willie brown, future blues.
willie brown was the mysterious guitarist who played behind son house and charley patton. robert johnson called out for his friend willie johnson in crossroads blues. future blues is a great haunting delta slide classic.
Today were honoring Classie Ballou, the creole rocker from South LA who currently leads his family band out of Waco, Texas. Classie and the family band will be appearing at the Jazz Fest today, and the Stomp’s own Alison Fensterstock profiles Ballou in today’s Times Picayune.
To get you in the mood, here is the smoldering “Classie’s Whip:”
The TP explains the origins:
Ballou moved on to play sessions at J.D. Miller’s legendary studio in Crowley, performing with Cookie Thierry (of Cookie and the Cupcakes), Carol Fran, and on dozens of Excello Records swamp blues, swamp pop and R&B sides. He also recorded on his own, cutting diverse blues, R&B and Latin-inflected tracks such as the wild instrumental rocker “Classie’s Whip” and the genre hybrid “Crazy Mambo.”
“Believe it or not, I’m a mambo freak, ” he said. “I always had a horn section. I just like that kind of rhythm. I like that New Orleans rhythm, too. I’m labeled as a blues band, but I can play everything.”
He proves it on “Crazy Mambo:”
The article goes on to chronicle the Stomp’s modus operandi when it comes to coaxing a musician to play their own classic material:
After Padnos prevailed upon Ballou to switch out chestnuts such as “Mustang Sally” [in his set] for nuggets such as “Classie’s Whip, ” the guitarist decided to roll with it. Fluent as he is in multiple musical languages, he’ll be speaking Classie in the Blues Tent today.
“Ira always tells me, ‘We don’t want to hear no BB King or Muddy Waters or Fats Domino. We want to hear the stuff you recorded when you were 29 years old and 30 in the waist, ‘ ” Ballou said, laughing. –”We don’t want to hear nothing but Classie Ballou.’ ”
“The Jazz Fest didn’t ask me what I was going to play, but I’m gonna follow that train and just be strictly original, more or less.”
Classie is also one of the three featured musicians in the Ponderosa Stomp film where he explains how he came up with “Classie’s Whip.”
As Michael Hurtt describes on the Ballou’s Stomp bio – the family band’s performances are not to be missed:
Ballou’s live shows are the kind of take no prisoners affairs where-unlike so many of his contemporaries–he’s guaranteed to play ‘em all, throwing in his amazing versions of “Jambalaya”, “Mathilda,” “Guitar Rhumbo,” “Honky Tonk” and “Sweet Home Alabama.” Classie’s family band features son Cedric (bass), grandson Cedryl (drums, accordion) and daughter CeChaun (sax, guitar and drums), all of whom have been taught to play by the master, resulting in an old school musical approach crossed with a youthful exuberance that belies the era they grew up in. Thus, when they tackle one of Classie’s old numbers, it sounds exactly like the original record; likewise, if you hear ‘em do “Tutti Frutti” it’ll be injected with every subtle nuance that’s been lost by everyone else in the last forty years. Simply put, Ballou and his wrecking crew are one of the best rock ‘n’ roll bands you’ll EVER see, end of the story.
I am sorry to say we recently learned of the passing of Floyd Dakil. Our condolences to Floyd’s family and friends.
Although we had not announced it yet- Floyd was scheduled to appear at the next Ponderosa Stomp. We would like to pay tribute the only way we know how- with one of his greatest tracks “Dance, Franny, Dance.”
From his Stomp bio:
Texas rocker Floyd Dakil started out as an adolescent wild man, forming his Floyd Dakil Combo with five other high school sophomores in 1963. In 1964, the combo recorded their first and best-known single for the Jetstar label, the regional hit “Dance, Franny, Dance,” live in front of a crowd at the Pit Club, where they were the house band. They were clean-cut teens in sharp suits who played savage, crazy and loose dance music that still stands out today as one of the hottest sounds to come out of the happening Dallas-Fort Worth ‘60s garage scene. In 1969 Dakil joined Louis Prima’s band as a guitarist and stayed for several years.
“Unsung Heroes: The Secret History of Louisiana Rock n’Roll” is a much-belated celebration of the state’s formidable contribution to American music. The exhibit showcases, for the first time, the rich – and largely unknown – musical history of Louisiana’s blues, R&B, soul, rockabilly, swamp pop and garage artists, who played a significant role in shaping popular music and culture for the last 60 years.
The exhibit takes a close look at the Louisiana’s post-war geographic music capitals- Shreveport, Lake Charles, Crowley, Baton Rouge, Lafayette and of course, New Orleans. With profiles on the entrepreneurial studio owners, the A&R men; and the key musicians, arrangers and producers who made the classic recordings.
The Unsung Heroes exhibit at the New Orleans Jazzfest is displayed in the grandstands during the festival and is an abbreviated version of the full exhibit now showing at the Louisiana State Museum Cabildo in the French Quarter.
obscure blues gem by the equally obscure thaddeus declouet. it was recorded by eddie shuler at goldband studios. the southwest louisiana creole influence is evident with the accordion thrown into the mix.
louise johnson was a piano player/blues singer from the mississippi. in june 1930, charley patton took louise, willie brown and son house up to grafton , wisconsin to record for paramount records.charley had his designs on louise .when it came time to pass out the room keys, louise told son house he was staying with her.
on the wall has the great couplet “you can shake it, break it or hang it on the wall”
king charles-bob cat stomp
great slashing guitar instrumental by charlie morris cut at eddie shuler`s goldband studio. it was released on the folk star label. charlie also cut the amazing i’m gonna kill that hen for jd miller. the record was issued on excello records by blue charlie.
Louisiana garage nuggets style. the session was produced by dale hawkins at robin hood brien`s studio in tyler, texas. it was released on stan lewis`s paula label. singer joe stampley would go on to have success as a country singer.
The Ponderosa Stomp throws down in its 9th year with an incredible array of performers and the first six headliners are official! Stand back: DUANE EDDY, SUGAR PIE DESANTO, THEE MIDNITERS, RED SIMPSON, JOE SOUTH and THE TRASHMEN will grace the stage in 2010! Representing American music’s Grand Canyonesque range of genres, from twangy guitar genius to bold, sassy R&B, Chicano rock, truckin’ anthems, soulful southern songwriting and primal garage, fans would be hard-pressed to witness talent this heavy and diverse anywhere else.
Check back often as more artists and details on all the weekends events are announced.
3rd Annual Music History Conference & Film Series
September 24 & 25 2010, Louisiana State Museum at the Cabildo, New Orleans
Rock & roll all night, panel every day. Intimate conversations with musicians, historians and music biz heavies take you behind the scenes of rock’s secret history.