Violin, Sing the Blues for Me: African-American Fiddlers 1926-1949

Violin, Sing the Blues for Me: African-American Fiddlers 1926-1949


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Violin, Sing the Blues for Me: African-American Fiddlers 1926-1949

As Marshall Wyatt's thorough liner notes explain in the accompanying 32-page booklet, the violin had a more prominent role in early blues than has often been supposed. Violins were far more apt to be played than guitars in the 19th century, and even when the blues began to be recorded in the 1920s, violins were still often used, although they weren't as apt to be featured on disc as the guitar and other instruments were. This 24-track compilation (with only one cut dating from after 1935) includes some fairly recognizable blues names like Peg Leg Howell, Howard Armstrong, Cow Cow Davenport, the Mississippi Sheiks, the Memphis Jug Band, Charley Patton (accompanying Henry Sims), and Big Joe Williams (a 1935 version of his signature tune "Baby Please Don't Go"), although many of the performers are far more obscure. The material tends toward the more good-timey and folky side of the rural blues tradition; the violins can get into a hoedown kick, as on Peg Leg Howell's "Beaver Slide Rag," or get into a rapid ragtime mode, as on Louie Bluie & Ted Bogan's "Ted's Stomp." Because of the chronological span and wide roster of artists represented, it's a good overview of violin-informed early blues, a subgenre that hasn't gotten a whole of attention. And check out Frank Stokes' "Right Now Blues" to get your head spun around when you hear a lyric that was repeated in Chuck Berry's classic "Reelin' and Rockin'."

Product Details

Release Date: 08/24/1999
Label: Old Hat Ent.
UPC: 0670725100226
catalogNumber: 1002
Rank: 95947

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Cow Cow Davenport   Piano
Lonnie Johnson   Violin,Vocals
Memphis Jug Band   Track Performer
Mississippi Sheiks   Track Performer
Charley Patton   Guitar
Frank Stokes   Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer
Big Joe Williams   Guitar
Joe Williams   Vocals
Howard Armstrong   Violin
Walter Vinson   Guitar,Vocals
Carl Martin   String Bass
Eddie Anthony   Violin,Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part,Track Performer
Will Batts   Violin
Ted Bogan   Guitar
Charlie Burse   Guitar,Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part
Bo Chatmon   Violin,Vocals,Track Performer
Lonnie Chatmon   Violin
Chasey Collins   Washboard
Jim Fields   Violin,Vocals
Nap Hayes   Guitar
Paul Johnson   Guitar
Charles Jones   Violin
Jab Jones   Jug
Jack Kelly   Guitar,Vocals
Charlie McCoy   Banjo,Mandolin
Tom Nelson   Track Performer
Charlie Pierce   Violin
Dan Sane   Guitar
Henry "Son" Sims   Violin,Vocals,Track Performer
Dad Tracy   One-String Fiddle
Lee Warren   Banjo,Mandolin
Henry "Rubberlegs" Williams   Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer
Willie Black   Banjo
Jess Ferguson   Violin
Rudolph Thompson   Jug
Buford Threlkeld   Guitar
Jack Kelly & His South Memphis Jug Band   Track Performer
Tommie Bradley   Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer
Peg Leg Howell   Guitar
Andrew Baxter   Guitar,Violin,Vocals,Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part,Track Performer
Matthew Prater   Mandolin
Robert Burse   Percussion
Roland Martin   Guitar
Robert Steele   Kazoo
Whistler & His Jug Band   Track Performer
Alabama Sheiks   Track Performer
Andrew & Jim Baxter   Track Performer
James Cole   Violin
Mobile Strugglers   Track Performer
Tom "Blue Coat" Nelson   Track Performer
Booker Orchestra   Track Performer
Jim Booker   Violin
Mississippi Mud Steppers   Track Performer
Joe Williams' Washboard Blues Singers   Track Performer
Eddie Dimmitt   Mandolin

Technical Credits

Charlie Burse   Composer
Will Shade   Composer
Marshall Wyatt   Producer,Liner Notes,Art Direction

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