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Hump Day Playlist On Spotify

Happy Hump Day everyone! We’ve crossed the one year mark recently here at Blues Biscuits and over the year we’ve covered a lot of ground. Our Hump Day feature remains a popular mid week break and our recent PA Blues Fest Spotify Playlist drew some interest, so today we’re trying out a playlist related to Hump Day. It’s a nice sunny day here in the Northeast so it seems like a good time to take the top off and open it up with a smooth stick shift and solid chassis. No, you pervs, we’re talking about automobiles! Well, maybe we are. If you need it, worked on, lubed, loosened, tightened, tagged, tapped, or driven hard we’ve got just what you need.

A few of these songs were featured in one of our earliest Hump Day features – Johnny Winter, Eli Cook, Blind Boy Fuller, and Led Zeppelin. But now we’ve expanded the set to include Rosetta Howard, Amos Milburn, Chuck Berry, Joe Louis Walker, Junior Wells & James Cotton, Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials, and Super Chikan. Across the full history of the automobile, Blues singers have turned them into vehicles for sexual innuendo. Big back seats and secluded country roads helped write a lot of Blues tunes from heart break and infidelity to good times and afternoon strolls, it’s all in there. Today we celebrate the automobile and it’s contribution to Blues. Now, fill it up and drive it home!

Happy Hump Day!

Fresh Biscuits! New Releases May 12, 2015

Alright Buiscuiteers, it’s new releases time again. This week, we have two brand spankin’ new discs and a reissue of a lesser known classic.  Sure it’s not much, but look at this week as time to appreciate some acts that may have dropped below your Blues Radar. take some time to really get to know the new Blues you pick up this week.

King King is a Blues band from Britain, currently ripping it up on the European festival circuit. King King won five awards at the 2014 British Blues Awards including Best Band for the third consecutive year and Best Album for 2013’s Standing In The Shadows. The new disc is Reaching For The Light. Reach for your copy at their website or at fine online retailers everywhere.

Scott Ellison has been putting out blues albums since 1993 but before that he worked with a long list of artists including The Box Tops, The Shirelles, Marvalettes, JJ Jackson, The Drifters, The Coasters, and Gary “US” Bonds. Ellison has written several songs that have appeared in hit TV shows and movies including Sister Sister, Santa Barbara, Reindeer Games, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Joan of Arcadia, Saving Grace, Smash and four songs on 2012’s hit TV show Justified. Scott recently sang and performed a song he co-wrote called “Jesus Loves Me” (Baby Why Don’t You) for the movie “Home Front” starring Jason Statham and Kate Bosworth. “Jesus Loves Me (Baby Why Don’t You)” was on the film soundtrack, but is also on Elevator Man. Elevator Man was produced by Walt Richmond, who has played keyboards on the last five Eric Clapton records. Scott is on tour in the US and Canada so head on out and catch this veteran musician live.

Last but not least this week is a a reissue on Wounded Bird Records of Johnny Winter’s Raisin’ Cain album from 1980. This was the last record Johnny made for the Blue Sky label. Four years later he would turn up on Alligator and dedicate the rest of his career to playing Blues. Raisin’ Cain has plenty of Blues though, and Johnny was clearly influenced by working so closely with Muddy Waters. Highlights include “The Crawl,” “Like a Rolling Stone,” “Bon Ton Roulet,” “Rollin’ and Tumblin’,” “Mother-in-Law Blues,” and “Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing.” So, if you missed this one originally, or if you haven’t been able to find it since it has been out of print for a while, check it out. You can’t go wrong

King King

King King Reaching For The Light

Scott Ellison

Scott Ellison Elevator Man

Johnny Winter

Johnny Winter Raisin’ Cain Reissue

36th Blues Music Awards Announced

Another year for the Blues Music Awards is in the books. Elvin Bishop and Bobby Rush came out on top as big winners this year in Memphis. The even this year coincided with the opening of the long awaited Blues Hall of Fame. According to The Blues Foundation president Jay Sieleman, the foundation built the Blues Hall of Fame after raising nearly $3 million, finally providing a destination for fans and a location where blues legends are remembered for their contributions to America’s unique musical creation. The Blues Hall of Fame is located at 421 South Main St. in Memphis and is open 10a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is only $10 so get your Blues loving self to Memphis.

