Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Music and Politics

One of my favorite News blogs (at least the is what I consider them) fivethirtyeight.com. I mention that because they are a Stats based site that writes about politics, sports, science & health, economics and pop culture.  They lend the power of statistics to stuff that we often think about.

A July 14 article, titled Hip Hop is Turning on Trump examined hip hop lyrics and how Trump and Clinton are referenced in rap music.

I thought this article was interesting because I was surprised by the response of many of the comments.  I left a comment;

I'm not a fan of most rap (surprise I'm sure to some people who think that Black people are a monilith) but I would also like to know if other music geners make political references, I know that early blues and folk music were often political, and I would guess that a lot of country and western music also have political messages. It would be cool to see you all do some stats on other music genres. Good article, keep up the good work.
Which brings me to a few blues / folk songs that have politics as their theme.

Woody Guthrie -- I Ain't Got No Home/Old Man Trump by the Missin' Cousins - This song is very interesting, From the YouTube notes, "Woody Guthrie wrote these lyrics in 1951, and 65 years later, the Missin' Cousins, a County-Western music group from Oakland California, present a recording of these new lyrics to I Ain't Got No Home in this World Anymore."

Mr. Hitler - Leadbelly - (notes from YouTube) "Huddie William Ledbetter(Lead Belly or Leadbelly, January 1888 December 6, 1949) was an American folk and blues musician. This song was recorded in 1942.

Big Bill Broonzy - I Wonder When I Will be Called a Man - Includes the lyrics.

John Lee Hooker - Welfare Blues 

Jimmy Dawkins - Walfare Blues  

BB King - Why I Sing the Blues

Some lite reading on the subject;

wikipedia Music and politics Nice overview.

5 best blues songs with political slants Songs by Woodie Guthrie

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Got those politician blues.

I usually follow a rule that my mother taught me, don't discuss politics or religion in public.  And since this is a music blog, mostly, that rule is easy to follow.  Unless you like all those Gospel videos I have posted over the years.

So anyway, one of my favorite blues harmonica mentors and all around blues musician Adam Gussow  posted a political post on Facebook.

While I would much rather listen to him playing his harmonica, or jamming the blues I thought he made an interesting point here >>> Adam's Post On Trump Being a Singularity.

It makes for a cool read, and he also posted a video with two of my heroes Neil deGrasse Tyson and Ray Kurzweil.  One for physics (which is probably my religion) and computer science (which is my other religion).

Come to think of it, Adam should be commended just for getting those three gentlemen in one post. (OK, Trump might not be a gentlemen, LOL).

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Louisiana Blues - The Best Louisiana Sounds

Tracklist :

00:00 - Clarence Frogman Henry - I Ain't Got No Home

02:19 - Little Walter - My Babe

04:49 - Clarence Garlow - New Bon Ton Roulay

07:38 - Bobby Charles - Take It Easy Greasy

09:50 - Louisiana Red - Alabama Train

13:07 - Muddy Waters - Louisiana Blues

15:59 - Slim Harpo - I'm a King Bee

18:56 - Big Bill Broonzy - Southern Flood Blues

22:12 - Big Joe Reynolds - Third Street Woman Blues

24:52 - Little Walter - Come Back Baby

27:54 - Bobby Charles - See You Later Alligator

30:42 - Slim Harpo - I Got Love If You Want It

33:26 - Lightnin' Slim - It's Mighty Crazy

35:53 - Warren Storm - Mama Look What Your Liitle Boy's Done

38:12 - Lightnin' Slim - My Starter Won't Start

41:00 - Lazy Lester - I'm a Lover Not a fighter

43:42 - Little Walter - You'd Better Watch Yourself

46:45 - Muddy Waters & Little Walter - Forty Days and Forty Nights

49:50 - Louisiana Red - You're Gonna Need Me Baby

53:08 - Big Bill Broonzy - John Henry

56:26 - Big Bill Broonzy - Key to the Highway

59:27 - Guitar Slim - The Things That I Used to Do

01:02:25 - Smiley Lewis - I Hear You Knocking

01:04:56 - Al Ferrier - Hey Baby

01:07:19 - Big Bopper - Chantilly Lace

01:09:42 - Boozoo Davis - Paper In My Shoe

01:11:54 - Muddy Waters - Meanest Woman

01:14:11 – Hawketts - Mardi Gras Mambo

01:16:19 - Earl King - Those Lonely Lonely nights

01:18:43 - Huey Piano Smith - Rockin' New Pneumonia

01:20:55 - Cookie & The Cupcakes - Mathilda

01:24:06 - Lazy Lester - Sugar Coated Love

01:26:50 - Huey Piano Smith - Don't You Just Know It

01:29:17 - Rod Bernard - Pardon Mr. Gordon

01:31:22 - Lightnin' Slim - Rooster Blues

01:33:51 - Frankie Ford - Sea Cruise

01:36:33 - Rod Bernard - This Should Go On Forever

01:39:17 - John Fred - Shirley

01:41:08 - Al Terry - Watchdog

01:43:12 - Joe Jones - You Talk Too Much

01:45:43 - Slim Harpo - Rainin' In My Heart

01:48:14 - Big Boy Myles - New Orleans

01:50:34 - Charles Sheffield - It's Your Voodoo Working

01:52:17 - Clarence Frogman Henry - But I Do

01:54:34 - Jimmy Clanton - Just a Dream

01:57:03 - Warren Storm - Prisoner's Song

Sunday, January 03, 2016

B.B. King's Top 10 Rules For Success

Published on Nov 18, 2015
He was an American blues singer, songwriter, and guitarist.

King was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

He's considered one of the most influential blues musicians of all time, earning the nickname "The King of the Blues".

He's B.B. King and here are his Top 10 Rules for Success.

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1. Know your goals
While young, King sang in the gospel choir at Elkhorn Baptist Church in Kilmichael.

2. Do the best that you can do
The minister taught King his first three chords. It seems that at the age of 12 he bought his first guitar for $15.00.

3. Practice
In 1943, King left Kilmichael to work as a tractor driver and play guitar with the Famous St. John's Quartet of Inverness.

4. Contribute something new
In 1949, King began recording songs under contract with Los Angeles-based RPM Records.

5. Find your energy
King assembled his own band; the B.B. King Review, under the leadership of Millard Lee.

6. Be grateful
He became one of the most important names in R&B music in the 1950s.

7. Appreciate your audience
He gained further visibility among rock audiences as an opening act on the Rolling Stones' 1969 American Tour.

8. Create something that lasts
King was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1980, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

9. Always aim to do better
In 2004, he was awarded the international Polar Music Prize.

10. Have fun
His half-century of success owes much to his hard work as a touring musician who consistently logged between 200 and 300 shows a year.


"This Little Light of Mine" - Joss Stone

ALICIA KEYS - Pressing On