This week’s five pack are all from the sixties which isn’t my usual area of interest. I started collecting garage records around the time of the original Nuggets (’72) and the Sonics’ Explosive (Buck Shot) re-issue, but over the years as I listened to the garage stuff less and less, and the fifties rockabilly and R&B 45’s got harder and harder to find, I traded away quite a few great garage originals. A few I truly regret trading away (Ritual by the Mods comes to mind first and foremost). In the post-Pebbles world however the music is all readily available, if not the original discs, in fact these days some of the coolest early comps– Off The Wall, Hipsville B.C., Scum Of The Earth, et al are rarities themselves. Here’s some of the records I’ve never considered trading and still play all the time.
Baby Ray & the Ferns is of course Frank Zappa and the Mothers circa 1964. I think this is his/their best record, you can really here the Johnny Guitar Watson influence on the guitar solos. This is what they must’ve sounded like playing greaser bars in Cucamonga. The A-side– World’s Greatest Sinner is of course the theme song for the incredible Tim Carey movie, the flip– How’s Your Bird comes from a line that Frank Sinatra and his pals used as a sort of an in joke. Both sides are classic greaseball rock’n’roll, the kind they don’t make no more.
The Devils’ Devil Dance on the Devlet label seems to come from Western Pennsylvania judging by the towns mentioned in the shout outs during the spoken part. It’s a frat garage rocker that many know from the A-Bones version. My favorite thing about the label is that is says “7 ” disc” , as if somebody was going to measure it to check up, but there’s no address or label info. I bet these guys played a lot of frat parties.
Speaking of Frat party bands, how the Trashmen ended up on Chess subsidiary Argo is anybody’s guess but they were not kidding when the put the words “Audio Odessey” on the label. A-side is the third version of their ’63 monster hit Surfin’ Bird– this time titled Bird’ 65 while the flip is a pretty straight forward run through of the Warren Smith Sun classic Ubangi Stomp. The Trashmen never made a bad record, but I’d put this one as their third best (second best: New Generation which gets extra points for the sound of a a-bomb exploding).
Mark Markam & the Jesters’ were from Florida and this frat rocker takes the Louie Louie riff
and adds some truly bizarre lyrics. Goin’ Back To Marlboro Country was a bit of a local hit in the Miami area around ’66, I remember hearing it on the radio at least once. Markam was a cousin of South Florida rocker Charlie Pickett who would cut a version of this in the 80’s. I’m not sure if he cut any other discs but this will do as a claim to immortality.
Last up is the original Fleetwood Mac line-up– Peter Green, John McVie, Mick Fleetwood and writer/singer and star of this b-side Jermey Spencer. This teddy boy send up– Somebody’s Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonight was issued as the b-side of Mac’s Man Of The World under the nome’du disc Earl Vince & the Valiants. Within a year, Spencer, who had previously been obsessed with Elmore James and fifties rock’n’roll would disappear into the Children Of God cult, one of the creepiest ‘Jesus meets kiddie porn’ cults around, only emerging recently. He did a whole LP in this style for Immediate (U.K. only), his second LP– Jeremy Spencer and the Children (Warner Bros) wasn’t even him but fellow cult members using his name to spread their ugly message. Doesn’t it seem that everyone who ever played guitar in Fleetwood Mac would go crazy at some point in their career (ever see the video of Linsay Buckingham kicking Stevie Nicks in the ass onstage)? I used to have a great tape of Spencer doing a BBC radio show (backed mostly by F.M. members) doing all rockabilly type stuff including a great version of Cliff Richards’ Move It (but I can’t find it), and there’s plenty of fifties style rockers on the Fleetwood Mac BBC double CD, if he’d of stuck with the Teddy Boys and Elmore James he’d be in better shape today no doubt. There’s great book in the Jeremy Spencer story, I’m sure will see one some day.
