The blues is back . . .

Posted: February 19, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !


Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, if you really needed any proof, this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling was crammed with excellent blues, from ‘seasoned’ favourites, the occasional forgotten gem and all those new and forthcoming releases. One of the albums that’s been getting a lot of plays here just lately is the new one by Quinn Sullivan, titled Midnight Highway’ and if you track it down when it gets released, you’ll find it has much more than blues among its tracks, but it’s all good stuff and with plenty to please the blues fans.

A couple of the ‘Kings of the Blues’, B.B. And Albert, popped up in the playlist this week, but before that, we kicked off with that great opener from Joe Bonamassa Live at The Greek Theatre and quickly followed by Big Head Todd & The Monsters, appearing as The Big Head Blues Club and featuring some notable names guesting on their tribute album to blues icon Willie Dixon, called ‘Way Down Inside’.
For those with a passion for scratchy blues, there was a worthy indulgence from Delta bluesman Tommy McClennan who was the first to record ‘Crosscut Saw Blues’ and it got released by Bluebird records back in 1941. It’s been recorded many times since. Then, we were hearing from Melissa Etheridge’s latest album ‘Memphis Rock & Soul’, which has been featuring in the blues charts lately, although it’s far more soul flavoured than blues. But, it does have a fine version of ‘Born Under A Bad Sign’, and it was a reminder to play something by Albert King himself . . . and we did.

Bring It On Home
Let The Good Times Roll – Joe Bonamassa (At The Greek Theatre – 2016)quinn-sullivan-midnight-highway-prd75162-1200x1200
Boogie Woogie Woman – B.B. King (King of The Blues – 2012)
Bring It On Home – The Big Head Blues Club (Ft Billy Branch) (Way Down Inside – 2016)
Rocks – Quinn Sullivan (Midnight Highway – 2017)
Don’t Do It – Delbert McClinton (Pick Of The Litter – 2017)
Crosscut Saw Blues – Tommy McClennan (Travelin’ Highway Man – 2012)
Born Under A Bad Sign – Melissa Etherdige (Memphis Rock & Soul – 2016)
Nice To Be Nice – Albert King (The Blues Don’t Change – 1977)

Pinetop’s Pick
Aged & Mellow – Esther Phillips (The Best of Esther Phillips – 2015)melissa-etheridge-untitled

Ride ‘Em On Down
All Talk – Russ Payne & The Unison Bends (Liquor & Iron – 2016)
Ride ‘Em On Down – Eddie Taylor (Big Town Playboy – 2016)
Young Woman’s Blues – Beki Brindle (All Kinds Of Beki – 2016)
The Blues Is Back – Easterfield (Honky Tonk Sessions – 2017)
Kansas City Blues – Michael Bloomfield (If You Love These Blues, Play ‘Em As You Please – 2004)
Try Try Try – The Lisa Lystam Family Band (Give You Everything – 2016)

Now, there’s been no shortage of good blues releases lately, including Russ Payne & The Unison Bends, with their debut album, ‘Liquor And Iron’ full of ‘original blues’. Guitarist lisa-lystam-family-band-give-you-everythingand singer Beki Brindle has also impressed with her latest album ‘All Kinds Of Beki’ and it delivered another fine track for our playlist, together with another track from Netherlands band Easterfield off of their debut album ‘Honky Tonk Sessions’.

The past week brought a sad anniversary . . . the passing of the great Mike Bloomfield. He’s probably best remembered for his work with Paul Butterfield’s Blues Band, The Electric Flag and his session work with Al Kooper and Bob Dylan, but Mike was also an accomplished acoustic guitarist too, and to demonstrate this we played his version of ‘Kansas City Blues’.

All too soon, the clock revealed that we had nearly run out of time, even if we haven’t run out of music. So, we played out this week with something from the latest album by The Lisa Lystam Family Band, ‘Try Try Try’, but not before thanking all for their good company on this week’s show and hoping to see everyone back again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 19 February 2017

Rolling & rocking . . .

Posted: February 15, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

It’s been a lively week here in the Grand Duchy with plenty of friendly faces and places to go. The Cruise Mobile has clocked up some impressive mileage along the way, but (like always) it got us there and back safe and sound. So, we were ready when it was time to go Cruising with The CommissionerCruising #215

Our playlist this week included Dr Feelgood & The Interns with a song that made little impact until it was discovered and covered by many UK bands. But, the song, ‘Mr Moonlight’ earned plenty of royalties for songwriter, William Lee Perryman, when the Fab Four recorded it. Of course, the music buffs will be quick to tell you that Dr Feelgood was otherwise known as Piano Red, who also wrote another song that got recorded by Carl Perkins and Little Richard as ‘She Knows How To Rock Me’.

