The Kentucky Headhunters with Johnnie Johnson: Meet Me in Bluesland (Alligator/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

The Kentucky Headhunters: Meet Me in Bluesland
The Kentucky Headhunters with Johnnie Johnson: Meet Me in Bluesland (Alligator/Southbound)

Here's one literally pulled from the vaults, a decade after the death of pianist Johnnie Johnson who was there for all those classic, early Chuck Berry sides.

In the Eighties and Nineties, Johnson finally enjoyed a career under his own name (Johnnie B. Bad from '92 is excellent) and along the way became friends with the Kentucky Headhunters.

The story behind this album is that the day after played at a show in Texas with the Rolling Stones on Honky Tonk Woman he flew down to Kentucky to sit in with the Kentucky Headhunters whom he met over a decade previous.

The sessions for the album Soul just kept rocking on and a whole album's worth of material with Johnson -- this belatedly released one -- was recorded.

This is archetypal good time Southern blues'n'boogie in which the guitar band leave ample space for Johnson, and they offer their distinctive take on Berry's Little Queenie alongside a bunch of crowd-pleasing originals (Party in Heaven, the slow roll of the title track).

If some of these songs work highly familiar grooves, riffs and sentiments it only serves to highlight the pleasure these people took in each other's company as they found common ground in r'n'b and Southern country-blues.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Blues articles index

Bo Diddley (Dec 30, 1928 - June 2, 2008)

Bo Diddley (Dec 30, 1928 - June 2, 2008)

Tributes will come fast for this legend of rock'n'roll and all will -- or at least they should -- note that for the past four decades the man barely sold an album despite his position as a... > Read more

Son of Dave: '02' (Kartel/Rhythmethod)

Son of Dave: '02' (Kartel/Rhythmethod)

In the last couple of years this UK-based Canadian-born singer-songwriter (aka Ben Darvill, formerly of Crash Test Dummies) has conjured up the spirit and sound of old bluesmen punctuated with raw... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to Sufi Music (World Music Network/Southbound)

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to Sufi Music (World Music Network/Southbound)

When a musical genre loses its figurehead -- as reggae did with the passing of Bob Marley and Sufi music did with the death of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, both of whom had taken their music to a... > Read more

JOHN BOUTTE INTERVIEWED (2002): Easy out of the Big Easy

JOHN BOUTTE INTERVIEWED (2002): Easy out of the Big Easy

If you could distil the history of New Orleans down to a few litres of blood, they'd probably be pumping around John Boutte's body. Listen to this. "The European side of my family has... > Read more