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Backtracking: The Duke Recordings, Vol. 2
     

Backtracking: The Duke Recordings, Vol. 2

by Junior Parker
 
Herman Parker Jr. was one of the first to reconcile varying styles of popular black music of the '50s to create a slick, modern big band blues sound. In "Can't Understand," he draws upon many traditional delta and Memphis blues songs; in "Wondering" he incorporates tart single-string guitar, rocking shuffles, a scuffling horn section, and honking sax solos to back

Overview

Herman Parker Jr. was one of the first to reconcile varying styles of popular black music of the '50s to create a slick, modern big band blues sound. In "Can't Understand," he draws upon many traditional delta and Memphis blues songs; in "Wondering" he incorporates tart single-string guitar, rocking shuffles, a scuffling horn section, and honking sax solos to back his elegant, pleading vocals and urgent, trilling harp breaks. The result is blues that's sly, wicked, cool, and aggressive. BACKTRACKING showcases his musical evolution, including two of his blues-oriented singles from 1953 to 1966, "Stranded" and "Man or Mouse," as well as R&B flavored numbers like "Annie Get Your Yo-Yo." It also documents the combustible playing of stellar guitarist Pat Hare. Parker died at the age of 39 in 1971. This album shows why he -- along with Bobby Blue Bland -- was one of the top R&B acts in the country.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Cub Koda
This second volume of Parker's best for the Duke label, while leaving off early classics like "I Wanna Ramble," still delivers on a pile of great early and late tunes for the Houston-based label. Kicking off with the jump blues "Please Baby Blues" and the Howlin' Wolf-like "Can't Understand" from a 1953 session, the early sides vacillate between small rhythm sections with Pat Hare on guitar, to larger ensembles pointing toward Parker's musical future. The early sides reach their peak with the inclusion of "Pretty Baby," recorded in 1956, and Parker's version of Wolf's first single "Riding in the Moonlight." But in two years' time, Junior is recording more R&B-style material like "Barefoot Rock," "You're On My Mind," and culminating in "Annie Get Your YoYo" in 1961. "Get Away Blues" from 1965 and "Man or Mouse" from the following year complete the package. As always, Parker's smooth-as-silk voice and Sonny Boy-derived harp playing carry the day, making a strong case for him as a major mover and shaker on the blues scene during this period.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/16/1998
Label:
Mca
UPC:
0008811178628
catalogNumber:
11786

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Junior Parker   Primary Artist,Harmonica,Vocals
Arnett Cobb   Tenor Saxophone
Roy Gaines   Guitar
James Booker   Piano
Theodore Arthur   Tenor Saxophone
Wayne Bennett   Guitar
Joe Bridgewater   Trumpet
Johnny Brown   Guitar
John Browning   Trumpet
Pluma Davis   Trombone
Sonny Freeman   Drums
Joe Fritz   Alto Saxophone
Pat Hare   Guitar
Bill Harvey   Alto Saxophone
Clarence Holliman   Guitar
Otis Jackson   Bass
Hamp Simmons   Bass
John Starks   Drums
Jimmy Stewart   Trumpet
Richard Waters   Trombone
Conrad Johnson   Baritone Saxophone
Bill Johnson   Piano
Tommy Nevue   Trumpet
Joe Scott   Trumpet
Donnie McGowan   Piano

Technical Credits

Lou Donaldson   Composer
Mike Fink   Reissue Design
Andy McKaie   Reissue Producer
Dick Shurman   Reissue Producer
Robert McCullum   Composer

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