Memphis Slim – USA


Referência: CJS9024
Etiqueta: Pure Pleasure
Embalagem: 1 LP 33 rpm
Gramagem: 180 gr

For the most part, this is a 1961 session wherein the blues raconteur and pianist Memphis Slim runs through a good chunk of his repertoire, the songs that came to mind that afternoon. As such, it’s relaxed entertainment, rather than a fixed recording for a larger audience. Which is not to say an audience can’t enjoy this music. Slim’s piano playing is dynamically rich, delicate at times, and pounding when necessary. His vocals are strong, too, but just as capable of dropping down to just above a whisper to make a point. They just don’t make records like this anymore, documents of an artist at work without any attempt to be outside the moment.

A quote from Nat Hentoff’s liner notes: “Aside from the usual hyperbole of record liners, I do think that engineer Bob d’Orleans has caught the full sonic impact of Slim more accurately than on any previous recordings by the Chicago-based wanderer. The best description I know of the sound of Memphis Slim is Stanley Dance’s in the British Jazz Journal: ‘It’s an outdoors voice with a hard strength that suggests inflexibility, but it bends at the right times. It has a somber gravity, dignity, shyness, and a shade of melancholy. As he sings, he often seems to withdraw into memories, fond and sad, of other days, other places and other faces.'”

Beautifully remastered from the original analog tapes by Graeme Durham at The Exchange.

This is another in Pure Pleasure’s Candid Series, featuring reissues from an incredible label that met its demise some 40 years ago. The American Candid label has achieved a near legendary status among the critics and the International jazz and blues public. The series was born in 1960 when Archie Bleyer, owner of the Cadence label decided to indulge his love of jazz and blues and create his own line – called Candid. Archie approached Nat Hentoff – a likeable and knowledgeable critic, author and journalist active in New York at the time. Hentoff accepted the challenge of producing the albums and history was made. However, the label went out of business in 1961 and remained that way for a quarter of a century. Then Alan Bates acquired the masters and renamed his Black Lion Productions company Candid. Bates made the Candid titles available again on CD. These Candid titles were very well recorded and the performances generally are stunning. Great sound and music.

1. Born With The Blues
2. Just Let Me Be
3. Red Haired Boogie
4. Blue And Disgusted
5. New Key To The Highway
6. I’d Take Her To Chicago
7. Harlem Bound
8. El Capitan
9. I Just Landed In Your Town
10. John Henry
11. I Believe I’ll Settle Down
12. Bad Luck And Troubles
13. Late Afternoon Blues
14. Memphis Slim, U.S.A.

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