LITTLE BOY BLUE : THE DUKE SIDES 1952-1959
You Did Me Wrong, No Blow No Show, I Don't believe, Farther On Up The Road, I Smell Trouble, You Got Me, Loan A Helping Hand, Last Night, You Got Bad Intentions, Little Boy Blue, It's My Life Baby, Time Out, I Learned My Lesson, Bobby's Blues, Teach Me, I Lost Sight On The World, Woke Up Screaming, Don't Want No Woman, Lost Lover Blues, I Can't Put You Down Baby, Army Blues, Wishing Well.
Yeah! It's Bobby Bland time with this CD of his Duke recordings and the revitalisation of his Malaco material which gets reviewed next - and the more the merrier as far as Red Lick is concerned.
This 22 tracker includes some of this master vocalist's seminal hits arranged by his band leader Joe Scott who helped to lift Bobby Bland's singles head and shoulders above his contemporaries. Other singers just didn't have the musicians that Bland and Scott attracted; pianist Connie Mack Booker, drummer Sonny Freeman, sax player Bill Harvey and trombonist Pluma Davis were regular performers along with the cream of blues guitarists like Clarence Holliman, Wayne Bennett, Roy Gaines and the infamous Pat Hare.
Together they provided the foundation for Bland's vocals, whether it was the jumping blues You Got Bad Intentions, Wayne Bennett's guitar showcase You Did Me Wrong or the hard bopper Further On Up The Road which just thunders along thanks to Pat Hare's insistent guitar wrangling. Songs like these and Little Boy Blue proved that Bobby Bland could fill a song with more emotional soul clout than anyone around. In fact, it wasn't until Wilson Pickett and Otis Redding came on the scene twenty years later that we heard such vocal power again. The whole CD is stacked with choice items including the hard rocking It's My Life Baby with some of the toughest guitar ever heard from Roy Gaines and hefty blues infused vocals from Bobby Bland who later gets tangled up in a mess of torment on the epic I Lost Sight On The World and simply wails on the beautifully arranged big blues ballad Lost Lover Blues.
‘Little Boy Blue' is a cracking album of superlative Bobby Bland vocals backed with sophisticated arrangements that always find room for startlingly aggressive and passionate guitar solos. This CD gets a full five stars from me.
Ask for 263377. Only £10.25 plus p&p here at Red Lick.
Review Date: Febraury 2011