Sticking with the 60’s Soul festivities with this cut from none other than the legendary ‘Big O’.. I’m led to believe that this one was released in 1968?? which would make it a year after he ‘boarded the train’ to the pearly gates..if it was then it would have be synoymous with themusicologist as I was born in the month of December, in the year of the Earth Monkey whilst revolution filled the air. Having already laid Otis’ majestic rendition of Irving Berlin’s ‘White Christmas’ down two years ago I’m very happy to be bringing this version of Lou Baxter and Johnny Moore’s Rhythm & Blues Christmas classic ‘Merry Christmas Baby’ to the festive table..First recorded by the Three? Blazers, (Johnny Moore, his brother Oscar, Charles Brown, Eddie Williams), in 1947.
Sliding out of the Cool Ruler tribute, (farewell Don Gregory gone but NEVER forgotten), into a new selection..
Don’t know how many of you are aware of the two Cats on this recording? but one in particular, (pianist, vocalist and songwriter Leroy Carr), almost originated the sophisticated Urban Blues style which in turn led to Rhythm & Blues.
Many a Rhythm & Blues legend such as Count Basie, Charles Brown, Ray Charles, Muddy Waters, Amos Milburn, T-Bone Walker, (to name a few), paid tribute to Leroy Carr.
Before Leroy, blues was distinctly ‘Country’…raw, rough and ready. Jazz was the ‘Urban’ sound for obvious reasons but it was, (predominantly), Leroy Carr who made the change and inspired all the Big Town Playboy’s who followed in his footsteps..from the Slick suits to the conversational, laid back style of singing and playing it begins with Leroy Carr in 1928 with his recording of ‘How Long, How Long Blues’ who epitomised ‘Urban Slick’. Today’s cut was recorded with his partner and friend Francis ‘Scrapper’ Blackwell in New York City on August 16th 1934 and released as a 78 on Vocalion. Leroy Carr died at the tender age of 30 less than a year later but his legacy is plain for all to hear.
Woke up this morning with the smell, sound and sight of Christmas in my nose, ears and eyes…what JOY. So with that in mind today I am going to post as many cuts as I can manage in between preparing for Santa’s visit tonight.
First up is a cut from Johnny Moore’s Blazers. Not sure of the exact year or even whether it’s Charles Brown on vocal duties what I am sure of however is it’s quality…..
had to bite the bullet, wipe my hard drive and reinstall Windows yesterday so wasn’t able to ‘throw down’. Back in the hot seat now..with the techno issues done and dusted.
out of the bonus cuts and back into the original tribute selection…
this cut taken from his 1963 album ‘Mr Soul’ finds the man paying his own tribute to foundation vocalist Charles Brown, (a major influence for Sam, Ray Charles, Bobby Bland and a host of singers that followed), with a heartfelt rendition of Brown’s 1946 classic ‘Driftin’ Blues.