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Episode #273

Air Week: July 27-August 2, 2015

Ruth Brown Ruth Brown, Pt. 3 – 1953-55

Ruth Brown was Atlantic Records first big star. She was so successful, racking up 24 R&B hits for the fledging label, that Atlantic was often called the “house that Ruth built.” This week, “Juke In The Back” continues its 4 part feature celebrating the music and influence of “Miss Rhythm.” Part 3 will feature another hour of Brown’s gritty, tough R&B and sweet ballads beginning in the middle of 1953 and continuing up through her first single release of 1955. During this period, she would score 2 more #1 hits with “Oh What A Dream,” which was written for her by Chuck Willis and “Mambo Baby.” These Ruth Brown sessions were co-produced by Jerry Wexler, who had joined Atlantic Records in ’53 as Atlantic’s co-founder Herb Abramson was drafted into the Army. Rock n’ roll was about to hit the mainstream as we close this final part of our Ruth Brown complete singles chronology. Next week, our look at Ruth Brown continues as we introduce a bonus show that will feature every one of her remaining charting singles from 1955-1960.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. The Shrine Of St. Cecilia – Ruth Brown – Unissued 1951
3. Wild Wild Young Men – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
4. Mend Your Ways – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
5. The Tears Keep Tumbling Down – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
6. I Would If I Could – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
7. Love Contest – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1954
8. If You Don’t Want Me (I Don’t Want No Part Of You) – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1954
9. Hello Little Boy – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1954
10. If I Had Any Sense – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1954
11. Oh What A Dream – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers – Atlantic 1954
12. Please Don’t Freeze – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers– Atlantic 1954
13. GREAT 78 – It’s All In Your Mind – Ruth Brown & The Delta Rhythm Boys – Atlantic 1954
14. Mambo Baby – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers – Atlantic 1954
15. Somebody Touched Me – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers – Atlantic 1954
16. Ever Since My Baby’s Been Gone – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers – Atlantic 1955
17. Bye Bye Young Men – Ruth Brown & Her Rhythmakers – Atlantic 1955
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #272

Air Week: July 20-26, 2015

Ruth Brown 2Ruth Brown, Pt. 2 – 1951-53

Ruth Brown was Atlantic Records first big star. She was so successful, racking up 24 R&B hits for the fledging label, that Atlantic was often called the “house that Ruth built.” This week, “Juke In The Back” continues its 4 part feature celebrating the music and influence of “Miss Rhythm.” Part 2 will focus on the hayday of Brown’s recordings from the start of 1951 through the middle of 1953. During this period, she would score 2 more #1 hits with “5-10-15 Hours” and “(Mama) He Treats Your Daughter Mean” as well as 3 more top ten entries. Matt The Cat digs out an interview with the late co-founder of Atlantic Records, Ahmet Ertegun, explaining how Atlantic marketed Ruth Brown during the early days. Next week, part 3 will focus on Brown’s 1954-’55 recordings just as Rock n’ Roll was hitting the American mainstream.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. It’s All For You – Ruth Brown – Unissued 1951
3. I’ll Wait For You – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
4. Standing On The Corner – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
5. I Know – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
6. I Don’t Want Nobody (If I Can’t Have You) – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
7. Shine On (Big Bright Moon) – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
8. Without My Love – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1951
9. 5-10-15 Hours – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
10. Be Anything (But Be Mine) – Atlantic 1952
11. Daddy Daddy – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
12. Have A Good Time – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Good For Nothing Joe – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
14. Three Letters – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
15. (Mama) He Treats Your Daughter Mean – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
16. R. B. Blues – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #271

