Swamp Blues Various Artists (Excello)

£11.50

Availablity:
World
Genre:
Blues
Label:
Ace Records
Format:
CD
Catalogue Id:
CDCHD 661

A lot has already been said in these pages about the Excello label, both on the quality of its artists and its influence on the on-going development of popular music. Compilations such as No Jive! (CDCHD 652) and Wail Daddy! (CDCHD 653) have opened our eyes to the wealth of sterling, and sometimes startling, blues performances that reside in the company's vaults.

By contrast, Swamp Blues is a brilliantly executed sampling of the vibrant blues scene in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in the summer of 1970. Recorded over the course of four hot August days, the sessions were produced by R&B monthly editor and Blue Horizon boss Mike Vernon. In his detailed and informative notes, Mike gives a flavour of the voyage of discovery that people like he, Mike Leadbitter and John Broven and I embarked upon during the 60s. They were exciting times, taking the train up to London to find Guy Stevens' record stall just off Cambridge Circus, where boxes of bright orange Excello 45s tempted the passing populace. Returning home, Mike Vernon & I would incorporate the latest Lightnin' Slim and Lazy Lester songs into the repertoire of our R&B group, which was briefly inflicted upon our South London neighbours. Years later, Mike was able to release albums by Slim and Lester, Slim Harpo, Lonesome Sundown, Silas Hogan and Arthur Gunter on Blue Horizon and it was through that agreement that the Swamp Blues sessions were first mooted and then realised. Ideally, Mike would have liked Lightnin' Slim and Lazy Lester to be present but he was more than happy to bring together Silas Hogan, Whispering Smith, Arthur 'Guitar' Kelley, Clarence Edwards and ex-Howlin' Wolf pianist Henry Gray. Mike's decision to split the sessions between group and solo recordings was undoubtedly the right one. By doing so, he allowed the artists to perform their blues in a decidedly contemporary vein before reaching back into the older styles which had been their formative influences. It's hard to believe nearly 30 years have elapsed since these recordings were made, for gathered here on one CD their immediacy remains intact.

Track listing

Side 1

  • 01
    Looking The World Over - Whispering Smith

  • 02
    Somebody Stole My Baby And Gone - Arthur "Guitar" Kelley

  • 03
    Just Give Me A Chance - Silas Hogan

  • 04
    Lonesome Bedroom Blues - Clarence Edwards

  • 05
    Can't Last Too Long - Henry Gray

  • 06
    A Thousand Miles From Nowhere (One Room Country Shack) - Whispering Smith

  • 07
    Deep South Mose - Whispering Smith

  • 08
    Dry Chemical Blues (Trouble At Home Blues) - Silas Hogan

  • 09
    How Can I Stay When All I Have Is Gone - Arthur "Guitar" Kelley

  • 10
    Let Me Love You Baby - Clarence Edwards

  • 11
    Cold Black Mare (Black Pony Blues) - Whispering Smith

  • 12
    I Didn't Tell Her To Leave - Silas Hogan

  • 13
    Cooling Board - Clarence Edwards

  • 14
    Storm In Texas - Whispering Smith

  • 15
    Gray's Bounce - Henry Gray

  • 16
    Hoo-Doo Blues (Hoodoo Hoodoo) - Silas Hogan

  • 17
    Worried Life Blues - Henry Gray

  • 18
    I Want Somebody - Clarence Edwards

  • 19
    I Don't Know Why - Arthur "Guitar" Kelley

  • 20
    Honey Bee Blues - Silas Hogan

  • 21
    Baton Rouge Breakdown - Whispering Smith

  • 22
    Showers Of Rain (Falling Rain Blues) - Henry Gray

  • 23
    Number Ten At The Station And Number Twelve Is On The Road - Arthur "Guitar" Kelley

  • 24
    Baby Please Don't Go - Whispering Smith

Delivery & Returns

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In the event that any products supplied to you by us are damaged or defective, we agree to replace or repair the damaged or defective products or refund the amount you paid for such goods (including postage & packaging) providing you notify us (either via post at or e-mail: orders@acerecords.com ) and return the goods within 28 days of purchase. Physical goods should be sent back to us in the same condition you received them to: “Returns” Bus Stop Mail Order Ltd, 42-50 Steele Road, London, NW10 7AS. Music downloads should be returned to us via the e-mail address above including a copy of your notification.

You have the right to cancel your order within seven days of purchase, or seven days of receipt of the goods (whichever is the longer). If you choose to cancel your order, full payment will be returned to you. Returned items should be sent to: “Returns” c/o Bus Stop Mail Order Ltd, 42-50 Steele Road, London, NW10 7AS. Music downloads should be returned to us via the email address: orders@acerecords.com including a copy of your notice of cancellation and order number.

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Press quotes

This is a classy package full of quality Louisiana blues. Every home should have one.

Blues & Rhythm

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