I see lots of my favorites on the list as winners but I still can’t figure out who voted for Joe Bonamassa over Ronnie Earl in the Guitarist category. Anyway, without further delay, the winners are…

B.B. King Entertainer Of The Year
Bobby Rush
Elvin Bishop
John Németh
Rick Estrin
Sugaray Rayford

Band Of The Year
Elvin Bishop Band
John Németh & the Bo-Keys
Rick Estrin & the Nightcats
Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
The Mannish Boys

Album Of The Year
Can’t Even Do Wrong Right – Elvin Bishop
Living Tear To Tear – Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
Memphis Grease – John Németh
Refuse to Lose – Jarekus Singleton
Wrapped Up and Ready – The Mannish Boys

Song Of The Year
“Can’t Even Do Wrong Right” written and performed by Elvin Bishop
“Another Murder in New Orleans” written by Carl Gustafson & Donald Markowitz, performed by Bobby Rush and Dr. John with Blinddog Smokin’
“Bad Luck Is My Name” written and performed by John Németh
“Let Me Breathe” written by Janiva Magness & Dave Darling, performed by Janiva Magness
“Things Could Be Worse” written by Ray Norcia, performed by Sugar Ray & the Bluetones

Contemporary Blues Album
BluesAmericana – Keb’ Mo’
Can’t Even Do Wrong Right – Elvin Bishop
Original – Janiva Magness
Refuse to Lose -Jarekus Singleton
Hornet’s Nest – Joe Louis Walker

Soul Blues Album
Memphis Grease – John Németh
Blues for My Father – Vaneese Thomas
Decisions – Bobby Rush with Blinddog Smokin’
In My Soul – The Robert Cray Band
Soul Brothers – Otis Clay & Johnny Rawls

Acoustic Album
Timeless – John Hammond

Hard Luck Child: A Tribute to Skip James – Rory Block
Jericho Road – Eric Bibb
Jigsaw Heart – Eden Brent
Son & Moon: A Tribute to Son House – John Mooney

Best New Artist Album
Don’t Call No Ambulance – Selwyn Birchwood
Chromaticism – Big Harp George
Heavy Water – Fo’ Reel
Making My Mark – Annika Chambers & the Houston All-Stars
One Heart Walkin‘ – Austin Walkin’ Cane

Traditional Blues Album
For Pops (A Tribute to Muddy Waters) – Mud Morganfield & Kim Wilson
Common Ground: Dave Alvin and Phil Alvin Play and Sing the Songs of Big Bill Broonzy – Dave Alvin and Phil Alvin
Livin’ it Up – Andy T-Nick Nixon Band
Living Tear To Tear – Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
The Hustle is Really On – Mark Hummel
Wrapped Up and Ready – The Mannish Boys

Rock Blues Album
Step Back – Johnny Winter
Goin’ Home – Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band
Time Ain’t Free – Nick Moss Band
heartsoulblood – Royal Southern Brotherhood
The Blues Came Callin’ – Walter Trout

Historical
Soul & Swagger: The Complete “5” Royales 1951-1967 – The “5” Royales (Rock Beat)
From His Head to His Heart to His Hands – Michael Bloomfield (Columbia/Legacy)
Live at the Avant Garde – Magic Sam (Delmark)
The Modern Music Sessions 1948-1951 – Pee Wee Crayton (Ace)
The Roots of it All-Acoustic Blues – Various Artists (Bear Family)

Acoustic Artist
John Hammond
Doug MacLeod
Eric Bibb
John Mooney
Rory Block

Contemporary Blues Female Artist
Janiva Magness
Beth Hart
Bettye LaVette
Marcia Ball
Shemekia Copeland

Traditional Blues Male Artist
Lurrie Bell
Billy Boy Arnold
John Primer
Sugar Ray Norcia
Sugaray Rayford

Koko Taylor Award
Ruthie Foster
Alexis P. Suter
Diunna Greenleaf
EG Kight
Trudy Lynn

Contemporary Blues Male Artist
Gary Clark, Jr.
Elvin Bishop
Jarekus Singleton
Joe Bonamassa
Joe Louis Walker

