A Short Cut to the Grave

A Short Cut to the Grave

CD

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Overview

A Short Cut to the Grave

This wonderful set includes four discs, 100 tracks in all, of vintage blues 78s released between 1924 and 1942 compiled by collector and archivist Neil Slaven. Each of the four discs has a theme, with the first disc presenting songs about gambling (including Peg Leg Howell's harrowing and kinetic "Skin Game Blues"), the second covering alcohol and drugs (including Tommy Johnson's immortal "Canned Heat Blues"), the third playlisting songs about jail and prison (including Bukka White's powerful "Parchman Farm Blues"), and the fourth winds things up with songs about death (including Blind Lemon Jefferson's "See That My Grave Is Kept Clean"). Several of the sides here will be familiar to serious fans of prewar country blues, but there are enough rare sides here, too, to make this set an archival treasure, and the themed discs help sketch out the imagined (and sometimes very real) arc of many of these players' lives and times.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/24/2014
Label: Jsp Records
UPC: 0788065712129
catalogNumber: 77121

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. Four-Eleven-Forty Four
  2. Numbers on the Brain
  3. Coon Can Blues
  4. Skin Game Blues
  5. Georgia Skin
  6. Snitchin' Gambler Blues
  7. Policy Blues
  8. Alley Crap Game
  9. Gambler's Blues
  10. Poker Woman Blues
  11. Bad Luck Dice
  12. Hitting the Numbers
  13. Dices Blues
  14. Policy Blues
  15. Policy Dream Blues (You Better Get on It)
  16. Policy Blues (You Can't 3-6-9 Me)
  17. Policy Wheels Blues
  18. I'm a Gamblin' Woman
  19. Coon Can Shorty
  20. Gambling Man
  21. Drunken Gambler
  22. Policy Writer's Blues
  23. Number Runner's Blues
  24. Good Gamblin'
  25. Roaming Gambler

Disc 2

  1. Booze and Blues
  2. Corn Liquor Blues
  3. Dope Head Blues
  4. Cocaine Blues
  5. Dead Drunk Blues
  6. Bootlegging Blues
  7. Canned Heat Blues
  8. Don't Drink It in Here
  9. Whiskey Moan Blues
  10. Whiskey Drinkin' Blues
  11. Me and My Whiskey
  12. Cocaine Habit Blues
  13. Papa Wants to Knock a Jug
  14. Corn Whiskey Blues
  15. Barrel of Whiskey Blues
  16. Devil's Island Gin
  17. Drinking Blues
  18. Bad Liquor Blues
  19. Drunken Woman Blues
  20. Bootleggin' Ain't Good No More
  21. Blackberry Wine
  22. Haven't Seen No Whiskey
  23. Good Gin Blues
  24. Beer Drinkin' Woman
  25. Blues That Made Me Drunk

Disc 3

  1. New Prison Blues
  2. Ninety Nine Year Blues
  3. The Jail House Blues
  4. Jailhouse Fire Blues
  5. The Escaped Convict
  6. Penitentiary Bound Blues
  7. Hangman's Blues
  8. Judge Harsh Blues
  9. Penitentiary
  10. Prison Bound Blues
  11. My Crime Blues
  12. Police Sergeant Blues
  13. Whiskey Selling Woman
  14. Robbin' and Stealin' Blues
  15. He's in the Jailhouse Now
  16. Buggy Jailhouse Blues
  17. Big House Blues
  18. Joliet Bound
  19. High Sheriff Blues
  20. Chain Gang Blues
  21. Jailhouse Blues
  22. Parchman Farm Blues
  23. Jailhouse Blues
  24. Angola Blues
  25. County Jail Blues

Disc 4

  1. See That My Grave Is Kept Clean
  2. My Daddy's Coffin Blues
  3. Burying Ground Blues
  4. Death Bell Blues
  5. Down in the Cemetery
  6. Dying Pickpocket Blues
  7. Prayer of Death, Pt. 2
  8. Suicide Blues
  9. Dying Mercy Blues
  10. Laying in the Graveyard
  11. Death Cell Blues
  12. Dead and Gone Mother
  13. Graveyard Blues (Dead and Gone Blues)
  14. Death Letter Blues
  15. Six Cold Feet in the Ground
  16. Graveyard Blues
  17. Crying Mother Blues
  18. When the Breath Bids the Body Goodbye
  19. Death of the Gambler
  20. Gonna Kill My Baby
  21. Bone Yard Blues
  22. Strange Place Blues
  23. Death of Walter Barnes
  24. A Short Cut to the Grave
  25. Death Valley Blues

