ROLL YOUR MONEYMAKER - EARLY BLACK ROCK N ROLL 1948-1958
Ike Turner's Kings Of Rhythm-You Got To Lose, Howlin' Wolf-You Gonna Wreck My Life, Etta James-W.O.M.A.N, Shakey Jake-Roll Your Moneymaker, Lazy Lester-Sugar Coated Love, Rufus Thomas,-Tiger Man, John J Moses-Night Out, Andre Williams-Going Down To Tijuana, Ruth Brown-Please Don't Freeze, Bill Davis Trio-Bring The Money, Big Maybelle-Don't Leave Poor Me, Johnny Guitar Watson-Space Guitar, Ike Turner-She Made My Blood Run Cold, Slim Harpo-Got Love If You Want It, Otis Rush-Keep On Loving Me, Sister Rosetta Tharpe-Jericho, Billy The Kid Emerson-If Lovin' Is Believing, Bo Diddley-Heart-O-Matic Blues, Ann Cole-Got My Mojo Working, Magic Sam-21 Days In Jail, Chuck Berry-Deep Feeling, Jesse Stone-Crawfish, Joe Tex-Pneumonia, Junior Parker-Love My Baby.
I had to review this because it's hardly been off my player since it came out a couple of months ago and I'd hate y'all to miss it. I know there are a few familiar titles here but on the whole it's a CD of famous people doing obscure stuff - and that's what makes it good.
I'd never heard some of the 24 tracks before but now, I'm pleased to say, they're pretty high up in my own list of blues favourites. I'm talking about Andre Williams' latin boogie rhythms on the good time raver ‘Going Down To Tijuana', Big Maybelle's frantic ‘Don't Leave Poor Me' and Ike Turner's ‘She Made My Blood Run Cold' with it's creepy arrangement. I'd forgotten just how fabulous Billy The Kid Emerson's ‘If Lovin' Is Believing' is. This one is a slow grinder with stunning lyrics, a slashing backbeat and guitar player who understands the value of empty space. The only problem is that at two minutes ten seconds, it's much too short.
Ann Cole's version of ‘Got My Mojo Working' laid down the blueprint for Muddy Water's (later) hit and I think that Ann's version swings a helluva lot more thanks to the searing saxophone solo. Chuck Berry's ‘Deep Feeling' is an easy rolling instrumental filled with relaxed picking and lovely delicate runs on the high strings that must have influenced Peter Green's ‘Albatros'. Recorded in 1956, when he was still a blues shouter rather than the hugely successful preaching style soul singer he became in the 60's, ‘Pneumonia' was Joe Tex's answer to Little Willie John's ‘Fever' and it should have been a hit!
My favourite track though is John J Moses' superb ‘Night Out' - a cool, low key, Coasters-style description of a night out downtown. He picks up a girl and gives her a real good time that includes a fifteen cent sandwich, a bottle of soda water and a six mile walk home. When he gets to her door she quite rightly introduces him to her dog.
There are some killer compilations out there but not many surpass this one. Five stars!
Ask for US0392
Price £13.15 plus p&p here at Red Lick.
Review Date: May 2009