Charlie & Joe McCoy – Complete Recorded Works Vol. 1: (1934 to 3rd April 1936)
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Charlie McCoy, vocal, mandolin; Joe McCoy, vocal, guitar.
Includes: Robert Lee McCoy, harmonica; Ransom Knowling, double bass; Harmon Ray (Peetie Wheatstraw’s Buddie), vocal; Little Brother Montgomery, piano; and others.
Genres: Blues, Mississippi Blues, Swing / Blues.
Informative booklet notes by Teddy Doering.
Hallelujah Joe Ain’t Preachin No More and one might add: He’s swinging now ! – this could be the motto of this CD. Following the trend of the time both Charlie and Joe McCoy played from the early 1930 onwards in the swing-oriented vein of the Bluebird beat. Gone were the days of the Jackson blues style with its subtleties in the guitar playing or the delicate singing. The new style, however, had its advantages, too. The vocals had a certain shouting quality which Joe had already demonstrated in his Hallelujah Joe recordings, there is more diversity in the accompanying musicians and especially rhythmically the songs were more appealing. Joe’s session from November 1935 still showed a strong Tommy Johnson influence (for example Something Gonna Happen To You, on BDCD-6019, whereas as Going Back Home Blues, on Document DOCD-5031 is a downright imitation of Johnsons famous Big Road Blues as well as Look Down The Road, an up-tempo version of the song). The new trend is clearly demonstrated by Charlie in his April 1936 session (Papa Charlie’s Boys), where the (unknown) bass player provided an immensely swinging rhythmic foundation. From here it was only a short step to the addition of other rhythm instruments such as washboard or drums in the series of recordings that Joe began in 1940, where he called himself Big Joe.