Archive for February, 2017

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

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

Well, a very bluesy welcome to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling and a very busy week it’s been too. Along with some enjoyable social events, there’s been a flurry of new blues releases and news of upcoming shows and tours to keep my interest. In the end, there were too many great choices to fit into this week’s playlist, so next week’s listening is already looking good.

Our sample of the new releases included, the forthcoming album by The Chris Bergson Band, demonstrating some mighty fine playing on their first studio album, titled ‘Bitter Midnight’. For those who have a passion for ‘swampy’ blues, we featured a track from a forthcoming album ‘Long Lie’ by London band Two 5, founded by Rob McElroy and Andy Burke and delivering what they describe as 21st Century Whiskey Barrel Blues. There was a big shout out to Dave Thomas for sharing tracks like ‘Sitting On Top Of The World’ from the new album, ‘Big Blue’, by Dave and Hugh Gregory as Shortstuff. Then, there was the welcome return of Guy Verlinde & the Houserockers, with their new album titled ‘How How How’, featuring some high-energy blues with a mix of old school Chicago style and contemporary sounds.

But, before all that, we kicked off the show with some rocking blues courtesy of Brighton’s Lenna & The Snakemen with ‘Leave It To Lee’ from their latest album ‘Black & Blue’ and we stuck with the girls for two more, each from a Lisa. First was Lisa Mann with ‘My Father’s House’ and then Lisa Lystam, leading The Lisa Lystam Family Band on a track from their latest album ‘Give You Everything’ . . . and they pretty much did just that on ‘Lately’.
Leave It To Lee – Lenna & The Snakemen (Black & Blue – 2016)
My Father’s House – Lisa Mann (Hard Times & Bad Decisions – 2016)
Lately – The Lisa Lystam Family Band (Give You Everything – 2016)
Bitter Midnight – The Chris Bergson Band (Bitter Midnight – 2017)
Little Boy Blue – Robert Lockwood Jr (Trouble Hearted Blues – 2003)
Honest Man – Matt Andersen (Honest Man – 2016)
Loved Another Woman – Mike Ross (Jenny’s Place – 2016)
That’s Cold – The Texas Topcats (Hot Rhythm & Cool Blues – Texas Style – 1992)

Pinetop’s Pickthe-chris-bergson-band
Bottle Up & Go – Alfred ‘Snuff’ Johnson (Black Cowboys Blues & Church Songs – 1988)

I Gotta Sang The Blues – Thornetta Davis & Kim Wilson (Honest Woman – 2016)
Waiting For So Long – Two 5 (Long Lie – 2017)
Wine Woogie – Marvin Phillips
Sitting On Top Of The World – Shortstuff (Big Blue – 2017)
Fool That I Am – Vika Bull & The Essential R&B Band (At Last – 2013)
Snap! – Guy Verlinde  & The Houserockers (How How How – 2017)two-5-long-lie
Poor Man’s Blues – Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings (Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings – 1999)

There was something to savor for those who like a little ‘scratchy blues’ in their listening diet, with ‘Little Boy Blue’ by Robert Lockwood Jr (or as some prefer to have it, Robert Jr Lockwood). Then Arfa Pinetop turned up with something from a more obscure bluesman, Alfred ‘Snuff’ Johnson, who didn’t record anything until his latter years and we heard his take on ‘Bottle Up & Go’ from his 1988 album ‘Black Cowboys Blues & Church Songs’.

This past week included a thoroughly enjoyable visit to the Rye Delta in Kent, with some rummaging in the town’s most excellent record shop and one of gems in the racks was a compilation called ‘Juice Head Baby’, which boasted something from Marvin Phillips called ‘Wine Woogie’. Our rummaging didn’t stop there either, because our rummaging in the archives here turned up a fine compilation of Texas blues called ‘Hot Rhythm & Cool Blues’ which features a track by The Texas Topcats, who happen to include our good pal Wendel Williams, so with not a second thought, we played The Texas Topcats with ‘That’s Cold’.

