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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Blind Pig Records: Roosevelt Sykes - The Original Honeydripper - New Release Review

I have just received the new reissue of The Original Honeydripper, a live recording of Roosevelt Sykes made in 1977 in the small basement blues club of the Blind Pig Cafe. This is a great spontaneous recording capturing Sykes in stride, opening with Cow Cow Blues featuring his pounding piano riffs and hootin' and hollarin' singing technique. On Drivin' Wheel, Sykes settles into a 12 bar roll with great vocal phrasing and piano presence. An earlier unreleased super rendition of St James Infirmary really highlights Sykes ability to play with sophisticated intensity complimented by his sense of seriousness. On Ray Charles' What I Say, Sykes adds his own flavor crossing back from Charles' style and his own barrelhouse style. On boogie track I'm A Nut, Sykes has the crowd rockin' and cheering. Always a crowd favorite, Viper Song is a great story track giving Sykes a great venue to showcase his vibrant personality and light handed fingers on the keyboard. Another unreleased track, Don't Talk Me To Death, is a great addition to this original release showing Sykes in control of the crowd and exhibiting some of his best vocal and key work on the release. Early Morning Blues is one of my favorite tracks on the release showing just the perfect balance between Skyes' powerful vocal and piano. Closing the release is Dirty Mother For You, a fun filled boogie track with Sykes leading you through the innuendo. This is a great documentation of one of the blues piano greats. If you don't already have a copy, now is the time!

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This is not a track from the release but does show Sykes in action:

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