If you sit on a guitar long enough, another one will hatch.
As seen from a landing flying saucer.
I love Little Walter. I have listened to his records constantly since buying that old All Platinum/Chess double LP for $1.99 when I was fourteen. His records still sound almost futuristic to me. Little Walter’s blues was not that of the cotton patch, but an urbane, yet still raw sound. There’s little I can tell you about Marion Walter Jacobs (born May 1, 1930, died Feb. 15 1968) that you won’t find in the definitive biography of the man– Blues With A Feeling: The Little Walter Story by Tony Glover, Scott Dirks and Ward Gaines (Routledge, 2002), a must read for any blues fan.
However, since a friend sent these incredible images ( the top five by Ray Flerlage, the next two down were taken by the late Don Bronstein who did all the Chess album covers and many Playboy Playmates as well as the book Chicago, I Will, the tiny one by Sam Charters), I thought I’d run them along with some funny in-session outtakes. As any reader of this blog knows I love profanity, and these are lots of fun to listen to thanks to the foul mouths of Little Walter and Leonard Chess (that’s Chess introducing “Blue and Lonesome by Little Motherfuckin’ Walter”). I’m pretty sure these are all out of print, most of them appeared on a series of bootlegs that appeared in the late 70’s on the Leroi De Blues label and later some showed up on a Japanese P-Vine double album, those LP’s are all long out of print.
Here’s an alternate take of Walter’s first hit Juke, two alternate takes of Temperature (take 30 takes 35-36), an alternate of Rock Bottom, Everthing’s Going To Be Alright take 1, and another alternate, Mean Old Frisco (take 1), Blue and Lonesome (take 1), and just for fun I thought I’d throw in Roller Coaster, not an alternate, but if you haven’t heard Little Walter with Bo Diddley on guitar, you really need to.
BTW: On my post concerning Little Walter’s pre-Checker sides (here), the links are down for the moment, you should probably just go out and buy Delmark‘s The Blues World Of Little Walter which contains all of the Little Walter and Baby Face Leroy recordings, as Barry Stoltz said in the comments section the Parkway waxing of Rollin’ & Tumblin’ pts.1 & 2 is easily one of the ten best blues records of the 20th Century.