Thursday, July 29, 2010

Black Label Blues - Gamble Rogers

Gamble Rogers is a fascinating folk singer. Gamble's engaging ballads and humanistic insight influenced performers like Jimmy Buffet and his early troubadouring ilk. In addition to being a regular commentator to NPR's All Songs Considered (during the late 1970s) he's also credited with creating a sub-genre known as Southern Gothic. That's not surprising since some of his best material leans toward the macabre side (The Great Maitland Turkey Farm Massacre of 1953, Blood Mountain, etc.). In 1991 Rogers died heroically while rescuing a little girl's drowning father off the Florida coast. The park was later renamed the Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach in his honor.

"Black Label Blues" is from his 1977 God Gave Me Grace, The Devil Gave Me Style LP. It's a whiskey sippin' story that I'm intimately familiar with. Enjoy.


Here's Gamble performing "Black Label Blues" for the Heartworn Highways documentary.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

If I Really Bug You Then You Don't Love Me - Jose Feliciano

1966's Bag Full of Soul is my favorite Jose Feliciano record. It's somewhat of a grab bag (hence the title) loaded with some truly dazzling tracks that cross a wide spectrum of popular genres. However, the so-called 10 finger wizard steals the show with "If I Really Bug You Then You Don't Love Me". It's a short and sweet album opener with a nifty guitar tickling solo. Dig it.


Most people don't think beyond Carlos Santana when you mention Latin rock. He's okay, but here's my preferred version of Tito Puente's "Oye Como Va".

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Jim Dandy - Margie Hendrix

Margie Hendrix takes Lavern Baker's 1950s "Jim Dandy" and adds some hep-jivin', soul-stompin' funk twenty years later. Margie Hendrix's claim to fame was that she supported Ray Charles as his lead Raylette in hits like "Hit The Road Jack". Her character figured prominently in the biopic Ray, however it wasn't until discovering her solo records that I garnered R-E-S-P-E-C-T for this forgotten singer of roots driven R&B. Perhaps it's the curse of the Hendrix name (although she's not related to Jimi), but Margie's life was cut short by a drug overdose in 1973. Luckily for followers of big, brassy soul she left behind an amazing legacy.

Here's a live recording of Lavern Baker's original "Jim Dandy" from 1956.

"Don't Destroy Me" is the a-side to 1968's "Jim Dandy". 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Rien Qu'un Seul Mot - Eddy Mitchell

Eddy Mitchell delivers a thundering version of the Rolling Stone's "Satisfaction" on his 1966 EP for Barclay Records. In his native France Eddy was considered somewhat of straitlaced square, but that reputation didn't prevent him from cranking out one of the best Stone's covers, ever. "Rien Qu'un Seul Mot" checks positive on all my satisfaction boxes - pounding drums, crackling guitar fuzz, no holds barred vocals, and a little tambourine jingle jangle thrown in for good measure.


Pre solo career. Here's Eddy Mitchell, his hair & The Black Socks singing Gene Vincent's timeless"Be Bop A Lula".

Friday, July 9, 2010

Ain't Gonna Spread Myself - Lee Moore

Topnotch funky blues from 1971 by Lee Moore. I don't know anything about the man, but damn, he sure could plead a case to his woman like nobody's business. Enjoy!


Thursday, July 8, 2010

Destruye El Vino - Rabbits & Carrots

Rabbits & Carrots was one of the funkiest Mexican bands of their time in the late 60s & early 70s. They've covered numerous artists while adding their own instrumental knack for funky horns. In fact, many praised them as being a Latino version of the mighty Meters. "Destruye El Vino" was released on their 1971 self-titled EP. It's got all the summer swagger of the original with extra spice included.


Eric Burdon (The Animals) & War created the greatest funk/rock partnership when they joined forces to record my go-to karaoke song "Spill The Wine" in 1970.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Nadine, Jimmy Et Moi - Alain Kan

French glam, punk-crooner Alain Kan coupled the deviantly delicious "Nadine, Jimmy Et Moi" alongside his 45 single for "City Palace" back in 1975. Alain was huge on the French rock scene, having founded one of the country's first punk bands, the legendary Gazoline. David Bowie was heavy influence on his career, and sexual expression. In fact, Alain Kan is considered to be the first of his peers to openly sing about his homosexuality. However, the most fascinating aspect of Alain Kan's biography is that he literally disappeared off a Parisian train station in 1990, and was never seen or heard from again.


"Nadine, Jimmy Et Moi" performed live.