But, before that, we kicked off our cruise with Red Prysock doing a little ‘Rolling & Rocking’ and we followed fast with Tommy Ridgley and his take on Jesse Hill’s favourite ‘Oo Poo Pah Doo’ . . .
Wait & See
Rolling & Rocking – Red Prysock
Oo Poo Pah Doo – Tommy Ridgley
All Night Worker – Rufus Thomas
Wait & See – Roomful Of Blues
You Don’t Miss Your Water – Little Esther & Big Al Downing
Silk Satin & Lace – Ray Scott & The Scottsmen
If You’re So Smart, How Come You Ain’t Rich – Chris Daniels & The King
Hula Hula Dancin’ Doll – Trade Martin
Mister Moonlight – Dr Feelgood & The Interns
Rockin’ With Red – Piano RedSharon Curfman

Girls & Guitars
I’m Coming Home – Sharon Curfman

Let’s Be Happy
Let’s Be Happy Tonight – Lafay Hawkins
Let The Money Drop – The Creole Stringbeans
Keep A Knockin’ – Rufus Brown
45 Men In A Telephone Booth – The Four Tophatters
My Girl Ivy – Jimmy Witherspoon & The Quintones
Heaven On Wheels – Richard Berry & The Lockettes
Enough Is Enough – The Refreshments
Breaking Up The House – Jump 4 Joythe-creole-stringbeans

This week, our Girls & Guitars feature took us to Fargo, North Dakota to find guitarist and singer Shannon Curfman, who started recording at the age of 14 and released her first album, ‘Loud Guitars, Big Suspicions’ in 1998 . . . which is where we found our choice, ‘I’m Coming Home’.

There were a few ‘thank you’s’ this week to those who have pointed us to some great ‘toons’, including Jamie Dell’Apa, Matt The Cat, The Shake, Shakin’ Sharon and not forgetting Susan Bowman. But, as time started running out, we went dipping back into the archives to find some ‘real’ R&B from the likes of Rufus Brown, Jimmy Witherspoon & The Quintones and Richard Berry & The Lockettes . . . . Which perhaps not surprisingly, generated a frenzied finale featuring The Cruisettes and maybe you too!

Jump 4 Joy brought us home safe and sound with ‘Breaking Up the House’ and then it was all over. Nothing left to do but park up the trusty Cruise Mobile in the hope that we can meet again next week when its time to go Cruising with The Commissioner. Until then . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 15 February 2017

Shiver & Shake . . .

Posted: February 13, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

the-blues-come-calling-header-blogsize (Revised)

Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, the sunshine has disappeared and there’s been a chill in the air, but there was still a very bluesy welcome to this week’s The Blues Come Calling. It came with it’s usual mix of ‘seasoned’ favourites, new releases and the occasional preview of things to come. So, it all kicked off with a great opener, ‘Don’t Need Nobody’, from Trevor Sewell, who is no stranger to our playlists and neither is Chris Bevington, who followed on with the title track of his latest album ‘Better Start Cooking’. 

Louisiana bluesmen, Lightning Slim and Slim Harpo were there too with tracks they cut for Excello records back in day and they caused an irresistible temptation, so the Stones latest and very successful album ‘Blue & Lonesome’ got pulled out for their take on Eddie Taylor’s number ‘Ride ‘Em On Down’.

There was a little taster of the new album by Gwyn Ashton, with the wonderful title of gwyn-ashton“Raga’s, Jugs and Mojo Hands” and some excellent acoustic blues like ‘I Can Feel That Mojo Working’. Then, we returned to the great and much missed Rory Gallagher with his 1976 recording of ‘Calling Card’ . . . . a song that originally inspired the title of this show.