Soul Blues Male Artist
Bobby Rush
Curtis Salgado
John Németh
Johnny Rawls
Otis Clay

Soul Blues Female Artist
Sista Monica
Candi Staton
Missy Andersen
Sharon Jones
Vaneese Thomas

Pinetop Perkins Piano Player
Marcia Ball
Barrelhouse Chuck
Bruce Katz
David Maxwell
Eden Brent

Instrumentalist – Harmonica
Charlie Musselwhite
Kim Wilson
Mark Hummel
Rick Estrin
Sugar Ray Norcia

Instrumentalist – Guitar
Joe Bonamassa
Anson Funderburgh
Johnny Winter
Kid Andersen
Ronnie Earl

Instrumentalist – Drums
Jimi Bott
June Core
Kenny Smith
Tom Hambridge
Tony Braunagel

Instrumentalist – Horn
Deanna Bogart
Al Basile
Jimmy Carpenter
Sax Gordon
Terry Hanck

Instrumentalist – Bass
Lisa Mann
Bob Stroger
Michael “Mudcat” Ward
Patrick Rynn
Willie J. Campbell

 

Hump Day! Risque Tunes For Your Midweek Blues

Welcome back for more Hump Day hokum fun and debauchery. Our theme this Hump Day was inspired by a reader who shall remain anonymous for fear her puritan reputation be sullied. “Why don’t you write about pussy cats?” she asked. It took me by surprise. I thought every installment entered that realm somehow, if you know what I mean. Wink wink, nudge nudge. Anyway, we may as well get right down in there and explore a few moments in blues history where the topic is pretty much called out by name in some of the slickest double entendre depravity ever achieved.

Big Bill Broonzy played on over 600 sides in the 1930’s and a handful were with the Famous Hokum Boys. Under his own name, he made “Pussy Cat Blues” aka “Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat” with a little help from the Hokum Boys’ friend Hannah May (aka Jane Lucas). The song begins with Hannah May singing the incredibly filthy yet perfectly innocent line “You can play with my pussy but please don’t dog it around / If you going to mistreat it, no pussy will be found.” Clearly she is a woman who cares about her pussy and wants to make sure it gets treated properly and with the respect it deserves.

Harry Roy & His Orchestra isn’t necessarily a blues band, but their classic ode to feline charms is definitely hokum of the first order.  This song takes hiding in plain sight to the highest magnitude. And it’s such a happy, bouncy tune that you’ll be singing along before you realize what just happened to your morality.

There’s one pet I like to pet
And every evening we get set
I stroke it every chance I get
It’s my girl’s pussy

Seldom plays and never purrs
And I love the thoughts it stirs
But I don’t mind because it’s hers
My girl’s pussy

Often it goes out at night
Returns at break of dawn
No matter what the weather’s like
It’s always nice and warm

It’s never dirty, always clean
In giving thrills, never mean
But it’s the best I’ve ever seen
Is my girl’s pussy

Where can you go after that? This is from 1931. 1931. A song so clearly about his girl’s kitty cat that it tricks your dirty mind into doing cartwheels. Right? It is about a cat isn’t it? We better listen to it again.

We also have Johnny Winter playing the Rolling Stones ode to teen runaway seduction “Stray Cat Blues” and Katie Webster warning you that stepping out on her and returning to her back door will not make her happy. You gotta keep your woman happy so treat her pussy right, especially on Hump Day!

Big Bill Broonzy Pussy Cat Blues

Harry Roy & His Orchestra My Girl’s Pussy

Johnny Winter Stray Cat Blues

Katie Webster Pussycat Moan

Hump Day! Risque Tunes For Your Midweek Blues 3/11/15

Heyyy, how you doin'?
             Heyyy, how you doin’?

Today’s selections for Hump Day were inspired by an impromptu trip to the veterinarian this morning with one of our foster dogs. I was listening to the terrific new disc from Smokin’ Joe Kubek & Bnois King, called Fat Man’s Shine Parlor, and Bnois is a witty lyricist so I was thinking about blues lyrics, and howling dogs and it hit me! Dog references!

