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John Primer & The Teardrops – You Can Make It If You Try (2014)

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John Primer & The Teardrops – You Can Make It If You Try (2014)

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01. Sweet Man 07:50
02. My Little Sister 05:10
03. You Can Make It If You Try 09:05
04. Big Fat Woman 06:00
05. Love In Vain 06:43
06. Don’t You Hear Me Crying For You 04:52
07. If I Could Hold You In My Arms 09:12
08. Standing At The Crossroads 05:40
09. Things I Used To Do 06:28
10. Corinna 04:48
11. Long Distance Call 08:00

John Primer (vocals, guitar)
Nick Holt (bass)
Earl Howell, Michael Scott (drums)

 

This CD was recorded live in the early 1990's in Vienna Austria while Magic Silm and the Teardrops toured Austria. This is an amazing CD dedicated to the memory of Nick Holt and also to Earl Howell for all the dedicated years of hard work and for laying the solid "Chicago Lump Style" blues foundation that pushed the Chicago Blues Style to the next level. --- johnprimerblues.com

 

The good folks at Wolf Records have once again delved into their vaults and found a golden nugget. Recorded at various shows in Austria while playing as part of Magic Slim & The Teardrops in the 1990s, John Primer is in full swing on these numbers that were used to warm the audience up prior to bringing Magic Slim to the stage. The sound quality from these live recordings is amazing. And listening to these tracks will have you believing that the opening sets featuring Primer were perhaps just as awesome as what Magic Slim would deliver once he came on stage.

Primer has always been a true master on six strings. Working with Muddy Waters before taking on The Teardrops bandleader role, these recordings are pure Chicago blues at its absolute best. The take on Otis Rush’s “You Can Make It If You Try” will leave you with your jaw dropped by the sheer workout he gives his guitar. Multiple solos keep coming at you throughout the song. And Primer is pumping the audience to a frenzy. Save for one point of feedback (this is a live recording remember) you just cannot find a better example of how the blues are supposed to sound in a perfect world. Nine minutes of pure guitar bliss, and still this is not the only magical moment occurring on this eleven song disc. The songs are truly stretched out to give the added flavor, with the shortest piece here, a take on Albert King’s “Corinna” still logging in at 4:46 minutes. Robert Johnson’s “Love In Vain” is a prime example of how the band is capable of stretching a well-known number to nearly 7:00 minutes, making it sound unique and still maintaining the strength behind the song.

If you take the time to read the liner notes, you’ll discover what the band referred to as the “Straightforward Lump” style. While the rhythm section provides a lump da lump pace, Primer plays all four guitar parts: rhythm, bassline, picking lead and slide, all within the same song. It’s said that he became known as the “Four Man Guitar Show,” or as Sammy Lawhorn said to Junior Wells, “John plays all four parts on that guitar, man, he’s a ‘bad’ guitar player!” Bad obviously meaning out of this world.

All the tracks included on the recording are covers. But as with “Love In Vain” the band has made each of them their own personal property. Songs usually associated with those who penned them have been reborn behind Primer’s guitar approach. It does not matter who may be the song’s author, be it Muddy Waters, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Elmore James, Hound Dog Taylor, whoever, they’ve been reborn in these approaches. Especially those done in the “Lump” style, like “My Little Sister,” “Standing At The Crossroads,” “Big Fat Woman,” or “Don’t You Hear Me Crying For You.”

This one is for anybody who loves Chicago blues. It just can’t get too much better than this. Enough said. --- cascadebluesassociation.org

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Last Updated (Saturday, 13 March 2021 21:59)

 

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