Attention Mac Users!

Mac users have been experiencing problems in unpacking the WinRAR archives used on this blog. Two solutions have been suggested.

1. Use The Unarchiver - www.theunarchiver.com - see comments on Little Esther Bad Baad Girl post for details.

2. Use Keka - http://www.kekaosx.com/en/ - see comments on Johnny Otis Presents post.

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Still Waters / Nite-Flite - Lloyd Glenn (Aladdin 3268)







It's the return of Be Bop Wino after a two week break and back we come with another 78 rpm disc from the collection of El Enmascarado - Texas born but West Coast based piano man Lloyd Glenn's instrumentals "Still Waters" and Nite-Flite." These sides were recorded for Aladdin in October 1954, at Lloyd's second session for that label.

The musicians on these sides include Billy Hadnott on bass and Bob Harvey on drums. Both of these musicians had accompanied Lloyd on his most commercially successful sides which were recorded for Swing Time between 1949 and 1952. On the sides in this post the trio is augmented by guitarist Jessie Erwin who turns in sterling performances, particularly on the bluesy "Still Waters." The rocking "Nite-Flite" ain't too bad either, with some nice interplay between Erwin and Glenn.

If you've been following the blog recently you'll have realised that many of these joint El Enmascarado / Be Bop Wino posts serve as tasters for an upcoming LP. If you've been following the blog for a few years you'll probably remember that an LP of Lloyd Glenn's Aladdin sides has already been posted. I'm working on a revamp of that post with new scans and more information, so stand by for a re-up of that Pathe Marconi LP "After Hours" in a few days.

Thanks to El Enmascarado for the label scans and rips from the 78 rpm disc of "Still Waters" / "Nite-Flite."

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Amos Milburn - Chicken Shack Boogie





Side A
1. My Baby's Boogying
2. Amos’ Boogie
3. Bye Bye Boogie
4. It Took A Long Long Time
5. Chicken Shack Boogie
6. Pot Luck Boogie
7. Jitterbug Fashion Parade

Side B
1. Roomin' House Boogie
2. Johnson Rag
3. Boogie Woogie
4. Sax Shack Boogie
5. Roll Mr Jelly
6. Grey Hound
7. House Party

This is the fifth of the Pathe Marconi Amos Milburn LPs to be posted on the blog and I believe that the set is now complete. I can say that I’ve saved the best till the last, for this collection of classic tracks rocks, rolls, pounds and boogies in a merciless onslaught of the finest rhythm and blues you’ll hear anywhere.

The only break is provided by the slower “It Took A Long Long Time” at track 4. From track 5, which is the original hit version of “Chicken Shack Boogie,” there is simply no letup as Amos shouts the blues and pounds that piano to the blasting tenor sax accompaniment of studio bands led by the great Maxwell Davis or else his road band, The Aladdin Chicken-Shackers.

This is a collection which spans Amos’ successful years with Aladdin, beginning with his first session for the label in September 1946 and ending in 1955, by which time the hits had dried up. He was born in Houston, Texas, in 1927, into a family of twelve children. After war service in the Pacific, he became the main breadwinner for the family and took up music professionally, forming a small combo which played the clubs around the Houston area. While playing at the Keyhole Club in San Antonio he was spotted by Lola Anne Cullum (the wife of a Houston doctor) who was something of a promoter on the local music scene. Taking the young Amos under her wing, Mrs Cullum soon had him relocated to Los Angeles and signed up with Aladdin Records.

From that first session under the supervision of Maxwell Davis, “My Baby’s Boogying” achieved good sales locally. In the next year or so Amos laid down a mix of boogies, salacious double entendre blues and the occasional ballad which sold well enough but it wasn’t until November 1948 that real success came along when “Chicken Shack Boogie,” which he’d recorded in late 1947 just prior to the AFM recording ban, stormed to the top of the R&B charts. This kicked off a remarkable series of hits for Amos which lasted from 1949 through to 1954 when “Good Good Whiskey,” the last in a series of drink related hits, (“Bad Bad Whiskey,” “One Scotch, One Bourbon, One Beer,” etc.) charted.

