Blues The best music site on the web there is where you can read about and listen to blues, jazz, classical music and much more. This is your ultimate music resource. Tons of albums can be found within. http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862.html Thu, 02 Feb 2023 09:17:29 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Lonnie Johnson – Steppin' On The Blues (1990) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/26800-lonnie-johnson--steppin-on-the-blues-1990.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/26800-lonnie-johnson--steppin-on-the-blues-1990.html Lonnie Johnson – Steppin' On The Blues (1990)

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1		Mr. Johnson's Blues	2:40
2		Sweet Potato Blues	2:56
3		Steppin' On The Blues	2:52
4		I Done Told You	2:58
5		Mean Old Bedbug Blues	2:53
6		Toothache Blues — Part I	2:47
7		Toothache Blues — Part II	3:20
8		Have To Change Keys (To Play These Blues)	3:01
9		Guitar Blues	3:14
10		She's Making Whoopee In Hell Tonight	3:09
11		Playing With The Strings	2:59
12		No More Women Blues	3:00
13		Deep Blue Sea Blues	3:02
14		No More Troubles Now	3:14
15		Got The Blues For Murder Only	3:22
16		Untitled	2:46
17		6/88 Glide	2:58
18		Racketeer's Blues	3:12
19		I'm Nuts About That Gal	3:09

Guitar – Eddie Lang (tracks: 8, 9), James Johnson (tracks: 4), Lonnie Johnson
Piano – Clarence Williams (tracks: 6, 7), John Arnold (tracks: 1)
Piano [Probably] – De Loise Searcy (tracks: 2), John Erby (tracks: 3, 17)
Soloist, Guitar – Lonnie Johnson (tracks: 3, 4, 11, 16, 17)
Vocals – Lonnie Johnson (tracks: 1, 2, 5, 10, 14, 15, 18, 19), Texas Alexander (tracks: 12, 13), Victoria Spivey (tracks: 6, 7)

 

Groundbreaking guitar work of dazzling complexity that never fails to amaze -- and this stuff was cut in the 1920s! Lonnie Johnson's astonishingly fluid guitar work was massively influential (Robert Johnson, for one, was greatly swayed by his waxings), and his no-nonsense vocals (frequently laced with threats of violence -- "Got the Blues for Murder Only" and "She's Making Whoopee in Hell Tonight" are prime examples on this 19-cut collection) are scarcely less impressive. Johnson's torrid guitar duets with jazzman Eddie Lang retain their sense of legend over seven decades after they were cut. ---Bill Dahl, allmusic.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever (Bogdan Marszałkowski)) Lonnie Johnson Mon, 26 Apr 2021 09:13:35 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - The Original Guitar Wizard - Mr. Johnson's Blues (2004) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/26755-lonnie-johnson-the-original-guitar-wizard-mr-johnsons-blues-2004.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/26755-lonnie-johnson-the-original-guitar-wizard-mr-johnsons-blues-2004.html Lonnie Johnson-The Original Guitar Wizard - Mr. Johnson's Blues (2004)

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1-1	Lonnie Johnson–	Mr. Johnson's Blues	2:40
1-2	Lonnie Johnson–	Johnson's Trio Stomp	2:58
1-3	Lonnie Johnson–	To Do This You Got To Know How	3:07
1-4	Lonnie Johnson)–	South Bound Water	2:43
1-5	James Johnson–	I Done Told You	2:56
1-6	Lonnie Johnson–	Steppin' On The Blues	2:51
1-7	Lonnie Johnson–	Steady Grind	3:24
1-8	Lonnie Johnson–	Four Hands Are Better Than Two	3:15
1-9	Lonnie Johnson–	Woke Up With The Blues In My Fingers	3:08
1-10	Lonnie Johnson–	Backwater Blues	3:35
1-11	Lonnie Johnson–	Mean Old Bedbug Blues	2:52
1-12	Lonnie Johnson–	Roaming Rambler Blues	3:02
1-13	Lonnie Johnson–	Stay Out Of Walnut Street Alley	3:10
1-14	Lonnie Johnson–	St. Louis Cyclone Blues	3:03
1-15	Lonnie Johnson–	Bedbug Blues, Pt 2	3:00
1-16	Lonnie Johnson–	Garter Snake Blues	3:14
1-17	Lonnie Johnson–	6/88 Glide	2:58
1-18	Lonnie Johnson–	Life Saver Blues	3:04
1-19	Louis Armstrong And His Hot Five-	I'm Not Rough	2:58
1-20	Lonnie Johnson–	Sweet Potato Blues	2:56
1-21	Louis Armstrong And His Hot Five–	Hotter Than That	3:01
1-22	Louis Armstrong And His Hot Five–	Savoy Blues	3:28
1-23	Lonnie Johnson–	Playing With The Strings	2:59
1-24	Lonnie Johnson–	Stompin' Em Along Now	2:53