Air Week: July 13-19, 2015

Ruth BrownRuth Brown, Pt. 1 – 1949-50

Ruth Brown was Atlantic Records first big star. She was so successful, racking up 24 R&B hits for the fledging label, that Atlantic was often called the “house that Ruth built.” This week, “Juke In The Back” begins a 4 part feature celebrating the music and influence of “Miss Rhythm.” Part 1 will focus on Brown’s beginnings with Atlantic. She came to the attention of co-founders Ahmet Ertegun and Herb Abramson in 1948, thanks to Voice of America DJ Willis Conover. They signed her up, but a terrible car accident sidelined the chanteuse for several months. By May, 1949, Brown was in the studio cutting her first single, which also turned out to be her first hit, the #6 smash, “So Long.” Matt The Cat digs out an interview with the late Ertegun, explaining how Atlantic came to sign Ruth Brown. She may have hit pay dirt right out of the gate, but still they didn’t know how to record her. Brown wanted to sing pop songs and standards and Ertegun and Abramson wanted her to sing in the Rhythm & Blues style. So there were quite a few missteps before Ruth Brown landed her next hit at the very end of 1950 with the #1 smash, “Teardrops From My Eyes.” We’ll dig on every single released by Ruth Brown from 1949-1950 on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Hey Pretty Baby – Ruth & Jimmy Brown – Unissued 1949
3. So Long – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1949
4. It’s Raining – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1949
5. I’ll Get Along Somehow – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1949
6. Rockin’ Blues – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1949
7. Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe – Atlantic 1950
8. Love Me Baby – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1950
9. Why – Ruth Brown & The Delta Rhythm Boys– Atlantic 1950
10. (I’ll Come Back) Someday – Ruth Brown & The Delta Rhythm Boys – Atlantic 1950
11. Sentimental Journey – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1950
12. I Can Dream, Can’t I – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1950
13. GREAT 78 – Where Can I Go – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1950
14. Dear Little Boy Of Mine – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1950
15. Am I Making The Same Mistake Again – Ruth Brown w/ Budd Johnson’s Orch – Atlantic 1950
16. Teardrops From My Eyes – Ruth Brown w/ Budd Johnson’s Orch – Atlantic 1950
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #270

Air Week: July 6-12, 2015

Signifying MonkeyThe Story Of The Signifying Monkey & Your Listener Requests

This week, Matt The Cat loads the “Juke In The Back” with a musical history of the old African folktale about The Signifying Monkey. We’ll trace this tale’s journey to America on slave ships from Africa as it became threaded into African-American culture in song, from Big Maceo’s adaptation of the story about the Monkey and the Baboon to the Big Three Trio’s 1947 popular version of “The Signifying Monkey.” Along the way, Cab Calloway, jazzer Hot Lips Page, Rockabilly rarity Smokey Joe and even Chuck Berry have a crack at this classic story of the ultimate trickster. Also on this week’s program, Matt The Cat takes your listener requests, which run across the genre we celebrate, Rhythm & Blues. So don’t miss “the soul that came before Rock n’ Roll” on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Woe Is Me – The Cadillacs – LIVE 1956 – Alan Freed’s Rock n’ Roll Dance Party – REQUEST
3. (Night Time Is) The Right Time – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1958 – REQUEST
4. Without Love (There Is Nothing) – Clyde McPhatter – Atlantic 1956 – REQUEST
5. Can’t You Read – Big Maceo – Bluebird 1941
6. Signifying Monkey – Big Three Trio – Columbia 1947
7. The Jungle King (You Ain’t Done A Doggone Thing) – Cab Calloway & His Cab-Jivers – Columbia 1947
8. The Monkey (The Jungle King) – Hot Lips Page – King 1952
9. The Signifying Monkey – Smoky Joe – Sun 1955
10. Joe Joe Gun – Chuck Berry – Chess 1958
11. Signifying Monkey – Oscar Brown Jr. – Columbia 1960
12. GREAT 78 – Signifying Blues – Bo Diddley – Checker 1960
13. Are You Fer It – King Cole Trio – Decca 1941 – REQUEST
14. Wyatt Earp (First Version) – The Marquees – Okeh 1957 – REQUEST
15. Blue Turning Grey Over You – Billie Holiday w/ Tiny Grimes Sextet – Aladdin 1951 – REQUEST
16. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

 

Episode #269

Air Week: June 29-July 5, 2015

4th Of July Special4th Of July Special: R&B Songs About Food

What’s more American than celebrating America’s birthday with some good ol’ red, white and Rhythm & Blues about THE Fourth of July staple: food? Dig in on an hour of classic R&B about hot dogs, cole slaw, potato salad, ribs and ice cream sung by Nat “King” Cole, Amos Milburn, Louis Jordan, the “5” Royales and many more. It’s the American “soul that came before rock n’ roll” on the Juke In The Back.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rib Joint – Sam Price & His Texas Bluesicians – Savoy 1956
3. House Of Blue Lights – Ella Mae Morse With Don Raye – Capitol 1946
4. Smoky Joe’s Café – The Robins – Spark 1955
5. Chicken Shack – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1956
6. Everybody Eats When They Come To My House – Cab Calloway – Columbia 1947
7. Pass The Biscuits Please – Andre Williams – Fortune 1957
8. Beans & Cornbread – Louis Jordan – Decca 1949
9. Corn Bread – Hal Singer Sextette – Savoy 1948
10. Hot Dog – Chris Powell & The Five Blue Flames – Okeh 1949
11. Dumplin’s – Doc Bagby – Okeh 1957
12. Monkey Hips & Rice – The “5” Royales – King 1954
13. GREAT 78 – Cole Slaw (Sorgum Switch) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
14. Pork Chops & Mustard Greens – Ernie Andrews With Maxwell Davis Orch – Imperial 1951
15. Cabbage Greens #2 – Champion Jack Dupree – Okeh 1940
16. The Frim Fram Sauce – King Cole Trio – Capitol 1945
17. Solid Potato Salad – Ella Mae Morse – Capitol 1943 (Prev. Unreleased)
18. Ice Cream Man – John Brim – Chess 1953
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #268

