Monday, June 05, 2006:

Lightnin' Hopkins: Another Fool in Town / Baby Please Don't Go

Lightnin' Hopkins -- Another Fool in Town
Lightnin' Hopkins -- Baby Please Don't Go
I'm not sure how it is that I haven't posted anything by Lightnin' Hopkins, but Google assures me that that's the case. Hopkins was a Texas bluesman with over a 40-year career; he played on both acoustic and electric and had a sort of loping, spontaneous sense of timing made more palatable by his voice and his guitarwork.

"Another Fool in Town" has Hopkins telling the story of a man whose school burned down, leaving him with no education. He moans that he can't write his name or say his ABCs. It's a simple story and a simple song, but that sound just makes it: the guitar rings out and the voice is pure blues rattling the mic. Excellent.

And then in "Baby Please Don't Go" the guitar flits about weaving melodies, harmonizing with itself, and occasionally dropping the funk, expecting you to pay attention and keep up. And you do, because it's both engaging and enjoyable.
[Blues Kingpins ]
[American Folk Blues Festival, 1962-1965] ($60 boxed set, or pick it up year by year from emusic.com. Hopkins' other track on the '64 disc is also quite good, a somber tune about being away from his wife.)

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Comments:
What a full sound he gets from one acoustic guitar! Sounds like a whole band. Love the reverb sound on "Another fool." The real thing.

Yup, lightnin' hopkins is one of my fav blues artists...and I thought I did post something but google says no too. Damn !

And I scooped the Rev, too? It's almost too much to ask for. :-)

Glad you like it, Rosswords. He's got a huge discography and I have just a fraction of it; I'd love to track down more of his work.

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