Lowell Fulson | Blue Shadows
Release:1981/1997 | 320 kbps44.1 Khz | MP3 | 133 Mb
Genre: Texas Blues
01. Oh WellOh Well ( 3:29)
02. Reconsider Baby ( 3:37)
03. I Cried ( 3:51)
04. Guitar Shuffle ( 2:48)
05. Blue Shadows ( 3:46)
06. Stoop Down Baby ( 4:42)
07. Sinner's Prayer ( 4:10)
08. You're Gonna Miss Me ( 2:33)
09. Mean Old World ( 4:13)
10. Do You Feel It? ( 6:11)
11. Interview With Lowell Fulson (17:38)
Lowell Fulson recorded every shade of blues imaginable. Polished urban bluesrustic two-guitar duets with his younger brother Martinfunk-tinged grooves that pierced the mid-'60s chartseven an unwise cover of the Beatles' "Why Don't We Do It in the Road!" Clearlythe veteran guitaristwho was active for more than half-a-centurywasn't afraid to experiment. Perhaps that's why his last couple of discs for Rounder were so vital and satisfying -- and why he remained an innovator for so long.
Exposed to the Western swing of Bob Willsas well as indigenous blues while growing up in OklahomaFulson joined up with singer Texas Alexander for a few months in 1940touring the Lone Star state with the veteran bluesman. Fulson was drafted in 1943. The Navy let him go in 1945; after a few months back in Oklahomahe was off to OaklandCAwhere he made his first 78s for fledgling producer Bob Geddins. Soon enoughFulson was fronting his own band and cutting a stack of platters for Big TownGilt EdgeTrilonand Down Town (where he hit big in 1948 with "Three O'Clock Blues," later covered by B.B. King).
Swing Time records prexy Jack Lauderdale snapped up Fulson in 1948and the hits really began to flow: the immortal "Every Day I Have the Blues" (an adaptation of Memphis Slim's "Nobody Loves Me")"Blue Shadows," the two-sided holiday perennial "Lonesome Christmas," and a groovy midtempo instrumental "Low Society Blues" that really hammers home how tremendously important pianist Lloyd Glenn and alto saxist Earl Brown were to Fulson's maturing sound (all charted in 1950!).
Fulson toured extensively from then onhis band stocked for a time with dazzling pianist Ray Charles (who later covered Lowell's "Sinner's Prayer" for Atlantic) and saxist Stanley Turrentine. After a one-off session in New Orleans in 1953 for AladdinFulson inked a longterm pact with Chess in 1954. His first single for the firm was the classic "Reconsider Baby," cut in Dallas under Stan Lewis' supervision with a sax section that included David "Fathead" Newman on tenor and Leroy Cooper on baritone.
The relentless midtempo blues proved a massive hit and perennial cover item -- even Elvis Presley cut it in 1960right after he got out of the Army. But apart from "Loving You," the guitarist's subsequent Checker output failed to find widespread favor with the public. Bafflingsince Fulson's crispconcise guitar work and sturdy vocals were as effective as ever. Most of his Checker sessions were held in Chicago and L.A. (the latter his home from the turn of the '50s).
Fulson stayed with Checker into 1962but a change of labels worked wonders when he jumped over to Los Angeles-based Kent Records. 1965's driving "Black Nights" became his first smash in a decadeand "Tramp," a loping funk-injected workout co-written by Fulson and Jimmy McCracklindid even betterrestoring the guitarist to R&B stardomgaining plenty of pop spinsand inspiring a playful Stax cover by Otis Redding and Carla Thomas only a few months later that outsold Fulson's original.
A couple of lesser follow-up hits for Kent ensued before the guitarist was reunited with Stan Lewis at Jewel Records. That's where he took a crack at that Beatles numberthough most of his outings for the firm were considerably closer to the blues bone. Fulson was never been absent for long on disc; 1992's Hold On and its 1995 follow-up. Them Update Bluesboth for Ron Levy's Bullseye Blues logowere among his later effortsboth quite solid. Fulson continued to perform until 1997when health problems forced the career bluesman into a reluctant retirement. His health continued to deteriorate and on March 61999 -- just a few weeks shy of his 78th birthday -- Lowell Fulson passed away.
Few bluesmen managed to remain contemporary the way Lowell Fulson did for more than five decades. And fewer still will make such a massive contribution to the idiom. ~Bio by Bill Dahl
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