3/29/15

John Lee Hooker - Let Me Play My Blues Alone Fake EP (1959)



A re-up of the second session JLH did for Vee Jay. Used this wonderful picture as cover sleeve. Catch it here.

Here's the next session John Lee Hooker did for Vee Jay, I mean the next after this one here. We are 6 months later, in January 1959. And once again, he came in the studio to record 2 rather commercial songs ("Maudie" and "Tennessee Blues") with the rock 'n roll flavor of the moment, backed by a 2nd guitar and drums. But then, when the "job"'s done, he stays and plays his style, more lonely with each song, even leaving his electric guitar for the accoustic one on "Hobo Blues", and covering no less than 4 blues styles in 4 songs (the reason I chose the cover sleeve). And it's really magical. This session will actually be released the same year, first on three 2-song 78 rpm and then compiled with songs recorded for Vee Jay over the previous 2 years on an album called I'm John Lee Hooker. The irony is that with the old rural blues style that he played on "Hobo Blues"(and in which Vee Jay was not interested), he would reach success among white University students the same year, with sessions recorded for the label Riverside and which provided the famous Country Blues and That's My Story album. I long thought that this neo-rural blues revival was not sincere and only a way to win some more money for him (and many Hooker's experts wrote that) but actually, hearing that he would end some of his 1958 and 59 sessions with these kind of songs when he came in to record some bandwagonned songs make me think it's maybe wrong. The fact is this fake EP makes us participate during some rare minutes to the more intimate part of the singer, alone in the studio, singing for none than him, and seeming to ask that he's left to play his blues alone. PS. If I knew the bastard in charge of the recording who faded the end of each song, I would punch him to death.



Below, John Lee takes his accoustic guitar and offers a great version of "Hobo Blues". And some said he didn't know to play guitar.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! I sure would like hear those John Lee LP's!

Is it possible for you to upload them elswhere then Rpdshr?

Keep on the good work!