Like many of his contemporaries, Amos was left behind by changing fashions in R&B and the advent of rock and roll. In 1956 he recorded in New Orleans with top musicians such as Lee Allen and Earl Palmer in an attempt to reboot his flagging career. This session produced one of the greatest rock and roll records of all time – a searing remake of “Chicken Shack Boogie” but it didn’t sell. The Aladdin contract was not renewed in 1957.

Towards the end of the 1950s Amos hooked up with his old buddy Charles Brown for live appearances and a single on Ace, “I Wanna Go Home,” / “Educated Fool.” Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home To Me” was heavily based on “I Wanna Go Home,” but for Brown and Milburn there was to be not a hint of the success that Cooke would have with his version.

Amos recorded for King and Motown between 1960 and 1967, but nothing sold. As the 60s became the 70s, increasing ill health including two strokes and a leg amputation blighted the remaining years of his life which came to a close on January 3rd, 1980.

Ripped from vinyl at 320 kbps.

Download from here:

http://www10.zippyshare.com/v/XbNi61uX/file.html

Amos Milburn (piano and vocal) on all tracks.

Los Angeles, September 12th, 1946. Unknown g, b, dm. Maxwell Davis (ts) present at session:

1. My Baby's Boogying (Aladdin 160)
2. Amos’ Boogie (Aladdin 173)

Los Angeles, October 27th, 1947. Maxwell Davis (ts), possibly Gene Phillips (g), unknown b and dm:

3. Bye Bye Boogie (Aladdin 206)
6. Pot Luck Boogie (Aladdin 3026)

Los Angeles, November 19th, 1947. Maxwell Davis (ts), unknown g, b and dm:

5. Chicken Shack Boogie (Aladdin, 3014)

Los Angeles, December 18th, 1947. Maxwell Davis (ts), probably Frank Heywood (g), unknown b and dm:

4. It Took A Long Long Time (Aladdin 3014)

Los Angeles, February 28th, 1949. Maxwell Davis (ts), Gene Phillips (g), Ralph Hamilton (b), Jesse Sailes (dm):

7. Jitterbug Fashion Parade (Aladdin 3023)

Los Angeles, July 13th, 1949. Maxwell Davis (ts), Chuck Norris (g), Ralph Hamilton (b), Lee Young (dm):

8. Roomin' House Boogie (Aladdin 3032)

Los Angeles, December 19th, 1949. Amos Milburn and his Aladdin Chicken-Shackers – Don Wilkerson (ts), Billy Smith (ts), Willie Simpson (bs), Johnny Brown (g), Harper Cosby (b), Calvin Vaughan (dm):

9. Johnson Rag (Aladdin 3049)
10. Boogie Woogie (Aladdin 3105)

Los Angeles, January 4th, 1950. Amos Milburn and his Aladdin Chicken-Shackers – Don Wilkerson (ts), Billy Smith (ts), Willie Simpson (bs), Johnny Brown (g), Harper Cosby (b), Calvin Vaughan (dm):

11. Sax Shack Boogie (Aladdin 3064)

Los Angeles, January 30th, 1952. Willie Smith (ts), Bill Hill (ts), Leroy Robinson (as and bs), Wayne Bennett (g), Leonard Sonny Williams (b), Eldeen McIntosh (dm):

12. Roll Mr Jelly (Aladdin 3133)

Los Angeles, August 21st, 1952. Maxwell Davis (ts), unknown bs, g, b and dm:

13. Grey Hound (Aladdin 3150)

Los Angeles, July 25th, 1955. Amos Milburn and his Aladdin Chickenshackers – Arnett Sparrow (tb), Eddie Chamblee (ts), Joe Evans (bs), Irving Ashby (g), possibly Red Callender (b), possibly Rufus Jones (dm):