Air Week: June 22-28, 2015

Smiley LewisSmiley Lewis

There are so many forgotten legends along Rhythm & Blues’ evolutionary highway. This week, the “Juke In The Back” looks at the great Smiley Lewis, another influential force out of New Orleans that time has chosen to forget. Lewis was born Overton Lemons, but took the name “Lewis” along with the nickname “Smiley” which poked fun at his missing teeth. He played the New Orleans clubs and cut his first single for DeLuxe Records in 1947. After it failed to go anywhere, Lewis was fortunate enough to fall into admiration of bandleader and Imperial Records talent scout, Dave Bartholomew. After signing to Imperial in 1950, it would be 2 years before Lewis would have his first national hit with “The Bells Are Ringing.” He’d fail to chart again for another 3 years even though his recordings were jumpin’, catchy and selling well in New Orleans and the South. 1955 saw his biggest success with the #2 R&B smash, “I Hear You Knockin’.” He’d have 2 more R&B hits before his star faded by 1957. Lewis recorded many Bartholomew compositions, such as the original “Blue Monday” and “One Night,” but Fats Domino (another of Bartholomew’s discoveries) and Elvis would have hits with those songs respectively. Bartholomew once called Smiley Lewis a “hard luck singer,” due to the fact that didn’t have an extended career, even though he laid down some of the greatest tunes of the 1950s. Matt The Cat spins those 78s on this week on the “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Here Comes Smiley – Smiley Lewis – DeLuxe 1947
3. Tee-Nah-Nah – Smiley Lewis & His Sextet – Imperial 1950
4. Slide Me Down – Smiley Lewis & His Sextet – Imperial 1950
5. If You Ever Loved A Woman – Smiley Lewis & His Sextet – Imperial 1950
6. The Bells Are Ringing – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1952
7. Lillie Mae – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1952
8. Gumbo Blues – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1952
9. Big Mamou – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1953
10. Caldonia’s Party – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1953
11. Blue Monday – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1954
12. Too Many Drivers – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1954
13. GREAT 78 – (I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1954
14. I Hear You Knocking – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1955
15. Bumpity Bump – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1955
16. One Night – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1956
17. Please Listen To Me – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1956
18. She’s Got Me Hook, Line & Sinker – Smiley Lewis 1956
19. Shame, Shame, Shame – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1957
20. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #267

Air Week: June 15-21, 2015

TreniersThe Treniers 

There were so many influential Rhythm & Blues artists who had a great impact on the development of Rock n’ Roll, but were never able to profit from the new genre they helped to create. The Treniers were just one such group. Their core were the twins Cliff and Claude Trenier, who were later joined by their younger brothers Milt and Buddy. Their sound formed a great bridge from the swing bands of the 1940s to the rock n’ roll jump combos of the early ’50s. Matt The Cat digs up Claude Trenier’s first records as a vocalist for The Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra as well as some early singles for the legendary Charles Mingus. We’ll dig into The Trenier Twins’ early sides for Mercury Records and then rock, roll and swing to their hep sides for the Okeh label. The Treniers only scored one national R&B hit, but they left their mark on the new music they helped to create and popularize; Rock n’ Roll. The Treniers’ story lights up this week’s “Juke In The Back” with Matt The Cat.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. That Someone Must Be You – Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra – Decca 1944
3. Young Man’s Blues Pt. 1 – Claude Trenier With The Lamplighter All-Stars – Lamplighter 1946
4. Ain’t Jivin’ Blues – Charlie Mingus Sextet – Excelsior 1946
5. Buzz Buzz Buzz – The Trenier Twins – Mercury 1947
6. My Convertible Cadillac – The Trenier Twins – Mercury 1948
7. Everybody Get Together – The Treniers – London 1950
8. Go! Go! Go! – The Treniers – Okeh 1951
9. It Rocks, It Rolls, It Swings – The Treniers – Okeh 1952
10. Hadacol (That’s All) – The Treniers – Okeh 1952
11. Poon-Tang! – The Treniers – Okeh 1952
12. Rockin’ Is Our Business – The Treniers – Okeh 1953
13. GREAT 78 – The Moondog – The Treniers – Okeh 1952
14. This Is It – The Treniers – Okeh 1953
15. Rock Bottom – Milt Trenier & His Solid Six – RCA Victor 1953
16. (Uh! Oh!) Get Out Of The Car – The Treniers – Okeh 1955
17. Rock n’ Roll Call – The Treniers – Epic 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #266

