Friday, 29 March 2019

The Blues Scene


This is another in this truly impressive series of Decca/Deram released tracks from the mid-sixties. This time it deals with the "r&b"/upbeat blues rock scene. While there are crossovers with "The R'n'B Scene", the material on here is pretty much all fast-paced, energetic rocking blues. Rhythm and blues, in fact. It only covers stuff that was released on Deram/Decca, so there is no Who, Yardbirds, Animals, Rolling Stones or Them but, among the lesser-known names, there are a few famous ones too. It goes without saying on this series that the remastered sound is 100% brilliant.


1. Curly - John Mayall & The Blues Breakers
2. Key To The Highway - Eddie Boyd And His Blues Band
3. The Super-Natural - John Mayall & The Blues Breakers
4. Pretty Girls Everywhere - Otis Spann
5. Blue Coat Man - Eddie Boyd And His Blues Band
6. Third Degree - Champion Jack Dupree
7. Steppin' Out - John Mayall & The Blues Breakers
8. Train To Nowhere - Savoy Brown
9. Roll Me Over - Curtis Jones
10. Get On The Right Track Baby - Zoot Money's Big Roll Band
11. Night Time Is The Right Time - Alexis Korner Skiffle Group
12. Sweet Little Angel - Mae Mercer
13. Strut Around - The Graham Bond Organisation
14. Long Night - John Mayall
15. Goin' Down Slow - Davy Graham
16. Taste And Try, Before You Buy - Savoy Brown
17. Me And My Woman - Keef Hartley Band
18. Dust My Broom - Eddie Boyd And His Blues Band
19. Barrelhouse Woman - Champion Jack Dupree & His Blues Band
20. I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town - Rod Stewart
21. Double Trouble - John Mayall & The Blues Breakers
22. 24 Hours - Champion Jack Dupree
23. Early In The Morning - Alexis Korner Skiffle Group
24. Let Me Love You Baby - Savoy Brown Blues Band
25. I Need Your Love - John Mayall & The Blues Breakers

"Curly" is a searing piece of guitar-driven fuzz to start off. It is an instrumental and it features some excellent guitar throughout, drums too. Great stuff. Their second track (there are six in all) on the album, "The Super-Natural" is another instrumental, this time sounding very like Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac. Eddie Boyd's "Key To The Highway" is an authentic-sounding slow, piano and harmonica-backed blues. His "Blue Coat Man" is an early rock'n'roll-influenced boogie-woogie blues with some sumptuous toe-tapping drums and accompanying guitar. Jools Holland would love this.

Otis Spann's "Pretty Girls Everywhere" is a catchy and rhythmic, groovy piece of upbeat, rocking blues. Champion Jack Dupree's "Third Degree" is a genuine, slow-burning, bassy blues. John Mayall is back again, with another corking instrumental, "Steppin' Out", once more featuring that buzzy guitar. Then we get some authentic blues in "Train To Nowhere" by Savoy Brown and "Roll Me Over" from Curtis Jones.

Zoot Money's "Get On The Right Track Baby" is very jazzy and Georgie Fame-like. Mae Mercer's "Sweet Little Angel" is a storming piece of guitar and piano solid blues. There really is so much good material on here. The Graham Bond Organisation have featured on some of the other compilations in this series. They were an impressive outfit who, unfortunately, never quite made it. They featured future Cream members bassist Jack Bruce and drummer Ginger Baker, so no wonder they were good. Here they give us the thumping "Strut Around".

The remaining John Mayall, Eddie Boyd, Champion Jack Dupree, Savoy Brown and Alexis Korner tracks are all excellent. A rarity is a young Rod Stewart's "I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town".

These days, I find I am retreating more and more into the comforting blanket of music, often the blues, to keep me from going insane. This fine album is one that helps with my treatment.


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