Friday, December 28, 2018
I'm listing my Top 20 here at FBF, but in a few weeks, Blues Bytes will list all of their reviewers' Top Ten, so you will have to visit there to see who my Top Ten were for the year. It was pretty difficult to narrow it down to 20 this year......when I ran down my list and picked my favorites, I had 33, so it took a few days to lower that number, but I'm satisfied with the results. I hope some of your favorites are here as well.
Friday Blues Fix's Top 20 Albums for 2018
(in alphabetical order)
Friday, November 30, 2018
After this post, we will be posting a year-end Top 20 Favorite Albums of 2018 in a few weeks, but the blog will be going on a bit of a hiatus after that. We still have our FBF Facebook page and I will be sharing a few items there......album reviews and such.......but sometimes it gets pretty hard to put together a post that's worth stopping for in the time allowed. I will post from time to time here and promise to let you know via Facebook when that happens, so by all means, please stop by our FBF FB page and join up.
After he was discharged, Riley played in a gospel group, occasionally playing soul and the blues, but quit the music business to help raise his son, working as a prison guard at Joliet State Penitentiary. He worked for 25 years in the prison system, developing an addiction to drugs and alcohol, two habits he kicked in the late 80's. When his son was grown, he began playing the blues again, but suffered a broken neck in a car crash in the late 90's, which ended his career at the prison and greatly limited his ability to play guitar. Through hard work and perseverance, Riley regained his guitar-playing ability. He's released a few CDs, my favorite being his Fedora release, Whiskey, Money and Women from 2001. He's also released three excellent albums with harmonica master Bob Corritore, the last one being Hush Your Fuss! in 2013. He also performed with the late John Weston and Sam Carr in the Delta Jukes, a slight variation of the famous Jelly Roll Kings. They released a very good album called Working for the Blues in 2002.
Blues Fix Mix CD - Volume Two (to date)......
1. Mannish Boy - Muddy Waters
2. Big Legs - Zuzu Bollin
3. If It Wasn't For Bad Luck - Lee "Shot" Williams
4. Taylor Rock - Sonny Landreth
5. How'd You Learn To Shake It Like That - Snooky Pryor
6. The Score - The Robert Cray Band
7. Ninety-Nine - Bobby Rush
8. Your Love Is Like A Cancer - Son Seals
9. Rats & Roaches In My Kitchen - Larry Garner
10. Baby Scratch My Back - Slim Harpo
11. If You Let A Man Kick You Once - Corey Harris & Henry Butler
12. Bring Your Fine Self Home - Albert Collins & Johnny Copeland
13. Down In The Delta - James "Super Chikan" Johnson
14. Pocketful of Money - Frank Frost
15. Swanee River Boogie - Ike Turner & The Kings of Rhythm
16. The Highway Is Like A Woman - Jimmy Johnson
17. Gristle - Clarence Hollimon
18. Automobile - Dave Riley
18. Automobile - Dave Riley
Friday, November 16, 2018
Hollimon worked as a session guitarist for Duke/Peacock Records as a high school student, and he played with a prestigious list of artists including Bobby Bland, Junior Parker, Big Mama Thornton, Charles Brown, O.V. Wright, Joe Hinton, Dionne Warwick, Buddy Ace, the original Jazz Crusaders and many other stars from the 1950's through the 1990's. I first heard him on several recordings for Black Top Records during the late 1980's, beginning with Grady Gaines' first release, Full Gain, which also featured another great Texas guitarist, Grady's brother Roy Gaines. That album is still one of my favorites and still gets regular play around the house, mainly because of the fantastic guitar work from Hollimon and Gaines.
|Carol Fran and Clarence Hollimon|
Hollimon was known as "Gristle" for many years, but no one ever really knew how he came about that nickname. Some figured it was because of his thin, wiry build, but no one knows for sure. He was also known as one of the nicest and most humble musicians in the Houston area. Singers loved to work for him because he never overplayed or showboated. He played just what needed to be played and man, did he play it well. Sadly, Hollimon died in 2000, just after he and Fran finished recording It's About Time for JSP Records. He was only 62 years old. Fran, now 85, has continued to work and record a couple of albums, even recovering from a stroke several years ago to return to performing.
Friday, November 9, 2018
one with his brother, Syl (Two Johnsons Are Better Than One).
This song has special significance to me, as far as Friday Blues Fix goes. Years ago, when I started Friday Blues Fix as a group email to some of my friends and co-workers, this was the very first song that I sent to them. I have worked on many of the Mississippi highways in my area for over 30 years, so that was part of the reason I used it. Also, I love Percy Mayfield's songs and this is one of my favorites.....I love the comparison of a highway and a woman ("soft shoulders and dangerous curves") and I really like Johnson's guitar work on this track. The entire album is worth a listen, as is all of Johnson's catalog, so if you have a chance, check it out......and if you have a chance to see him live, check him out.