Men have been referred to as dogs since before the Blues began and it didn’t take long for horny guys to turn up in songs in the form of their other best friend, if you know what I mean. While there were previous examples, Big Mama Thornton‘s “Hound Dog” from 1952 was arguably the first widely popular song to focus on the dog reference. It was right there in front of you too, sniffing your back side and making you nervous in a mid-twentieth century repression kind of way. When Big Mama sang these lines you knew exactly what that dog was hungry for:

“You ain’t nothing but a hound dog
Been snoopin’ ’round my door
You can wag your tail
But I ain’t gonna feed you no more”

Ten years later, Rufus Thomas introduced us to something called “Walkin’ The Dog.” Rufus wasn’t merely talking a stroll with his favorite pooch. No, no, this was some kind of dance that with a sly wink and nod became something dirty. I’m pretty sure Ol’ Rufus would have put Baby in a corner and had the time of his life. If you don’t know how to do it, he will definitely show you how to walk the dog.

Since Smokin’ Joe Kubek and Bnois King were unwittingly involved in deciding today’s Hump Day topic, I had to see what they had in their catalog that fit. It turns out Bnois King may have been walking his dog a little too much. His woman is giving him the boot for snoopin’ around too many of the wrong doors and all over town too. She’s gonna set him free to roam and now he’s got the “K9 Blues.” 

Big Bill Morganfield would love you to take his dog for one more walk before you go baby. You know his dog loves you best. His dog is always happy to see you and loves the way you stroke it (I may have added that part). Johnny Winter is no stranger to Hump Day, but this time he says there will be “No More Doggin'” around with you. He’s gonna let you out baby, and don’t come back. Go hump the neighbor’s leg for a while.

Finally, this Hump Day, we have the band who introduced me to “Walkin’ The Dog” – Aerosmith. Yeah, it’s not exactly Blues, but the band, along with a host of others, got me interested in Blues all while singing along in a teenage hormone frenzy and proclaiming that “I’ll show you how to walk the dog!” I didn’t know a damned thing but it sure felt good to sing it. This is a recent version which shows the band still has the swagger and testosterone that fueled the version on their 1973 debut. Rockers doing blues isn’t always a bad thing.

Now, get those leashes and collars on and walk that dog! Happy Hump Day!

 

Big Mama Thornton Hound Dog

Rufus Thomas Walkin’ The Dog

Smokin’ Joe Kubek & Bnois King K9 Blues

Big Bill Morganfield My Doggy’s Got The Blues

Johnny Winter No More No Doggin’

 

Aerosmith Walkin’ The Dog

Fresh Biscuits! New Releases For February 10, 2015

Well, my little Biscuiteers, this week is a dry week for new releases. Maybe the industry is giving you some time to explore the music of the Best Blues Album nominees from the 2015 Grammys that were held this past weekend. Johnny Winter won this year. Personally I think it was a sympathy win since we lost him this year. For more of my thoughts on his new album check out our review here. For my money, of those nominated, Dave & Phil Alvin had the best record, with Charlie Musselwhite at a close second. Our review of Dave & Phil’s album is here. On the left side of our page we have a poll. Who do you think should have won the Grammy? Click your choice and vote! The other fine nominees are Ruthie Foster and Bobby Rush. Check out their latest albums too since this week is looking bleak for new releases to enjoy.

What we do have this week is a Stax/Volt Singles box set, a live set from recent Blues converts Spin Doctors, and a Vance Kelly live set that seems to have been available digitally since December. Check them out. The Spin Doctors last album – If The River Was Whiskey  – was their first Blues foray and is terrific. If they keep it up they just might make a successful transition into the glamorous world of Blues. I hope they like carrying their own gear and then getting it stolen! But they’ll never be as good as Joe Bonamassa – just ask him! Okay, okay, JB gets a lot of grief and he just got a little more. I still dig him. Bring back Black Country Communion, Joe!

Anyway, three big new releases. Enjoy:

 

 

Spin Doctors

Spin Doctors Songs From The Road

Vance Kelly

Vance Kelly Live At Kingston Mines

Stax/Volt Soul Singles

Various Artists The Complete Stax/Volt Soul Singles: 1972-1975

Fresh Biscuits! New Releases For January 13, 2015

Well, the long winter break is over, the Holidays have passed, the eggnog bottles are empty and the credit card bills are coming in, but the new releases are popping back up. Hopefully you saved a few bucks to treat yourself to some hot new music this winter.