The top photo is Ernie and Antoinette K-Doe’s wedding photo. It hangs over the fireplace mantel in our bedroom. It was a wedding present from the late Kelly Keller. It was through Kelly I met the K-Does, fellow New Orleans bar owners. They owned the Mother In Law Lounge at 1500 Clairborne, one of the coolest joints I’ve ever been in. Ernie of course was a great New Orleans R&B singer responsible for such classics as Mother In Law, Tain’t It The Truth, et al. Ernie passed away in 2001. They were true New Orleans royalty (and the best dressed people I’ve ever encountered) and I’m honored to have known them. Antoinette died today of a heart attack. As Mardis Gras gathers steam until it’s final blow out on Fat Tuesday bar owners get less and less sleep and are usually awake from Sat. night until Tues afternoon, it could wear out anyone, and Miss Antoinette, who rebuilt the Mother In Law Lounge after Katrina seems to have just worn her self out. She was one of the best and funniest people I ever met. I remember when Kelly was still alive, once a week she and Antoinette would hit the thrifts stores on the outskirts of New Orleans and I tagged along on several of these junkets. They were some of the most fun times I’ve ever had. Antoinette was not only funny, warm, and down to earth, she made the best beans and rice I’ve ever eaten.
New Orleans will never be the same without her. R.I.P.
Another week, another guy whose musical talent was so unique and singular that he could never be replaced bites the dust. Ford “Snooks” Eaglin, age 72, died last Wed. He fell down and had a heart attack, he was already suffering from prostate cancer. He’s one of the very last of the true New Orleans R&B greats.
Snooks made tons of great records but my favorites were recorded in two very different settings.
The first are the sides he cut for Imperial in 1960-61 produced by Dave Bartholomew (I don’t have to explain who he is, do I?). On these recordings Snooks’ guitar rides over a groove provided by Smokey Johnson on drums, Frank Field on bass, James Booker at the piano and the sax sections of Mayer Kennedy on alto, Clarance Hall on tenor and Clarence Ford on baritone.
This is one of the truly great New Orleans session bands (the original Bartholomew session band with Lee Allen, Earl Palmer, et al had already moved on to L.A. and better paying jobs) and would have made anyone sound great, but with Snooks unique guitar style and laconic voice, these sides are just about as good as it gets. Some highlights are: That Certain Door, I’m Slippin In,
If I Could and Don’t Slam That Door.
Harry Oster and Richard Allen recorded Snooks, who they’d seen playing on the street in New Orleans in the late 50’s solo, playing 12 string acoustic (occasionally a washboard was added, the only other instrument) and these sides were issued by Arhoolie and Folk Lyric and capture a very different Snooks. This is the way he sounded when he started out, playing on the streets of the French Quarter for tips. Here’s a few favorites-Locomotive Train, Veal Chop and Pork Chop, and because it’s carnival time– Mardis Gras Mambo.
In Oct. of 1999 me and a bunch of friends opened a bar in New Orleans– the Circle Bar (1032 St. Charles Ave @ Lee Circle, it was still there last time I looked), and one of my partners– the late, much missed Kelly Keller who was basically in charge of running and booking the joint wanted Snooks to play the opening night. We actually had two opening night parties, one with Hank Williams III (Treycephus) and the second with Snooks Eaglin. Kelly knew Snooks from when she worked at Black Top Records and they were crazy about each other. He agreed to play for a fraction of his usual fee. The photo above is from that night (that’s Nauman Scott, one of Black Top’s owners patting Snooks on the head like he was a puppy).
That night me and Kelly went out to Metarie to drive Snooks and his wife in for the gig.
Snooks wanted to sit near the radio so he could punch the buttons, which he did the whole ride in. He had very big ears and although we yapped the whole trip he was obviously absorbing everything he heard on the car radio because that night in his set he worked in versions of Mott The Hoople’s Ready For Love and Allen Sherman’s Hello Mudda, both of which we had heard in the car on the way in. And he made them both sound like songs he’d written himself. At one point in his set Ernie and Antoinette K-Doe arrived. Since Ernie was “The Emperor of the Whole Wide World”, the K-Does made an entrance befitting his title. Snooks, who was blind, went into a medley of K-Doe’s hits, even got Ernie up to sing Mother In Law. As a bar owner it was one of my proudest moments, right up there with Phil May of the Pretty Things trying to french kiss me (I’ve got photos to prove it), ? & the Mysterians playing the Lakeside Christmas party and Andre Williams calling me “his nigga”. Snooks was truly one of a kind. He played guitar in a finger picking style that I could never quite figure out, he made it look so simple, it wasn’t, but he could make his guitar sound like a whole band.
Snooks also recorded as a guitarist with Sugar Boy Crawford & the Cane Cutters on several 1954 sessions for Chess. These are some of the greatest records ever made. While only three singles were issued on the Checker subsidiary there was enough material for a two LP set, in fact one came out in the 1970’s although it’s long out of print. You can find the whole mess here. Note that PW means password which you’ll need to unstuff the file.
