Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Lightnin' Hopkins - Texas Blues Giant - 2010.
There was nobody quite like Lightnin’ Hopkins. John Lee Hooker may have made more records but even he couldn’t match the consistently high level of Hopkins’ creativity. He and his vast repertoire represented the epitome of Texas country blues. No question. He came from a musical family and his unique guitar style was fashioned from the traditions he learned in the presence of Blind Lemon Jefferson and Texas Alexander, a distant cousin. His guitar both underscored and complemented the songs he drew from his own life and the lives of those around him. His recording career began in 1946 and hardly paused for the next three decades.
In that time, he created an amazing miscellany of original blues, starting with "Katie Mae Blues", through "Shotgun Blues", "Automobile Blues", "Long Way From Texas", "Dirty House Blues", "Sad News From Korea" and "Ain’t It A Shame" to his last major commercial sessions for the New York-based Herald label in April 1954, which make up the entire third disc here. Songs like "Don’t Think ’Cause You’re Pretty", "Nothin’ But The Blues", "Lonesome In Your Home", "Sittin’ Down Thinkin’" and "Lightnin’ Don’t Feel Well" showed that the wellspring of his inspiration hadn’t dried up. Nor was he always serious, as "Lightnin’s Boogie", "Grandma’s Boogie" and "Hopkins Sky Hop" proved.
Lightnin’ Hopkins went on from these recordings to become an international blues star before his death in January 1982. He may have travelled in foreign climes but his heart was always in Houston’s Dowling Street, amongst the friends and neighbours whose lives he memorialised in his songs
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FLAC - 542 Mb