That Ain't Right

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Michael G. Nastos
Producer Ralph Bass intended to issue some ten blues albums for T.K. Records based in Miami, but the label wound up having disco hits with KC & the Sunshine Band and scrapped his projects. Three decades after the fact, some of those recordings done in Chicago, through a circuitous route of failed labels, have finally surfaced on Delmark Records, including what would have been the debut sessions for Magic Slim & the Teardrops. Morris Holt, aka Slim, was hot on the Chicago scene but few suspected he'd become a major superstar, and although these 1977 dates are imperfect due to distortion on the masters, the raw edge of his music comes shining through. In ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Michael G. Nastos
Producer Ralph Bass intended to issue some ten blues albums for T.K. Records based in Miami, but the label wound up having disco hits with KC & the Sunshine Band and scrapped his projects. Three decades after the fact, some of those recordings done in Chicago, through a circuitous route of failed labels, have finally surfaced on Delmark Records, including what would have been the debut sessions for Magic Slim & the Teardrops. Morris Holt, aka Slim, was hot on the Chicago scene but few suspected he'd become a major superstar, and although these 1977 dates are imperfect due to distortion on the masters, the raw edge of his music comes shining through. In addition, the Elmore James-influenced guitarist and vocalist Joe Carter appears here on an additional six tracks, while Carter's all-star band with legends like pianist Sunnyland Slim, drummer Fred Below, guitarist Lacy Gibson, and bassist Willie Black does another song sans its leader. Slim's family band with bassist Nick Holt and drummer Doug Holt join second guitarist Coleman Pettis for some riveting, primal electric Chicago blues in the Elmore James tradition, set apart because of the leader's expansive, mean streets, but somewhat reined-in sound. Six sides by Slim and the band include the steady-rollin' "In the Dark" not the Lil Green classic, which bears the rough and dry lyric "that ain't right" that is the title of this CD. Slim's sonorous stinging guitar is all too evident on this, the slow and sleek original "She Is Mine," the autobiographical "Cummins Prison Farm," the instrumental jam "Soul Blues," and the slow pining "Just to Be with You," with the vocal reminiscent of peer Lonnie Brooks. There's an electric crackle that suggests the tapings were amped up too high, but this is not a major flaw. The single track with Below leading and singing "Route 66" shuffles along, with Gibson and Sunnyland Slim swinging along quite nicely. Carter is an Elmore James devotee both in his singing and guitar playing, but with less of an edge or gruffness. He does the James evergreen "I'm Worried" like he means it, along with a loose churning shuffle on "Sweet Home Chicago" and quite respectable "Stormy Monday" with slide guitar inserts. On a saloon-style tinny upright piano, Sunnyland Slim is the real star, stepping up on the jazzy "Joe's Boogie" and another James instrumental jam, "Bobby's Rock." Carter's singing on "Anna Lee" is slowed, refined, and soulful like Elmore James but more rounded and subtle, less obvious. A collector's item, a slice of history, and an important link between the past and contemporary urban electric blues, most everything is right about this collection that many blues fans should celebrate.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/20/2006
  • Label: Delmark
  • UPC: 038153078621
  • Catalog Number: 786
  • Sales rank: 153,186

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Magic Slim Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals
Joe Carter Guitar, Vocals
Fred Below Drums, Vocals
Lacy Gibson Guitar
Douglas Holt Drums
Nick Holt Bass
Coleman "Daddy Rabbit" Pettis Guitar
Sunnyland Slim Piano
Willie Black Bass
Technical Credits
Bobby Troup Composer
Ralph Bass Producer
Morris Magic Slim Holt Composer
Elmore James Composer
Robert G. Koester Producer
Jim O'Neal Liner Notes
Aaron Walker Composer
Rein Wisse Cover Photo
Robert McCullum Composer
Bernard Roth Composer
William Cole Composer
Traditional Composer
Steve Wagner Producer, Remixing
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