Category Chess Records

TRUE BLUES: The Stones Get Back To The Bedrock

Ultimately, despite (or perhaps because of) being bashed-about and knocked-out off-the-cuff, “Blue & Lonesome” firmly and expansively situates itself in time and place. Like most good albums, it captures and distills a mood and a feeling, a frame of mind, a state of being, and it’s a welcome, if relatively brief (at 42 minutes), escape.

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THE KING IS DEAD (But Johnny B. Goode Lives On): Chuck Berry, Rock ‘n’ Roll’s Pioneer Architect of Youthful Abandon, Dies at 90.

Chuck was/is a progenitor of the gloriously messy swamp of cross-pollinated sounds we call rock ‘n’ roll. With his own influences as disparate as T-Bone Walker and Nat “King” Cole, Berry burst on the national scene in the early 1950s as a five-tool artist who wrote, sang, played, performed, and created an exciting new form from existing traditions, effortlessly fusing elements of nascent Teenage Pop (which he helped invent), Tin Pan Alley, Blues, R&B, Rockabilly, Swing, and even Country and Western.

FROM LITTLE RED ROOSTER TO HOOCHIE COOCHIE MAN: Reflections On Willie Dixon, Blues’ Biggest Songwriter, At 100

“RPM” is pausing to reflect on the Centennial of the birth of Willie Dixon, surely the greatest and single most important songwriter of modern blues, as well as an ace bassist-producer-arranger-session man, who would have turned 100 today (after battling diabetes for many years, he died of heart failure at the age of 76 in […]

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