Piano – John Arnold, James Johnson, John Erby, Lazy Harris, Porter Grainger
Vocals, Guitar, Violin – Lonnie Johnson
Piano [Probably] – Al De Loise Searcy
---
Five:
Banjo – Johnny St. Cyr
Clarinet – Johnny Dodds
Piano – Lil Armstrong
Trombone – Kid Ory
Trumpet, Vocals – Louis Armstrong

 

Johnson was a pioneering Blues and Jazz guitarist and banjoist. He started playing in cafes in New Orleans and in 1917 he traveled in Europe, playing in revues and briefly with Will Marion Cook's Southern Syncopated Orchestra. When he returned home to New Orleans in 1918 he discovered that his entire family had been killed by a flu epidemic except for one brother. He and his surviving brother, James "Steady Roll" Johnson moved to St. Louis in 1920 where Lonnie played with Charlie Creath's Jazz-O-Maniacs and with Fate Marable in their Mississippi riverboat bands.

In 1925 Johnson married Blues singer Mary Johnson and won a Blues contest sponsored by the Okeh record company. Part of the prize was a recording deal with the company. Throughout the rest of the 1920s he recorded with a variety of bands and musicians, including Eddie Lang, Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five and the Duke Ellington Orchestra. In the 1930s Johnson moved to Cleveland, Ohio and worked with the Putney Dandridge Orchestra, and then in a tire factory and steel mill. In 1937 he moved back to Chicago and played with Johnny Dodds, and Jimmie Noone. Johnson continued to play for the rest of his life, but was often forced to leave the music business for periods to make a living. In 1963 he once again appeared briefly with Duke Ellington. ---Red Hot Jazz Archive, deepsouthernsoul.blogspot.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever (Bogdan Marszałkowski)) Lonnie Johnson Mon, 12 Apr 2021 14:04:46 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - Another Night To Cry (1962/2018) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/24433-lonnie-johnson-another-night-to-cry-19622018.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/24433-lonnie-johnson-another-night-to-cry-19622018.html Lonnie Johnson - Another Night To Cry (1962/2018)

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1 	Another Night To Cry 	
2 	I Got News For You, Baby 	
3 	Blues After Hours 	
4 	You Didn´t Mean What You Said 	
5 	Fine Booze And Heavy Dues 	
6 	I´ve Got To Get Rid Of You 	
7 	Bow Legged Baby 	
8 	Make Love To Me, Baby 	
9 	Lots Of Loving 	
10 	A Story About Barbara 	
11 	Goodbye Kitten

Lonnie Johnson - Composer, Guitar, Keyboards, Violin, Vocals 

 

Lonnie Johnson, a talented vocalist and guitarist who chose to spend much of his life playing blues (although in the 1920s he recorded with some of the top jazz stars), recorded his fifth effort for Prestige/Bluesville -- a solo set. "Blues After Hours" is an instrumental that shows off his jazz roots and many of the 11 songs (all of which are Johnson originals) have spots for his guitar. Since there are only about 34 minutes on this set, and none of the individual songs even reach four minutes, this is not one of the more essential Johnson releases to own, but it does have its strong moments. ---Scott Yanow, AllMusic Review

 

Singer-songwriter-musician Alonzo “Lonnie” Johnson was born on February 8, 1899 in New Orleans. Johnson was a musical pioneer for, among other reasons, his work with the electric guitar and the electric violin.

