Papa Egg Shell
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 02.22.07

Lawrence Casey recorded two sides for Brunswick in 1929 under the unfortunate nickname “Papa Egg Shell” reportedly because of the shape of his head and not his fragile psyche. These tracks are country blues in its purest form. Casey is a superb guitar player with a voice that should have at least got him half a dozen sides. Unfortunately, that’s the story with many of the people posted here at Honey, but at least we can here the few songs they did record.

Papa Egg Shell – Whole Soul Blues (1929)

Can’t Anybody Tell Me Blues
Posted in 1920s,1930s,Country Blues,Honey on 02.21.07

This was the track I was planning on posting yesterday. Walter Vinson leads this duet with Harry Chatman on piano in this incredibly fun and fresh sounding. Chatman steals the show here, but Vinson pulls the whole song together. The second track “Overtime Blues” is a showcase for Vinson, just him and his wonderful guitar – but it raises some doubt on if the Leroy Carter of the first track is Vinson as rumored. I think the guitar on “Can’t Anyone Tell Me Blues” sounds a lot like Vinson and the vocals could just be off because of the recording equipment.

Leroy Carter (Walter Vinson) – Can’t Anybody Tell Me Blues (1935)
Walter Vinson – Overtime Blues (1929)

I Got A Razor In My Bosom
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 02.20.07

I was going to post a Walter Vinson track today, but I kept listening to this Mary Butler track (featuring Vinson on guitar) and now I’m on a quest to track down her recorded works. Vinson was part of the Mississippi Sheiks, one of the most prolific groups recording in the pre-war era its a wonder how he had time to play on other peoples’ sides as well as record a dozen or more solo numbers. This track was recorded in 1928 and is the first recording of Vinson away from the Sheiks and its an impressive number, Vinson’s guitar work is outstanding and Mary Butler’s vocals don’t over power his playing. It’s obvious that this recording was Vinson’s not Mary’s.

Mary Butler with Walter Vinson – Mad Dog Blues (1928)

The Missing Sam Collins
Posted in 1930s,Country Blues,Honey on 01.18.07

It snowed in Greensboro today, forcing me to find, and wear my heavy coat, which I don’t think I’ve worn since 2005. Arizona Danes will start tomorrow, but I know if I don’t do this now I’m going to forget all about it, so here are the remaining Sam Collins tracks that Yazoo didn’t collect on their release – my favorites are the first couple tracks he did with John D. Fox.
Sam Collins with John Fox – Worried Man Blues

Sam Collins with John Fox – The Moanin’ Blues 

Sam Collins – Lonesome Road Blues

Sam Collins – Signifying Blues

Sam Collins – I’m Still Sitting On Top Of The World 

Sam Collins – My Road Is Rough And Rocky (How Long, How Long?) 

Lead Me All The Way
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 12.07.06

The final batch of Cryin’ Sam Collins tracks. I hope everyone has enjoyed this album – and by the looks of the bandwidth – you have. If you have any ideas about rare or out of print albums you’d like to see hit me up at pkpatnaik at and I’ll see what I can do.

11. Do That Thing

12. I Want To Be Like Jesus In My Heart

13. Loving Lady Blues

14. Midnight Special Blues

15. Lead Me All The Way

16. Graveyard Digger’s Blues 

The Next Five
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 12.05.06

The Cryin’ Sam Collins’ train keeps on coming with the next five tracks off the release.

6. Yellow Dog Blues

7. Pork Chop Blues

8. Dark Cloudy Blues

9. Hesitation Blues

10. It Won’t Be Long 

Christmas Comes Early
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 12.04.06

Long time readers will remember that I’m not a fan of Christmas music, I am however a fan of the season. So here is my gift to the devoted readers of the blog: Sam Collins – Jailhouse Blues. This CD was released by Yazoo sometime ago and is now out of print. Here are the first five tracks from the album. I’ll post the rest by the end of the week and they’ll stay up until the end of the month, so don’t wait to download!
1. Devil In The Lion’s Den

2. Slow Mama Slow

3. The Jailhouse Blues

4. Riverside Blues

5. New Salty Dog

Dark Cloudy Blues
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 11.28.06

Thanksgiving here at Honey HQ went well – and no turkeys were hurt in the process. Several pumpkin pies weren’t as lucky. Locust St. Has made it up to 1986 in his latest series of time traveling posts – and posted one of my favorite Mekons songs in the process – the whole series has been great – and the last few posts are still up.

Sometimes I get a certain tune stuck in my head for days on end – and today its Dark Cloudy Blues by Sam Collins – one of the greatest blues singers and guitar players this world has ever known. It’s really sad that both collections of his songs are out of print and fetch silly prices on the ‘net. I’m thinking about making it a download on the site – but I’m not sure if the lawyers would be chopping at my bit for that.

Sam Collins – Dark Cloudy Blues (1927)

A To Z Blues

There were a few requests in my inbox this morning for more Josie Miles, so I picked A To Z Blues, which she introduces but the song is taken over by Billy Higgins who doesn’t do her any favors by singing lead on this song. A to Z Blues is an interesting song because it might be the most violent of all the murder blues songs. It’s so gory in fact it’s almost comical and later versions of the song seem to follow that idea as they become more sing-songy rather than mean and forceful way Higgins sings the song. These are all the versions of the song that I have, are there any more?
Josie Miles – A To Z Blues (1924)
Blind Willie McTell – A To Z Blues (1949)

Blind Willie McTell – A To Z Blues (1956)

Butterbeans and Susie – A To Z Blues (1924)

Charley Jordan – Cutting My ABCs (1937)

When The Levee Breaks
Posted in 1920s,Country Blues,Honey on 08.23.06

I’ve been so wrapped up in Spike Lee’s Katrina Documentary, that I forgot that PBS’ had an hour long documentary about Alan Lomax as part of their POV series premiere last night. Did anyone catch it? Hopefully my local PBS station will be replaying this soon, or a quick turnaround to dvd.

Not to point any fingers at those in governmental positions who dealt with the Katrina disaster, but Kansas Joe and Memphis predicted the Levee’s breaking way back in 1929 (the basis of this song is of the “Great Mississippi Flood of 1927“). Kansas Joe, Minnie’s husband sings lead on this track which is a shame because Minnie has that great voice, but Joe is perfectly fine and the track features Minnie’s wonderful guitar work. To show how out of touch I am with blues rock, I didn’t know until today that Led Zep covered this song, though I can’t imagine it being very good. Though I could be wrong about that.
Kansas Joe and Memphis Minnie – When The Levee Breaks (1929)