Louisiana Red – Memphis Mojo
If the Blues were a drug this album would be for mainlining!
Yowza! Yowza! Yowza! What have I discovered here?
After discovering Rory Gallagher and Johnny Winter in my youth I developed a deep rooted love for the Blues in all its formats; but always preferred anything influenced by Muddy Waters and Louisiana Red just might be his Love Child!
Born in 1932 and living the last 20 or so years in Germany Red still has a fire burning in his belly that comes through in his songs and some exceptional guitar playing.
From opening track Goodbye Blues to the finale Grandmothers Death we are treat to a Masterclass by a musician who has not only ‘walked the walk’ and ‘talked the talk’ but got the t-shirt too.
The fella’s 81 but on Yolanda he still talks about ‘going to California/to see an old girlfriend of mine’ and you know what the rascal has on his mind.
Your Lovin Man is in a similar vein and starts with a studio chat between Red and the Producer, which leaves you in no doubts that this guy is serious about the sound he wants and Little Victor supplies it in spades.
Boogie Woogie Boogie is exactly what it says on the tin – Boogie and Woogie to get the toes a tapping! I’m Getting Tired sounds nothing of the sort as the band rock the joint and So Long So Long tips its hat to Robert Johnson as Red plays some stinging slide guitar and Bob Corritore blows the reeds out of his harmonica. Praise the Lord that this music still exists.
See That My Grave is Kept Clean begins with the tolling of a Church Bell then Red goes on to set out the funeral that he wants and asks the favour See That My Grave is Kept Clean; a simply magnificent song executed superbly.
Louisiana Red has the perfect crackling/lived in voice for the Blues and his own guitar playing is excellent but the supporting players, Little Victor and The Hawk on guitars, David Maxwell – piano, Alex Petterson – drums, Bill Troiani – bass and the timeless wailing harmonica of Bob Corritore must all be saluted for services above and beyond the call of duty.
With music as good as this the Blues will never die.