Besides the fact he created some great music, he has been credited with creating the note-by-note guitar solo style that became common in many kinds of music. His career spanned decades, starting with his jazz and blues work in the 1920s and 1930s. And after World War II, he had some success as an R&B performer, although he eventually ended up taking other labor jobs to support himself.

Johnson died on June 16, 1970 in Toronto. He had been in poor health following getting hit by a car in March 1969. Because he had no money when he died, in 2014 the Killer Blues Headstone Project paid for the headstone on his grave. ---chimesfreedom.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Sun, 25 Nov 2018 13:47:40 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - Blues Roots, Vol. 8 Swingin' With Lonnie (1964) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/15895-lonnie-johnson-blues-roots-vol-8-swingin-with-lonnie-1964.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/15895-lonnie-johnson-blues-roots-vol-8-swingin-with-lonnie-1964.html Lonnie Johnson - Blues Roots, Vol. 8 Swingin' With Lonnie (1964)

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A1		Tomorrow Night	2:55
A2		Clementine Blues	6:10
A3		See See Rider	2:55
A4		Raining On The Cold Ground	4:50
A5		Jelly, Jelly	3:29
B1		Too Late To Cry	3:35
B2		Call Me Darling	3:15
B3		Why Did You Go	4:35
B4		Swingin' With Lonnie	3:15
B5		Please Help Me	4:35

Lonnie Johnson - guitar, vocals
Otis Spann - piano 

 

Backed by pianist Otis Spann, singer/guitarist Lonnie Johnson performs blues and ballads on this well-rounded set. Included are such numbers as his old hit "Tomorrow Night," "See See Rider," "Jelly, Jelly" and a lone instrumental, "Swingin' With Lonnie." An above-average outing by the veteran bluesman. ---Scott Yanow, allmusic.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Sun, 20 Apr 2014 16:09:48 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - Mr. Johnson's Blues (2000) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8975-lonnie-johnson-mr-johnsons-blues.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8975-lonnie-johnson-mr-johnsons-blues.html Lonnie Johnson - Mr. Johnson's Blues (2000)

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1. Mr. Johnson's Blues
2. Roamin' Rambler Blues
3. Guitar Blues
4. Winnie the Wailer
5. No More Troubles Now
6. There Is No Justice
7. Have to Change Keys (To Play These Blues)
8. Broken Heart That Never Smiles
9. Tin Can Alley Blues
10. Away Down in the Alley Blues
11. Stompin' Em Along Slow
12. Uncle Ned, Don't Use Your Head
13. Bull Frog Moan
14. Low Land Moan
15. Racketeer's Blues
16. South Bound Water
17. Blues in G
18. Sweet Potato Blues

 

In 1944 Bruce Cook went with his father to a concert sponsored by the Hot Club of Chicago, a program or traditional jazz in the old New Orleans style. The father was a serious jazzman who never made much money at it but played occasionally and practiced over an hour each day, running scales and jamming with records by Bix Beiderbecke, Red Nichols and Louis Armstrong. Ten-year-old Bruce had already found, at the bottom of the drawer, a small stack of records quite different from the ones his father listened to, ruder and more primitive, tunes from people like Tampa Red, Bessie Smith, Cow Cow Davenport. But this was Bruce's first encounter with a bluesman live. Almost thirty years later, in Listen to the Blues, Cook described it:

“His name was Lonnie Johnson and he was the real thing. ... I remember my own impression in listening to him was that it would be hard to imagine anybody playing better. There is a quality that the real virtuoso communicates, an added dimension to his playing, that makes it immediately and recognizably distinct from that of one who is merely proficient. Lonnie Johnson had it that day, and he may always have had it, for Pops Foster, though then hardly more than a boy, remebered him as "the only guy we had around New Orleans who could play jazz guitar. he was great on guitar. Django Reinhardt was a great jazz player like Johnson." And here he was, at fifty, playing deep rolls and treble runs that he extended with amazing subtlety, torturing out the last nuance of melody from all those simple blues chords.