Calling Card
Don’t Need Nobody – Trevor Sewell (Calling Your Name – 2011)
Better Start Cooking – Chris Bevington (Better Start Cooking – 2016)
Just Made Twenty One – Lightning Slim (Excello 45 – 1955)
I’m A King Bee – Slim Harpo (You Want The King Bee – 2014)
Ride ‘Em On Down – The Rolling Stones (Blue & Lonesome – 2016)
I Can Feel That Mojo Working – Gwyn Ashton (Raga’s, Jugs & Mojo Hands – 2017)
Calling Card – Rory Gallagher (Calling Card – 1976)rory-gallagher-calling-card

Pinetop’s Pick
River’s Invitation – Alexis Korner (Sky High – 2007)

Empty Arms – Bad Pennies (Turned Up Again – 2016)
Words Of A Woman – Ash Wilson (Broken Machine – 2017)
My Baby’s Alright – Tweed Funk (Bring It – 2011)
Wildfire – Elles Bailey (Wildfire – 2017)
Stop Breaking Down – Larry Bragg & Time Pools (A Take On Robert Johnson – 2004)
Don’t You Call My Name – Sari Schorr (Unreleased track – 2017)elles-bailey
Chasing Snakes – Blacktop Deluxe (Presence & Gain – 2015)
Shiver & Shake – Daddy Long Legs (King For A Day – 2008)

It’s always a joy to hear from local band, The Bad Pennies, who are busy bringing the blues to people around the Garden of England and beyond with their album ‘Turned Up Again’. Then the East Midlands were calling with guitarist and singer, Ash Wilson and his new album called ‘Broken Machine’, featuring his blues ballad ‘Words Of A Woman’. American band, Tweed Funk were back with a track, ‘My Baby’s Alright’ from their 2011 album ‘Bring It’ and Larry Bragg was there too with a reworking of Robert Johnson’s ‘Stop Breaking Down’

Now, over the years, the blues have celebrated or commemorated local and national events and Elles Bailey has done just that with her new single release ‘Wildfire’, about tabloid misrepresentation of a story that spreads like wildfire. For those who like their blues with a little swing, the very talented Sari Schorr gave us an unreleased track called ‘Don’t You Call My Name’.

As time was running out, Cornwall’s own Blacktop Deluxe were welcomed back to the show with ‘Chasing Snakes’ from their 2015 album ‘Presence & Gain’, and then the closer, ‘Shiver & Shake’ from Daddy Longlegs. Then it was time to say our farewells, ever hopeful you will be back again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then, remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 12 February 2017

Jam up . . .

Posted: February 8, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

Well, this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner included some unashamedly indulgent choices to celebrate this week’s festivities in New Orleans for Mardi Gras. We had a European selection to show that the influence of the Crescent City goes far and wide. We featured Swedish band, Honeyboy Slim & The Bad Habits with ‘The Wobble’, The Big Town Playboys with ‘Jam Up’, renowned UK band Diz & The Doormen with a James Booker song and a triple dose of the UK’s much celebrated actor Hugh Laurie with his version of Tipitina, featuring him doing vocals, piano and guitar. We also included a few local artists, to provide appropriate balance, and if you happen to be in New Orleans for Mardi Gras, look out for our good pal Jamie Dell’Apa who’s parading with the Krewe du Vieux this year.

Whilst we lingered awhile with our New Orleans connection, Mr Merlot pointed out that we were late for our visit to the islands, so we corrected that with the assistance Si Cranstoun and something we hoped would inspire Susan Bowman and Buddy to another video demonstration of their dancing prowess.

This week we discovered a pretty rare single on the Swade label, courtesy of Neil Pellegrin, down there in New Orleans and we were grateful to him for digging out The Raves with their take on the saga of ‘Billy The Kid’. But, before that we kicked off on our cruise this week with a little instrumental called ‘Dicla’ by Doug Fowlkes & His Airdales, who went on to become Rocky Roberts and The Airdales . . . . Then we were off down the road again with an old Louis Prima favourite ‘Bim Bam’ from 44 Shakedown . . .

