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Ida Cox - Complete Recorded Works Vol.1 (2000)

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Ida Cox - Complete Recorded Works Vol.1 (2000)

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Vol.1 (1923)

1. Any Woman's Blues
2. Bama Bound Blues
3. Lovin' Is The Thing I'm Wild About
4. Graveyard Dream Blues
5. Graveyard Dream Blues
6. Weary Way Blues
7. Blue Monday Blues
8. I Love My Man Better Than I Love Myself
9. Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues (Take 3)
10. Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues (Take 4)	play
11. Moanin' Groanin' Blues
12. Chattanooga Blues
13. Chicago Bound Blues (Take 2)
14. Chicago Bound Blues (Take 3)
15. Come Right In
16. I've Got The Blues For Rampart Street (Take 3)	play
17. I've Got The Blues For Rampart Street (Take 4)
18. Graveyard Dream Blues
19. Mama Doo Shee Blues
20. Worried Mama Blues
21. So Soon This Morning Blues
22. Mail Man Blues
23. Confidential Blues
24. Bear-Mash Blues

Ida Cox (vocals, piano); 
Jimmy O'Bryant (clarinet, piano); 
Tommy Ladnier (cornet); 
Jesse Crump, Lovie Austin (piano).


Ida Cox was one of the most powerful blues singers of the 1920s, ranking just below Bessie Smith. The Document label has reissued all of Cox's 1920s recordings on four CDs, leaving out many of the alternate takes (since there are a great deal from 1923-24) to be put out on a later series. The first CD has the master takes of all of Cox's recordings from 1923, plus four alternates. Except for the closing "Bear-Mash Blues," which finds the singer joined by her future husband Jesse Crump on piano, the music either features accompaniment by pianist Lovie Austin (an underrated blues player) or assistance from Austin, the great cornetist Tommy Ladnier and clarinetist Jimmy O'Bryant. Cox was one of the few singers from this early period who could overcome the technical limitations of the primitive recording equipment and really communicate with the listener. Among the highlights from her first year on records are "Any Woman's Blues," "Graveyard Dream Blues" (which is heard in three versions), "Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues," "Moanin' Groanin' Blues," "Come Right In" (which has some lines that would become quite familiar in later songs) and "I've Got the Blues for Rampart Street." Highly recommended. ~Scott Yanow


Ida Cox was one of the most talented of the classic blues singers of the 1920s. This Document CD has 24 of her first 32 recordings and, although one regrets that it is not a "complete" series (hopefully the dozen other alternate takes will be reissued by Document eventually), the music is consistently enjoyable and timeless. In fact, quite a few of the lyrics (many of which were written by Cox) were later permanently "borrowed" by Jimmy Rushing and Joe Williams; the first stanza of "Goin' to Chicago" was taken from "Chicago Monkey Man Blues" and "Bear-Mash Blues" has a couple of Williams' best lines. When one considers that the music on this CD is taken from 1923-24, it can certainly be considered ahead of its time! Most of the musicians backing Ida Cox are excellent, particularly pianist Lovie Austin and (on five numbers) cornetist Tommy Ladnier and clarinetist Jimmy O'Bryant. The recording quality (even with some surface noise) has been greatly cleaned up for this reissue and Cox's singing is very easy to understand. Although uncrowned, Ida Cox (who after retiring in 1945 came back for a final recording in 1961) can still communicate to today's listeners, something than can be said about very few other singers from 1923. ---aaron amazon.com

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Last Updated (Monday, 24 November 2014 14:14)


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