But the blues is essentially a vocal art, and Lonnie Johnson was preeminently a blues singer. I remember his voice as hushed and rather insinuating in tone; he was a singer with a style that managed to say more than words alone might allow. He was a dapper man, light-complexioned, with a pencil mustache, and dressed in a careful and precise way that reminded me a little of my father. (I remember he kept his hat on as he played and sang, and that struck me as odd.) He was the very picture of the urban bluesman, and that was the image he projected as he sang – knowing, world-wise, a man who had no illusions but who still had pride in himself...

My father's attitude about all this was interesting. I remember asking him on the way home what he thought of Lonnie Johnson. he said he was a good guitar player, one of the best he had heard – and that's all he would say. I tried to draw him out on the blues we had heard, the odd, hushed style in which they'd been sung: I asked him what he thought of the blues and how come he didn't play them more himself. He just smiled, and shrugged, and changed the subject.”

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Mon, 18 Apr 2011 08:35:30 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - Blues By Lonnie Johnson [1960] http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8963-lonnie-johnson-blues-by-lonnie-johnson-1960.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8963-lonnie-johnson-blues-by-lonnie-johnson-1960.html Lonnie Johnson - Blues By Lonnie Johnson [1960]

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1. Don't Ever Love -3:33
2. No Love For Sale - 3:02
3. There's No Love - 2:25
4. I Don't Hurt Anymore - 3:53
5. She-Devil - 2:53
6. One-Sided Love Affair - 3:12
7. Big Leg Woman - 3:11 play
8. There Must Be A Way - 3:23 play
9. She's Drunk Again - 3:21
10. Blues 'Round My Door - 3:33
11. You Don't Move Me - 2:12
12. You Will Need Me - 3:27

Lonnie Johnson (Guitar.Violin, Keyboards,Vocals),
Claude Hopkins (Piano),
Bobby Donaldson (Drums),
Hal Singer (Sax (Tenor),
Wendell Marshall (Bass)

 

Lonnie Johnson's influence on modern jazz and blues guitar is staggering. His intricate, fluid playing inspired a long line of musicians from Charlie Christian to Lowell Fulson. But the kind of success his scions enjoyed often eluded Johnson. These recordings took place after a determined disc jockey finally located Johnson holding down a job as a janitor in a Ben Franklin store. And while they don't display the improvisational brilliance of his youth, Johnson's playing is still sharp and almost always captivating. The songs that best capture his smooth fretwork are "She Devil," "She's Drunk Again," and "Blues Around My Door." Johnson sticks mainly to simple blues structures, and there is one riff he revisits a little too often. But his dignified field holler still carries the power of 10 hurricanes, and strong sax work by Hal Singer keeps spirits high. --Ken Hohman

 

After four years off records and in obscurity, Lonnie Johnson launched his final comeback with this release, which has been reissued on CD. Teamed with tenor saxophonist Hal Singer, pianist Claude Hopkins, bassist Wendell Marshall and drummer Bobby Donaldson, Johnson sings and plays guitar on a variety of blues, showing that the layoff (he was working at the time as a janitor) had not hurt his abilities in the slightest. ---Scott Yanow, allmusic.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Sat, 16 Apr 2011 08:50:58 +0000
Lonnie Johnson With Elmer Snowdes - Blues, Ballads and Jumpin' Jazz (1960) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8093-lonnie-johnson-with-elmer-snowdes-blues-ballads-and-jumpin-jazz-1960.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8093-lonnie-johnson-with-elmer-snowdes-blues-ballads-and-jumpin-jazz-1960.html Lonnie Johnson With Elmer Snowdes - Blues, Ballads and Jumpin' Jazz (1960)

