Category Archives: Black Bull Blues

Maxwell Street early Chicago Blues

Chicago 6.00 A.M, it’s the just before sunrise while a silent Maxwell Street awakes. Early in the morning the first amplifiers and harp-microphones are turned on. People walk by and the music start It’s the way I imagine Maxwell Street around the ’40 / ‘50. Garbage canes, maybe a firepit. It is, you tell me ‘Come early in the mornin’, baby ’bout the break of day’ Now ya oughta see me grab the pillow where my baby used to lay.

Early in the Morning

Bluesmen Sonny Boy Williamson I sings the blues traditional “Early In The Morning” on the corner of Maxwell street. The Chicago-Blues-sound develops, Sonny had to play loud because  other bluesmen played their tunes on ‘his’ corner. A amplifier helps to make yourself intelligibly. Because of that harp, guitar, drums and singers arise above the noise of fellow musicians, that noise of multiple bands on Maxwell Street made the Chicago Blues.

Maxwell Street Bands

Maxwell Street BLues Blog
woodwork: Todros Geller (Died in Chicago 1949-02-23)

There was this bluesmen born in Marksville Louisiana born Marion Jacobs , he played the harmonica on Maxwell street since 1947 too. Accompanied by fellow bluesmen Johnny Young, Othum Brown, and Big Bill Broonzy. Broonzy once said about Walter Jacobs. “He played harmonica ya’ know but he used to follow me to try to play the guitar. Me and him be playing together, we’d go out to make some money and he wouldn’t want to play the harmonica. He’d want to play what I was doing. So he finally learned.” Big Bill Broonzy also played the song “Early in the Morning together with Litthe Walter, and I’m for sure, he played it on Maxwell Street, or around the corners of the Jewish Market on the South side of Chicago where the Chicago Blues was born.

Sonny Boy Williamson was killed on the Chicago South side after a performance. Little Walter got stuck in a fight in a Chicago Bluesbar. It was not only fun on Maxwell street, but they made some incredible tunes there.

Junior Wells Maxwell Street

The heritage of Little Walter was difiicult but they found his successor on Maxwell Street.  Ten Years later Maxwell street is still the Same. Blues dogs like Muddy Waters passed by, are already part of the Chess Family and I can’t Be satisfied reached the #1 position on the charts. The world changed Maxwell Street did not. Junior Wells recorded the song Early in the Morning. He also moved from the south, Memphis to Chicago. After Little Walter quitted Muddy Waters band It was junior who took his place. Maxwell Street a community of Blues Musicians.

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The New Orleans Blues Swing of Maison du Malheur

It’s the Dust  Bowl Depression Era Jump Jive Blues- it’s the sounds of a jump jive jalopy, broken down banjos and rumble seat sinners fueled up on jungle juice and the churn of the crank shaft as the Model-T lurks into motion  along the dusty  hobo  highway.  Pre-War  Blues and rockin’  rhythm  & blues  rages of  the stage and rumbles through the festival grounds. Maison du Malheur has arrived.

blues, maison du malheur

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The Black Bull Blues of Little Walter

Little Walter | Marion Walter Jacobs (May 1, 1930)

Little Walter I would’ve liked to have played with  / Johnny Winter

The Swinging Harp

The first time I heard about Little Walter was in the movie Cadillac Recods. I was a nineteen year old boy who just invented some blues greats like Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and John Lee Hooker. The first song that got my attention, and I’m sure many more Little Walter enthusiasts, was ‘My Babe’.  Everytime I hear that swinging harp and Guitar, it gives me a relaxing groove. Walters voice is one of a kind, that is what makes his music great.


Little walter was born in Marksville, Louisiana. At age of twelve he dropped out of school, he would travel around, walking the streets of New Orleans, Memphis, Helena and St. Louis.


When Little Walter arrived in Chicago he started playing music on Maxwell Street. A famous place for Chicago blues musicians, back in the day. Not only Walter but also many more Chicago legends made fame on Maxwell Street.  Among Little Walter artist like Floyd Jones, Big Bill Broonzy and Sonny Boy Williamson played there tunes on Maxwell Street.

Little Walter´s Music  

From now on it is possible to listen to some Blues records on the Black Bull Blues Blog. With Amazon musicplayer I can give an impression of the music I’m talking ’bout. Enjoy the famous Little Walter Tracks.


A few months after returning from his second European tour, he was involved in a fight while taking a break from a performance at a nightclub on the South Side of Chicago. The relatively minor injuries sustained in this altercation aggravated and compounded damage he had suffered in previous violent encounters, and he died in his sleep at the apartment of a girlfriend at 209 E. 54th St. in Chicago early the following morning.


His body was buried at St. Mary’s Cemetery inEvergreen Park, IL on February 22, 1968. His grave remained unmarked until 1991, when fans Scott Dirks and Eomot Rasun had a marker designed and installed

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Zydeco music Clifton Chenier

Zydeco music Clifton Chenier

Some know him as ‘The King Of Zydeco’ other as the ‘King Of The South’, he was the first French speaking American grammy winner, this blog is about Clifton Chenier. Clifton is famous for his influential accordion sound and as the creator of a musical mix between Cajun, Blues, Rhythm & Blues, Rock ‘n Roll into a Zydeco sandwich.

Blues Grammy

clifton chenier blues zydeco music
Cotton_field_kv08 clifton chenier blues zydeco music

Chenier was born in Opelousas, Louisiana he grew up working in the sugar and rice fields of the Pelican State. Clifton’s father was an accordion player, his uncle was a guitarist and a fiddler, the Chenier family was a music family. He featured in the beautiful 1973 documentary film Hot Pepper by director Les Blank about Zydeco. The documentary shows the musical life of Chenier from the sweaty music clubs in Louisiana through the Bayous of the countryside into downtown New Orleans streets.

Frenchin’the Boogie

My favourite album of Clifton Chenier is ‘Frenchin’ the Boogie’ released in 1976 on Bluestar records. It contains covers of Ray Charles ( I Got A Woman), Muddy Waters ( I Just Want To Make Love To You). It is a swinging album with a perfect mix of Zydeco, Rock n Roll and Blues. A typical New Orleans album.

Clifton’s Blues

His cousin, Lightning Hopkins wife introduced Chenier to Chris Strachwitz, owner of the roots music label Arhoolie.. Strachwitz quickly Signed Chenier to his label.

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Blues Blog – Keith Dunn at Delft Bluesfestival

Last week Keith Dunn performed at the Delft Bluesfestival. It is organised two times a year. Every bar and pub has live bluesmusic. It’s a great event. so therefore a short Blues Blog.

My personal highlight was the Keith Dunn band. Great harmonica’s and a great voice. It’s modern blues with a little bit of soul.

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Blues Blog – Buddy Guy: Blues Lives Forever

photo Truejustice Buddy Guy Crossroads 2007
photo Truejustice Buddy Guy Crossroads 2007

Once I was checking to hotel and a couple saw my ring with Blues on it. They said, ‘You play blues. That music is so sad.’ I gave them tickets to the show, and they came up afterwards and said, ‘You didn’t play one sad song.’
– Buddy Guy – 

 A legend speaks his mind

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