- July 3rd.,1881-- "Blind" Simmie Dooley
- July 14th.,1902-- Henry "Rubber Legs" Williams
- July 26th.,1922-- Charles Wacker
- July 8th.,1991-- Willie Nix
- July 19th.,2002-- Alan Lomax
- July 27th.,1991-- James David "J.D." Nicholson
A "Hi there" to T.J.Gassan, and thanks for your comments, and yes, I miss a lot of things about the old location. Hope you continue to enjoy the blog and find it, at least a little bit, entertaining, and also to let others know there's a lot for all to learn, including me ! Now, on to the Blog---
Some July Blues Births:
Answer To The June 2022 Blues Question: The bluesman we were looking for was/ is Johnny Edward Jenkins, born March 5, 1939, in Macon (Bibb County) Georgia. There's not much info on his early life but in the late '50's he started a band, known as "The Pinetoppers", and through the years, had in it Johnny Jenkins on lead guitar and vocals, Samuel Davis on rhythm guitar, Ish Mosley on saxaphone, Willie Bowden on drums, and, of course, Otis Redding on vocals, who was an "unknown" at the time. Otis also served as Johnny's personal driver, as Johnny had no driver's license. In 1962, the band's manager, Phil Walden, set up a recording studio date, with the recording managed by Jenkins. Johnny recorded 2 songs: "Spunky", an instrumental on the "A" side, and "Bashful Guitar" on the "B" side. They were released on the "Volt" label (Stax) #V-122, with recording numbers of V1134 & V1135, but not until 1964. There were 40 minutes of studio recording time left, and Otis used it to record "These Arms Of Mine" (A side) and "Hey Hey Baby" (B side). Those were released on #45-V103, with recording numbers V6511 & V6512, respectively, and were released in 1962. Otis's recordings of those songs featured Jenkins on guitar and Steve Cropper on piano. Redding's recordings were selling well, which led Walden to promote him, while putting Jenkins on the "back burner", as far as career development. Johnny stuck it out though, up until '70, when he recorded an album -- "Ton Ton Macoute !" (look that one up--you'll be surprised what it was named after). That album was recorded with members of the Allman Brother's Band, Including Duane, and it was Johnny's debut album. Johnny had had early success, both with the Pinetoppers, and as a solo performer, as he was quite the showman when performing. Remember, this was in the late '50's, and he was playing left-handed (normally), both in front and behind the back, with a right-handed guitar, not re-strung for a "southpaw". He also played using his teeth, which was kinda' never seen back then. Remember I stated in the Blues Question that he influenced a young player who had seen him perform when the youn man was in Macon visiting relatives. That young man was another "lefty", using the same basic set-up as Johnny, ie., right handed guitar not restrung for left- handed players, and he would use some of Johnny's showmanship too. That was a "kid" named Jimi Hendrix, who said that he was influenced by Johnny's playing. Anyhow, dissatisfied with the music business, Johnny walked away from it. He would work different jobs to support his family, and, on occasion, play a local gig. This would have been in the early '70's. Walden kept in touch with him, and finally convinced him in '96 or '97, to do another album, which he agreed to do. That one was titled "Blessed Blues", and had some of the blues standards on it, along with some of Johnny's tunes. Johnny recorded 2 additional albums, 1 in 2001, and 1 in 2005. Sadly, he passed away, from a stroke, on June 26,2006, in his hometown of Macon, Georgia.
Blues Question For July 2022: This bluesman was known for his work as a sideman, but he also did quite a few recordings of his own, either as a solo artist, or with a backing band. he's recorded on singles and on albums, as a sideman. He's also known to be a good songwriter, both for himself, and for other artists. Any idea who this bluesman might be ??
Blues Song(s) And Artist(s) For July 2022: The song is "Linda Lu", and the artist is "Left Hand Frank" (Craig). This version was recorded and titled "Left Hand Frank: Live At The Knickerbocker Cafe", in the late '70's, at the Knickerbocker Cafe, in Westerly, Rhode Island, which is now known as The Knickerbocker Music Center. The musicians on this song are: Left Hand Frank on guitar & vocals, Peter "Hi-Fi" Ward on rhythm guitar, Michael "Mudcat" Ward on bass (yes,they're brothers), and Ted "Houserocking" Harvey on drums. By the way, the "Knick" opened in 1933, and it was named after a train that went through Westerly. Also, it's where the Roomful of Blues band got started, and they're still the house band there. This albumis on bothFan Club cd # FCD-101, and Last Call cd # 42428, both of which are out of France.
Blues Trivia For July 2022: In the February 2021 Blues Blog Trivia section, I listed some of the differences between Hoodoo and Voodoo, and mentioned the "Voodoo Queen of New Orleans", Marie Laveau. I also gave you a description of one of the "charms" used in both practices-- the "gris -gris". Now, about that item: you've heard of Dr.John, a New Orleans musician, most likely. That was used as the title of his first album, "Gris Gris". There are cerrently 70 different releases of that album. He picked that title because he'd been interested in the New Orleans voodooist history after he'd moved there, which was/ is still prominent. Some of the practioners of some of those forms were/are called "root doctors". The most famous of them was Dr. John Montenet, aka Bayou John, an African priest and freed slave, and he's a whole other story. Here's the trivia part: the Dr.John you know really studied up on the history of root doctors and all of the "problems and/ or ills" that they could cure, or , at least, help with, and admired Dr. John Montenet from that. Our Dr.John thought enough of the original Dr. John that he hunted down and aquired some of his things. Early in his performing career, he was sometimes called Dr.John, rather than Mac Rebennack, his real name. He eventually decided to keep and use the Dr.John moniker to also honor the memory of the "root Doctor John".
Some July Blues Passings:
Proprietor of The Sound of Blue record shop in Kent, Ohio.