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1- Lester Leaps In play
2- Blue And All Alone
3- On The Sunny Side Of The Street
4- C Jam Blues
5- New Orleans Blues
6- Careless Love play
7- Stormy Weather (Take #1)
8- Stormy Weather (Take #2)
9- Ain't Gonna Give You None Of This Jelly Roll
10- Birth Of The Blues
Lonnie Johnson - electric guitar Elmer Snowden - acoustic guitar Wendell Marshall - bass

 

This informal, relaxed collection of 1960 duets features Snowden's surprisingly impressive acoustic work as prominently as Johnson's rich vocals and smooth electric guitar. Both of these veterans had successful associations with jazz legends during the early parts of their careers--Johnson with Ellington and Armstrong; Snowden with Eubie Blake and Count Basie among others--and the repertoire leans heavily on jazz standards. On five of six instrumentals, including "On the Sunny Side of the Street," "Lester Leaps In," and "C Jam Blues," Snowden's fleet acoustic guitar jumps to the fore, while Johnson takes lead on four vocal performances, including two superb takes of "Stormy Weather." Only on "Careless Love" does a guitar battle materialize. Still, the unique material, sparkling performances, and the light-hearted approach make for highly enjoyable listening. --Marc Greilsamer

When producer Chris Albertson brought Lonnie Johnson and guitarist Elmer Snowden into a studio for this album on April 9, 1960, both musicians hadn't recorded in a number of years. Indeed, Snowden hadn't seen the inside of a studio in 26 years, but you'd never know it by the fleet-fingered work he employs on the opening "Lester Leaps In," where he rips off one hot chorus after another. Johnson plays a dark-toned electric while Snowden plays acoustic, with Wendell Marshall rounding things out on bass. Given Johnson's reputation as a closet jazzer, it's remarkable that he merely comps rhythm behind Snowden's leads on "C-Jam Blues" and "On the Sunny Side of the Street." Johnson handles all the vocals, turning in an especially strong turn on the second take of "Stormy Weather." Lots of studio chatter make this disc of previously unissued material a real joy to listen to, a loose and relaxed session with loads of great playing and singing to recommend it. ---Cub Koda, AllMusic Review

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Tue, 01 Feb 2011 19:49:05 +0000
Lonnie Johnson With Elmer Snowden - Blues and Ballads (1960) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8083-lonnie-johnson-with-elmer-snowden-blues-and-ballads-1960.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/8083-lonnie-johnson-with-elmer-snowden-blues-and-ballads-1960.html Lonnie Johnson With Elmer Snowden - Blues and Ballads (1960)

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1 - Haunted House
2 - Memories Of You
3 - Blues For Chris
4 - I Found A Dream
5 - St. Louis Blues play
6 - I'll Get Along Somehow
7 - Savoy Blues play
8 - Backwater Blues
9 - Elmer's Blues
10 - He's A Jelly Roll Baker
* Lonnie Johnson - electric guitar, vocals
* Elmer Snowden - acoustic guitar
* Wendell Marshall - bass

 

The album has generally received high acclaim. Although one writer appears to disregard the album with a single sentence, calling it "just plain sad, lacking even the vitality of rock and roll." Others have noted Johnson's "plaintive, slightly nasal voice" and indicated that he "sings smooth blues and sentimental ballads with equal skill."described as a "sympathetic accompanist" with "an easy swingingly graceful style." One reviewer calls Johnson's performance on the blues numbers "convincing, affecting interpretations," but indicates that his performance on the three ballads is less consistent. He states, "On 'Memories of You', his approach is gentle and lyrical, and yet his controlled inner tension builds tremendous emotional power. Two other ballads, his own compositions are too stickily sentimental to be effective."