Bim Bam 44 Shakedown
Dicla – Doug Fowlkes & His Airdales
Bim Bam – 44 Shakedown
The Wobble – Honeyboy Slim & The Bad Habits
Billy The Kid – The Raves
Jokomo – Larry Williams
So Swell So Well – Diz Watson & The Doormen
Tipitina – Hugh Laurie
Jam Up – The Big Town Playboys
Ella Hula Hula – Si Cranstoun

Girls & Guitarsemily-remler
Hot House – Emily Remler

Let It Rock
Got My Gun (Gonna Travel) – Cee Pee Johnson
Little Coquette – Jimmy Beasley
Shirley Jean – Rockin’ Sidney
Seventh Son – Willie Mabon
Route 66 – Paul Curry
I Got A Rocket In My Pocket – Jimmy Lloyd
Itchy Twitchy Feeling – The Swallows
Let It Rock – Chuck Berry
For our Girls & Guitars feature this week, with the background of Mardi Gras, we went looking for a girl guitarist with a link to New Orleans and we found jazz guitarist Emily Remler, who gave us some sensational jazz guitar playing it up with Hot House

Almost too late, The Cruisettes turned up and Mr Merlot was all consumed with keeping the breakables safe, but he was not too preoccupied to stop him rolling his eyes at me and nodding at the clock, which is when we knew it was time to be heading for home. But, we managed to say a big thanks to our good pal Matt The Cat for featuring vocal group The Swallows on his Juke In The Back show. We chose their 1958 Federal 45 ‘Itchy Twitchy Feeling’ as our finale, but actually managed to squeeze in one more from Chuck Berry.

Then, we were parking up the Cruise Mobile and with cheery wave, heading off for the after show party, ever hopeful that you will be back again, same time, same place, next week. So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 8 February 2017

Smack that thing . . .

Posted: February 5, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !


Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, The Blues Come Calling came bouncing back this week with another armful of the best of the blues, from forthcoming releases, current releases and some ‘seasoned’ choices from the archives. It all shaped up to be fine playlist that kicked off with a great opener from Saturday Night Fish Fry, demonstrating some impressive vocals from Toronto’s own Shakura S’Aida. We followed by revisiting the great new album from Paul Lamb & The King Snakes, ‘Live at The Royal Albert Hall’ for another taster titled ‘Come To The Conclusion’.

Out of the archives this week came some scorching piano from Forrest Sykes and something he recorded in 1948 and got released as a 45 on the Aristocrat label. There was also a little gem from Pink Anderson, who will ever be remembered by modern music buffs for inspiring the name of Pink Floyd. But, he turned up with a song he recorded in 1962, ‘That’s No way To Do’. Even earlier than that, in 1936, there was Walter Coleman with one of only a few sides he recorded in Chicago, for Decca records, called ‘Smack That Thing’.

The weeks and months ahead look like bringing some real treats, including Bruce Mississippi Johnson’s new album titled ‘The Deal Baby’ which features our chosen track, ‘No Good’. There’s also Marcus Malone’s album ‘Better Man’, which we’ve been plundering in recent weeks for it’s great tracks, like ‘Feelin’ Bad Blues’.

Devil’s Highwayalbertcoverfront
Poor Me – Saturday Night Fish Fry (The Best of Saturday Night Fish Fry – 2010)
Come To The Conclusion – Paul Lamb & The King Snakes (Live at The Royal Albert Hall – 2017)
Tonky Boogie – Forrest Sykes (Chess Blues – 1992)
No Good – Bruce Mississippi Johnson (The Deal Baby – 2017)
Devil’s Highway – Jon Spear Band (Live Music Is Better – 2016)
That’s No Way To Do – Pink Anderson (Greasy Greens & A Mess Of Blues – 2012)
Harpo – Mike Ross (Jenny’s Place – 2016)mike-ross

Pinetop’s Pick
Chauffeur Blues – Eric Bibb (Leadbelly’s Gold – 2015)

We Just Might
We Just Might – The Paul DesLauriers Band (Relentless – 2016)
Is It Any Wonder – Dona Oxford (Step Up – 2008)
Did You Love Me – Easterfield (Honky Tonk Sessions – 2015)
Smack That Thing – Walter Coleman (Rarity Country Blues – 2014)
Feelin’ Bad Blues – Marcus Malone (Better Man – 2017)
New Shoelaces – Beki Brindle (All Kinds of Beki – 2016)

We’re in the awards season now and The Paul beki-brindle-all-kinds-of-bekiDesLauriers Band did well in the recent Maple Blues Awards in Toronto. Their latest album ‘Restless’ got some good feedback when if appeared on our playlist before, so they were back with another choice, ‘We Just Might’, this week. One of the finalists in this year’s International Blues Challenge was the Jon Spear Band, some fine blues musicians from around Central Virginia, with heir latest album ‘Live Music Is Better’.

