Beginning To Miss You/ MONTE EASTER & HIS BAND: New Orleans Hop/ Blues In The Evening/ GREAT GATES & BAND: Darling/ Jump, Jump, Jump/ CLEDUS HARRISON & BAND: How Much I Love You/ I Wait For You/ CHUCK HIGGINS & HIS BAND: Come On And Blow Your Horn/ Pancho/ CHUCK HIGGINS & HIS ORCH.: Chuck-A-Buck/ Yac-A-Dack/ RICHARD LEWIS & HIS BAND: Still Drifting/ Sweet Dreams/ BOBBY MARCHAN: Have Mercy On Me/ Just A Little Walk/ JOHNNY MOORE'S THREE BLAZERS FEAT. MARI JONES: How Could You Be So Mean/ FREDDY STRONG WITH FATS GAINES & HIS ORCH.: Blue Mood/ Gaines' Boogie

VARIOUS ARTISTS One Day 267 Guess Who? The Zirkon Records Story ● CD $11.98
2 CD, 50 tracks, highly recommended
Zirkon Records was an independent Canadian label based in Montreal and set up in 1960 by Abby Smollan and Art Young. Although Zirkon acted as Canadian distributor for a number of jazz labels (World Pacific and Pacific Jazz, among others), that didn't stop it from licensing hit recordings from U.S. labels like Highland, Fury, Fire, Coed, and Excello for distribution in Canada. Consequently, many of these songs can be found other compilations of American music (even other One Day compilations, e.g. Maxine Brown's All In My Mind is also featured on The Wand Records Story). Nonetheless, there's an interesting selection of artists of an R&B bent included here: Gladys Knight & the Pips, The Flamingos, Lee Dorsey, Ike & Tina Turner, The Royaltones, Bobby Marchan, Little Anthony & the Imperials, Wilbert Harrison, and Slim Harpo. There's also some obscure doo wop from the Dubs and the Chimes; some country from Ted Self and Alan Riddle; some pop from Adam Wade and Ral Donner; and some tasty instrumentals from The Pepper Pots and The Texans. There's nearly something for everyone here and the set rates a purchase on sheer novelty value alone! (GMC)
BARRY & THE DEANS: Rock With Me Baby/ PETE BENNETT & THE EMBERS: Fever/ THE BOBBETTES: Have Mercy Baby/ BUSTER BROWN: Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby/ MAXINE BROWN: All In My Mind/ Funny/ THE BUTANES: That's My Desire/ GARY CANE: The Fight/ PAUL CHAPLIN & HIS EMERALDS: Shortnin' Bread/ THE CHIFFONS: Tonight's The Night/ THE CHIMES: Once In A While/ Summer Night/ DON COVAY & GOODTIMERS: Pony Time/ THE CRESTS: In The Still Of The Night/ RAL DONNER: Girl Of My Best Friend/ You Don't Know What You've Got/ LEE DORSEY: Do-re-mi/ Ya Ya/ THE DREAMERS: Teenage Vows Of Love/ THE DUBS: Chapel Of Dreams/ THE ECHOES: Baby Blue/ MARY ANN FISHER: I Can't Take It/ THE FLAMINGOS: Ko Ko Mo/ Your Other Love/ WILBERT HARRISON: The Horse/ GLADYS KNIGHT & THE PIPS: Every Beat Of My Heart/ Guess Who/ Letter Full Of Tears/ LITTLE JUNIOR LEWIS: Your Heart Must Be Made Of Stone/ LITTLE ANTHONY & THE IMPERIALS: Please Say You Want Me/ Tears On My Pillow/ JOHNNY MAESTRO: Mr. Happiness/ What A Surprise/ BOBBY MARCHAN: Booty Green/ THE NEW YORKERS: Miss Fine/ THE PEPPER POTS: Leather Jacket Cowboy/ ALAN RIDDLE: The Moon Is Crying/ ROSIE & THE ORIGINALS: Angel Baby/ THE ROYALTONES: Dixie Rock/ Flamingo Express/ TED SELF: Little Angel (Come Rock Me To Sleep)/ THE SEVILLES: Charlena/ THE SHELLS: Baby Oh Baby/ SLIM HARPO: Rainin' In My Heart/ RAY SMITH: Turn On The Moonlight/ THE TEXANS: Bloody River/ Green Grass Of Texas/ IKE & TINA TURNER: A Fool In Love/ ADAM WADE: Sleepy Time Gal/ The Writing On The Wall

VARIOUS ARTISTS One Day 272 All In My Mind - The Wand Records Story ● CD $11.98
2 CD, 40 tracks, highly recommended
Scepter Records' lynchpin Florence Greenberg's other record label, Wand Records began life in 1961 with its' first signing, Chuck Jackson who immediately scored an R&B hit with I Don't Want to Cry. When The Shirelles returned to the Greenberg fold after being hitless with Decca, they retrieved their chart dominance with Tonight's the Night and Mama Said. Originally conceived as a home for "rootsier" R&B material, Wand has hosted many classic sides, that are included here, from the likes of Maxine Brown (All in My Mind), the Isley Brothers (Twist and Shout), Shep & the Limelites (Daddy's Home), and the aforementioned Chuck Jackson. For the collectors, there's two early songs from producer Bert Berns, recording under the name Russell Byrd, and for the doo wop fans there's fine examples from The Leeds, The Titones, and The Jokers. While Wand might not have had the sheen of Scepter (which had Dionne Warwick and her classy collaborations with Bert Bacharach and Hal David), label still delivered some timeless R&B during the years 1961 and 1962, of which these songs represent some of the best examples. (GMC)
LEE ANDREWS & THE HEARTS: Long Lonely Nights/ Teardrops/ MAXINE BROWN: All In My Mind/ Funny/ RUSSELL BYRD: Nights Of Mexico/ You'd Better Come Home/ JOEY DEE & THE STARLITERS: Shimmy Baby/ THE DEEP RIVER BOYS: The Vanishing American/ ELOISE: Ooh Baby/ You Should 'a Treated Me Right/ GERRY GRANAHAN: No Chemise, Please/ DOUGLAS "JOCKO" HENDERSON: A Little Bit Of Everything/ Blast Off To Love/ THE ISLEY BROTHERS: Right Now/ The Snake/ Twist And Shout/ You Better Come Home/ CHUCK JACKSON: Getting Ready For The Heartbreak/ I Don't Want To Cry/ I Wake Up Crying/ The Breaking Point/ THE JOKERS: Whisper/ THE LEEDS: Heaven Only Knows/ Mr. Cool/ DEL MARINO: Cupid's Arrow/ I'll Never Be The Same/ TAMMY MONTGOMERY: Voice Of Experience/ BOBBY PETERSON: Irresistible You/ THE RENAULTS: Another Train Pulled Out/ Just Like Mine/ SHEP & THE LIMELITES: Daddy's Home/ Ready For Your Love/ THE SHIRELLES: Mama Said/ Tonight's The Night/ THE SOUL BROTHERS: Notify Me/ The Parade Of Broken Hearts/ THE TITONES: Symbol Of Love/ THE VIDEOS: Trickle, Trickle/ BETTE WATTS: Do Me A Favor/ Let It Be

VARIOUS ARTISTS Psychic Circle 7030 An Outbreak Of Twangin' ● CD $18.98 $11.98
26 tracks, 58 mins, very highly recommended
Here's a very cool instrumental collection, a follow up to the equally excellent "Phantom Guitars" collection that Psychic Circle put out a few years back. This set features all European bands, mostly from the U.K., playing exotic, twangy guitar driven Rock & Roll. Highlights include the dramatic, moody, and very cool An Outbreak Of Murder by The Gordon Franks Orchestra, who owe a bit to both Les Baxter and Moondog; Alan Caddy - Workout, a swingin' version of Jezebel by Rob E.G.; Clearway by Judd Parker"; Ghost Train by Bert Weedon; and many more. Quality liner notes to tell you who all those cats are/ were. Fans of Joe Meek productions, The Ventures, etc. will surely dig this one. (JM)

VARIOUS ARTISTS Regal 3201 Regal Records - The R&B Years, Vol. 1 ● CD $16.98
24 tracks, very highly recommended
The Regal label was founded in Linden, New Jersey in 1949 by Jules & David Braun and Fred Mendelsohn. The label was a successor to the Braun's DeLuxe label which had been sold to King. Although the label lasted only two years it put out almost 150 78s of high quality blues, R&B and gospel. Although there have been previous reissues of the label's country, down home and New Orleans blues this collection features many of the label's lesser known recordings - mostly jump blues plus some gospel and vocal group sounds. There are several New Orleans cuts here including Paul Gayten's R&B version of country great Lefty Frizzell's If You've Got The Money, I Got The Time and Larry Darnell's Pack Your Rags And Go. The are are two superb cuts from Alberta Hunter who started her recordings career in 1921 but sounds perfectly at home with early 50s R&B styling. Another veteran artist here is the great singer & piano player Roosevelt Sykes who had an extensive post war career and is featured here on two superb sides accompanied by drummer Jump Jackson. Other artists featured here include Doc Sausage, James "Blazer Boy" Locks, The Teddy Brannon Orch. (one for collectors of baseball songs with Don Newcomb Really Throws That Ball), Milt Larkin & His X-Rays and others. There are two excellent gospel sides featuring the powerhouse vocals of Edna Gallmon Cooke accompanied by The Mt. Vernon Men's Choir and a couple of vocal group sides from The Magicords. Spendid stuff with excellent sound. (FS)
TEDDY BRANNON ORCH. (VCL. DICKIE THOMPSON): Don Newcomb Really Throws That Ball/ EDNA GALLMON COOKE & THE MT. VERNON MEN'S CHOIR OF WA: Handwriting On The Wall/ LARRY DARNELL & ORCH.: Pack Your Rags And Go/ EDNA GALLMON COOKE & THE MT. VERNON MEN'S CHO: I Promised The Lord/ PAUL GAYTEN & HIS ORCH.: I'm So Crazy For Love/ If You Got The Money, Honey, I Got The Time/ ALBERTA HUNTER: Midnight Blues/ I Got A Mind To Ramble/ BILL JOHNSON: I'd Give The World To Know How I Stand With You/ Mad Money Blues/ MILT LARKIN & HIS X-RAYS FEAT. BILLY FORD, TR: Best Friend Blues/ MILT LARKIN & HIS X-RAYS: Tennessee Waltz/ LITTLE MR. MIDNIGHT: Four O'clock Blues/ Got A Brand New Baby/ JAMES (BLAZER BOY) LOCKS: Baby Lovin' Blues/ Blazer Boy Blues/ THE MAGICHORDS: Cherry Tree/ The Game Of Broken Hearts/ WILD BILL MOORE: Mean Old World/ DOC SAUSAGE & HIS MAD LADS: Please Don't Leave Me Now/ Rag Mop/ You Got Me Cryin'/ ROOSEVELT (HONEYDRIPPER) SYKES: Blues N' Boogie/ Rock It

VARIOUS ARTISTS Topic 677 The Flax In Bloom - Traditional Music In Ulster ● CD $22.98
Three CDs, 93 tracks, highly recommended
More wonderful traditional music in Topic's "Voice Of The People " series this features recordings made in 1952 and 1953 in the Irish province of Ulster by folklorists Peter Kennedy and Sean O'Boyle. The first disc features singers and instrumentalist from counties Fermanagh and Donegal. It includes two songs by the magnificent Paddy Tunney who was later to become an important figure in the folk revival of the 1950s and 1960s and many revival artists learned from his extensive repertoire of songs. There are also four superb songs by Paddy's mother Brigid including a spine chilling rendition of The Mountain Streams Where The Moorcocks Crow as well as a couple from his siter Annie and three accordion instrumentals from his brother Joe. Another important and influential figure is fiddler and vocalist John Doherty who is featured on half a dozen superb performances. Other artists include Mick Gallagher, Maureen Melly, Neillidh Boyle and others. The second CD is all instrumental dance music featuring fiddlers like Johnny Pickering, Vincent & John McCusker and Paddy McCluskey, tin whistle player John Maguire (father of the highly acclaimed Irish musician Sean Maguire) and some delightful ceilidh music from the McCusker Brothers Ceilidh Band. The third disc features songs from Irish travelers (gypsies) recorded over two nights around a camp fire. Most of the singers are girls in the late teens and early 20s - some of them singing while breast feeding their babies - most of the men were already asleep after generously imbibing Guinness! In spite of their youth the performances by the girls (Mary Connors, Lal Smith, Winnie Ryan and Mary Doran) are powerful, evocative and intense, often singing unfamiliar variants of traditional songs. There are two male singers - Christy Purcell and Paddy Doran who also deliver fine performances. All in all, a superb collection of traditional Irish music which is somewhat marred by frequent slight distortion on many of the tracks - presumably a result of tape deterioration over 60+ years. Set includes a 100 page booklet with informative notes on the music background and biographies of the artists (except for the travelers) plus lyrics of all the songs. Counts as three CDs for shippping. (FS)

MARY LOU WILLIAMS Fabulous 2046 The Mary Lou Williams ● CD $9.98
Two CDs, 51 tracks, highly recommended
Mary Lou Williams was a great pianist, composer and arranger who practically carried Andy Kirk's band into popularity in the '30s. She later wrote arrangements for Benny Goodman, Jimmy Lunceford and even Duke Ellington. She also managed to lead her own groups (including one co-led with Don Byas), she never stagnated, her creativity continuing well into the seventies. Like virtually no other swing-era player, Mary Lou Williams was able to adapt to and perform in the post-war, modern style. She went from the stride to bebop without blinking. This two CD set is a superb cross section showcasing the talents of this remarkable woman. It opens with a cut from her first session in 1927 as a member of the group Jeanette James and her Synco Jazzers and ends in 1959 with a recording of the two part Chuck-A-Luck which is an outstanding showcase for her nimble fingers accompanied only by bass and drums. It includes many great sides from the 30s and early 40s with the Andy Kirk Orchestra as well as many sides with her own groups and a track with the Benny Goodman Orch. About half the tracks here are her own compositions. Sound quality is generally excellent and the booklet has informative notes and full discographical dettails. (FS)

MAURICE WILLIAMS Acrobat 3124 With The Gladiolas & The Zodiacs - Complete, 1956-62 ● CD $16.98
Two CDs, 37 tracks, highly recommended
An expanded version of Acrobat 4250 this features all the recordings made between 1956 and 1962 by the two doowop groups led by the excellent soulful vocalist Maurice Williams. Williams formed his first gospel group while still in high school and when the group turned to doo-wop they adopted the name The Gladiolas. They wangled an audition with Excello Records in Nashville who immediatley signed and they had a big R&B hit with their first release, the iconic Little Darlin' which became a big R&B hit in 1958 though they had only minimal success in the pop charts as the song was covered by the bland white group The Diamonds. After three more fine, but unsuccsefull sides for Excello they were let go though Excello hung on to the rights of the name The Gladiolas so the group changed its name to the Zodiacs. They made several singles for the Cole and Soma labels with little success and in 1960 fired the members of the group and brought in new singers to become the Zodiacs. They were signed by Al Silver's Herald label and their first record Stay became a hit in both the R&B and pop charts and became one of the all time doowop classics. Over the next few years they recorded a fine selection of sides though Stay was to be their only hit. However many of these later cuts became regular "Beach" dance classics in the Carolinas including I Remember/ Do I/ Come Along/ Someday/ Little Mamma/ Come And Get It/ It's Alright and a great cover of Ray Charles' I Got A Woman. Sound is excellent and 12 page booklet has informative notes by Paul Watts. (FS)

JACKIE WILSON Music Club Deluxe 22 Best Of The Original Soul Brother** ● CD $13.98
2-CDs, 40 tracks 114 mins highly recommended
Very little needs to be said about Jackie Wilson: second lead singer of Billy Ward's Dominos, who went solo with great success in 1957 and remained a top R&B star until his devastating stroke in 1975. This modestly priced two CD set on Music Club contains his best known Pop hit (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher & Higher and a generous sampling of his career from first hit Reet Petite to tracks from the end of his career, including one recorded with the Chi-Lites (released in 1976) Don't Burn No Bridges. The nice packaging, reasonable price and great sound quality make up for the random, non-chronological sequencing of the tracks. A great way to check a legendary talent. (GMC)
JACKIE WILSON: (I Can Feel Those Vibrations) This Love Is Real/ (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher & Higher/ A Woman Needs To Be Loved/ Beautiful Day/ Because Of You/ Brand New Thing (Pt. 2)/ Danny Boy/ Don't Burn No Bridges/ For Your Precious Love/ Hard To Get A Thing Called Love/ Haunted House/ I'm The One To Do It/ I've Learned About Life/ I've Lost You/ I Don't Want To Lose You/ I Get The Sweetest Feeling/ I Was Made To Love Her/ Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho/ Just As Soon As The Feeling's Over/ Just Be Sincere/ Love Uprising/ My Tale Of Woe/ No Pity (In The Naked City)/ Nobody But You/ Nothing But Blue Skies/ Reet Petite (The Finest Girl You Ever Want To Meet)/ Since You Showed Me How To Be Happy/ Soul Galore/ Soul Time/ Stop Lying/ The Who Who Song/ Think About The Good Times/ Think Twice/ Whispers (Getting' Louder)/ Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)/ You're The Song I Can't Stop Singing/ You Brought About A Change In Me/ You Can Count On Me/ You Got Me Walking/ You Left The Fire Burning


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