This beautiful album was engineered by Rudy Van Gelder in his Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, home studio where so much jazz history was made. It features guitar innovators Lonnie Johnson and Elmer Snowden together for the first time--despite a friendship going back to the 1920s when both appeared on some of the earliest jazz and blues 78s. Johnson, the father of single-note six-string soloing, is in marvelous voice on this selection of blues, ballads, and jazz, crooning the double-entendre "Jelly Roll Baker" and the heartache-laden "Back Water Blues" (a Bessie Smith tune he first cut in 1927) with a marksman's sense of pitch and chilling nuance. Snowden serves mostly as accompanist. But these men play so closely that they seem to be sharing every breath. --Ted Drozdowski, amazon.com

 

 

One of Lonnie Johnson's numerous comeback albums of the early 1960s, Blues & Ballads coincides with the folk/blues revival of that era, and presents the revered New Orleans-born guitarist/singer in fine form, despite years of inactivity. Ably assisted by guitarist Elmer Snowden and bassist Wendell Marshall, Johnson applies his plaintive croon and deft guitar playing to both sauntering rural blues tunes (the weary "Back Water Blues") and gorgeous jazz-tinged ballads (a spare, poignant take on "Memories of You"), effortlessly revealing his artistic range. A must for fans of the underrated bluesman, this record is followed by the excellent companion piece Blues, Ballads, & Jumpin' Jazz. ---allmusic.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Mon, 31 Jan 2011 19:46:57 +0000
Lonnie Johnson - He's A Jelly Roll Baker (1992) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/3781-lonnie-johnson-hes-a-jelly-roll-baker.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/3781-lonnie-johnson-hes-a-jelly-roll-baker.html Lonnie Johnson - He's A Jelly Roll Baker (1992)

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1. Why Women Go Wrong - 2:56
2. Nothing But A Rat - 3:00
3. Jersey Belle Blues - 3:00
4. The Loveless Blues - 3:15
5. I'm Just Dumb - 3:01
6. Get Yourself Together - 3:13
7. Crowing Rooster Blues - 2:40
8. That's Love - 2:59
9. Somebody's Got To Go - 3:08
10. Lazy Woman Blues - 3:04
11. Chicago Blues - 2:49
12. I Did All I Could - 3:05
13. In Love Again - 2:56
14. The Last Call - 3:18
15. Rambler's Blues - 2:56
16. Baby Remember Me - 3:02
17. He's A Jelly Roll Baker - 3:19
18. When You Feel Low Down - 2:57
19. The Victim Of Love - 3:14
20. Watch Shorty - 3:06
Lonnie Johnson - Guitar, Vocals
Blind John Davis, Joshua Altheimer, Lil Armstrong - Piano
Andrew Harris, Alfred Elkins, Ransom Knowling – Bass

 

This 20-song collection covers 1930s and '40s material in which Johnson primarily performs blues tunes, doing salty, sassy, mournful, and suggestive numbers in a distinctive, memorable fashion. His vocals on "Rambler's Blues," "In Love Again," the title cut, and several others, are framed by brilliant, creative playing and excellent support from such pianists as Blind John Davis, Lil Hardin Armstrong, and Joshua Altheimer. This is tight, intuitive music in which Johnson set the tone and dominated the songs. If you're unaware of Lonnie Johnson's brilliant blues material, here's an excellent introduction. ---Ron Wynn, allmusisc.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Sun, 07 Mar 2010 11:38:36 +0000
Lonnie Johnson – The Blues Collection 74 – Guitar Blues http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/2253-lonniebluescollet74.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/blues/862-lonniejohnson/2253-lonniebluescollet74.html Lonnie Johnson – The Blues Collection 74 – Guitar Blues (1996)


01. Lonnie Johnson - Sweet Woman You Can't Go Wrong (2:49)
02. Lonnie Johnson - Life Saver Blues (3:04)
03. Lonnie Johnson - Blue Ghost Blues (3:08)
04. Lonnie Johnson - Saint Louis Cyclone Blues (3:05)
05. Lonnie Johnson - Low Land Moan (3:17)
06. Lonnie Johnson - I'm So Tired of Living All Alone (3:04)
07. Lonnie Johnson - When You Fall For Someone That's Not Your Own (3:17)
08. Lonnie Johnson - Way Down That Lonesome Road (2:40)
09. Lonnie Johnson - Sundown Blues (3:02)
10. Lonnie Johnson - Baby Please Don't Leave Home No More (3:06)
11. Lonnie Johnson - Racketeer's Blues (3:13)
12. Lonnie Johnson - I'm Nuts About That Gal (3:13)
13. Lonnie Johnson - Why Women Go Wrong (2:53)
14. Lonnie Johnson - Trust Your Husband (2:56)
15. Lonnie Johnson - Four-o-three Blues (3:00)
16. Lonnie Johnson - She's Only a Woman (3:02)
17. Lonnie Johnson - Don't Be No Fool (2:55)
18. Lonnie Johnson - Get Yourself Together (3:13)