Los Angeles singer and pianist Dona Oxford, is due to be touring the UK during April & May with her fine mix of boogie, blues and soul, and to show off her talents, we played ‘Is It Any Wonder’ from Dona’s 2008 album ‘Step Up’. Even after 5 years of playing together, Netherlands band Easterfield now have just released their debut album, ‘Honky Tonk Sessions’, which includes ‘Did You Love Me ‘.

But, all good things come to an end and it was New York guitarist, singer and band leader, Beki Brindle, with a track from her latest album ‘All Kinds Of Beki’. But, first we said our goodbyes for this week, hoping to see you again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 5 February 2017

Pack, shack & stack . . .

Posted: February 1, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

Well, the environs of the Grand Duchy have looked a little gray, damp and chill this week and the news seems full of break ups, break downs and break outs. But, our spirits were kept high by the good music and kind messages from the friendly faces out there in Cruising land. This certainly helped to inspire some enthusiastic rummaging in the Cruising Library for this week’s playlist and our choices had their fair share of UK related ‘toons’ and artists, as well as some visitors who were influenced by this music or came to record in the UK.
We started off with a few gems from the 50s UK rockCruising #2007 scene, including our opener from Art Baxter & His Rock ‘n’ Roll Sinners, the colourful Wee Willie Harris and Don Lang & His Frantic Five. We kept that Brit link going with something current from the talented Si Cranstoun and one of the great UK R&B bands, The Big Town Playboys with their take on Jimmy McCracklin’s ‘The Wobble’, the original of which popped up on both Jamie Dell’Apa’s and Neil Pelligrin’s radio shows.

We celebrated some visitors, who came to record in the UK, which included names like Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Bo Diddley and Champion Jack Dupree. Of course, the UK’s musical exports became highly influential in the 60s and beyond and our Ambassador to The Islands, Susan Bowman, revealed she is a fan of the fab four. So, we let Mr Merlot do his patented thought transfer therapy to help folks imagine for a moment what the fab four might have sounded like, if they covered Led Zeps ‘Stairway To Heaven’. But, before all that we kicked off down the road with Art Baxter & His Rock ‘n’ Roll Sinners . . . .

Stairway To Heavenart-baxter-his-rock-n-roll-sinners
Art’s Theme – Art Baxter & His Rock ‘n’ Roll Sinners
Lollipop Mama – Wee Willie Harris
Rock-A-Billy – Don Lang & His Frantic Five
The Wobble – The Big Town Playboys
Your Kind Of Love – Screamin’ Jay Hawkins
Don’t Want No Lyin’ Woman – Bo Diddley
Shim Sham Shimmy – Champion Jack Dupree
Stairway To Heaven – The Beatnix
Girls & Guitars
Drive My Car – The Donnas
Where ‘Yat
Vegas Baby – Si Cranstoun
Pack Shack & Stack – Billy Nelson & The Five Wings
Mailman Blues – Lloyd Price
Get Out Of My Life – Aaron Neville
So Swell When You’re Well – Fats Domino
Run Rose – Billy Miranda
My Baby – Chuck Willis
Sandy – The Colonaires
Where ‘Yat – Colin James
old-school-packEven our Girls & Guitars feature had a fab four flavour this week, because our spotlight fell on girl singer and guitarist, Brett Anderson, who was a member of Californian all-girl rock band, The Donnas. We found a track by the Donnas on the 2005 Rubber Soul tribute compilation ‘This Bird Has Flown’, with Brett up front on ‘Drive My Car’.

To demonstrate our well established abilities to jump genres, cross musical frontiers and steer in and out of time zones on our cruises, there were some tasty treats from Manhattan’s 50s vocal group, The Five Wings and Billy Nelson with a number called ‘Pack Shack & Stack’. The Big Easy was represented by the great Lloyd Price, along with Aaron Neville and Fats Domino, and we followed on with a Checker 45 from Billy Miranda and the last Chuck Willis single released by Atlantic records after his untimely passing in 1958.

Eventually, we had to turn the Cruise Mobile for home with The Colonaires and when Colin James arrived to ask ‘Where Y’at’, we looked around and found he had brought us home safe and sound. So, with a sigh, we parked up the cruise mobile for another week, ever hopeful that you’ll have had such fun on this week’s adventure that you’ll want to do it again next week. In anticipation, we’re already planning our next playlist for when we roll by in the Cruise Mobile, same time same place next week and rest assured there will be a seat saved especially for you. But, with a big smile and a wave, Mr Merlot, The Cruisettes and yours truly headed off for the after show party. So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 1 February 2017


Hold On Tight . . .

