Rare Country Blues (1928-1937) – Full Album
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Rare Country Blues
The Complete Recorded Works (1928 1937)
Featuring the recordings of:
Seth Richard, vocal / guitar / kazoo on 2. Charlie Kyle, vocal / guitar. Freezone, vocal / guitar. Willie Harris, vocal / guitar; prob. Charles Avery, piano; poss. Coletha Simpson or Freddie Thomas speech. Willie Harris, vocal / guitar; James Williams, piano. Willie Harris, vocal / guitar; possibly unknown 2nd guitar. Leola Manning, vocal / piano; Eugene Ballinger, guitar. Tommy Settlers And His Blue Moaner: Tommy Settlers, vocal / kazoo / percussion. Tommy Settlers With Ezekiel Lowe And Lee Bunkley, vocal; accompanied by Tommy Settlers, kazoo; Ezekiel Lowe, piano; Lee Bunkley, guitar. Jazzbo Tommy And His Lowlanders: Tommy Settlers, vocal / kazoo; Ezekiel Lowe, piano; Lee Buckley, guitar; unknown, washboard on 24.
Genres: Blues, Country Blues, Texas Blues, Mississippi Blues, Country Blues Guitar, Blues Guitar, 12-String Guitar, Bottleneck-slide Guitar, Female Blues, Gospel,
Abridged from this albums original booklet notes. This album focuses attention on some of the lesser known artists of the pre-war period who recorded maybe only once or twice but who are none the less interesting for that. Their backgrounds, both musical and personal, are widely divergent and most are biographical blanks. What little that is known about them has been gleaned from record company files or construed from their recordings. Although his only two pre-war recordings were made in New York, according to the researches of Kip Lornell, SETH RICHARD seems likely to have been from Bedford County, Virginia. He also seemed to have been identified with the raggy Skoodeldum-Doo to such an extent that when he got a chance to record again in 1943, he used the term for a pseudonym, performing with a harmonica player as Skoodle Dum Doo and Sheffield. Similarly, despite being recorded in Memphis in 1928 CHARLIE KYLE was a Texas singer from the Songster tradition, who probably attended the session in the company of those tough members of the Dallas demi-monde, Bessie Tucker and Ida Mae Mack. Of the six tracks cut during his only session two remained in the can and he returned to the obscurity from which he had emerged. If little is known about Charlie Kyle at least we have a name that might be his real one, the singer of Indian Squaw Blues denies us even that familiarity hiding behind the pseudonym FREEZONE. This was his only issued recording and shared a disc with the Texas pianist Raymond Barrows Walking Blues. WILLIAM HARRIS, one of several singers of that name, betrays his Mississippi roots on the two tracks issued from his 1930 Chicago session for Brunswick. Particularly worthy of note is the driving slide guitar backing he supplies to Never Drive A Stranger From Your Door, a variation of the standard Make Me Up A Pallet On Your Floor. Prior to this Brunswick had issued a 78 under Harris name; one side of which featured the comedic What Makes A Tom Cat Blue, a song far removed from the rural roots of the later coupling. The flip side of this disc, West Side Blues, recorded at a different session from Tom Cat, is really a showcase for a pianist who is probably Charles Avery. Avery is also speculated to be the pianist who appears on the LEOLA MANNING recordings cut in Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1929. Manning, who sounded something like Memphis Minnie, was another off-centre artist who recorded religious songs in a blues setting. If the title He Fans Me brings to mind the overheated efforts of Frankie Jaxon the illusion fails when Manning quotes Mathew 3:11 as her source. Actually Mathew 3:12 would be more accurate. TOMMY SETTLES (or possibly Settlers) used the name Jazzbo Tommy and his Paramount titles referred to his use of a blue moaner. Both terms disguise the fact that he actually considered himself a virtuoso on that most disparaged of all instruments the kazoo! How justified he was in this conceit is a matter for your personal assessment.Keith Briggs Copyright 1993 & 2008 Document Records