ARTIST: Junior Wells
TITLE: Hoodoo Man Blues
YEAR RELEASED: 1965
CHART ACTION: None
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Good Morning Schoolgirl, Hound Dog, Hey Lawdy Mama, Hoodoo Man Blues, Early in the Morning
LINEUP: Junior Wells, Buddy Guy, Jack Myers, Bill Warren.
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: First album from Junior Wells, in collaboration with Buddy Guy, and it’s a classic of Chicago Blues.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: “Chicago Blues won’t work on an album”. “No one will buy it.”
Poppycock. Delmark Records owner Bob Koester loved Wells so much he definitely wanted to get him and his band on vinyl. So much so he didn’t care about cost, and gave Wells freedom to record what he wanted and chose his band. The result? Classic, and the best seller in the history of the label.
Wells works seamlessly with the band, especially trading off with Guy’s fabulous guitar lines. The opener “Snatch It Back and Hold It” should be taught as “Chicago Blues 101”, as Guy’s snaking guitar lines, the groove from Myers and Warren, and Wells’ vocals and harmonica blend into a fantastic blues workout.
Are you any ways interested in Chicago Blues? Then why don’t you have this?
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Guy was signed to Chess Records and the company didn’t want his name on the credits, so he was originally billed as “Friendly Chap”, but it turned out Norman Chess actually couldn’t contractually stop Guy from being credited on the album after all.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: A couple of alternate takes exist.
GRADE: A: Junior Wells and Buddy Guy are a match made in Blues Heaven.