Tag Archives: Slide Guitar

New album Animal by one man band Bottleneck Jay from Montreal

The opening song of this one-man band musician really reminded me of traditional delta bluesmen like Mississippi John Hurt and the reverend  Blind Gary Davis. Most of all because of the melodies you hear between the rhythm guitar parts. That old time blues guitar is mixed with a punk-garage sounds and echoing vocals. Bottleneck Jay brings blues from a fresh angle. 

Opening song “Caravane” Bottleneck Jay

“Caravane”, the opening song is a perfect example how he mixes traditional blues with other genres.  Bottleneck Jay’s new album Animal is just out and was released February 2017 via Blacklez Records.

Bottleneck Jay Album Design by Arnopeople

The album is design by Arnopeople and contains a cool mix of skateboarding and Rock ‘n’ Roll symbolics. Check out more interesting band and brand design on his website here. Photo credit to: Bottleneck Jay (bandcamp photo) and the original photographer.

Continue reading New album Animal by one man band Bottleneck Jay from Montreal

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Album | Death Blues vs. The Dirty Spliff featuring 20 Watt Tombstone and Left Lane Cruiser

Well, last year two powerhouse alternative blues bands released a split album called Death Blues vs. The Dirty Spliff.  20 Watt Tombstone from Wisconsin and Left Lane Cruiser from Indiana joined forces to record a raw power album. Their heavy blues is very addictive and features 3 new Left Lane Cruiser tracks and 3 new 20 Watt Tracks!

Whiskey Fueled Blues-driven Rock ‘n’ Roll From Left Lane Cruiser

Starting with Left Lane Cruiser which is a synonym for energetic blues rock with a healthy doses of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Songs like Laid to the Bone and Slow Grind are full of addictive slide guitar tunes and contain  some of heavy  vocals. “Special Delivery” is remarkable for its rhythmic vocals and that guitar solo is kicking some ass.

Left Lane Cruiser is a whiskey fueled two man frenzy of blues-driven rock’n’roll noise straight from Fort Wayne, Indiana promise to hit you like a shock wave and show you a foot-stompin’ good time.

Heavy Blues Rock Duo

Left Lane Cruiser is comprised of Joe Evans (Freddy J IV) on slide guitar and vocals and Pete Dio on the drums. The raw blues power duo of LLC have practiced through thick and thin to hone a sound unlike any other and have been together long enough to have previously released a couple of self-produced EPs.

“Let your soul drive what you do” is the premise of their music, “give it all you got, and everything is an instrument

20 Watt Tombstone’s fantastic song titles

Besides the fantastic music arrangements of 20 Watt Tombstone you also have to like their song titles. Hits like “Your man’s a Jerk” and “Shitty Ex Girlfriend” make you curious of their music. Well and if you listen to 20 Watt Tombstone you get powerful , raw blues rock built on steady drums, slide guitar and Lemmy-esque vocals.

If  the White stripes, The black keys, and Left lane cruiser had an illegitimate love child with Lemmy & Hunter S. Thompson documented the whole thing

Raw and Heavy songs: kick ass Blues Rock

Since the bands formation in 2011, the Wisconsin Duo 20 Watt Tombstone  has been receiving an unreal amount of attention, they tell us on their Facebook page. Their brand of brash un-tethered alt. blues rock mixed with Metal,country and punk blends into a sometimes comedic monster that cannot be easily pinned down, and at times seems so over the top it cant be serious.

 

Your man’s a Jerk

http://blackbullblues.tumblr.com/post/157570363205/via-httpswwwyoutubecomwatchv-nmehmak5frq

 

Continue reading Album | Death Blues vs. The Dirty Spliff featuring 20 Watt Tombstone and Left Lane Cruiser

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Full-lenght debutalbum “The Devil” by Indy

Australian Folk and Blues by slide guitarist Indy

Folkblues singer-songwriter Indy from Australia recently released his full-length debut album ‘The Devil’ on Bandcamp. This record features Indy’s unique, driving slide-guitar, powerful vocals and dark undertones, all creating a wild-west style soundtrack. 

I like the use of the bottleneck on Indy’s album. A Blues song played on a guitar with a slide or a bottleneck creates one of the finest blues grooves around. Elmore James and Hound Dog Taylor sho’ knew how to play that kind of songs. Indy built his riffs and composition around the bottleneck in almost every song.

Indy writes meaningfull lyrics that embody the blues feeling. In it’s own way it could remind you of the diaspore of delta. The scream for a better life.

