The Blues, Man, the Blues
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There's a favourite moment of mine on one of Hound Dog Taylor's albums. Between songs he just says..'I got it'. Someone in the crowd shouts: 'What you got?' and the laconic answer comes back.. 'The blues, man...".
So obvious.. what the hell do you think he's got? He's Hound Dog Taylor. Anyway, I liked it, and it lodged in my head, where it grew an extra bit, and became 'the blues, man, the blues'..And here it is as a six track online EP.
NB: the album has now been remixed and re-released - I hope you enjoy it.
Track 1: I Sing Um the Way I Feel
I first heard this song by J.B.Lenoir way back - one of the first blues tracks I ever heard. Mid 60s sometime. And I liked the tune, so lately I tracked it down. J.B's version is quite laid back - I've boogied it up a little, with some Hubert Sumlin influenced guitar.
Note: 'I Sing Um the Way I Feel' will be on rotation on BB King's Bluesville channel, Sirius XM, from Saturday 7th Jan.
Track 2: I Asked For Water
We toured with Wolf as I've mentioned before. I don't think he ever did this one on stage, not when I was there. If he had it would have been spellbinding. Anyway, here's my version with the Strat wailing.
Track 3: Doing The Best I Can
When I was just a kid my late brother Derek used to bring home a lot of the hit records of the day. That's when I heard Lonnie Donnegan, Buddy Holly and others. He loved the Elvis album 'G.I.Blues'. Actually he loved all the sloppy tracks, bless him, and Elvis's version of this Doc Pomus / Mort Schuman song is pretty sloppy. However it can also harden up nicely and with some Guitar Slim style guitar I think it rocks. Hope you enjoy it.
Track 4: Mizzable Blues
I think I did have the backache and the toothache and the headache when I wrote Mizzable Blues. It's all true! 'Getting old is not for the faint of heart' - the blues, man, the blues..
Track 5: Baby Please Don't Throw Me Down
Tampa Red wrote this, but the version I liked was by Chicago blues man Jimmy Eager. Hard rockin' stuff. So I've applied some Hound Dog style slide to my version.. verges on the rockabilly which is not a bad thing. Boogie on..
Track 6: Love Her With A Feeling
I was privileged to play this track as rhythm guitarist with Freddie King many times on our two UK tours together back in 1969. Always loved the song, and Freddie put it across beautifully. I've tried to keep a lot of his phrasing while at the same time adapting it to my style. Anyway, I'm happy. Hope you enjoy the track.
With thanks to:
Lou Brutus, BB King's Bluesville, Sirius XM
Dennis 'Big D' Schaibly at WWOZ New Orleans
Bluespower, Radio Weser, Bremerhaven, Germany
Radio Key West, Florida
4ZZZ Brisbane 102.1FM Australia
Mark Stenzler, Blues Zeppelin, Switzerland
Pascal at Blues Des Canuts, France
WHQR 91.3fm in Wilmington, North Carolina
Pete Feenstra at Get Ready To Rock Radio
Patrick Turlo at WMHB 89.7 FM, Maine
Luke Wolk at Global Blues Radio
Mike Jacobs at KIOS-FM Omaha, Nebraska
Bernie at Future.fm
Joost Van Steen at Jazz Blues Tour, Netherlands
Robert Hiebler, France
Simon Flint, Australia
Blues Radio, Athens, Greece
AJ's Kitchen, WRFG 89.3 FM Atlanta Georgia
Blues Depot Radio
Joel Chailleux, France
Gary Reinhard, WITR Radio, New York
Dr Boogie, Classic 21, RTBF Belgium
David Fusco at Blues DeLuxe Radio
And many others who have expressed interest in playing 'The Blues, Man, the Blues' on radio and internet. Thanks to all .. keep rockin' the blues!
Review from Blues Town Music, Netherlands by Peter Marinus
Mick Clarke is simply unstoppable! And we can only be happy about that as long as Mick releases one great blues rock release after another.
Now he comes with the EP 'The Blues, Man, The Blues'.
A title coming from Hound Dog Taylor. After he sighed “I Got It” during a concert and a fan asked what he had, the statement came The Blues, Man, The Blues…
The EP contains five covers and one of Mick's own songs. All songs on the EP are stripped of any kind of frills so that the pure raw essence of the blues remains.
Opening with the J.B. Lenoir cover 'I Sing Um The Way I Feel'. A song on which Mick has poured a boogie sauce with a nice unpolished result in which Mick's ingenious piercing guitar comes out well. The next cover is Howlin' Wolf's 'I Asked For Water', which sounds raw, brooding and funky with nasty biting guitar work this time.
'Doing The Best' I Can could be known for Elvis Presley's performance. The song was written by Doc Pomus and Mort Schuman and is in the hands of Mick Clarke, a lazily pumping blues in which Mick lets his guitar flame and scrape hard.
Then Mick's very own 'Mizzable Blues'. A lazy raw boogie, which stomps through nicely. Tampa Red's Baby Please Don't Throw Me Down has been put into a soggy boogie version with Mick's roaring slide guitar.
Finally, Mick Freddie King's 'Love Her With A Feeling' gives a very loving and soulful treatment.
A wonderful unpolished blues EP from Mick Clarke that eases the wait for the next Mick Clarke release. But knowing Mick Clarke we probably won't have to wait long for a next release