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Tag: Jimmy Johnson

Friday, December 7th

This is Jimmy’s brother.

Syl Johnson, “Take Me to the River” (A. Green, M. Hodges), 1974

 

*****

Another take.

Live (with Howard Grimes [drums], Leroy Hodges [bass], et al.), Memphis

 

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lagniappe

random sights

other day, Oak Park, Ill.

Tuesday, December 4th

timeless

This guy, whom I worked with in the 1970s, co-producing this track and a few others for Alligator Records (Living Chicago Blues, Vol. 1), just turned ninety. One of my sons, now older than I was then, heard him the other night at a Chicago club, where, he said, his guitar playing was “robust.” How wonderful to be ninety years old and robust. How wonderful, too, to be able to share music with a son.

“Breaking up Somebody’s Home” (T. Matthews, A. Jackson), 1978

 

***

Here he is forty years later.

“People Get Ready” (C. Mayfield), “That’s All Right,” Chicago, 2018

 

Friday, June 10th

voices I miss

Albert Collins (1932-1993), live, Switzerland (Montreux), 1979


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lagniappe

art beat: other day, Art Institute of Chicago 

Aaron Siskind (1903-1991), Chicago 28 1957 (Abstractions, through 8/14/16)

58083_std

*****

tonight in Chicago

The Chicago Blues Festival celebrates the 45th anniversary of Alligator Records, where, in the ’70s, barely out of college, I had the good fortune to co-produce recordings by Albert Collins, Koko Taylor, Son Seals, Fenton Robinson, Jimmy Johnson, Carey Bell, et al.

Monday, November 30th

sounds of Chicago

More from Living Chicago Blues, Vol. 1 (1978).

Jimmy Johnson Blues Band, “Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody’s Home”

Friday, 1/18/13

three takes

“Driving Wheel,” AKA “Driving Wheel Blues” (R. Sykes)

Buddy Guy & Junior Wells (BG, guitar; JW, harmonica and vocals; Jimmy Johnson, guitar; Dave Myers, bass; Odie Payne, drums), live, Portugal (Algarve Jazz Festival), 1978

*****

Junior Parker, 1961

*****

Roosevelt Sykes, 1936

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lagniappe

reading table

[I]t is out of adolescents who last a sufficient number of years that life makes old men.

—Marcel Proust, Finding Time Again (translated from French by Ian Patterson)

Saturday, 11/27/10

This guy and the guy we heard Monday (Syl Johnson) are brothers.

Speaking of Syl, he’s getting a lot of attention right now: the cover story in this week’s Chicago Reader; a big new boxed set on the Numero label; and a concert tonight, in Chicago, with a top-flight band and guest Otis Clay (yeah, I’ll be there).

*****

replay: a clip too good for just one day

This take?

Or that?

Move the voice forward?

Back?

Make the guitar brighter?

Darker?

Enough bass?

Too much?

Enough room sound?

Mixing a record, as I learned when I worked at Alligator Records (back in the 1970s), involves a seemingly countless number of decisions. After a few hours, everyone starts to get a little punch-drunk. By the end of the night, for instance, this track had morphed—in the warped warble of engineer Freddie Breitberg (AKA, in his personal mythology, Eddie B. Flick)—into “Serve Me Rice For Supper.”

Jimmy Johnson, “Serves Me Right To Suffer” (Living Chicago Blues, Vol. 1, Alligator Records, 1977 [Grammy Nominee])

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lagniappe

reading table

The ’net’s filled with enough dreck for a thousand lifetimes; but then, as happened the other day (after hearing about it on the radio), you come across something that’s simply stunning—like the new, complete collection of the letters of Vincent van Gogh.

. . . Van Gogh’s letters are the best written by any artist . . . Their mixture of humble detail and heroic aspiration is quite simply life-affirming.—Andrew Motion, The Guardian (11/21/09)

(Originally posted a year ago [11/27/09].)

Friday, 11/27/09

This take?

Or that?

Move the voice forward?

Back?

Make the guitar brighter?

Darker?

Enough bass?

Too much?

Enough room sound?

Mixing a record, as I learned when I worked at Alligator Records (back in the 1970s), involves a seemingly countless number of decisions. After a few hours, everyone starts to get a little punch-drunk. By the end of the night, for instance, this track had morphed—in the warped warble of engineer Freddie Breitberg (AKA, in his personal mythology, Eddie B. Flick)—into “Serve Me Rice For Supper.”

Jimmy Johnson, “Serves Me Right To Suffer” (Living Chicago Blues, Vol. 1, Alligator Records, 1977 [Grammy Nominee])

**********

lagniappe

reading table

The ’net’s filled with enough dreck for a thousand lifetimes; but then, as happened the other day (after hearing about it on the radio), you come across something that’s simply stunning—like the new, complete collection of the letters of Vincent van Gogh.

. . . Van Gogh’s letters are the best written by any artist . . . Their mixture of humble detail and heroic aspiration is quite simply life-affirming.—Andrew Motion, The Guardian (11/21/09)

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