14. House Party (Aladdin 3306)

Mo’ Amos –

On the blog – the other 4 Amos Milburn Pathe Marconi LPs are shown below:





That gives you quite a helping of Amos but there is much more to explore. Try to hunt down and purchase the following CDs:

"Amos Milburn Rocks!" (Bear Family) is probably the current best single CD overview of his career:


The Revola CD "Let's Have A Party" is a compilation of 1950s sides recorded for Aladdin:


If you wish to explore the career of Amos Milburn in depth (and who wouldn't?), then the Chronological Classics series covers 1946 - 1953 in 5 CDs. The first CD, 1946 - 1947, may be hard to obtain. The succeeding four are available at Amazon.co.uk, some as mp3 downloads.


Now sadly out of print, but still one of my all time favourite R&B CDs, is the Capitol Blues Collection 3CD set ""Blues, Barrelhouse & Boogie Woogie." 66 tracks and superb liner notes by Mark Humphrey. Still available as a surprisingly cheap mp3 download from Amazon, but if you find a second hand copy at a reasonable price, buy it.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Let's Make Christmas Merry, Baby / Bow Wow! - Amos Milburn and his Aladdin Chicken-Shackers (Aladdin 3037)







There's good news for shellac fans: El Enmascarado has ripped more 78 rpm discs and among the latest offerings is this classic from Amos Milburn and his Aladdin Chicken-Shackers. Recorded in Los Angeles on the 1st of October, 1949, "Let's Make Christmas Merry, Baby" reached number 3 in the R&B chart in the weeks leading up to Christmas.


1949 was a peak year in the career of Amos Milburn. He had a string of big R&B hits and according to Billboard he was the top selling rhythm and blues artist of the year. He was also voted "Best Blues and Jazz Star of 1949" in Downbeat magazine. In the wake of his biggest hit "Chicken Shack Boogie," his road band was named the Aladdin Chicken-Shackers. Up until July 1949 Amos recorded with small studio groups led by Maxwell Davis. At the recording session of July 13th, a Davis-led studio combo was billed as the Aladdin Chicken-Shackers on "Roomin' House Boogie" and "Walkin' Blues."

At the next recording session on October 1st, 1949, Amos was backed by the real Chicken-Shackers, his road band, which featured a much heavier sax sound thanks to two tenor saxes and a baritone sax. Five sides were recorded: "Bow Wow," and "Let's Make Christmas Merry Baby," both released on Aladdin 3037, "Drifting Blues," and "Real Pretty Mama," both released on Aladdin 3038 and "Untitled Boogie," which remained unreleased until Capitol issued the 3 CD set "Blues, Barrelhouse and Boogie Woogie" in 1996.

The Aladdin Chicken-Shackers on this session were: Don Wilkerson and Willie Smith (tenor saxes), Willie Simpson, Jr. (baritone sax), Amos Milburn (piano, vocal), Johnny Brown (guitar), Harper Cosby (bass) and Calvin Vaughan (drums).

Amos recorded with this line-up until April 1951, occasionally alternating with Maxwell Davis led studio groups. "Let's Make Christmas Merry, Baby" is a fine piece of festive filth or seasonal sleaze which is rooted in "Merry Christmas Baby" - a 1947 hit for Charles Brown with Johnny Moore's Three Blazers. "Bow Wow" is a good instrumental workout, although one cannot help but feel that it is a bit of "filler" for the B Side of the intended Christmas hit.

Billboard ad
With thanks to El Enmascarado for his heroic efforts in creating a listenable rip from "Let's Make Christmas Merry, Baby" which was in very poor condition with scratches, a crack and a chewed up spindle hole.

Sources: liner notes by Mark Humphrey from the Capitol 3CD set "Blues, Barrelhouse and Boogie Woogie: The Best Of Amos Milburn, 1946-1955", and Billboard Magazine which is available free via Google Books.