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Subject: "Son House was cold as fukk...." Previous topic | Next topic
Warren Coolidge
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Wed Mar-07-12 02:23 AM

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"Son House was cold as fukk...."


  

          

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXarV-DjuKo

he had that left hand talkin like a muthafukka...

not a lot fukkin with that....

  

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Topic Outline
Subject Author Message Date ID
Death Letter Blues is so great!
Mar 07th 2012
1
Shetland Pony Blues is the shit
Mar 07th 2012
2
true words
Mar 07th 2012
3
doesn't get a whole lot better than this
Mar 07th 2012
4
yeah those recordings are really great....
Mar 07th 2012
5
well, it's understandable there are no videos from the 1930s
Mar 08th 2012
6
Scrapper Blackwell was a beast, too
Mar 08th 2012
7
      there are theories on why this is
Mar 08th 2012
8
      I wasn't around then
Mar 08th 2012
10
      Kokomo Arnold (as Gitfiddle Jim) - Paddlin' Madeleine Blues
Mar 08th 2012
12
           RE: Kokomo Arnold (as Gitfiddle Jim) - Paddlin' Madeleine Blues
Mar 08th 2012
13
a few complete packages, all very stylistically different
Mar 08th 2012
9
damn. this is great
Mar 08th 2012
11
my favorite's gotta be Grinnin' In Your Face
Mar 08th 2012
14

SpookyElectric
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Wed Mar-07-12 05:12 AM

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1. "Death Letter Blues is so great!"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jN5vqEyV7g

"Everyone knows Republicans love this country, they just hate half the people in it"!!! (c) Jon Stewart

"I will NOT be getting my anchovy on"!!! (c)Black Thought

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Garhart Poppwell
Member since Nov 28th 2008
18040 posts
Wed Mar-07-12 06:58 AM

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2. "Shetland Pony Blues is the shit"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

duke wrote a song about a nigger taking care of a white man's prized horse and stealing the horse, then riding it to Mexico to get away from the cauc
massive shit

__________________________________________
CHOP-THESE-BITCHES!!!!
------------------------------------
Garhart Ivanhoe Poppwell
Un-OK'd moderator for The Lesson and Make The Music (yes, I do's work up in here, and in your asscrease if you run foul of this

  

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lonesome_d
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Wed Mar-07-12 10:19 AM

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3. "true words"
In response to Reply # 0


          

a recording some of you might find interesting is the 1941/2 LOC recordings... we tend to think of Delta blues as as solo guitarist's medium, and it's true that House's commercial records (both from 1930 and from the folk revival period) were all solo guitar.

But these sessions (recorded by Alan Lomax) have House with 'his' band of the period - harp, mandolin, and backup guitar by Willie Brown. They're cool because they're the only recordings of him in a group setting (far as I know, anyway). They're also cool historically because of the instrumentation - a midway point between rural Black string bands and urban blues combos. And of course they're a lot of fun - aside from the background noise, the band sounds relaxed, stretching out on some of the tunes and ribbing and/or shouting encouragement, making for some great ad-libs.

Walking Blues: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9rwsnPJ7aw

-------
so I'm in a band now:
album ---> http://greenwoodburns.bandcamp.com/releases
Soundcloud ---> http://soundcloud.com/greenwood-burns

my own stuff -->http://soundcloud.com/lonesomedstringband

avy by buckshot_defunct

  

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Garhart Poppwell
Member since Nov 28th 2008
18040 posts
Wed Mar-07-12 07:55 PM

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4. "doesn't get a whole lot better than this"
In response to Reply # 3


  

          

hearing Son in a group is well worth the listen, considering his personality

__________________________________________
CHOP-THESE-BITCHES!!!!
------------------------------------
Garhart Ivanhoe Poppwell
Un-OK'd moderator for The Lesson and Make The Music (yes, I do's work up in here, and in your asscrease if you run foul of this

  

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Warren Coolidge
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Wed Mar-07-12 09:33 PM

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5. "yeah those recordings are really great...."
In response to Reply # 3


  

          


the videos though ..even though particuarly this one wasn't necessarily from his prime time in life in general..... but seeing him play...I mean his style of play really required a level of physical dexterity..... Dude was like a one man band by himself.... that fingering with the left hand he's doing sounds like a group of violins in an orchestra playing real soft in the background .... with the left hand he's like setting up anticipation for the next line in the song narrative....

a lot going on for just one man sitting there with guitar...I mean you hear that(and see it witht he artists where video is available) but I'm not sure if any of the Blues artists have complete package and prolific playing like he does.... Arguably 2 of the guys who came closest, Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson....Son House fathered their style....lol

  

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lonesome_d
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Thu Mar-08-12 12:10 AM

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6. "well, it's understandable there are no videos from the 1930s"
In response to Reply # 5


          

>the videos though ..even though particuarly this one wasn't
>necessarily from his prime time in life in general

while Son House was an important and influential regional figure, he never had cachet in the blues record market until the revivalists got hold of his records in the 1950s. Those 1941/42 records were recorded in the back of the country store, for Pete's sake.



