I might not be in Beirut to support the Tol3et Re7etkom cause, however I have donated to the Indiegogo campaign and signed the petition, which you can too!
I'm sending you my blues support, stay safe everyone!
In 1967, Albert King released his first album on Stax Records (2nd overall), 'Born Under a Bad Sign', to widespread acclaim, featuring several songs that would eventually become standards, like the title track, 'Crosscut Saw', and 'Personal Manager', which you can see below in an extended live version at the Fillmore in 1968.
Truly electrifying, with the added soul horn section, and Albert's distinctive guitar style.
A few months ago, HBO released a TV film called 'Bessie', starring Queen Latifah.
It's a biofilm about 'The Empress of the Blues' Bessie Smith, who was one of the top female blues artists alongside Ma Rainey, Victoria Spivey, and dozens of others.
I'm not a movie critic but the film captured the spirit of the depression era, how she rose to fame, generally everything feels right and the performances are spot on.
I watched it on OSN, so you can look for that now, or if you can get your hands on it somehow, because it's a great movie about blues history, which we lack so far (see this post about some blues films).
Here's a song from the movie, 'Down Hearted Blues' (cover):
The last remaining OG bluesman Buddy Guy has spoken about the future of the blues in a recent interview with NPR (full interview here):
I wonder if there aren't as
many young black musicians devoting themselves to the blues. Do you worry about
the future of blues music?
I worry about the future of blues music whether you are
black or white. If they don't hear it like I did and listen to it and don't
know about it — you ever been to Louisiana
where they cook all this gumbo?
I have. I love it.
I do, too. [Laughs.] So if you never tasted it, you
wouldn't love it. That's what's happening with the blues. Now, the young people
don't know nothing about it unless — I know satellite [radio] do play blues,
but we need more than that. I tell everybody I would love to hear Muddy Waters
twice a week. I'm not telling you to play him all day, all night; just play
him. Let the young people know where it all started."
His new album, 'Born to Play Guitar' has been released and I'll be reviewing it soon.
Here's a song off the new album; no embed is available sorry:
In 1960, legendary blues pianist Sunnyland Slim and jazz pianist Little Brother Montgomery got together and recorded a full length album full of blues and jazzy pieces, showcasing each person's background. Jump Jackson appears on drums on a few tracks.
Here is the full vinyl, conveniently placed on Youtube, perfect for your work commute or your way back home: