John Mayall – The Blues Alone (Epic 2017 #173)

The Epic 2017 Project #173: 170622

John Mayall – The Blues Alone (1967)

The Blues Alone is a 1967 electric blues album recorded by John Mayall on which he recorded all the parts himself, with the exception of percussion which was provided by longtime collaborator Keef Hartley.

The cover art and the original LP sleeve design are by John Mayall. Sleeve notes, including track notes, were written by noted DJ John Peel. And this is what he said about the album’s concept…

I was featuring his LP A Hard Road on the air and was amazed that, in addition to writing 8 of the 12 numbers on the record, playing 5 [sic] and 9 string guitar, organ, piano, harmonica and singing, he had written the sleeve notes and painted the portrait of the group on the front cover. With this new LP he has carried all of this to its logical conclusion and has produced a record featuring no other musician than himself except for the occasional aid of his drummer Keef Hartley.

Love Sculpture – Blues Helping (Epic 2017 #165)

The Epic 2017 Project #165: 170614

Love Sculpture – Blues Helping (1968)

Love Sculpture were a Welsh blues rock band[1] of the late 1960s, led by Dave Edmunds , plus bassist John David and drummer Rob ‘Congo’ Jones, their debut album ‘Blues Helping’ was released on Parlophone Records in December 1968

Based in Cardiff, Love Sculpture disbanded in 1970, although Edmunds went on to enjoy solo success in the 1970s. Here’s the rather excellent final track (and name-giver) of the debut album.

Jonny Lang – Lie to me (Epic 2017 #162)

The Epic 2017 Project #162: 170611

Jonny Lang – Lie to me (1997)

Growing up on his father’s farm near Casselton, North Dakota, Lang absorbed his parents’ record collection, stocked with Motown, Otis Redding and Steely Dan. He was 12 when his dad brought him to a gig by the Bad Medicine Blues Band, and 13 when he gave him his first guitar. Eventually, the band’s guitarist gave Lang lessons, and it wasn’t long before his very obvious talent persuaded the band to take the rather brave step of adding a 14-year old as its frontman.

Renamed ‘Kid Jonny Lang & The Big Bang’, the decision paid off as, another year later A&M Records, then home of Janet Jackson and Soundgarden, spotted him at a showcase in Minneapolis, and he was suddenly the latest in a trend of shockingly young blues-guitar prodigies that included Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Derek Trucks.

Lie to Me is Lang’s second studio album, released on January 28, 1997. It was Lang’s big-label debut, released a day before he turned 16.

King Size Slim – Chukka Chukka (Epic 2017 #145)

The Epic 2017 Project #145: 170525

King Size Slim – Chukka Chukka (2015)

I discovered King Size Slim late last year when he supported ‘Son of Dave’ on the Brighton leg of his current tour.

Using just a metal bodied dobro guitar and no other accompaniment than the stomp of his boot on the floor, the man started his set by suggesting he dispense with the amplification and just get down and dirty with the audience. So that’s what he did.

What followed was 40 minutes of heaven culminating in this barnstormer to which you cannot help but sing along. In fact – it’s an essential.

‘May we find’ comes from King Size Slim’s second album released independently in 2015.