>seeing him play...I mean his style of play really required a
>level of physical dexterity..... Dude was like a one man band
>by himself.... that fingering with the left hand he's doing
>sounds like a group of violins in an orchestra playing real
>soft in the background .... with the left hand he's like
>setting up anticipation for the next line in the song
>narrative....

Some of that comes from his open tuning... not sure what he used there but I suspect it's an analogue of open G or D.

But yeah, his fluency is pretty amazing considering he basically took two decades off playing. The rockist legend about how ole boy from Canned Heat 'taught Son House how to play Son House' is pretty much debunked, but (as did a lot of other blues figures) he suffered from hand ailments and did have to re-learn quite a bit. If you compare the early records to the revival period records, there's a clear difference in what you could call the directness of his guitar attack, while conversely his vocals remained just as intense, and possibly got moreso.

>a lot going on for just one man sitting there with guitar...

yeah, but in actuality, it's how much he's accomplishing with how little actual playing that's the amazing part.

>mean you hear that(and see it witht he artists where video is
>available) but I'm not sure if any of the Blues artists have
>complete package and prolific playing like he does....
>Arguably 2 of the guys who came closest, Muddy Waters and
>Robert Johnson....Son House fathered their style....lol

Yes and no... Both of those guys borrowed from all over, and Muddy's favorite band was actually the Mississippi Shieks according to most histories/interviews I've read (though he also described Son House as the King, or some similar superlative). That 'Escaping the Delta' book has an outstanding middle section where the author breaks down where the elements of each of Johnson's songs come from, and it's fairly eye-opening to read it and youtube all the songs he references... the borrowings are plain as day, for the most part, once you can hear them.

But it IS cool listening to the recordings Lomax made of House w/band I mention above, and Muddy w/string band (released as The Complete Plantation Sessions, with Son Simms on fiddle) on either the same two trips or different trips those same years.

And there are tons of country blues guys who only made a few records who were 'the complete package' that way... GP will back Skip James all the way, and my money's on John Hurt, but there's also guys like Bill Broonzy, Sleepy John Estes, Furry Lewis, the little-known Tommy McClennan, and even major period stars like Josh White, Kokomo Arnold, a bunch of the blind guys... there was a huge range in pre-war blues sounds and styles that often gets glossed over in the search for Handy's apocryphal knife-slide player.

-------
so I'm in a band now:
album ---> http://greenwoodburns.bandcamp.com/releases
Soundcloud ---> http://soundcloud.com/greenwood-burns

my own stuff -->http://soundcloud.com/lonesomedstringband

avy by buckshot_defunct

  

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Garhart Poppwell
Member since Nov 28th 2008
18040 posts
Thu Mar-08-12 07:18 AM

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7. "Scrapper Blackwell was a beast, too"
In response to Reply # 6


  

          

and Kokomo Arnold was one of the best ever at the Hawaiian style guitar playing
in fact most of the Appalachian players had an incredible hybrid technique that wasn't really found anywhere else

__________________________________________
CHOP-THESE-BITCHES!!!!
------------------------------------
Garhart Ivanhoe Poppwell
Un-OK'd moderator for The Lesson and Make The Music (yes, I do's work up in here, and in your asscrease if you run foul of this

  

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lonesome_d
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Thu Mar-08-12 09:02 AM

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8. "there are theories on why this is"
In response to Reply # 7


          


>in fact most of the Appalachian players had an incredible
>hybrid technique that wasn't really found anywhere else

most of them have to do with the picking patterns of the thumb in Piedmont blues styles, and how it relates to Appalachian banjo styles.

I don't really go for it, for a number of reasons, but I haven't really heard any better ideas.

-------
so I'm in a band now:
album ---> http://greenwoodburns.bandcamp.com/releases
Soundcloud ---> http://soundcloud.com/greenwood-burns

my own stuff -->http://soundcloud.com/lonesomedstringband

avy by buckshot_defunct

  

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Garhart Poppwell
Member since Nov 28th 2008
18040 posts
Thu Mar-08-12 09:32 AM

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10. "I wasn't around then"
In response to Reply # 8


  

          

of course, but I'd imagine since that area got a lot of traffic from people coming in and out of the area from all over, the players there would probably pick up something from everyone and use it

__________________________________________
CHOP-THESE-BITCHES!!!!
------------------------------------
Garhart Ivanhoe Poppwell
Un-OK'd moderator for The Lesson and Make The Music (yes, I do's work up in here, and in your asscrease if you run foul of this

  

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lonesome_d
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Thu Mar-08-12 12:42 PM

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12. "Kokomo Arnold (as Gitfiddle Jim) - Paddlin' Madeleine Blues"
In response to Reply # 7


          

>and Kokomo Arnold was one of the best ever at the Hawaiian
>style guitar playing

some of the most amazing stuff I've ever heard

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5e6HV8Puy4

but yeah, the origins of slide in blues is something I've never read a distinct treatise on and would like to see. Popular thought has it as an American expression of African instrumental techniques, but when Handy first heard it he described it as being in the Hawaiian style. Either way imho it's probably a confluence of influences, like jsut about everything.