Posted: January 29, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !


Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, this week brought a timely reminder that the blues knows no frontiers and excludes no one from its company. So, we gave a very bluesy welcome to one and all for this edition of The Blues Come Calling and we kicked off in the UK with a great new album from Paul Lamb & The King Snakes, Live at The Royal Albert Hall, which will be well worth waiting., but for those who couldn’t wait, we played a taster track from the album.

There were some new names (at least ‘new’ to our playlist) and first up was Californian, Sammy Eubanks delivering some nice slide guitar on the classic ‘I Just Wanna Make Love To You’. There was Tweed Funk, who provided some soulful blues. Then there was Lew Jetton & 61 South with ‘Who’s Texting You’ from Lew’s very fine album ‘Rain’ and it seems Lew follows the show, so thanks for that! The Maple Blues Awards delivered some welcome new names to our playlist, including The Paul DesLauriers Band, Angela Forrest and Harpdog Brown, who all walked away with awards this year.

Who’s Texting Youlew-jetton-61-south
Jumping Little Judy – Paul Lamb & The King Snakes (Live at The Royal Albert Hall – 2017)
I Just Want To Make Love To You – Sammy Eubanks (Sugar Me – 2016)
Take My Hand – Mighty Mike Schermer (Blues In Good Hands – 2015)
Heaven’s Where You Dwell – Jimmy Bowskill and Carlos Del Junco (Blues Etc – 2016)
Who’s Texting You – Lew Jetton & 61 South (Rain – 2016)
It’s Best To Know Who You’re Talking To – Clifford ‘Grandpappy’ Gibson (Rural Blues Vol.2 1951-1962)
Pick ‘Em Early – Tweed Funk (Love Is – 2012)
Pinetop’s Pickthe-paul-deslauriers-band
Chicken & Gravy – Richard Johnston & Jessie Mae Hemphill

Slowly Burning
She Should Be Mine – The Paul DesLauriers Band (The Paul DesLauriers Band – 2014)
Hold On Tight . . . Mr I’m Alright – Angela Forrest (Angel’s 11 – 2016)
Fine Little Girl Rag – Harpdog Brown (Travelling With The Blues – 2016)
Slowly Burning – Erja Lyytinen ( Stolen Hearts – 2017)
House Of Blues Marcus Malone (Better Man – 2017)
Don’t Lie To Me – Gary Moore (After Hours – 1992)

There were some happy returns this week by Mighty 6417138644619_600Mike Schermer, who’s currently on tour with Marcia Ball, then there was Jimmy Bowskill and Carlos Del Junco providing one of the very nice choices on their latest album ‘Blues Etc’. Finnish lady of the blues, Erja Lyytinen, was back with a preview copy of her forthcoming album, ‘Stolen Hearts’, which is a more subtle and less bluesy collection of songs than previously, but it does include a bluesy number, called ‘Slowly Burning’. So, we played it! Marcus Malone appeared again on our playlist to confirm that I’m mighty impressed with the forthcoming album ‘Better Man’ and we played another track from it, this time ‘House Of Blues’.

The lovers of scratchy blues had ‘double bubble’ this week with Clifford ‘Grandpappy’ Gibson and his 1960 Bobbin release with its wise words, ‘It’s Best To Know Who You’re Talking To’. Our regular guest, Arfa Pinetop, also brought us some ‘Chicken & Gravy’ courtesy of Richard Johnston & Jessie Mae Hemphill

As time ran out on this week’s show, we decided to play out with the late Gary Moore and his version of Don’t Lie To Me. So, a big thanks for your company this week and, until the next time The Blues Come Calling . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 29 January 2017

