Joan K has provided these rips from 1950s vinyl and a folder of label scans.
In the post “The Roots Of Rock ‘N Roll”, a 2LP set of Savoy sides, the first solo recordings of Huey ‘Piano’ Smith were included. Recorded in June 1953, they were pretty dreadful. So how come Huey Smith started making some of the best ever New Orleans R&B / Rock ‘n’ Roll recordings just three years later?
Huey Smith’s first recordings were actually made for Imperial in 1951 when he was part of a small group which included guitarist Eddie Jones who would soon become famous as Guitar Slim. In truth these Imperial recordings were no great shakes either. Both musicians’ fortunes changed when they met Johnny Vincent who was a talent scout for Specialty Records. Guitar Slim was the first to benefit as Johnny split him from Huey and teamed him up with the Lloyd Lambert band plus Ray Charles on piano to record the hit “The Things I Used To Do”.
Meanwhile Huey had recruited Earl King as replacement guitarist and singer. With Huey on piano, Earl recorded some sides for Specialty and then for Johnny Vincent’s new label, Ace. Huey also recorded an uncredited B side for Eddie Bo (“We Like Mambo”) on Ace and in 1956 recorded his first solo single for Ace, “Little Liza Jane” / “”Everybody’s Whalin’”. With these sides Huey established the formula which would bring him chart success: simple lyrics, catchy choruses and an insistent dance beat. Ensemble vocals helped disguise Huey’s own rather weak vocal contributions.
Bobby Marchan was recruited to Huey’s group which was by now called The Clowns and in 1957 they recorded the massive hit “Rockin’ Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu”. More hits which followed the same formula ensued: “High Blood Pressure”, “Don’t You Just Know It” and “Don’t You Know Jockomo”. The LP “Having A Good Time” was released in 1959.
Joan’s rips are from 1950s vinyl with some surface noise, and, yes, the occasional sound of the needle hitting the shiny wax disc. Moments in time captured forever. Thanks Joan!
1. Rockin' Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu
2. Little Chickee Wah Wah
3. Little Liza Jane
4. Just a Lonely Clown
5. Hush Your Mouth
6. Don't You Know Yockomo
7. Havin' A Good Time
8. Don't You Just Know It
9. Well I'll Be John Brown
10. Everybody's Whalin'
11. High Blood Pressure
12. We Like Birdland
There’s a distinct lack of swing on the blog since I removed the Jazz Greats links, so it’s time to start uploading some more and what better band is there to start with than that of Count Basie? These classic recordings for Decca were cut between July 1937 and February 1939. The band line-up included the twin tenor sax threat of Lester Young and Herschel Evans, and of course the All American Rhythm Section of Freddy Green (guitar), Walter Page (bass), Jo Jones (drums) and the Count himself on piano. There’s a tremendous blues shouting performance by Jimmy Rushing on the classic “Sent For You Yesterday” which is a number I just can’t get out of my head at present.
“Jive at Five” and “Lady Be Good” were recorded on the third of February 1939, just five days before Herschel Evans died of a heart condition. On these tracks Chu Berry deputised for the ailing Herschel. Berry himself was to die in an automobile accident just two years later.
These tracks are ripped from a cassette issued in 1984 by Charly Records.
1. Swinging The Blues
2. John's Idea
3. Blue & Sentimental
4. Texas Shuffle
5. Panassie Stomp
6. Sent For You Yesterday
7. You Can Depend On Me
8. Every Tub
9. Jumpin' At The Woodside
10. Time Out
11. Jive At Five
12. Oh Lady Be Good
13. Shorty George
14. Out The Window
16. Doggin' Around
This 1988 LP from Official compiles sides by mostly little known women blues singers for the King and Federal labels. The bulk of the recordings date from the early to mid 1950s and what really stands out is the calibre of the R&B combos on these tracks. A glance at the track list is an R&B fan’s delight as names like Earl Bostic, Lucky Millinder, Roy Milton, Bill Doggett, Duke Hampton and Gene Redd (the vibes player in the Earl Bostic band) catch the eye.
