Black Stone Cherry – ‘Black To Blues’

 


THE BAND:
Chris Robertson – lead vocals, lead and rhythm guitar
Ben Wells – rhythm and lead guitar, backing vocals
Jon Lawhon – bass guitar, backing vocals
John Fred Young – drums, percussion, piano, backing vocals


TRACK LISTING:
1.) “Built For Comfort” – Taken from the ‘The Howlin' Wolf’ Album released 1969 by Howlin' Wolf, with members of Rotary Connection as his backing band. It mixed blues with psychedelic rock arrangements of several of Howlin' Wolf's classic songs. Howlin' Wolf strongly disliked the album, which is noted on the album's cover. The album peaked at number 69 on Billboard magazine's Black Albums chart
2.) “Champagne & Reefer” – ‘King Bee’ is the fourteenth and final studio album by blues singer and guitarist Muddy Waters. Released in 1981, it is third in a series of records done for the label Blue Sky Records under producer/guitarist Johnny Winter. Recorded in three days (and in the wake of Muddy's failing health) some of the band members, namely Winter and guitarist Bob Margolin, were not happy with the result. As his health deteriorated, Muddy was forced to cancel an increasing number of shows. He died of a heart attack on April 30, 1983.
The album was recorded in May 1980. A salary dispute between the band and Muddy Waters's manager, Scott Cameron, halted the session. Eventually the album was completed by using a couple of outtakes from 1977's ‘Hard Again’.
3.) “Palace Of The King” – By Freddy King
4.) “Hoochie Coochie Man” - "Hoochie Coochie Man" (originally titled "I'm Your Hoochie Cooche Man")  is a blues standard written by Willie Dixon and first recorded by Muddy Waters in 1954. The song references hoodoo folk magic elements and makes novel use of a stop-time musical arrangement. It became one of Waters' most popular and identifiable songs and helped secure Dixon's role as Chess Records' chief songwriter.  The song is a classic of Chicago blues and one of Waters' first recordings with a full backing band. Dixon's lyrics build on Waters' earlier use of braggadocio and themes of fortune and sex appeal. The stop-time riff was "soon absorbed into the lingua franca of blues, R&B, jazz, and rock and roll", according to musicologist Robert Palmer, and is used in several popular songs. When Bo Diddley adapted it for "I'm a Man", it became one of the most recognizable musical phrases in blues.  After the song's initial success in 1954, Waters recorded several live and new studio versions. The original appears on the 1958 The Best of Muddy Waters album and many compilations. Numerous musicians have recorded "Hoochie Coochie Man" in a variety of styles, making it one of the most interpreted Waters and Dixon songs. The Blues Foundation and the Grammy Hall of Fame recognize the song for its influence in popular music and the US Library of Congress' National Recording Registry selected it for preservation in 2004.
5.) “Born Under A Bad Sign” - "Born Under a Bad Sign" is a blues song recorded by American blues singer and guitarist Albert King in 1967. Called "a timeless staple of the blues", the song also had strong crossover appeal to the rock audience with its bass and guitar harmony line and topical astrology reference.  "Born Under a Bad Sign" became an R&B chart hit for King and numerous blues and other musicians have made it perhaps the most recorded Albert King song.
6.) “I Want To Be Loved” – Originally performed by Muddy Waters




    Hailing from Edmonton, Kentucky Black Stone Cherry is from my home backyard of Falls Of Rough.  You should always route for the home team yet that is just a part of the reason of why I like Black Stone Cherry.  Since their first release every release has been a ten or better.
   The new release is an E.P. titled ‘Back To Blues’ and covers some of the great blues classics from the thirties through the fifties.  There is not a song that I have heard Black Stone do were I do not hear a Blues feel so doing a Blues cover album is pretty fitting.  One of the things I really loved about this release was that Black Stone Cherry made these songs their own.  If you did not know about the Blues you could argue that the band wrote these tracks.  This to a musician is very important.  The backbone to the songs has to be John Fred Young his snare cracks and bass drum kicks are just amazing.  Chris’s vocals are meant for the way the band arranged these songs!  Very much in the way Led Zeppelin was meant for this style of music.  “Champagne & Reefer” is the bands nod to their belief that marijuana should be legal.  The guys do an amazing job on this E.P. with only one complaint there could and should be more songs!