Tuesday, 26 January 2010
Luke Jones & Red Mack - West Coast R&B 1947-1952
Here’s a 1987 Krazy Kat LP which features some rollicking West Coast jump blues from the mid 1940s. All of theses sides were recorded for the Atlas label between early 1946 and mid 1947 with the exception of Red Mack’s single “Just Like Two Drops of Water” / “Mr Big Head” which was recorded for Mercury in early 1951. Wynonie Harris recorded a storming cover version of “Just Like Two Drops of Water” for King, but the original version is the one by Red Mack.
This collection centres on Luke Jones, bandleader, alto and baritone sax player and clarinettist who was born in Louisiana but as an infant moved to Los Angeles. From the late 1930s he was involved in the LA scene, playing for Lionel Hampton and Roy Milton before forming his own jump trio with pianist Betty Hall Jones and drummer / blues shouter George Vann. At the Atlas sessions the trio was augmented by trumpeter and vocalist Red Mack and bass player Chuck Barksdale. Two of the early 1946 sides were credited to Red Mack: “If You Love Me Baby” and “Black Man’s Blues.”
The music is the standard jump band mix of the 1940s – blues, boogies, shuffles and the occasional ballad. The contributions of Betty Hall Jones and George Vann are particularly fine. Miss Jones pounds out some great boogie while George Vann is a good blues shouter. This is yet another LP which has languished unplayed for a decade or two in my dusty vinyl vault. I’m glad I dusted it down for the blog – it’s a cracking little comp which spotlights musicians who perhaps weren’t up there with the bands of Louis Jordan, Roy Milton or Joe Liggins, but who nevertheless made music which still sounds good sixty years later.
Ripped from vinyl at 320 kbps.
Download from here:
1. Jump The Boogie - Luke Jones (Atlas 122, 123, 160)
2. Feelin' Low Down - Luke Jones (Atlas 116)
3. Four Or Five Times - Luke Jones (Atlas 116)
4. Graveyard Blues - Luke Jones (Atlas 122)
5. Shufflin' Boogie - Luke Jones (Atlas 122, 123, 160)
6. Worryin' Anyhow Blues - Luke Jones (Atlas 123, 160)
7. Disc Jockey Blues - Luke Jones (Atlas 144)
8. What You Bet - Luke Jones (Atlas 115)
9. If You Love Me Baby - Red Mack (Atlas 117)
10. Black Man's Blues - Red Mack (Atlas 117)
11. Mr Big Head - Red Mack (Mercury 8217)
12. Just Like Two Drops Of Water - Red Mack (Mercury 8217)
13. Midnight Blues - Luke Jones (Atlas 135)
14. Ditch Diggin' Daddy - Luke Jones (Atlas 134)
15. I Love You Love Me Too - Luke Jones (Atlas 134)
16. She's My Baby - Luke Jones (Atlas 135)