Back in October I posted about Bob Quine, I posted four excerpts from some film soundtrack music he did in the months before he died (I think the recordings were done in Jan-March, 2004).
I promised I’d eventually post the rest of these home recordings so here they are:
Film Music: Two
Film Music: Three
Film Music: Four
Film Music: Five
Film Music: Six
Film Music: Eight
for parts One, Seven and Nine see the October posting under Quine.
P.J. Proby’s story is one of those crazed, it should be a movie but no one would believe it tales that I love so much. This is a mere thumbnail sketch of a man who’s voice can raise a fan’s enthusiasm to seismic proportions. A quick Google search will keep you busy reading and watching videos all week. The great Nik Cohn, perhaps the most insightful chronicler of pop music the U.K has ever produced (I even love his book on New Orleans hip hop, Triksta (Alfred A. Knopf, 2005) and I don’t even like the music) dedicated an entire chapter to him in his classic work Pop: From The Beginning (Rock: From The Beginning in the U.S., Stein & Day, 1969).
P.J. Proby, born James Marcus Smith in Houston, Texas, 1938, into an upper class banking family headed to L.A. in the late 50’s to make it as either a singer or pop star. His first managers renamed him Jett Powers (after James Dean’s character in Giant) and it was as Jett Powers he cut two incredible rock’n’roll 45’s that would have insured his infamy even if he’d headed back to Houston and taken his father’s job running the Second National Bank. The first 45, released in ’58 was on the Design label, a subsidiary of the budget Pickwick Records (where Lou Reed started out)– Go Girl Go b/w Teenage Quarrel on which he was backed by a rockin’ little combo called Vince Paris & the Raunch Hands (where the Crypt Records group would steal their name from) is, I think, the pinnacle of his entire recorded catalog. 1959 saw his second release– Loud Perfume b/w My Troubles on Beta, an L.A. label, features Marcus/Powers/Proby fronting the Bumps Blackwell Orchestra, the same session players heard on all of Little Richard and Sam Cooke’s early L.A. recordings. Both singles sank without a trace but have been re-issued dozens if not hundreds of times over the ensuing decades. To make ends meet he began recording demos for Elvis and Johnny Cash (amongst others), his voice had an amazing range and he was a spot on mimic who could reproduce nearly any style from Hank Williams to Mario Lanza.
So what’s in this week’s five pack of scratchy 45’s? From the top we find somebody with the catchy nome-du-disque of The Creep on the Oakridge label, both unknown entities to me, The tune is a snappy little rocker called Betty Lou’s Got A New Tattoo. It’s basically a take off on Bobby Freeman’s Betty Lou Got A New Pair Of Shoes, but better, and dumber. In her time Betty Lou might’ve seemed like quite a gal but nowadays it’d be harder to find a Betty Lou without a tattoo. The tune might be familiar as it’s been in the A-Bones set for several decades. Maybe they should find something to rhyme with “Betty Lou got her labia pierced….” as a way of making it more timely.
Another unknown group are Pat & the Satellites who cut this wild rocker, Jupiter C, for Atco in the early sixties. This was on the very first cassette Bob Quine ever made for me, and since that fateful day it has been one of my favorites. Like I said last week, I just love rockin’ instrumentals and this sits near the very top of what Phil Schaap would call “the pantheon of sides”. I think that means it’s a good ‘un.
Mr. Wiggles was a pimp from Norfolk, Virginia. A good place to be a pimp since it’s basically one big Navy port and full of horny sailors (it was also something of a hotbed of rockabilly, Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps, Janis Martin and the Rock-A-Teens all hail from the area). Herr Wiggles issued this homage to his bad self on his own Golden Triangle label– Homeboy. What a classic– I love his anti-materialistic stance stated over the fade– “I don’t want no Cadillac, all I need is a mule….”.Mr. Wiggles also issued a strange LP about the Clifford Irving/Howard Hughes scandal in the early 70’s, I almost sold my copy on Ebay, luckily the buyer never sent the cash and while I was holding on to it for him an article on Mr. Wiggles appeared in Living Blues magazine with the Howard Hughes disc pictured prominently. Some day I’ll play the damn thing. I got to find it first, it’s in a stack of unfiled LP’s in the basement somewhere.
