Rare 1970 album produced by Johnny Otis featuring the stinging guitar of his son Shuggie – with two previously unissued bonus tracks
Bluesman Slim Green made very few records in a career that started in 1948 and ended with this LP in 1970. Born Norman G. Green in Bryant, Texas in 1920, he grew up in Oklahoma and played guitar in Las Vegas before settling in Los Angeles in the late 1940s. He made his first records in 1948 for local labels. Listening to them suggests a player full of country influences, updating them for a modern urban audience. He reappeared a decade later in a group called the Cats From Fresno, who made two singles for Johnny Otis’ Dig label, a contact he renewed in the late 60s.
Johnny Otis, a pioneer of post-war R&B, had scored hits as a producer and recording artist as well as being a renowned talent-spotter. Having dropped out of sight for much of the 1960s, he returned to the studio in the latter part of the decade and released a series of records for the Kent label, distinguished by the guitar playing of his teenage son Shuggie.
“Stone Down Blues”, recorded by Slim Green with Johnny and Shuggie in 1970, is one of the finest blues albums of its time. The trio of Johnny on drums, Shuggie on bass and guitar, and Slim on guitar and vocals work their way through a selection of self-penned songs. From the opening ‘Shake ‘Em Up’, via the anti-war ‘This War Ain’t Right’ to the closing ‘Play On Little Girl’, this is compelling stuff. We complete our release with the previously unreleased ‘My Marie’ and ‘Rock The Nation’ from around the same time period.