14 April 2009

Junior Kimbrough - First Recordings

"See, I have a different type of music from other peoples. They playing the other kind of blues, and I'm playing cotton-patch blues.... Ain't nobody now can play the blues that I play." - Junior Kimbrough

Ten or fifteen years ago my father-in-law was clearing out some cds and knowing my interest in blues handed me a sampler called Adventures In Music #28 sampler - Cotton Patch Blues. That odd sampler turned into something of a holy grail for a couple friends and I. Reason being that this sampler had three songs on it by Junior Kimbrough that none of us had heard of let alone heard before. The liner notes also suggested that there was an album somewhere out there recorded for the Goldwax record label.

And now you'll know, as the man said, the rest of the story.

In 1966 Junior Kimbrough traveled to Memphis from his home in North Mississippi and recorded for noted R&B/Gospel producer and owner of the Goldwax record label, Quinton Claunch. Claunch was a founder of Hi Records (whose entire catalog will be reissued by Fat Possum Records) and is known as the man that gave James Carr and O.V. Wright their start. Junior Kimbrough recorded one session in one afternoon at American Studios. Claunch declined to release the recordings, deeming them too country. Forty some years later, Bruce Watson of Big Legal Mess Records approached Claunch to buy the original master tapes and the rights to release the recordings made that day. BTW the three tracks that appeared previously on the Cotton Patch Blues sampler were mastered differently than the Big Legal Mess release. These new found recordings by the late Mississippi hill country master are completely essential for any music fan.

Junior Kimbrough - First Recordings - Feels So Good #2 - MP3

Now available on gorgeous vinyl.BUY iT!

The Following recordings are extremely rare and Out Of Print.

You totally owe my pal Jay Martin a couple beers for these!

On the label of the 45 Junior Kimbrough recorded in 1967 for Philwood his name was spelled incorrectly and the song Tramp was listed as Tram?

Junior Kimbell - Philwood 45 - Tram? - MP3

Junior Kimbell - Philwood 45 - You Can't Leave Me - MP3

from Charlie Gillett's Honky Tonk Demos, Oval Records 1979:

Junior Kimbrough - In The City - MP3

"My songs, they have just the one chord, there's none of that fancy stuff you hear now, with lots of chords in one song. If I find another chord I leave it for another song." -Junior Kimbrough

Tons o' Thanks to my friend Jay Martin for his research and help and to Bruce Watson from Big Legal Mess Records for answering some of my questions and for taking the time to edit the orginal tapes into these fantastic six tracks. Salute!

"Junior Kimbrough is the beginning and the end of all music". -Charlie Feathers


nathan danger croson said...

ahhh yeeaahhh!! i love junior. thanks so much rick.


Skip Papworth said...

As usual, Rick and Jay, you guys kick ass!


Ratel said...

Thanks ! What's the story behind the Charlie Gillett's Honky Tonk Demos ? Never heard of these either.
Just in case somebody managed to miss them and because you quote Feathers, old Kimbrough recordings include also the two 1969 recordings with Feathers on Revenant's Get with it.

jdogg said...

Please re-up at least the 2 Philwood sides. My name is John J-DOGG Shaw, I work for Select-O-Hits and WE don't even have a copy of that Philwood 45. We're also hoping for someone to put up the VMO Lofton on Philwood. We don't have that either (2 fires have occurred over the years).

Rick Saunders said...

ATTN: jdogg:

RE: Re-up-

Recontact Jay Martin (DJ HWY 7) in Portland, OR.