Speaking of Hawaiian style, though... I'm also a fan of not-blues guitarist Roy Smeck... a lot of his most famous stuff is on ukelele (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcQYt7xvA8M... the old cameras can't even keep up with dude's hands) but he was great at about anything with strings.

it's crazy that in terms of the record market, I've read that "Hawaiian" music outsold every other style in the 1920s.

-------
so I'm in a band now:
album ---> http://greenwoodburns.bandcamp.com/releases
Soundcloud ---> http://soundcloud.com/greenwood-burns

my own stuff -->http://soundcloud.com/lonesomedstringband

avy by buckshot_defunct

  

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Garhart Poppwell
Member since Nov 28th 2008
18040 posts
Thu Mar-08-12 01:12 PM

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13. "RE: Kokomo Arnold (as Gitfiddle Jim) - Paddlin' Madeleine Blues"
In response to Reply # 12


  

          


>some of the most amazing stuff I've ever heard
>
>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5e6HV8Puy4
>

yeah man that shit is wild to me
funny thing about him, and most bluesmen of his era, is that they had to drag carry them to the stu; in his case probably moreso than others, the didn't give a fuck about being a star or no shit like that because he liked his money quick
he even looks like a 'iont give a fuck' type of old dude from what I hear he was quite the character


>but yeah, the origins of slide in blues is something I've
>never read a distinct treatise on and would like to see.
>Popular thought has it as an American expression of African
>instrumental techniques, but when Handy first heard it he
>described it as being in the Hawaiian style. Either way imho
>it's probably a confluence of influences, like jsut about
>everything.
>
>Speaking of Hawaiian style, though... I'm also a fan of
>not-blues guitarist Roy Smeck... a lot of his most famous
>stuff is on ukelele
>(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcQYt7xvA8M... the old cameras
>can't even keep up with dude's hands) but he was great at
>about anything with strings.
>

Smeck was something else, he was sooooooo efficient with what he did, and he had style with it too


>it's crazy that in terms of the record market, I've read that
>"Hawaiian" music outsold every other style in the 1920s.

yeah that style ruled the charts and the dance halls too
people were crazy for that shit, a lot of those bluesmen had quite the niche market for themselves and it was considered 'grown folk' shit by the time big band and swing really got moving

__________________________________________
CHOP-THESE-BITCHES!!!!
------------------------------------
Garhart Ivanhoe Poppwell
Un-OK'd moderator for The Lesson and Make The Music (yes, I do's work up in here, and in your asscrease if you run foul of this

  

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lonesome_d
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Thu Mar-08-12 09:13 AM

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9. "a few complete packages, all very stylistically different"
In response to Reply # 5


          

Furry Lewis - probably the only pre-war bluesman where I have a relatively strong preference for his revival-period material... not that his '20s stuff is bad by any stretch, but it's mostly somewhat formulaic adherence to the blues form, and I tend to prefer stuff that is more idiosyncratic. Liike this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCqbKdnHZTs - same thing as the Son House one, how much he gets out of the guitar with so little playing.

Skip James - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYK40D_us5g. GOD DAMN. No wonder he had the ego he did.

Lonnie Johnson - one of the most fluid players of the '20s and '30s, equally at home playing jazz and blues and hybridizing the two, and a pioneer in single-string soloing, which he does impressively here without losing any of the bottom end, even in the solo format: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uH9GSERDAFI&feature=related

Tommy McClennan - a different Deep Blue Sea Blues - despite the fact that Muddy came to own this song under two different titles, this is my favorite version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rc61tRO2PXM

Rev. Gary Davis - I had listened to If I Had My Way a hundred times, and always imagined the good Reverend's guitar style as a manic, frenzied approach. When I finally got to see a video of him playing it, I was amazed at how calm, cool and collected he was. It's a shame there aren't more recordings of him as a young man. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGDZdy8lDmc

Blind Willie Johnson - fun to compare and contrast his version of If I Had My Way with the Davis version... similarities and differences, but also The Complete Package: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_HjTWVZNQg - awesome boogie lines under the verses, wicked swing throughout.


-------
so I'm in a band now:
album ---> http://greenwoodburns.bandcamp.com/releases
Soundcloud ---> http://soundcloud.com/greenwood-burns

my own stuff -->http://soundcloud.com/lonesomedstringband

avy by buckshot_defunct

  

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hardware
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Thu Mar-08-12 09:35 AM

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11. "damn. this is great"
In response to Reply # 3


          

  

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Wordman
Member since Apr 11th 2003
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Thu Mar-08-12 03:02 PM

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14. "my favorite's gotta be Grinnin' In Your Face"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          


"Your current frequencies of understanding outweigh that which has been given for you to understand." Saul Williams

  

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