Texas Girls – Various Artists – Complete Recorded Works (1926-1929)
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Texas Blues Girls
Complete Recorded Works 1926 1929
Featuring the recordings of:
Lillian Miller, vocal, accompanied by Hersal Thomas, piano. Lillian Miller, vocal, accompanied by George W. Thomas, piano (except on 5) / vocal & speech on 5; Charlie Hill, guitar. Hattie Hudson, vocal, accompanied by Willie Tyson, piano. Gertrude Perkins, vocal, accompanied by Willie Tyson, piano; probably Coley Jones, guitar; Octave Gaspard, brass bass. Ida May Mack, vocal, accompanied by K. D. Johsnon, piano. Bobbie Cadillac, vocal, accompanied by unknown, piano. Bobbie Cadillac And Coley Jones, vocal duets; accompanied possibly Alex Moore, piano; Coley Jones, guitar.
Genres: Blues, Country Blues, Texas Blues, Country Blues Guitar, Blues Guitar, Blues Piano, Female Blues, Paul Garon,
Abridged from this albums original booklet. This assortment of Texas blues by Texas women contains a number of excellent pieces. Hattie Hudson‘s lilting Doggone My Good Luck Soul is backed with another song dealing with luck, Black Hand Blues, and both are outstanding. In these she was accompanied by Willie Tyson on piano, who with Octave Gaspard on tuba, had the pleasure of being on one of the great blues records of all time, Gertrude Perkins‘ No Easy Rider. The guitarist on both her sides is almost certainly Coley Jones, who also accompanies Bobbie Cadillac. With her rural-sounding accent and her moaned lines – the latter a trademark of many Texas singers – she delivers an extraordinary performance. In Gold Daddy Blues, she seems to reverse the pimp/prostitute roles at the end of the song, when she singsOh, say, gold daddy, are you holding out on me? (2x) Bring it in on time, I’ll count it up and see. Or, she is merely parroting, with parody, the pimps’s accusation? An enticing ambiguity!
Ida May Mack is another Texas singer who uses the moaned line with some frequency, although in Mr.Forty-Nine Blues her moan is more of a hum. In spite of its stiffness, her voice has a compelling quality. On Elm Street Blues, she invokes the notorious “deep Ellum” district, which, along with the Central Tracks area, is Dallas’ equivalent of Beale Street in Memphis. As Mack reminds us on Elm Street Blues, again invoking the prostitute’s life,Walking is not so easy, worry is not so good!
Lillian Miller is another Texas singer whose biographical details remain obscure. Comparing her Kitchen Blues, where she’s accompanied by the sophisticated and tasteful piano of the child prodigy Hersal Thomas, 16 years old at the time of his death, with Dead Drunk Blues, where she’s accompanied only by Charlie Hill‘s guitar, makes it clear that the accompaniment can determine whether a performance is thought of as rural-sounding, down-home, or folk lyric, as opposed to urban, polished, or sophisticated. Collectors of down-home blues have already been more drawn to guitar accompaniments, and Lillian Miller‘s Dead Drunk Blues is a distinctly rural-sounding performance. The sides where she’s accompanied by George Thomas‘ piano as well as Hill’s guitar have a rougher flavor than Kitchen Blues, too, especially You Just Can’t Keep A Good Woman Down and Harbor Blues. Both her Butcher Shop Blues and Kitchen Blues use food and cooking metaphors to elaborate a special network of sexually enticing propositions.
Bobbie Cadillac sings four duets with Coley Jones, who offers us an attractive and appealing solo on Easin’ In. I Can’t Stand That, He Throws That Thing, Listen Everybody, and Easin’ In are all spinoffs of Tampa Red and Georgia Tom‘s phenomenal hit, It’s Tight Like That. In a few instances, they seem to be derived more from the spinoffs like Lonnie Johnson and Spencer Williams‘ It Feels So Good, than from the original. But pieces like I Can’t Stand That can hide extremely uncommon lyrical gems like this one:He called me Aunt Jemima, something I don t like He caught that train, said he’d be right back. Bobbie Cadillac is also a more professional and polished singer than Ida May Mack, for example, and her Carbolic Acid Blues is a moving testimony to the reality of violence that often touched the singers’ lives. My right hand is itching, my left eye began to burn (2xj I know my man don’t want me, hey, by the way he’s doing. I told her I loved her man, grave would be her resting place (2.x) She looked at me with burning eyes, throwed carbolic acid in my face. Paul Garon Copyright 1993: Document Records.