Bass [Possibly] – Alfred Elkins (tracks: 17, 18)
Guitar – Unknown Artist (tracks: 17, 18)
Piano – Josh Altheimer (tracks: 13 to 16), Porter Grainger (tracks: 4), Unknown Artist (tracks: 9)
Vocals, Guitar – Lonnie Johnson

Recorded between 1927 and 1940.
Track 1. - New York, 5 August 1927
Track 2, 3. - New York, 9 November 1927
Track 4. - New York, 3 October 1927
Track 5. - Chicago, 12 December 1927
Track 6, 8. - San Antonio, 13 March 1928
Track 7. - New York, 16 November 1928
Track 9, 10. - New York, 11 June 1929
Track 11, 12. - New York, 12 August 1932
Track 13, 14, 15, 16. - Chicago, 2 November 1939
Track 17, 18. - Chicago, 22 May 1940

 

Blues guitar simply would not have developed in the manner that it did if not for the prolific brilliance of Lonnie Johnson. He was there to help define the instrument's future within the genre and the genre's future itself at the very beginning, his melodic conception so far advanced from most of his prewar peers as to inhabit a plane all his own. For more than 40 years, Johnson played blues, jazz, and ballads his way; he was a true blues originator whose influence hung heavy on a host of subsequent blues immortals.

Johnson's extreme versatility doubtless stemmed in great part from growing up in the musically diverse Crescent City. Violin caught his ear initially, but he eventually made the guitar his passion, developing a style so fluid and inexorably melodic that instrumental backing seemed superfluous. He signed up with OKeh Records in 1925 and commenced to recording at an astonishing pace -- between 1925 and 1932, he cut an estimated 130 waxings. The red-hot duets he recorded with white jazz guitarist Eddie Lang (masquerading as Blind Willie Dunn) in 1928-1929 were utterly groundbreaking in their ceaseless invention. Johnson also recorded pioneering jazz efforts in 1927 with no less than Louis Armstrong's Hot Five and Duke Ellington's orchestra.

After enduring the Depression and moving to Chicago, Johnson came back to recording life with Bluebird for a five-year stint beginning in 1939. Under the ubiquitous Lester Melrose's supervision, Johnson picked up right where he left off, selling quite a few copies of "He's a Jelly Roll Baker" for old Nipper. Johnson went with Cincinnati-based King Records in 1947 and promptly enjoyed one of the biggest hits of his uncommonly long career with the mellow ballad "Tomorrow Night," which topped the R&B charts for seven weeks in 1948. More hits followed posthaste: "Pleasing You (As Long as I Live)," "So Tired," and "Confused." Time seemed to have passed Johnson by during the late '50s. He was toiling as a hotel janitor in Philadelphia when banjo player Elmer Snowden alerted Chris Albertson to his whereabouts. That rekindled a major comeback, Johnson cutting a series of albums for Prestige's Bluesville subsidiary during the early '60s and venturing to Europe under the auspices of Horst Lippmann and Fritz Rau's American Folk Blues Festival banner in 1963. Finally, in 1969, Johnson was hit by a car in Toronto and died a year later from the effects of the accident.

Johnson's influence was massive, touching everyone from Robert Johnson, whose seminal approach bore strong resemblance to that of his older namesake, to Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis, who each paid heartfelt tribute with versions of "Tomorrow Night" while at Sun. ---Bill Dahl, allmusic.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluesever) Lonnie Johnson Wed, 28 Oct 2009 22:13:40 +0000