We spent the past weekend at Pennsylvania Blues Festival and had the good fortune to catch two sets by James “Super Chikan” Johnson. Super Chikan is one of my favorite blues performers, players, writers and guitar builders. He made some wild looking guitars from items like old oil and gas cans to ceiling fans, axes, and even shotguns. On Sunday July 27, 2014, Super Chikan played a solo set using a variety of his homemade instruments, and performed again later in the day. The second set was supposed to be a solo set but turned into an impromptu full band set as Jarekus Singleton and his whole band eventually joined the Chikan on stage. This set was my favorite of the weekend. It was an organic jam that the musicians quite obviously enjoyed and Super Chikan’s upbeat blues boogies had everyone moving and more people up dancing than any other set I saw.
How does all this relate to Hump Day? Well, Super Chikan has a tune called “Shoot That Thang” and it gets down and dirty. So down and dirty that Chikan declined to play it when requested by a fellow PA Blues Fest patron. He said it gets a little X-rated (a slight overstatement) and he wouldn’t play it with little kids around. Did I mention he’s also a class act? Somebody Shoot That Thang! I looked around for a video with the studio version but I came up empty. I did find a pretty lengthy but fun performance clip though. I hope you enjoy it.
Our second selection is also inspired by Pennsylvania Blues Fest. Barbara Carr performed an afternoon set and unfortunately I missed a lot of it covering another band on another stage. I don’t know if she played this song but if she did I’m sorry I missed it. Maybe she would have explained just what a “Bo Hawg Grind” is but I’m guessing that if you don’t know you’ve never experienced it. According to Barrelhouse Words: A Blues Dialect Dictionary By Stephen Calt, a bo’ hog is a boar hog; literally an adult male swine. Bo’ hog connotes a middle aged or sexually experienced boyfriend, a bo’ hog shuffle is a slang term for sexual intercourse, and a bo’ hog’s eye or hog-eye is a slang term for vagina. Well, then, let’s have a listen and see what we can learn of the “Bo Hawg Grind.” I wonder if Muddy was looking for Barbara when he was singing “Can’t Get No Grindin'”…
Super Chikan – Shoot That Thang
Barbara Carr – Bo Hawg Grind
Get yourself Sum Mo’ Chikan: