Crazy Arms

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Mick writes:

A 15 track compilation of recent singles, EP tracks and favourite album tracks, featuring the brand new title track "Crazy Arms".

"Crazy Arms" was a big hit for country star Ray Price back in the 50s. It was then picked up by Jerry Lee Lewis and released as his first single on Sun Records. He turned it into a jumping shuffle - it's great, in case you don't know it. My friend the late Charlie Lankester was a singer / piano player who lived and worked mainly in the Balham, South London area. He did a rocked up version of "Crazy Arms" which I always enjoyed hearing, and this is a kind of tribute to Charlie.

So I've given it a treatment which is somewhere between Status Quo and Dave Edmunds, but I've kept the guitars bluesy, because that's what I do. It's quite a mix but I like it a lot - I hope you do too.

On to the previously released stuff.. "That's All Right" flows on nicely being another Sun Records release of the period, Arthur Crudup's original being covered by Elvis Presley as his first ever release. Tommy Tucker's "Hi-Heel Sneakers" fits right in too. And "Down The Road Apiece" is an even older song, written by Don Rae who also wrote "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B".

"Gypsy Blues '38" is a remake of my instrumental "Gypsy Blues" but played on my 1930s Harmony Archtop, in a kind of Djangoish "Manouche" style. One of my personal favourite tracks.

Bobby Parker's "Watch Your Step" was a popular track back in the 60s.. all the Mod bands of the time had a go at it, from Spencer Davis to Manfred Mann. I thought it was time to bring it back and this is from my 2018 album "Steppin' Out". As is the following track "Can't Help Myself". To me this track lies somewhere between the Stones and the Faces.. I think it rocks along pretty good.

"Bad Bad Whisky" is a recent single release - my version of the Amos Milburn song. But "Steady Road" takes us back to my "Crazy Blues" album ..(why do I keep stumbling from one Crazy to another?). It was a popular track at the time and I think it still sounds good.. I like some of the lyrics... "You can find my name on an old T-shirt" adapted from Jimmie Rogers, the Singing Brakeman, and "I'm praying at the church of Chuck and Bo" pretty much sums everything up.

"Bread and Butter" is the old Newbeats hit given a kind of Little Walter feel, and "Dry Road Blues" is the opening track from my 2017 album "Diggin' Down".

"You Got Good Business" is my version of a song I heard way back in the 60s by Texas singer and pianist Curtis Jones. The rustic sounding guitar straight through my 1963 Watkins Clubman amp. And "Cheap" is from my 2012 album "The Rambunctious Blues Experiment" - my first venture into recording here at Rockfold Studio, with Russell Chaney on the drums. I've remastered this release for a little extra oomph.

"Complicated Woman" is again from my "Crazy Blues" album - it's always been a popular track and I think it's worthy of another outing here. I think it's a little over recorded, and the singing's rotten, but one thing is for sure.. it digs in and swings like hell! And finally the title track from the aforementioned "Crazy Blues". Mamie Smith's big hit from back in the 20s, with my Epiphone Dot getting a nice Les Pauly kind of tone.

I hope you enjoy the compilation, and particularly the new "Crazy Arms". More releases are in the pipeline - Keep rockin' the blues.

Mick Clarke - Crazy Arms