Bob “Froggy” Landers’ Cherokee Dance first entered my life on the old Specialty Doo-Wop LP that Dr. Demento compiled in the early 70’s. Long out of print, every tune on it is a classic, although some titles like Roddy Jackson’s “Moose On The Loose” (see the “Call Of The Wild” posting back in Oct.) are pretty far from doo wop. Anyway, I eventually tracked down the 45 and it has improved my quality of life considerably. That’s Willie Joe Duncan playing his Unitar (a one string guitar) that gives the record its distinctive, almost fuzz tone sound. Willie Joe played on Chicago’s Maxwell Street with Jimmy Reed before heading for the coast and briefly ending up in Landers’ band the Cough Drops. He’s featured on the b-side- Unitar Rock, a tune that was re-recorded by the under rated guitarist Rene Hall who brought Willie Joe back into the studio and issued the title (also on Specialty) as Twitchy. See if you can tell the difference in the two versions. Landers cut another disc– River Rock Part One b/w River Rock Part Two for Ensign, an early Herb Albert/Jerry Moss (of A&M fame) label, but something’s missing— the Unitar!
Had they kept Willie Joe in the group the second single would have also ended up in the aforementioned P.O.S. (pantheon of sides), but instead it resides in the ‘for Froggy Landers completists only’ category.
Winding up this week is a platter from the Santa Clara, California label Blue Moon, one of the coolest labels of all time. They released such uber-classics as Johnny Amelio’s Jugue (what be a Jugue? my guess is he’s saying Juke and the person in charge of typing the record label messed up), and Linda & the Epics’ Gonna Be Loved and our current topic: Cecil Collins & the Fretts’ Rock’n Baby (as another aside they also were the first label to release Jimmy Bowen’s I’m Sticking With You which became a hit when leased to Roulette, it was the label’s only real hit). The Fretts’ disc made today’s list because I just got it yesterday. I like everything about this record from the primitive guitar chords that open the disc to the honking sax solo. I even love the way off key girl’s harmony voice comes in right at the last verse as if she had gotten to the session a verse late. Oddly enough, this one was picked up by the jazz label Verve for distribution. Perhaps they were preparing the promo department for their future signing– Velvet Underground?
It must’ve been the early 1990’s, when I was doing my radio show at WFMU. There was a guy, a mailman out in Queens named Pat Conte. Pat had been collecting 78’s since before I was born. He had tons of amazing stuff, country blues from the 20’s and 30’s, all kinds of strange ethnic records from all over the world. I believe he was the genius behind Yazoo’s six CD series The Secret Museum Of Mankind which compiled strange and wonderful 78’s from all over the world, mostly from the 20’s and 30’s. Anyways, so this mailman named Pat Conte who briefly had his own show at WFMU called The Secret Museum of the Airwaves sends me a cassette with a brief note that said something like– “this is rock’n’roll from South African 78’s, 1950-62”. He tried to put out a re-issue cassette of the stuff (Global Village actually printed up a handful of cassettes) but it was sued out of existence by some big company, but now since this stuff is all in the public domain it can be heard. In part one of my investigation of African rock’n’roll 78’s (and they pressed 78’s in the Mother Land until around 1970) I present the stuff from Pat’s tape. Some day soon, I’ll do part two which covers 1962-70 and will include stuff I tracked down on my own as well as some incredible rock’n’roll influenced hi-life music from Nigeria and Ghana. But for now, dig these sounds:
Benoni Rocket, a Zulu whose real name was Joseph Nkhoda (probably still is) cut a handful of Elvis influenced sides, his accent gives way to the theory that he learned the tunes phonetically. Here we have I’m Gonna Shake, Rattle, Roll (not the Joe Turner tune covered by Elvis, I don’t think…) Last Night and I’m Gonna Rock,they are amongst the wildest discs I’ve ever heard. Gabriel Sibusi waxed Call Me Mister for the Troubadour label, I’ve seen another disc by him mentioned– She Works In Bedrooms, but I’ve never heard it. Also on Troubadour were the Pretty Dolls, a jive style group with a pronounced Caribbean influence as heard here on I Promise. Jimmy Masuluke’s Happy Happy Make It Snappy appeared on the equally obscure FM label and features some rockin’ sax and hot electric guitar riffs. And that’s all I know about it. The Tip Top Rhythm Boys (possibly a white group gone native) show off their percussion/sax heavy sound on Sparkling Se Dinge, again, I know nothing about them. Allen Kwela and his guitar are featured on the 500 Guitar Rock, another ultra-obscurity from another unknown artist. This is the most traditionally African sounding disc here. The Black Mambazo (no relation to Ladysmith Black Mambazo) show the influence of Latin music in After Muchacha , the group was led by Finish Mohamed, Simon Nkbinde and vocalist Zeph Nakbinde.