And there’s more good news for fans of swingin’ blues bands. Dorothy Ellis is backed by musicians from the Johnny Otis band of the early 50s including Ben Webster, Pete “Guitar” Lewis and Devonia Williams. The frantic Lil Greenwood track “Grandpa Can Boogie Too” features Joe Lutcher on alto sax. Fluffy Hunter’s bluesy “Climb The Wall” features red hot backing from The Buddy Banks Sextet and Sarah McLawler and the excellent Flo Garvin are backed by Sonny Thompson and Jimmy Coe. Sugar Pie is of course Sugar Pie De Santo and the band on her track is The Preston Love Orchestra which includes Pete “Guitar” Lewis, Ernie Freeman, Plas Johnson and Floyd Turnham.
A special word about Marion Abernathy’s “Undecided”. This was recorded in late December 1947 when King were frantically stockpiling recordings as a Musicians’ Union strike was due to begin on January 1st 1948. The band in the studio was led by Hot Lips Page with Hal Singer and Tom Archia on tenor saxes. The same band also recorded a series of sides with Wynonie Harris on the same day they recorded with Ms Abernathy. A few days later a slightly slimmed down version of the same band would cut “Good Rockin’ Tonight” with Mr Harris.
Ripped from vinyl at 320 kbps. Password = greaseyspoon
1. He's Gone / Dorothy Ellis 2. Grandpa Can Boogie Too / Lil Greenwood 3. Portrait Of A Faded Love / Earl Bostic & His Orchestra (v- Helen Young) 4. Please Be Good To Me / Duke Hampton & His Orchestra (v- Aletra Hampton) 5. Climb The Wall / Fluffy Hunter 6. You're Gonna Suffer Baby / Roy Milton & His Orchestra (v- Mickey Champion) 7. I Need You Now / Sarah McLawler 8. I Dreamed The Blues / Gene Redd & His Orchestra (v- Valerie Carr) 9. No More In Life / Bill Doggett Trio (v- Mildred Anderson) 10. Undecided / Marion Abernathy 11. I'm On The Outside Looking In / Flo Garvin 12. Let Me Keep You Warm / Flo Garvin 13. You Can't Have Me Now / Lorraine Lester 14. It's A Sad, Sad Feeling / Lucky Millinder & His Orchestra (v- Cathy Ryan) 15. Slowly Going Out Of My Mind / Dorothy Ellis 16. Please Be True / Sugar Pie
Joan K was kind enough to send in this copy of saxman Buddy Lucas' one and only release on the Luniverse label. "Star Dust" c/w "Bo-Lee" was released in 1957. The A side is a deadpan stroll through the Hoagy Carmichael standard. "Bo-Lee" is a much more R&B sounding side with Buddy in fine hoarse-voiced shouting form. Click on the Buddy Lucas label or use the search box to find more music and info on this artist.
Ripped from vintage vinyl complete with the inevitable surface noise. Password = greaseyspoon
This crackly collection of sax blowouts (“mastered” from original 78s and 45s) makes a nice supplement to the double CD “Tenor Madness” post. Just about every artist here (except Joe Houston) is a veteran of the big bands and this disc nicely captures the era of the end of the swingin’ aggregations and the move towards small group R&B and jazz. The sleevenotes by Morgan on the back cover give background info on the artists. For me, the sides by former Erskine Hawkins saxman Paul Bascomb are raucous standouts.
Ripped from vinyl at 320 kbps. Password = greaseyspoon
1. Have A Ball / Joe Houston Orchestra (vocal – Lois Butler) 2. Houston's Hot House / Joe Houston Orchestra 3. Leo's Boogie / Leo Parker And His Mad Lads 4. Cool Leo / Leo Parker And His Mad Lads 5. SOS / Charlie Singleton And His Band 6. Please Don't Leave Me Here / Charlie Singleton And His Band (vocal – Jake Vaughn) 7. Artistry In Mood / Joe Thomas And His Orchestra 8. Tearing Hair / Joe Thomas And His Orchestra 9. Turntable / Morris Lane And His Combo 10. What Did Sam Say / Paul Bascomb And His Orchestra (vocal – Paul Bascomb) 11. Ain't Nothin' Shakin' / Paul Bascomb And His Orchestra (vocal – Paul Bascomb) 12. Forty-Nine-Fifty / Bumps Myers Sextet 13. Memphis Hop / Bumps Myers Sextet 14. September Song / Morris Lane And His Combo
Joan sent this great collection of Five Keys mp3s – all from recordings made while they were with Aladdin Records. Many have been ripped from original discs – both 45 rpm and 78 rpm, so, yes, there is some “surface noise”. The bitrate varies, but there is nothing lower than 128 kbps. Beneath the tracklist you’ll find Joan’s explanation of the provenance of each track, although I reckon that track 18 sounds like a 78 rpm rip.