There wasn’t much in the Blues genre in the during the waning days of 2014, but now, in the second full week of 2015, there is a pretty good line-up of new Blues to start us off. There’s a new live album from John Ginty. This guy is an incredible keyboard player and has played on countless sessions. You may have heard his solo stuff on B.B. King’s Bluesville on Sirius/XM or heard him as part of Robert Randolph And The Family Band, of which he was a founding member.

The new Johnny Winter set brings together highlights from the Bootleg Series, a CD version of the Record Store Day vinyl release “Live Bootleg Special Edition” which is also a compilation of Bootleg Series tracks, and a third disc of rarities. The press release doesn’t say if the “rarities” are previously unreleased, except for two tracks they mention. If you’re not familiar with the Bootleg Series, this looks like a great place to jump in. If you have them all, it looks like a retread of stuff you already bought. I’d like more info on the third disc before I decide to buy it.

We hope you find something good in this week’s new releases to get your new year of Blues off to a great start.

Johnny Winter

Johnny Winter Remembrance Volume 1 (Limited Edition, 3-CD Set)

Eric Sardinas

Eric Sardinas Boomerang

Lightnin' Slim

Lightnin’ Slim I’m A Rollin’ Stone – Louisiana Swamp Blues – The Singles As & Bs 1954-1962 Centenary Edition

John Ginty

John Ginty Bad News Travels – Live

Grizzlee Train

Grizzlee Train Come Back Around

Glas

Glas From The Blues To Your Shoes

Josh Hoyer and the Shadowboxers

Josh Hoyer and the Shadowboxers Living By The Minute

 

Now, go forth and boogie!

Blues And Roots Grammy Nominations Announced

GrammyLogoBluesBlues Grammy nominations are included with the American Roots Music category. Most of the Grammy nominations were announced today, leaving only the Album of the Year which will be announced tonight at 9 p.m. ET/PT during “A Very GRAMMY Christmas” on CBS.

I can’t say I agree with the Blues Album Of The Year nominees, although Common Ground and Juke Joint Chapel will make our Top 20 for the year. Maybe I’m jaded but I can’t help thinking Johnny Winter’s inclusion is solely because of his death. The record just isn’t that good.  At least Buddy Guy wasn’t nominated again. He’s like the Oprah of Blues Grammy category. I love Buddy Guy but he doesn’t have the best blues album every time he puts one out. I’m probably too cynical to be writing about Grammys. Anyway…

The Nominees are as follows:

BLUES ALBUM

“Common Ground – Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin Play And Sing The Songs Of Big Bill Broonzy,” Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin

“Promise Of A Brand New Day,” Ruthie Foster

“Juke Joint Chapel,” Charlie Musselwhite

“Decisions,” Bobby Rush With Blinddog Smokin’

“Step Back,” Johnny Winter

 

AMERICAN ROOTS PERFORMANCE

“Statesboro Blues,” Gregg Allman & Taj Mahal

“A Feather’s Not A Bird,” Rosanne Cash

“And When I Die,” Billy Childs Featuring Alison Krauss & Jerry Douglas

“The Old Me Better,” Keb’ Mo’ Featuring The California Feet Warmers

“Destination,” Nickel Creek

 

AMERICAN ROOTS SONG

“A Feather’s Not A Bird,” Rosanne Cash & John Leventhal (Rosanne Cash)

“Just So Much,” Jesse Winchester (Jesse Winchester)

“The New York Trains,” Woody Guthrie & Del McCoury (The Del McCoury Band)

“Pretty Little One,” Edie Brickell & Steve Martin, songwriters (Steve Martin And The Steep Canyon Rangers Featuring Edie Brickell)

“Terms Of My Surrender,” John Hiatt (John Hiatt)

 

AMERICANA ALBUM

“The River & The Thread,” Rosanne Cash

“Terms Of My Surrender,” John Hiatt

“Bluesamericana,” Keb’ Mo’

“A Dotted Line,” Nickel Creek

“Metamodern Sounds In Country Music,” Sturgill Simpson

 