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

Well, it’s been a week with it’s fair share of notable events, but whether these please or dismay you, they certainly didn’t distract us from our rummaging in the Cruising Library for some juicy gems to include in the playlist for this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner.
There were some birthdays to celebrate this week and we did it in our customary style, plus there were a few stories behind some of the choices this week. One was inspired by a number from Nappy Brown and our good pal Arfa Pinetop had an amusing tale to tell about Nappy’s UK tour, back in the 80s, where the audience was also bemused by the suggestive antics of ‘long lost bluesman’, ‘Walking Cane Smith’, who some suspected was none other than the tour bus driver (where getting ‘long lost’ is not an asset). Another story came from Louisiana’s own Marcia Ball, who was at London’s Ronnie Scott’s this past week and kindly took some time out after the gig to chat about New Orleans’ pianoman, James Booker. She confirmed the story that James Booker didn’t turn up for a gig with her, because he was paranoid about the CIA and realised that her name ended in CIA . . . but I don’t think she took offence.
Now, whether it’s a description of the trusty Cruise Mobile or not, we set off at high speed on our cruise in the company of New Jersey Band, The Fins, and a full tilt instrumental called ‘Hot Rod’, then we were heading on down the road with a little something from someone who taught guitar to a young Mac Rebennack . . . Roy Montrell.
All Is Well
Hot Rod – The Fins
Ooh Wow – Roy Montrell
Am I – Nappy Brown
All Is Well – Big Miller & The Five Pennies
Money – The Five Pennies
She Shot A Hole In My Soul – Clifford Curry
Michael (The Lover) – Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band
Girls & Guitars
Have You Ever Seen The Rain – Joan Jettgeno-washington
That’s How It Goes
Kana Kapila – The Cousins
Ruby Baby –  Aaron Neville
Keep On Pushing You’re Luck – Sleepy King
Pitter Patter Boom Boom – The Jaye Sisters
I’ve Been Walking – Snooks Eaglin
So Swell When You’re Well – James Booker
That’s How It Goes – Marcia Ball
Be Somebody – Mighty Mike Schermer
Everybody Needs Somebody To Love – The Blues Brothers
Our Girls & Guitars feature focused on Joan Jett, whomike-schermer was a founding member of girl group The Runaways and went on to have a successful solo career which produced her 1990 album ‘The Hit List’ with its cover of Credence Clearwater Revival’s ‘Have You Ever Seen The Rain’.

There were a few respectful nods in the direction of others this week for pointing us to some artists and songs that found a place in our playlist too. Jamie Dell’ApaLarry Grogan and Neil Pellegrin all recommended good things, worth another listen. But things are not always what they seem and, with a song titled ‘Kana Kapila’, The Cousins might easily have been an Hawaiian band, but they were actually a Belgian band. But, we’re waiting on our Cruising Ambassador to The Islands, Susan Bowman, to confirm what ‘Kana Kapila’ means.

Mr Merlot and yours truly stole the Cruisettes thunder by doing a little dangerous dancing this week and nearly missed the moment to turn the Cruise Mobile for home. But, with a demonstration of ‘just in time management’, we made it home, safe and sound, in the riotous company of The Blues Brothers. Then, we parked up the Cruise Mobile for another week, ever hopeful that you had such fun on this week’s adventure that you’ll want to do it again next week. So, just in case, we’ll roll by in the Cruise Mobile, same time same place next week, with a seat saved especially for you. But, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . . remember . . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 25 January 2017


Sweet stuff . . .

Posted: January 24, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Rocking Tonight:

Well, the sun came shining through today to cheer the day and try to make us forget the chill of the past weeks. But, the sunshine didn’t deter us from rummaging in those dusty boxes for those lost gems for this week’s Rocking Tonight. As it happens, good fortune smiled on us, because there were more than we could fit into the time we had. But, rest assured they’re in the ‘pending tray’ for our next session, so you’ll hear them soon.rocking-tonight-3

This week, we lined up some notable names, as well as a few less familiar, but all most excellent choices for your listening pleasure. There were a couple of surprises . . . Guy Mitchell getting into the up tempo ‘Sweet Stuff’ and Paul Anka with a rocking little number that appeared as a ‘b’ side of one of his 45 releases.

The ‘girl with the laughing voice’ was in there too, with one of my favourites of hers, ‘Stairway Of Love’ and UK rocker, Don Lang & His Frantic Five, showing off why they justified their name! But, we kicked it off with The Motor City Rockers and their take on Esquerita’s classic, ‘Rocking The Joint’, and then were definitely Rocking Tonight.

