Blind Raccoon Nola Blue Collection Volume 3

Blind Raccoon Nola Blue Collection Volume 3

Blind Raccoon Nola Blue Collection Volume 3 a great listen with some wonderful artists a great listen with some wonderful artists but, as with all compilations, its value depends upon how many of the songs you possess elsewhere

Although this double album came out earlier this year, we’ve held off because, as we’re huge fans of the Nola and Blue Heart labels (and Betsie!), we often end up double reviewing some of the artists. It’s about time now to look at the marvellous roster that Blind Raccoon look after and the labels release, concentrating on those artists whose work we haven’t covered in their own right.

The tracklisting shows, courtesy of an asterisk, which artists you’ll find on Bluesdoodles and our thought’s on the full album the track was sourced from…use the search facility to be quickly taken to those fine artists.

Out of the generous thirty-two tracks, there are ten that are new to us and it these I will concentrate on…indeed three artists are new to these aged ears and I dug deeper for some background:

The Matt Lomeo offering, One More 1&1, is an exclusive to this compilation: Matt is a blues harmonica player who started young by appearing at Woodstock ’99 when he was ten…I feel really old now! Anyway, his portfolio includes some fascinating covers: try I Shot  The Sherif in original reggae style but with harp, or the G ’N’ R song Don’t Cry…the harp wails nicely. This single however is a Hammond washed, soulful blues with horns filling it out and the harp solo is well thought out and contributes the way a good harp solo should.

Sandy Haley, who is a Detroit born singer who was raised on gospel and found the blues and now merges the two with some r’n’r to great effect, also appears with an exclusive…the evocatively titled Never Sleep Your way To The Middle provides bluesy rock and roll that plays with tradition in a neat way. Think Chuck Berry, Marc Bolan and a horn section with Sandy on vocals…nice guitar solo too.

Sammy Eubanks is no relation to the British boxer (who is singular, in every sense) nor did he invent the carpet sweeper: he is a Californian guitar/vocalist who is feted in a number of States in the US and supplies his single release, What Would Delbert Do? That’s not a reference to the cartoon character of that name, but the great Delbert McClinton. Here he supplies a Quo style rhythm but with horns and neat backing, particularly from the piano and the quality guitars. He has five albums out there somewhere, so I may have to seek them out.

The next ones are from regulars:

Malaya Blue did Hot Love as a great rocking blues on her Still album, here we get an acoustic version that makes this an essential addition to my collection. I loved the rockier version but this one somehow pours even more emotion into the beautifully paced and phrased vocal and the acoustic picking is a delight and its extended run time is most welcome.

Another single release is by the wonderful The Reverend Shawn Amos as he covers another classic in his inimitable and genius way: Diggin’ My Potatoes is another reason for owning this. The Rev is a genius in the way he interprets the classics; be it his brilliant Baby Please Don’t Go or the stunning Jean Genie. This cover of one of Little Son Joe’s seminal songs is yet further proof of why I said of the Rev in an earlier review; “Once again, The Reverend Shawn Amos has shown how adept he is at bringing a new life and approach to some classic songs. His, and his guests, abilities shine through as they put a different patina on each song and make them different, accessible and a delight to listen to”…’nuff said.

Brigitte Purdy puts the hot into Memphis Hotline on this single, a ‘good time’ slice of blues with aspects of r’n’r and, obviously, Memphis…”make it greasy like my blues” – oh yes! The key and guitar solos are short but very sweet too.

Cash McCall gives us Blues Coming Down with a sax intro that recalls probably the most famous one, ever; but then Cash delivers his customary vocal nuances that bring the blues into a semi-soul song of quality. The guitar solo is a highlight too with exquisite picking and only sufficient notes.

Blind Lemon Pledge brings his customary polish to Nag Nag Nag. His work is always stellar and he’s the only player I know that can make a six string acoustic sound like a 12 string; not on this one, which is a piano led, rocking blues laced with lyrical humour and a playful horn section…a bit different from what we usually expect but still a great song.

Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps keep the standards we expect with All You Ever Bring Me Is the Blues; a slow, smoky jazz lounge feel sets up for Teresa’s equally smoky vocals…languid but lovely. The piano, picked guitar, clever bass and brushed drums all add to the atmosphere.

Benny Turner puts in another strong vocal performance on a key led song with a cracking bass line; I Can’t Leave is a mild soulful blues song with layers of quality.

As with all compilations, its value depends upon how many of the songs you possess elsewhere: however, if you don’t and want an introduction to a host of quality bands via music focussed labels and a band/fan focussed PR Agency then you can do no better than this.

Bluesdoodles rating: 3 Doodle Paws – a great listen with some wonderful artists but, as with all compilations, its value depends upon how many of the songs you possess elsewhere: However, if you want an introduction to a host of quality bands via music focussed labels and a band/fan focussed PR Agency then you can do no better than this.

Blind Raccoon Nola Blue Collection Volume 3

Track listing (artist/song):
Brigitte Purdy – Memphis Hotline
Wily Bo Walker and Danny Flam – Time To Forget You*
Cash McCall – Blues Coming Down
John Nemeth – I Can See You Love Light Shine*
Eric Johanson – Riverbend Blues*
Clarence Spady – Surrender*
Laura Tate – I Need A Man*
Miss Bix – Red Walls*
Mark Cameron – Lost and Found*
Tim Woods – Ready*
Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps – All You Ever Bring Me Is the Blues
Malaya Blue – Hot Love (Acoustic)
Steve Howell, Dan Sumner and Jason Weinheimer – Nothin’ But The Blues*/Singin’ The Blues*
CD Woodberry – Can’t Eat That Stuff No More*
Lisa Mann – It’s The Monkeys Or Me*
Dudley Taft – The End Of The Blues*
Reverend Freak Child – Sweet Sweet You*
Frank Bey – One Of These Days*
Kelly’s Lot – Took It Back*
Benny Turner – I Can’t Leave
Paul Boddy and the Slidewinders – Pretty Kitty*
Charlie Bedford – Just A Little Longer*
Matt Lomeo – One More 1&!
Kirsten Thein delivers Two Sides of Quality Blues – Bluesdoodles
Sammy Eubanks – What Would Delbert Do?
Rob Stone, Elana Kato, Hiroshi Eguchi – Blow Fish Blow!*
Blind Lemon Pledge – Nag Nag Nag
The Reverend Shawn Amos – Diggin’ My Potatoes
Sandy Haley – Never Sleep Your Way to The Middle
Skylar Rogers – Back To Memphis*/Hard Headed Woman*
* Album Reviewed bt Bluesdoodles

(iTunes moved to more Brigitte (her album Still I Rise) and then on to a bluesy rock band called Broken Levee & Lindsay Hannon with Face The Wall from 2018 and their Last Light release…nice)

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