BLUEGRASS ALBUM

“The Earls Of Leicester,” The Earls Of Leicester

“Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe,” Noam Pikelny

“Cold Spell,” Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen

“Into My Own,” Bryan Sutton

“Only Me,” Rhonda Vincent

Hump Day! Risque Tunes For Your Midweek Blues 11/12/14

BluesBiscuitsHumpdayHave you got the Hump Day blues? Feeling down? Feeling low? A little sluggish? Need to put a little spring in your step? Forget the Snake Oil salesmen. It’s time to call on your doctor – your special doctor who loves to make house calls and give you a thorough exam. He’s got the cure for all your ills and guarantees to make you feel good. Real good.

That’s right. Even in Blues playing doctor is a popular game. Today we have Muddy Waters with “I’m Your Doctor.” The tune is the B-side of Muddy’s 1960 Chess single “Read Way Back.” Muddy has his mojo working overtime on this one and Little Walter is writing harmonica euphoria prescriptions. Muddy knows he can cure your headache with a double dose of love so please strip down and get ready to be probed. Who’s ready for the rectal exam?

Next we have George Thorogood & The Destroyers performing “Love Doctor” from their album The Hard Stuff (that sounds dirty). He proudly declares “the doctor is IN!” after offering to operate on you and kiss it where it hurts. Now that’s bedside manner!

Finally we have Johnny Winter and “Medicine Man” from his album Let Me In (that also sounds dirty). This is low down and grooving with guitar licks to soothe your aches and pains but this medicine man has other ideas about how to maintain your happiness and well-being. He’d also like to remind you that “your g.p.’s got cold hands” and “Dr. Quincy’s much too old” just in case you were thinking maybe Quincy was available for the evening’s examinations. Don’t suffer alone, let Johnny Winter in – he’s the warm-handed medicine man.

Happy Hump Day friends. Go forth and operate…

 

Muddy Waters I’m Your Doctor

George Thorogood & The Destroyers Love Doctor

Johnny Winter Medicine Man

Hump Day! Risque Tunes For Your Midweek Blues 10/29/14

BluesBiscuitsHumpdayHappy Hump Day folks. This week we’re looking at a song that has become a staple in Rock and Blues. “Good Morning Little School Girl” has been done by hundreds of artists over the years. It is possibly the most popular song every written about pedophilia. The song was first recorded by John Lee “Sonny Boy” Williamson in 1937 as “Good Morning, School Girl.” In true blues fashion the tune is borrowed and in this case, the melody is from Son Bonds’ “Back And Side Blues.” I couldn’t find a clip of it to share but you can find audio out there on Spotify and other retailers if you want to compare them.

The song has been done many different ways. Performers like Mississippi Fred McDowell, Lightnin’ Hopkins, and John Lee Hooker all did country blues versions. In 1965, Junior Wells and Buddy Guy recorded it for Hoodoo Man Blues giving it a distinctive guitar riff and bass line. That signature riff influenced nearly every future version of the song, especially in the Rock world. From The Yardbirds, Ten Years After, Johnny Winter, and ZZ Top, to the Allman Brothers Band and beyond, Buddy and Junior inspired an army of guitarists to whip out their big riffs and woo the school girls. It creeps me out.

As with many Blues songs, the more it’s covered the more it is changed. The words change a lot. the original were perhaps least creepy with only the first verse focusing on the underage object of his affection. Johnny Winter took the lechery to whole new levels with lines like “When I was twelve, baby when I was twelve years old – You know I was looking for a schoolgirl just to eat my jelly roll.” Alvin Lee from Ten Years After just wanted to ball you all night long, so at least you have that going for you. The only saving grace for this song is that in 1937 a lot of people got married well before the age of 18. And there’s that monster riff.

We present to you a few different versions for your amusement and/or horror.

John Lee “Sonny Boy” Williamson Good Morning, School Girl

Junior Wells’ Chicago Blues Band Good Morning Little School Girl

Buddy Guy Good Morning Little School Girl

Ten Years After Good Morning Little School Girl

Muddy Waters with Johnny Winter Good Morning Little School Girl

The Allman Brothers Band Good Morning Little School Girl