There’s Inkspots influenced ballads and rockin’ jump tunes. The Five Keys were an outstanding R&B group as you can hear by downloading this selection.
Ripped from vinyl, shellac and what-the-heck. Variable bitrates not less than 128 kbps.
1. Yes Sir That's My Baby 2. There Ought To Be A Law (Against Breaking A Heart) 3. If You Only Knew 4. Mistakes 5. White Cliffs Of Dover 6. When You Are Gone 7. (I Don't Stand A) Ghost Of A Chance 8. Yearning 9. Can't Keep From Crying 10. I'm So High 11. Will My Heart Stand A Chance 12. Do I Need You 13. Deep In My Heart 14. Darling 15. Old McDonald 16. Come Go My Bail Louise 17. I Cried For You 18. How Do You Expect Me To Get It 19. My Love 20. Why Oh Why 21. Story Of Love 22. Someday Sweetheart 23. How Long 24. I Hadn't Anyone 'Til You 25. With A Broken Heart 26. Going Downtown (8-9-10) 27. Mama (Your Daughter Told A Lie On Me)
1 - Yes Sir That's My Baby - Released on Aladdin Single 3118
2 - There Ought to Be A Law (Against Breaking A Heart) - Released on Aladdin Single 3175
3 - If You Only Knew - Unreleased
4 - Mistakes - Released on Aladdin Single 3131
5 - White Cliffs Of Dover - Unreleased
6 - When You're Gone - Unreleased
7 - (I Don't Stand A) Ghost Of A Chance - Unreleased
8 - Yearning - Unreleased
9 - Can't Keep From Crying - Unreleased
10 - I'm So High - Released on Aladdin Single 3204
11 - Will My Heart Stand A Chance - Unreleased
12 - Do I Need You - Unreleased
13 - Deep In My Heart - Released on Aladdin Single 3245
14 - Darling - Released on Aladdin Single 3119
15 - Old McDonald - Released on Aladdin Single 3113
16 - Come Go My Bail Louise - Released on Aladdin Single 3167 From 78 collection
17 - I Cried For you - Released on Aladdin Single 3158 From 78 collection
18 - How Do You Expect Me To Get It - Released on Aladdin Single 3245
19 - My Love - Released on Aladdin Single 3263 From 78 Collection
20 - Why Oh Why - Released on Aladdin Single 3263 From 78 collection
21 - Story Of Love - Released on Aladdin Single 3312
22 - Someday Sweetheart - Released on Aladdin Single 3228
23 - How Long - Released on Aladdin Single 3131
24 - I Hadn't Anyone 'Til You - Released on Aladdin Single 3136
25 - With A Broken Heart - Released on Aladdin Single 3085
26 - Going Downtown (8-9-10) - Unreleased
27 - Mama (Your Daughter Told A Lie On Me) - Released on Aladdin Single 3175
If you own the copyright of any music posted here and wish to have it removed from the blog, please contact me at the above email address and it will be removed forthwith.
Dedicated to REAL R&B, Rock'n'Roll, Blues and Jazz
This is a site dedicated to rockin' 1940s and 1950s music, ripped from vinyl. Some cuts are a bit on the rough side. If you're looking for audio perfection you're on the wrong site baby! If you like what you hear on this site please buy this kind of music. There are many reasonably priced reissues available from web dealers or perhaps from your local record shop, if it still exists. These reissues will be in far better sound quality than the vinyl rips on this site and they will usually have more up to date liner notes and info, so go out and splash a little cash now and again. Help keep those reissue labels going in these difficult times.
No in-print CDs will be posted here. In fact no CDs will be posted here. I will occasionally list recommended purchases to help you hear more from artists featured on the blog.
"The night is the corridor of history, not the history of famous people or great events, but that of the marginal, the ignored, the supressed, the unacknowledged; the history of vice, of error, of confusion, of fear, of want; the history of intoxication, of vainglory, of delusion, of dissipation, of delirium." Luc Sante - Low Life