Now, back in 2013 Australian chanteuse, Vika Bull released a very fine tribute album to the great Etta James. An adventurous project, to cover well known songs by one of the great soul and R&B voices of our time, Vika Bull excelled at it and for those as impressed as me, you can catch her live, because she’s coming to the UK soon with her whole band.

With plenty more of the ‘good stuff’ still in the pending tray, time was running out as we cued up the rocking ‘Poor Man’s Blues’ by The Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings. So, there were some quick farewells and the hope that we can all meet again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 26 February 2017


Time on my side . . .

Posted: February 23, 2017 in Hear This . . . . !

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

Well, it’s been a pretty hectic week here and the trusty Cruise Mobile has served us very well as we picked up on some very sociable visits. There were many laughs and some fine dining along the way, as well as a very fruitful visit to one of our favourite records shops in the sleepy town of Rye. We didn’t come away empty handed . . . but more of that another time.
There were a couple of birthday’s this week that caught our eyes and with little persuasion we found time to celebrate them in sound here. First up was Dodie Stevens, who was celebrating her 71st birthday this past week. . . . and some 58 years ago, at the age of 13, she cut a little number called ‘Pink Shoe Laces’ for Crystalette records, which proved to be her only chart success. Then there was the great singer/songwriter Otis Blackwell, who would also have been celebrating his birthday this past week, if he was still with us. It was a good excuse to feature a few of his songs, including his own version of his own song ‘Daddy Rollin’ Stone’.

We also featured a little gem by Australian singer & TV presenter Johnny Chester, which was unearthed by our good pal Jamie Dell’Apa and we know a good thing when we hear it, so we played it again. But, before that, we set off on our cruise in the company of Mighty Joe Houston & His Orchestra with ‘Chicano Hop’ and with Mickey Baker & Sylvia Vanderpool following up with their 1956 Groove 45 ‘No Good Lover’

Daddy Rollin’ Stonems_groove_no_good_lover_78
Chicano Hop – Joe Houston
No Good Lover – Mickey & Sylvia
Uh Huh – Big Boy Groves
Can Can Ladies – Johnny Chester & The Thunderbirds
Pink Shoe Laces – Dodie Stevens
Daddy Rollin’ Stone – Otis Blackwell
Don’t Be Cruel – The Upsetters
Fever – Patti Drew
Great Balls Of Fire – Georgia Gibbs

Girls & Guitars
You Were On My Mind – Susanna Hoffsr-3173840-1319076569_jpeg

Goin’ Round In Circles
Lonesome Tears In My Eyes – The Beatles
Hot Biscuits & Sweet Marie – Eddie Cooley & The Dimples
I Don’t Love You No More – Jimmy Norman
Time On My Side – Beverley Knight
River’s Invitation – Zoot Money & His Bog Roll Band
Big Time Operator – Charlie Rich
Messed Up – Harold Burrage
Goin’ Round In Circles – Bobby Mitchell
Our Girls & Guitars feature this week put thezoot-money-transition spotlight on American vocalist and guitarist, Susanna Hoffs, who is probably best known as a member of The Bangles. To show off her talents, we chose her version of a song previously recorded by US group We Five, which became a UK hit for Crispian St Peters ‘You Were On My Mind’.

Somewhere out there in Cruising Land, hopefully Buddy Bowman is now recovering from his little health problem . To wish him well, we played a rare track by The Beatles and their 1963 cover of Johnny & Dorsey Burnette’s song ‘Lonesome Tears In My Eyes’. But, all too soon afterwards we had to turn for home back them and taking us all the way home was New Orleans favourite, Bobby Mitchell with his 1956 Imperial 45 ‘Goin’ Round In Circles’. Sadly, then there was nothing left to do but park up the Cruise Mobile give it a quick polish so it’s all ready for our next escapade together. So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Cruising Radio
on 22 February 2017

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