Sweet Stuff . . .Sweet Stuff
Rocking The Joint – The Motor City Rockers
We Just Can’t Win – The Refreshments
Sweet Stuff – Guy Mitchell
Seven Day Weekend – Gary US Bonds
Dancin’ Party – Chubby Checker
Lovey Dovey Baby – Dave Burgess
Stairway Of Love – Alma Cogan
Cool Baby Cool – Don Lang & His Frantic Five
Hey Marie – Eddie Fontaine
Won’t Be Long – Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs
45 Men In A Telephone Booth – Rockin Carbonara
Don’t Let Go – Jerry Lee LewisEddie Fontaine

I Knew From The Start . . .
It’s Late – Dorsey Burnette
Believe What You Say – Ricky Nelson
It’s Gonna Take Some Time – Connie Francis
Uh Huh – Paul Anka
I Knew From The Start – The Moonglows
D In Love – Curtis Lee
Get Rhythm – Little Richard
Aw Who – Bat Carrol
Sweet Suzie – Johnny Burnette
Bim Bam – Sam ButeraSam Butera2

After nearly an hour of Rocking Tonight, the sands of time were clearly running out, so we dug out something for those who enjoy the swinging sounds of folks like Louis Jordan and Louis Prima, and we chose Sam Butera’s ‘Bim Bam’ for our closer. Then, before we went our separate ways, we assure everyone that we’ll be back, same time, same place next week, with another pile of tasty tunes to tantalise your musical taste buds and get us Rocking Tonight . . . but until then . . . remember . . . .have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 24 January 2017


Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, if you were looking for a diversion from world events, or even an excuse to delay some unwelcome chore, then this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling may have arrived just in time! Regular listeners will know this is where to come for a selection of the best of the blues around and to prove it, we kicked off our playlist with a great Checker 45 from Lowell Fulson. There was some great piano work from Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne with ‘Bankrupted Blues’, followed by another pair of hands on the keyboard and someone who we saw do a rip roaring set at Ronnie Scott’s this week, Marcia Ball.

To show our international choices, we had Canadian duo Jimmy Brownskill and Carlos Del Junco providing some nice guitar, harp and vocals ‘Beale Street Toodle-oo’ from their latest album ‘Blues Etc’. We also had a taster of the new album ‘Lovelight’ from Australian singer and keyboard ace, Lachy Doley. Then, to indulge those who, like me, enjoy a little slide guitar, we featured Finnish band, Honey B & T Bones with their version of Elmore James classic ‘Shake Your Moneymaker’.
Who Was I Foolin’
Don’t Drive Me Baby – Lowell Fulson
Bankrupted Blues – Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne (Jumpin’ & Boppin’ – 2016)
Louella – Marcia Ball (Presumed Innocent – 2001)
Crossroads – Calli Malpas (Never Made The 27 Club – 2016)
Beale St. Toodle-oo – Jimmy Bowskill and Carlos Del Junco (Blues Etc – 2016)
Who Was I Foolin’ – Lachy Doley (Lovelight – 2017)
It Ain’t Your Business – Johnny Winter (The Alligator Years – 2013)
Pinetop’s Pickjohn-mayall_talk-about-that-1200x1067
Lonely No More – Vaneese Thomas (Long Journey Home – 2016)

No Harm Done
Dog Without A Bone – Ritchie Dave Porter (Single – 2017)
The Devil Must Be Laughing – John Mayall (Talk About That – 2017)
City Of Love – Thorbjorn Risager (Change My Game – 2017)
No Harm Done – Mighty Mike Schermer (First Set – 1999)
Lookin’ Back – Redhouse (Play It Like You Mean It – 2016)
Shake Your Moneymaker – Honey B & T Bones (EMI Years 1985-87 – 2012)
There were plenty of other new releases, including the new single by Ritchie Dave Porter, ‘Dog Without A Bone’ and John Mayall with ‘The Devil Must Be Laughing’ from his new album, which is due for release in a few days time. Also, seeking a prime place among the up-coming releases on our playlist was an album by Thorbjorn Risager & The Black Tornado. They’ve promised to return to the UK soon and the new album ‘Change My Game’ will surely confirm their good standing with UK blues fans.

Having mentioned Marcia Ball, we also dug out something from her guitarist, Mighty Mike Schermer, who, at London’s Ronnie Scott’s, fronted the band for a solo number and we featured ‘No Harm Done’ from his 1999 album ‘First Set’.

As time was getting tight, we managed to squeeze in a great track from our favourite Bristol band Redhouse and then played out with Honey B & T Bones. Then it was all over, except to thank you for your good company this week and invite you back again same time same place next week. So, until the next time The Blues Come Calling . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 22 January 2017