C’Mon Let’s Ride – Lyrics

My baby
So black
She hang me up
For my stack
Black coffee
No cigar
Black nails
In my heart

Learn more about Indy on the Bandcamp page.

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Samuel James: gatekeeper of the Delta Blues

Samuel James: gatekeeper of the Delta Blues

Samuel_James_by_Jon_Reece_floating
Samuel_James_by_Jon_Reece_floating

If Samuel James had lived eighty years ago he would be on posters around town alongside Son House, Robert Johnson and Big Joe Williams. He is a Blues guitarist inspired by the delta sound. Groovy, now and then slow, but always a bluesy voice accompanied by guitar. Samuel James isn’t a new cat in town, this blues-based singer/songwriter has dazzled audiences around the world for the better part of a decade. 

Samuel James is a fantastic guitarist in the Delta Blues style. Not only for using the slide in a lot of songs, but also the way James puts rhythm in a ´simple´ riffs is admirable. There are a lot of singer-songwriters around, I often miss the rhythm and the groove in their songs, I always hope they will start playing some blues songs. Samuel James is the singer-songwriter you want to see. He plays blues and there is always rhythm in Blues.

Recorded albums Samuel James

Albums of James that give you the best insight in his style are ‘Songs Famed for Sorrow and Joy’ (2008) ‘For Rosa, Maeve and Noreen’ (2009) And ‘for the Dark Road Ahead’ (2012) all released on Toronto’s Northern Blues label.

Stomping Delta Blues

His songs make you Stomp your feet and you will easily listen it for hours. Samuel James describes his music as: “A mixture of Charlie Patton, Preston Reed, Bill Withers and Townes Van Zandt”. Most of all: Samuel James is a gatekeeper of the Delta Blues.

Samuel James on Spotify

Samuel James “Wooooooo Rosa”

Samuel James “Bumly” playing Parchment Farm

 

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CW Ayon one man Band Blues from New Mexico

CW Ayon one man Band Blues from New Mexico

CW Ayon is a blues musician you should see in the pub, with his one man band act Ayon brings true Delta Blues to your local juke joint. Like Ben Prestage and Mississippi Gabe Carter, Ayon is an ex excellent slide guitar player supported by steady drums. That combination make his songs easy to listen to, groovy and the ideal travel music. Over the last few years Ayon released every year an album some of the song are available to listen to. Invite CW Ayon to your local bar and enjoy the song of this New Mexico bluesman.

CW Ayon, New Mexico Blues Man

CW Ayon calls the Southwestern deserts of New Mexico his home, but his soul is deeply rooted in the blues an grooves of the Mississippi Hill country. His act contains a simple Kick, Snare and Tambourine setup which ensures his performance of solid beats. This basis is added with Delta Style acoustic or resonator guitar sound and sometimes with a bit of harmonica.

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Reverend Deadeye performing as a Punk Blues Saint

Reverend Deadeye performing as a Punk Blues Saint

Last Sunday afternoon the holy experience of Reverend Deadeye’s music overwhelmed me. It was the song ‘Drunk on Jesus’ of this former snake handlin’ performer from Arizona that got to me.

Rev Deadeye is the reverend’s son of a reverend’ son who delivers a punk-rock version of gritty pre-war delta blues which he blends with fiery gospel interpretations capable of turnin’ the whole room into a whiskey filled bar room revival.

Punk style Blues music

RevDeadeye-press photo - credit photo to Yeheshua Johnson
RevDeadeye-press photo – credit photo to Yeheshua Johnson

Reverend Deadeye continued the punk style use of the slide guitar, like Hound Dog Tayler did fifty years ago. Hound Dog turned the slide guitar into a Rock ‘n Roll instrument. Rev Deadeye into a true punk machine. It is the use of his modified wok-lid resonator guitar that makes the Reverend songs so recognizable.

The slide guitar was a true delta blues instrument but is now evolved by Reverend Deadeye. The sound changed but the soul of the music doesn’t. It is great to experience how blues and punk rock music are so close to each other.

Songs of Reverend Deadeye

Especially in songs like ‘Yonder Blue’ and ‘Fuck The Devil’ you hear the punk and rock influence in his music. His voice is like a radio stream from blues-punk heaven: gritty, hard and raw. It is the use of his homemade beer can microphone that completes the raw sound of his performance.

Reverend Deadeye One Man Band

Like Joe Hill Louis, and later Ben Prestage did, Reverend Deadeye is an excellent one man band performer. Besides the use of his beer can microphone and wok-lid resonator Guitar, listen to his Kick Drum and washtub snare. To get the idea of his songs you should listen for the some heavy songs to “Backslider Baby’ and ‘Bless My Soul’. For some happy grooving songs to ‘Baby On That Train’.

Shows of Reverend Deadeye

Don’t expect a Sunday mornin’ church service at one of Reverend Deadeye’s shows; instead, expect a Saturday night baptism with fire holy rollin’ revival. I really enjoy the music of the Reverend. Follow him here…

Reverend Deadeye – Fuck the Devil

Reverend Deadeye – “Underneath the Ground”

Reverend Dead Eye Performs on Late Night Denver

Reverend Deadeye – Penticostal Rattle Snake Shake

Reverend Deadeye Spotify

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Chicago Slide Guitar, Elmore James

“Say ‘Play that Elmore lick,’ and everybody knows what to do.”
– Derek Trucks –

Chigago slide guitar Elmore James

Elmore James (1918-1963), often described as the “king of the slide guitar.” James’ electric style built on the approach of Robert Johnson and later influenced many blues and rock guitarists.

Stagenames

When Elmore James started playing Guitar in his teens he had difficulties finding a stage name. So James used multiple names like Cleanhead and Joe Willie James. Eventually James used his fathers’ family name we all know him for Elmore James. Before he moved to Chicago Elmore James King of the Slide Guitar often performed in the Mississippi juke joint alongside famous Blues guys like Arthur Big Boy Crodrup, Bubby Rush, Sonny Boy Williamson and John ‘Big Moose’ Walker.

Major influence

The influence of Elmore James is gigantic, his unique sound, and the rock ´n roll groove. That Chicago Slide Guitar sound developed Elmore in Robert´s Electric shop, where he worked after returning from WW II. He used parts from the shop in combination with his D´Armond pickups.

Dust My Broom

Chicago Blues Elmore James Dust My Broom
Chicago Blues Elmore James Dust My Broom

Politician and entrepreneur Charles Evers owned a number of clubs on the Southside of Chicago where he let Mississippians like BB King, Muddy Waters and Howlin´ Wolf perform. When Elmore James arrived in Chicago he got the opportunity to play in Evers Bluesclubs too. Clubs and therefor the musician where as popular as it gets in those days.

In 1951 James assisted Sonny Boy Williamson as a sideman. But when James started performing as a solo musician a year later, he would become a superstar with `Dust My Broom`. He and his ‘Broomdusters’ were as popular in the Chicago clubs as any of these musicians’ bands. But James was known as difficult, partly because of his alcoholic use during shows.

Hard Blues life

Like many other Blues musicians on this Blues Blog Elmore James had a tough life. He was addicted to whiskey, particularly Moonshine, which he began drinking at an early age and also distilled himself. His two bandmembers Willie Love and Johnny Jones died earlier because of alcohol and Elmore would have difficulties with it throughout his career.

James married three times, and fought during World War II. He was stationed in Guam, fighting the Japanese. During those days, a dysfunction of his heart was found.

After scoring multiple hits, he died in 1963 because of the effects of his third heart attack.

On his Wikipedia page a great story of George Adins, the Belgian Blues fan about Elmore James, he recalled.

George Adins over Elmore James

Muddy Waters took the Belgian blues fan George Adins to see James play in Chicago in 1959,

Elmore will always remain the most exciting, dramatic blues singer and guitarist that I’ve ever had a chance to see perform in the flesh. On our way we listened to him on the radio as Big Bill Hill … was broadcasting direct from that place. I was burning to see Elmore James and before we even pushed open the door of the club, we could hear Elmore’s violent guitar sound. Although the place was overcrowded, we managed to find a seat close to the bandstand and the blues came falling down on me as it had never done before. Watching Elmore sing and play, backed by a solid blues band (Homesick James, J.T. Brown, Boyd Atkins and Sam Cassell) made me feel real fine. Wearing thick glasses, Elmore’s face always had an expressive and dramatic look, especially when he was real gone on the slow blues. Singing with a strong and rough voice, he really didn’t need a mike.

On such slow blues as “I’m Worried – “Make My Dreams Come True” – “It Hurts Me”, his voice reached a climax and created a tension that was unmistakably the down and out blues. Notwithstanding that raw voice, Elmore sang his blues with a particular feeling, an emotion and depth that showed his country background. His singing was… fed, reinforced by his own guitar accompaniment which was as rough, violent and expressive as was his voice. Using the bottleneck technique most of the time, Elmore really let his guitar sound as I had never heard a guitar sound before. You just couldn’t sit still! You had to move…

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