Willard Cele appeared in the 1950 film The Magic Garden aka Pennywhistle Blues which makes sense since he rocked the Penny Whistle long before the Pogues, you can study his unique approach to the instrument on Penny Whistle Boogie. This style of music was called Kwela and was big all over South Africa in the 50’s.
Well, talk about obscure genres, I think this is the tip of the iceberg. Too bad Paul Simon didn’t run into the Bogard Brothers when he was making Graceland, they’d have sent him back to his books and poetry fast enough! Or as Jerry Lee Lewis once said–“I’d like to slap a hamburger patty on his ass and run him through Ethiopia”! I’ll get to work on volume two with some of the sides mentioned above (you just gotta hear the Junkers, Nigeria’s answer to the Rolling Stones and Ghanian Charlotte Doda’s incredible Beatles’ cover) and should have it posted before summer or the next war breaks out, which ever comes first.
The cassette Hasil gave me to play on the my radio show, all un-issued stuff.
Me and the Haze, from 3-D original, 1984.
It was around 1994 or 5 that Hasil Adkins gave this 90 minute cassette to Norton Records’ honcho Billy Miller to give to me to play on my radio show. I’d had Haze on the show on several occasions for a series of “Hunchin’ Luncheon” broadcasts. Me and the Haze hit off well, we both like Mopar cars, guns and coffee, so we had lots to talk about off mike. Unfortunately, Haze was a bit mike shy about being interviewed and he was one of the hardest on-air interviews I’ve ever done. Soon as the mike would go on, he’d shut up and give one word answers When the e mike was off and he was quite cordial and talkative. We eventually figured out if we brought his guitar and kit, he could just shut up and play live. These broadcasts can be heard on the Hound Archive Air Check page highlighted above. So Billy gives me this cassette of Hasil’s home recordings, no info, no song titles, nuthin’, but every song is great. Some of his best work. Much better than anything on the Fat Possum LP (which captures Hasil on a very uninspired day). As far as I can tell none of this stuff has ever been released, so now it will escape, I being the one to unlock the cage and let it loose on you–the rest of the world. If you’re a Hasil fan, fidelity isn’t one of your great concerns, this stuff was recorded at Haze’s house in the holler somewhere in the country side outside of Madison, West Virginia and transferred to cassette by Hasil himself. I dubbed it to digital using a program called Amadeus Pro (thanks to Brian Redman, for turning me on to this and teaching me how to use it, without Brian there’d be no Hound). Some of the song titles I made up since, as I said, there were no titles on the tape box (pictured above). These fifteen tunes were chosen from a total of twenty three, so there’ll be a volume two someday (all sad ballads). The great lost Hasil Adkins album, I think I’ll call it Commodity Meat and other delights, or maybe How To Do The Hunch And Influence People. Here’s are the tunes (keep in mind on the original tape the tunes all run together, and some tunes cut off when the tape ran out of Hasil’s machine):
Waitin’ For The Graveyard, Go Go Go Down The Line (Lookin’ Down That Highway), Let Me Talk To You (Moo Moo Moo), Me & Jesus (Got It All Worked Out), Lee-Anne (I Wanna See You Boogie Woogie), Kill ‘Em Rock, Keep On Hunchin’, Way Before My Time (I Should Have Been Born A Long Time Ago), Somebody I Used To Know (and Chased Away With A Baseball Bat), Madison Boone County Blues, Old Joe, Commodity Meat & Peanut Butter, Ugly Chelsea Clinton Hunch (Feed Her Commodity Meat, Bill), Catch Me A Train, You’re Too Young For Me, Reelin’ & Rockin‘. Enjoy, and if I catch anyone tryin’ to sell this thing I’m gonna put my steel toed boot up your ass.
BTW, a funny Hasil antidote: Around 1997 the late, great, Bill Pietsch brings the late, great,Hasil Adkins into the Lakeside Lounge to say hi. I’d just bought some guitars that walked in the door with a crackhead, so I gave Haze a little Fender Squire in exchange for doing a short set. To get warmed up to play, Haze asks if I have any salt. I go get him the salt shaker, he takes it, opens the top, pours the entire thing into his hand and downs it in one gulp. Then asks for the box of salt. I give him the box and he eats the entire box of salt. Swear to God.
