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Forgotten Classic

This is one of those songs I heard way way back in the day and fell in love with it the first time I heard it, but I hardly ever heard it since then. An old, but not so old friend of mine on FB posted it this last week and it really struck me how great it was all over again. I love how music has the power to do that. So I just wanted to share it with all of you.

Thanks Karla.

Wiki:

Robin Leonard Trower (born 9 March 1945) is an English rock guitarist and vocalist who achieved success with Procol Harum during the 1960s, and then again as the bandleader of his own power trio.

Bridge of Sighs is the second solo album by the English guitarist and songwriter Robin Trower. It was released in 1974. Bridge of Sighs, his second album after leaving Procol Harum, was a breakthrough album for Trower. Songs from this album, such as “Bridge of Sighs”, “Too Rolling Stoned”, “Day of the Eagle”, and “Little Bit of Sympathy”, have become live concert staples for Trower.

The album was produced by organist Matthew Fisher, formerly Trower’s bandmate in Procol Harum. Acclaimed Beatles engineer Geoff Emerick was this album’s sound engineer.

In a recent interview in Guitar World, Robin Trower explained how the album got its title. Robin said that he had had the first line of the song for years and then one day he saw some sport pages which listed a racehorse called Bridge of Sighs and thought that would be a great title.

Bridge of Sighs (Chrysalis 1057) reached #7 in the United States during a chart stay of 31 weeks. It was certified Gold on 10 September 1974. Early printings of the original album cover had the front image upside-down, and were more greenish in colour.

The title track was covered by Opeth for the special edition of their 2008 album Watershed.

“Day of the Eagle” was covered by Billy Idol guitarist Steve Stevens on his 3rd solo album Memory Crash. Tesla also covered the song on their 2007 “Real to Reel” album as did Armored Saint on their “Nod to the Old School” record.

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This is Bridge of Sighs.

No.7 TAM’s Top 15 Best Blues Songs of All Time

Alright alright alright!!! Back at it. Here we go again gettin’ on down to the nitty gritty. We gotta keep rolling cause we just can’t stop!

“The wheel is turning and you can’t slow down

You can’t let go and can’t hold on

You can’t go back and you can’t stand still

If the thunder don’t get you then the lightning will”

That’s what I’m talkin’ bout!

So here we are at number seven, ole lucky number seven. Seven Seven Seven Seven Seven and we roll the dice.

This next artist goes way back and I mean way the hell back. He came up, made some recordings and then the great depression hit and no one bought his music so he went into obscurity until his rediscovery by John Fahey and Henry Vestine in the mid-’60s. Though he had not played the blues for more than 20 years, his skills were largely undiminished.

Wiki:

hard_time_killing_floor

Nehemiah Curtis “Skip” James (June 9, 1902 – October 3, 1969) was an American Delta blues singer, guitarist, pianist and songwriter. Born in Bentonia, Mississippi, United States, he died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

He first learned to play guitar from another bluesman from the area, Henry Stuckey. His guitar playing is noted for its dark, minor sound, played in an open D-minor tuning with an intricate fingerpicking technique. James first recorded for Paramount Records in 1931.

His songs have influenced several generations of musicians, being adapted or covered by Kansas Joe McCoy, Robert Johnson, Alan Wilson, Cream, Deep Purple, Chris Thomas King, Alvin Youngblood Hart, The Derek Trucks Band, Beck, Big Sugar, Eric Clapton, John Martyn, Lucinda Williams and Rory Block. He is hailed as “one of the seminal figures of the blues.”

Skip James – Hard Time Killing Floor Blues

 

This song was re-recorded by Chris Thomas King and used in the movie Oh Brother Where Art Thou, it’s on the movie soundtrack.

 

No.8 TAM’s Top 15 Best Blues Songs of All Time

I love that we’re in the top ten now, this is where things really start to get interesting. This song first appeared in 1975 on an album called Fandango by that little ole band from Texas. It’s short, sweet and to the point. There’s really not much as far as back story on this song that I can find, so here it is.

Blue Jean Blues by ZZ TOP

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No.9 TAM’s Top 15 Best Blues Songs of All Time

Time to get on down to number nine. But before we do I just want to say that this is one of the hardest and funnest things I’ve done here at TheAudioMuseum. Not to mention that with each new post I’ve learned something new about the music and the artists that make it. That alone has made this worth doing. I hope you are finding this as fun and enlightening as I am.

This next bluesman  is no stranger to any of us. He was voted 67 out of 100 by Rolling Stone Magazine on their list of “The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”. Not bad right? He’s influenced everyone from Jimi Hendrix himself to SRV and countless others. His song Stormy Monday gave BB King the inspiration to pick up his first electric guitar. He wasn’t just a great guitar player but also a fantastic entertainer, here’s T-Bone Walker!

Wiki:

Aaron Thibeaux “T-Bone” Walker (May 28, 1910 – March 16, 1975) was a critically acclaimed American blues guitarist, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, who was an influential pioneer and innovator of the jump blues and electric blues sound. Walker began his career as a teenager in Dallas in the early 1900s. His mother and stepfather (a member of the Dallas String Band) were musicians, and family friend Blind Lemon Jefferson sometimes came over for dinner.

Walker was admired by Jimi Hendrix who imitated Walker’s trick of playing the guitar with his teeth. “Stormy Monday” was a favorite live number for The Allman Brothers Band. Chuck Berry named Walker and Louis Jordan as his main influences. Walker was posthumously inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1980, and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

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T-Bone Walker w/ Jazz At The Philharmonic – Live in UK 1966

“Woman, You Must Be Crazy” (Aaron Walker)
“Goin’ To Chicago Blues” (Aaron Walker)

w/ Dizzy Gillespie, Teddy Wilson, Louis Bellson, Clark Terry, Coleman Hawkins, Zoot Sims, Jimmy Moody, Benny Carter and Bob Cranshaw.

The Breeze

Here’s a nice twist on an old classic. If you are a fan of any or all of these bands you will like this. A little gem I found online featuring Stevie Ray Vaughan with Lynrd Skynrd and The Charlie Daniels Band. And they call Me the Breeze!

No.10 TAM’s Top 15 Best Blues Songs of All Time

Well we just can’t stay away from these old blues here at The Audio Museum. We love’em we really do. And it sure feels good to finally break into the top ten, now we’re getting somewhere!

After digging deeper into the roots of the blues I came across this gem by Otis Rush called Double Trouble. He wrote and and recorded the song in 1958. And yes Stevie Ray Vaughan eventually renamed his band The Triple Threat Revue to Double Trouble (named after this song) on firing one of his guitarists and female lead singer.

Wiki:

“Double Trouble” is a slow tempo twelve-bar blues notated in 12/8 time in the key of D minor. “The song’s underlying air of quiet desperation stretched to the breaking point is enhanced by brilliant use of dynamics and some truly mind-boggling, strangled guitar fills near the end.” According to Otis Rush, the song’s title was inspired by a comment by a woman upon viewing her hand during a card game “trouble, trouble, trouble, trouble, double troubles”.

The song was produced by Willie Dixon and features Rush (guitar and vocal), Dixon (bass), Ike Turner (guitar), Little Brother Montgomery (piano), Harold Ashby and Jackie Brenston (saxophones), and Billy Gayles (drums). Although Rush plays the lead guitar introduction to the song, Turner plays the signature vibrato guitar parts. In 1986, Rush recorded a live version of the song for Blues Interaction – Live in Japan 1986, which was released in 1989.

In 2008, Rush’s original version was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame, who called it a “minor-key masterpiece”

 

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