Thursday, April 12, 2012

»Soul has Gained New Fans«

... we read in a Billboard article (»Soul Trends - The Widening of Its Audience«, Aug. 16, 1969, issue), »thanks to the rediscovery, by progressive rock FM stations, of Blues. LP cuts by B.B. King, Isaac Hayes, Ray Charles, Albert Collins, and Ike and Tina Turner are programmed almost as regularly as those by Iron Butterfly or Jimi Hendrix Experience by these stations, and an audience completely different from those already mentioned has emerged with great interest in the music and tre- mendous buying power. Soul has come a long way from Fats Domino being covered by Pat Boone ...«

Hmm, not exactly the mix of names which would come to my mind if I had to restate this, but still ... Albert Collins certainly had a peculiar role in bringing different, and often separate, musical styles together. His Imperial LP Trash Talkin' (# 12438) was released just at the time when the above-quoted Billboard issue was published. (His previous album, for Blue Thumb, had been released only two months before ... perhaps you remember the beautiful headshot of Albert on the cover.) Albert's Imperial LP contains 12 tracks, 8 of which are instrumentals. The funny »Conversation With Collins« has him talking, among many other things, about changing diapers, and »Talking Slim Blues« is actually »Things That I Used To Do«. However, these are more or less classic blues tunes. More towards the blending of styles - soul, blues and funk for instance - go some of the instrumentals, and it may have been those that prompted the Billboard writer to include Collins's name in his musings about Soul's widening audience. The instrumentals best exemplifying this are, to my mind, »Jawing« and »Tongue Lashing«, the first pretty funky, the second reminding of the Memphis soul sound (complete with horn section). Just the right stuff for a thursday night I'd say ...

Albert Collins: »Jawing« / »Tongue Lashing« from the Imperial LP # 12438 (1969):

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... and I love his ties!

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