They Tell Me Love Will Kill You
Posted in Honey on 12.07.05

Apparently yesterday was the biggest day for Honey ever. Over 6 gigs of mp3s downloaded, though that number seems very high for no real reason, has Honey been in the news recently? Or maybe the lure of Alice Moore was just so strong.

Walter Davis was a prolific performer in the pre-war era though he is very under-rated these days. While granted he isn’t the most impressive piano player around (especially compared to Wesley Wallace who is a few posts down) he’s solid and he has one of the best voices around. It’s sleepy, but also very sharp – he is very witty, but not as obvious most other blues artists. Two tracks from him today, the first is one of his best written songs “I Did Everything I Could” which contains some bizarre sexual references and is just weird all around. It feature some light guitar work by Yank Rachel also. The second track is “Love Will Kill You” which is one of my favorite tracks by him though it doesn’t really show off his talents nearly as much as “I Did Everything I Could.”

Walter Davis – I Did Everything I Could
Walter Davis – Love Will Kill You

Posted in Honey on 12.06.05

Top Downloads For Novemember, 2005.

1. Billie Holiday – Don’t Explain
2. Baby Huey and the Babysitters – Hard Times
3. Furry Lewis – Big Chief Blues
4. Big Mama Thornton – Yes, Baby
5. Frankie Jaxon – Willie The Weeper
6. Merline Johnson – 2×4 Blues
7. Pinetop and Linberg – I’ll Believe I’ll Make A Change
8. Eva Taylor – Organ Grinder Blues
9. Roosevelt Graves – Woke Up (With My Mind on Jesus)
10. Lonnie McIntorsh – Sleep On Mother, Sleep On
I’ve blogged about Alice Moore before , but she’s so good I just had to bring her back. Alice Moore was one of the more unique blues singers, she has a strange way of phrasing words (like the way she sings pusher in this song), but it doesn’t ever distract from the songs. Moore created a strong persona for herself – that’s she is this innocent girl and the world/blues/men are just pull her around by her pigtails. It’s really interesting to listen to her recorded works and see how she constructs this persona throughout her short career. I’m picking two songs by her today, the first is a dirty blues song called Push Cart Pusher where she is backed by Roosevelt Sykes on piano and Charley Jordan on guitar. The second one is “Just A Good Girl Treated Wrong” a song more typical of her output – she’s backed by Peetie Wheatstraw on piano and Charley Jordan on guitar.

Alice Moore – Push Cart Pusher
Alice Moore – Just A Good Girl, Treated Wrong

Providence Help The Poor People
Posted in Honey on 12.05.05

Last month’s recap will be coming later in the week. I should be posting more regularly in a few weeks, as well as finishing up all the loose ends from the previous few months.

Big Joe Williams was one of the last of the pre-war delta blues musicians. He cut his teeth on these few early recordings before the war and before he became one of the bigger blues artists of the post-war era. This track is a really solid Delta Blues song, features some really great guitar work by Williams and great lyrics that cover both political and emotional topics – it is one of the best written blues songs I’ve ever heard.

Big Joe Williams – Providence Help The Poor People

Fanny Lee Blues v. No. 29
Posted in Honey on 12.01.05

The spammers don’t give up apparently. It’s sort of a hassle, but I know I hate having to register to post comments, so I’m trying to stay away from that option. If anyone knows how to ban IP addresses, let me know.

Wesley Wallace only recorded two solo songs, though he had a couple of tracks with Bessie Mae Smith and a handful more with Robert Peeples (who has thought to have been about every person in the St. Louis area) but he never really shined as an accompanist His No.29 blues is considered one of the finest blues piano instrumentals, and while it’s good I hold that Fanny Lee is his finest work – and doesn’t have his talking all over the piano playing.

Wesley Wallace – Fanny Lee Blues

Wesley Wallace – No. 29