LET'S GET HIGH 1951-1965 (2CD)
Rosco Gordon may not have been the greatest bluesman who ever lived but he did have something the public craved. His voice could rise up from an R&B croon to a hard bopping roar in the same song while his piano playing ranged from a good tempered rolling style to a popping rhythmic shuffle that was perfect for dance halls. That's why he was such a big shot in Memphis - he made boogie music that got people up on their feet!
In the fifties he recorded almost exclusively for Sam Phillips who put ‘em out on Sun or leased the masters to RPM who put out the rockin' uptown ‘Booted' and gained a number one R&B hit.
Due to legal wrangles caused by Rosco's tendency to break contracts, further hits didn't materialize until he visited the studio in October 1951 and recorded ‘No More Doggin' which turned out to be a smash in the West Indies. Their record scene was just blossoming when ‘Doggin' hit the islands and Rosco's catchy rhythm, which placed the accent on the off-beat, captured the imagination of local musicians who adopted it and used it as the foundation for ska which, in turn, gave birth to reggae music. Think on that next time you hear Bob Marley!
Needless to say, Rosco knew nothing of this and continued to record at Sun Studios making the engaging down home blues, stomps, urban boogies, dance tunes and Memphis good time music you get to hear on this very fine anthology.
Great story - Great release.
Ask for JSP4210
Only £11.00 plus p&p for this 2CD set
Review Date: May 2009