Okay, I’ll take you commenter’s suggestion and try and make this a weekly feature. Five 45’s. Here’s this week’s stack.
Since I’m a lazy shit, this week I just leaned over, from the reproduction of the couch that Sigmund Freud had in his own office, if I lay backwards on the one in my own office I find myself at eye level directly in front of the instrumental section of the 45 shelves. Easy enough. I love rock’n’roll instrumentals, especially guitar instrumentals. For seventeen years I opened my radio show with five instrumentals (take a listen here). I didn’t exactly grab these randomly, I wanted to give you some discs that hadn’t been re-issued, at least not on CD as far as I know, and by guys who you might’ve heard of, if it not heard of, at least heard (and maybe didn’t know it). And I wanted ’em to be great records. I think these past the test.
Roy Buchanan was amazing in his early days, he contributes some truly ominous guitar sounds to Dale Hawkins sides like Cross-Ties, early fuzz wackiness on Cody Brennan’s version of Ruby Baby and even made a handful of great 45’s under his own name. By the time his ship came in via a PBS documentary which portrayed him as the great, lonesome blues man, he’d turned into a bore, but this platter, a rendition of Erkstine Hawkins’ After Hours for the Philadelphia based Bomarc label illustrates just how cool he once was. Buchanan himself had long credited the Jimmy Nolen (guitarist with the Johnny Otis Show and James Brown, see the Dec. Johnny Otis I for more on him) waxing of After Hours (Federal, you can hear it on the Johnny Otis I posting) as his all time favorite and most influential disc. Here, Buchanan adds a few of his own tricks, including using the volume knob on his Telecaster as a primitive Wah Wah pedal (or as Hasil Adkins called it– the Bow Wow pedal), and some almost tasteful use of feedback. Quine used to say Buchanan was the only guitarist whom he couldn’t tell if he was black or white, on this disc he sounds grey with red pinstripes.
J.J. Cale is somebody I used to file in the same part of my brain as Jimmy Buffet, but the aforementioned Quine re-introduced me to Cale’s stuff and damned, if you really listen he’s almost the white Jimmy Reed. Ask Eric Clapton, who stole Cale’s sound, songs and band and durn near modled himself after the lazier than hell Okie trash genius (when told he had a hit record and should go out and tour to promote it Cale asked his manager “if I got a hit, why do I have to promote it”? Turns out Cale has a long history and appeared on quite a few great rockabilly and hillbilly discs back in Oklahoma before setting out for L.A. where he recorded as the Leather Coated Minds for Sidewalk in 1968 before returning to Tulsa and laid back near stardom. This instrumental, Shock Hop he’s billed as Johnny Cale, it is from ’63 and could sit proudly next to such classics as the Frantics’ Werewolf (see Halloween I posting) as instro-spook rock’n’roll at it’s best.
Jody Williams- Lucky Lou (Argo). Jody Williams started out in Bo Diddley’s band when they were called the Langley Ave. Jive Cats or something like that. He can be heard soloing on Bo’s Who Do You Love. As a session man he’s on dozens of incredible Chess/Checker/Argo discs including many by Howlin’ Wolf. He only got his due recently, and as of a few years ago was still playing at top of his game. I have fond memories of the first Ponderosa Stomp (when it was still called the Mau-Mau Ball) at the Circle Bar in New Orleans when Jody played a killer set with blues steel player Freddy Roulette. On this Argo disc, his only solo record for the Chess brothers, he displays all his best tendencies. Great record, no bout a doubt it.
Jimmy Dobro (James Burton)- Swamp Surfer (Phillips). This is of course James Burton, hero of countless fine rockabilly records by Dale Hawkins (Suzi Q), Bob Luman, Ricky Nelson, as well as sides by Merle Haggard, Buck Owens, Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gram Parson and even John Denver. He’s probably one of the most deservedly praised guitar players in history but his solo work (an LP for A&M in ’72 and a duet LP with Ralph Mooney for Capitol in ’66) are good but never quite click into high gear. This, my favorite of all his solo sides, was cut under the name Jimmy Dobro because the a-side is a corny dobro-novelty called Everybody Listen To The Dobro that really isn’t worth posting. I love the vibe of this one, especially the way the rhythm section modulates south without breaking tempo. Swamp Surfer isn’t so much a monster as a real sleeper, in the best sense of the term.