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Home Blues Compilation Blues, Blues Christmas 1925-1955 In The Blues, Jazz, Boogie-Woogie And Gospel Spirit (2006)

Blues, Blues Christmas 1925-1955 In The Blues, Jazz, Boogie-Woogie And Gospel Spirit (2006)

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Blues, Blues Christmas 1925-1955 In The Blues, Jazz, Boogie-Woogie And Gospel Spirit (2006)

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1-1 	–Frankie 'Half-Pint' Jaxon 	Christ Was Born On Christmas Morn 	
1-2 	–Titus Turner 	Christmas Morning Blues 	
1-3 	–The Cats And The Fiddle 	Hep Cat's Holiday 	
1-4 	–Ralph Willis 	Christmas Blues 	
1-5 	–Willie "61" Blackwell 	Junior's A Jap Girl's Christmas For His Santa Claus 	
1-6 	–Butterbeans & Susie 	Papa Ain't No Santa Claus 	
1-7 	–Jimmy Butler 	Trim Your Tree 	
1-8 	–Gatemouth Moore 	Christmas Blues 	
1-9 	–Harry Crafton With Doc Bagby's Orchestra 	Bring That Cadillac Back 	
1-10 	–Bertha "Chippie" Hill 	Christmas Man Blues 	
1-11 	–Cecil Gant 	Hello Santa Claus 	
1-12 	–Bumble Bee Slim 	Christmas And No Santa Claus 	
1-13 	–Felix Gross 	Love For Christmas 	
1-14 	–Lonnie Johnson	Happy New Year Darling 	
1-15 	–Tampa Red 	Christmas & New Year's Blues 	
1-16 	–Amos Milburn 	Let's Make Christmas Merry, Baby 	
1-17 	–Julia Lee & Her Boy Friends 	Christmas Spirit 	
1-18 	–Bessie Smith 	At The Christmas Ball 	
1-19 	–Rev. A.W. Nix 	How Will You Spend Christmas? 	
1-20 	–Harmon Ray 	Xmas Blues 	
1-21 	–Jimmy Witherspoon 	How I Hate To See Christmas Come Around 	
1-22 	–Joe Turner With Pete Johnson And His Orchestra 	Christmas Date Boogie 	
1-23 	–Sugar Chile Robinson 	Christmas Boogie 	
1-24 	–Leadbelly 	The Christmas Song 	
1-25 	–Lightnin' Hopkins 	Happy New Year 	
1-26 	–Rev. Edward W. Clayborn 	The Wrong Way To Celebrate Christmas 	

2-1 	–Bo Carter 	Santa Claus 	
2-2 	–Black Ace 	Christmas Time 	
2-3 	–Mary Harris	Happy New Year Blues 	
2-4 	–Charley Jordan 	Christmas Christmas Blues 	
2-5 	–The Johnny Otis Orchestra 	Happy New Year, Baby 	
2-6 	–Little Esther And Mel Walker With Johnny Otis 	Faraway Chistmas Blues 	
2-7 	–Sonny Boy Williamson 	Christmas Morning Blues 	
2-8 	–Leroy Carr 	Christmas In Jail 	
2-9 	–Kansas City Kitty 	Christmas Mornin' Blues 	
2-10 	–Rev. J. M. Gates 	Did You Spend Christmas Day In Jail? 	
2-11 	–Rev. J. M. Gates 	Death Might Be Your Santa Claus 	
2-12 	–Blind Lemon Jefferson 	Happy New Year Blues 	
2-13 	–Smokey Hogg 	New Year's Eve Blues 	
2-14 	–Larry Darnell 	Christmas Blues 	
2-15 	–Sons Of Heaven 	When Was Jesus Born 	
2-16 	–J. B. Summers With Doc Bagby's Orchestra 	I Want A Present For Christmas 	
2-17 	–Sonny Parker With Lionel Hampton Orchestra 	Boogie Woogie Santa Claus 	
2-18 	–Roy Milton & His Solid Senders 	New Year's Resolution Blues 	
2-19 	–Sonny Boy Williamson		Sonny Boy's Christmas Blues 	
2-20 	–Roosevelt Sykes 	Let Me Hang My Stocking In Your Christmas Tree 	
2-21 	–Elzadie Robinson 	The Santa Claus Crave 	
2-22 	–Walter Davis 		Santa Claus 	
2-23 	–Victoria Spivey 	Christmas Morning Blues 	
2-24 	–Boll Weavil 		Christmas Time Blues 	
2-25 	–Floyd Dixon 	Empty Stocking Blues 	
2-26 	–Mabel Scott With Les Welch And His Orchestra 	Boogie Woogie Santa Claus

 

Christmas and the blues might seem at first like a strange combination, given that the music of the holiday season is usually joyful, hopeful, and bright, but no other time of the year is so good at showing you what you don't have, and what you can't get, and if you have the blues at Christmas, well, it's going to be a pretty heavy dose. This generous two-disc set from Document Records features 52 tracks of vintage African-American Christmas-themed blues and gospel pieces (with a couple of street sermons thrown in) recorded between 1925 and 1955, ranging from down-and-out laments and jailhouse moans to surprising (and occasionally risqué) requests for what Santa can bring down the chimney. Highlights on the first disc include the opening track, the joyous "Christ Was Born on Christmas Morn," recorded in 1925 by comedian and female impersonator Frankie "Half Pint" Jaxon; Harry Crafton's "Bring That Cadillac Back" (a Cadillac might not be the best gift if your girlfriend likes to ramble) from 1947; Tampa Red's amazing, ringing slide guitar tone on "Christmas and New Year's Blues" from 1936; and the bizarre, disturbing field recording of "Junior's a Jap Girl's Christmas for His Santa Claus," sung by Willie Blackwell for Alan Lomax in Arkansas in 1942. Other high points include the charming "Christmas Boogie," recorded in 1950 by piano prodigy (he was only ten years old when this recording was made) Frankie "Sugar Chile" Robinson and the intense, bottled-up street-corner sermon "The Wrong Way to Celebrate Xmas," recorded by Rev. Edward Clayborn in 1928. The second disc yields even more holiday gems, including the bottleneck guitar attack of Black Ace (Babe Karo Lemon Turner) on 1937's "Christmas Time Blues (Beggin' Santa Claus)"; Leroy Carr's stark and brilliant "Christmas in Jail" from 1929; a breezy, bouncing "When Jesus Was Born" by gospel harmony quartet the Sons of Heaven (who were really the Selah Jubilee Singers doing a little moonlighting -- which they did often, also recording as the Jubilators, the Southern Harmonaires, and the Larks) from 1948; and the sparse, stunning "Christmas Time Blues" by the mysterious Boll Weavil (Willie McNeil), also from 1948. A marvelous collection, Blues, Blues Christmas is a refreshing addition to the more standard holiday material that prevails during the season. ---Steve Leggett, Rovi

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