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Kokomo Arnold   Guitar,Vocals
Barbecue Bob   Guitar,Vocals
Scrapper Blackwell   Guitar,Vocals
Lucille Bogan   Vocals
Big Bill Broonzy   Guitar
Bumble Bee Slim   Vocals
Leroy Carr   Piano,Vocals
Sam Collins   Guitar,Vocals
Blind John Davis   Piano
Georgia Tom   Piano,Vocals,Human Whistle,Group Member
Champion Jack Dupree   Piano,Vocals
Sleepy John Estes   Guitar,Vocals
Jim Jackson   Guitar,Vocals
Papa Charlie Jackson   Banjo,Vocals
Blind Lemon Jefferson   Guitar,Vocals
Lonnie Johnson   Guitar
Tommy Johnson   Guitar,Vocals
Furry Lewis   Guitar,Vocals
Blind Willie McTell   Guitar,Vocals
Memphis Minnie   Guitar,Vocals
Memphis Slim   Piano,Vocals
Robert Nighthawk   Guitar,Vocals
Charley Patton   Guitar,Vocals
Funny Paper Smith   Guitar,Vocals
Victoria Spivey   Vocals
Roosevelt Sykes   Piano,Vocals
Sylvester Weaver   Guitar,Vocals
Peetie Wheatstraw   Piano,Vocals
Bukka White   Guitar,Vocals
Walter Beasley   Vocals
Speckled Red   Piano
Frankie "Half-Pint" Jaxon   Vocals,Group Member
Tampa Red   Guitar,Vocals,Group Member
Don Redman   Clarinet,Group Member
Clifford Gibson   Guitar,Vocals
Buddy Boy Hawkins   Guitar,Vocals
Bessie Tucker   Vocals
Curley Weaver   Guitar
Robert Wilkins   Guitar,Vocals
Ed Bell   Guitar,Vocals
Blind Blake   Guitar,Vocals
Leroy Batchelor   Bass
Billy Bird   Guitar,Vocals
Charlie Burse   Guitar,Group Member
Bob Campbell   Guitar,Vocals
Leonard Caston   Guitar,Vocals
Buddy Christian   Banjo
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup   Guitar,Vocals
Tom Dickson   Guitar,Vocals
Charlie Dixon   Banjo,Group Member
Alfred Elkins   Bass
Fletcher Henderson   Piano,Group Member
Jimmie Gordon   Piano,Vocals
Porter Grainger   Piano
Hattie Hart   Vocals,Group Member
K.D. Johnson   Piano
Jab Jones   Jug,Group Member
Luke Jordan   Guitar,Vocals
Huddie Ledbetter   Guitar,Vocals
Hambone Lewis   Jug,Group Member
John Lindsay   Bass
Joe McCoy   Guitar,Vocals
Robert Lee McCoy   Harmonica
Red Nelson   Vocals
Yank Rachell   Mandolin
Ben Ramey   Kazoo,Vocals,Group Member
Walter Roland   Piano
Washboard Sam   Vocals,Washboard
Chuck Segar   Piano
Bill Settles   Bass
Will Shade   Harmonica,Vocals,Group Member
Vol Stevens   Banjo,Mandolin,Group Member
Wilson Swain   Bass
Will Weldon   Guitar,Group Member
Sonny Boy Williamson   Harmonica,Piano,Vocals
Georgia White   Piano,Vocals
Black Bob   Piano
Robert Cooksey   Harmonica
Bobby Leecan   Guitar
Charlie Green   Trombone,Group Member
Gene Campbell   Guitar,Vocals
Blind Teddy Darby   Vocals
Margaret Johnson   Vocals
Jack Newman   Piano,Vocals
Charlie Polk   Jug,Group Member
Peg Leg Howell   Guitar,Vocals
Harry Chatman   Piano
Charles Avery   Piano
James "Stump" Johnson   Vocals
Julius Daniels   Guitar,Vocals
Alex Robinson   Piano
Bill Gaither   Guitar,Vocals
George "Bullet" Williams   Harmonica,Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part
Jenny Pope   Vocals
Leola Manning   Vocals
Gene Gilmore   Piano
Mooch Richardson   Guitar,Vocals
Howard Scott   Cornet,Group Member
Dot Rice   Piano
Lewis Black   Guitar,Vocals
Walter Vincson   Guitar,Vocals
Big Maceo   Piano,Vocals
Charlie "Dad" Nelson   Guitar,Vocals
Lillie Mae   Vocals
Georgia Jazz Band   Guest Appearance
Nolan Welsh   Piano,Vocals
New Orleans Willie Jackson   Vocals
Bessie Mae Smith   Vocals
Lonnie Chatman   Violin,Group Member
Charlie Nickerson   Vocals,Group Member
Bo Chatman   Guitar,Vocals,Group Member
Clarence Lofton   Piano
Albert Clemons   Piano,Vocals
Louisiana Johnny   Vocals
Black Spider Dumplin'   Vocals
"Jackson" Joe Williams   Guitar,Vocals
Little Son Joe Lawlers   Guitar,Vocals

Technical Credits

Neil Slaven   Liner Notes

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