Air Week: June 8-14, 2015

BB KingB. B. King

The “Juke In The Back” pays its respects to a true musical icon, B.B. King. When he passed away at the age of 89 on May 14, 2015, we lost one of our last connections to the true blues. Riley B. King was raised on plantations as his mother was a sharecropper. He wanted to play guitar and sing on the radio like his mother’s cousin, Bukka White. He moved from Mississippi to Memphis in the mid-’40s to pursue his dream and finally in 1948, Riley got his big break, filling in for blues harpist Sonny Boy Williamson on his radio program. Soon, Riley became the “Beale Street Blues Boy” and later just “Blues Boy” or “B.B” and scored his own radio show on WDIA. Matt The Cat focuses on B.B.’s first records for Nashville’s Bullet Records and LA’s RPM label. His early sides were cut in Memphis with Sam Phillips at the controls. After a few years of non-charting records, B.B. hit the big time with a smokin’ #1 R&B hit, “Three O’Clock Blues” at the beginning of 1952. From there, he would score 3 more #1s. “Juke In The Back” features all of B.B. King’s great R&B hits from 1949-1955. Many of these you never get to hear these days. B.B. had a life of accomplishments as a great ambassador for the blues. We know how great he became and on this week’s program, we’ll see just where he started from. The late, great B.B. King on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Miss Martha King – B. B. King – Bullet 1949
3. Mistreated Woman – B. B. King – RPM 1950
4. 3 O’Clock Blues – B. B. King – RPM 1951
5. You Know I Love You – B. B. King – RPM 1952
6. Story From My Heart And Soul – B. B. King – RPM 1952
7. Woke Up This Morning (My Baby, She Was Gone) – B. B. King – RPM 1953
8. Please Love Me – B. B. King & His Orch.– RPM 1953
9. Please Hurry Home – B. B. King & His Orch. – RPM 1953
10. When My Heart Beats Like A Hammer – B. B. King & His Orch. – RPM 1954
11. You Upset Me Baby – B. B. “Blues Boy” King & His Orch. – RPM 1954
12. Whole Lotta’ Love – B. B. “Blues Boy” King & His Orch – RPM 1954
13. GREAT 78 – B. B. Blues – B. B. King – RPM 1951 – first release of 1951
14. Every Day I Have The Blues – B. B. “Blues Boy” King & His Orch. – RPM 1955
15. Sneakin’ Around – B. B. “Blues Boy” King & “The Kings Men” – RPM 1955
16. Ten Long Years – B. B. “Blues Boy” King & His Orch. – RPM 1955
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #265

Air Week: June 1-7, 2015

Camille HowardCamille Howard 

The pre-Rock n’ Roll era is full of unsung performers who’s style directly impacted those who came after. This week’s “Juke In The Back” spotlight on Camille Howard is one such example. Her boogie woogie piano style was inventive, fluid and pure joy. It left a lasting impression on Ike Turner, Fats Domino and Professor Longhair. Howard rose to fame as the pianist for Roy Milton & His Solid Senders in the mid-1940s. Their breakthrough smash, “R.M. Blues” featured her fantastic piano style and the public took notice. Soon, Art Rupe of Specialty Records had her releasing solo records under The Camille Howard Trio while she remained with Roy Milton. Matt The Cat will dig into Howard’s best work with The Solid Senders as well as her solo material up through 1956, when she left music for good. Camille Howard, along with Hadda Brooks must be remembered as pioneering instrumentalists in the developing field of Rhythm & Blues, which of course led to the birth of Rock n’ Roll. Camille Howard’s star shines on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. R.M. Blues – Roy Milton & His Solid Senders – Juke Box 1946
3. Camille’s Boogie – Roy Milton & His Solid Senders – Specialty 1947
4. Thrill Me – Roy Milton & His Solid Senders – Specialty 1947
5. X-Temporaneous Boogie – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1948
6. You Don’t Love Me – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1948
7. The Mood I’m In – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1949
8. Fiesta In Old Mexico – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1949
9. O Sole Mio Boogie – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1950
10. Shrinking Up Fast – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1950
11. That’s The One For Me – Roy Milton & His Solid Senders – Specialty 1950
12. Money Blues – Camille Howard & Her Boy Friends – Specialty 1951
13. GREAT 78 – I’m Blue – Camille Howard Trio – Specialty 1950
14. Excite Me Daddy – Camille Howard – Federal 1953
15. Are You Losing Your Mind – Camille Howard – Federal 1953
16. Business Woman – Camille Howard – Vee-Jay 1956
17. Mr. Fine – Roy Milton & His Solid Senders – Miltone 1947
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #264

Air Week: May 25-31, 2015

Fats DominoFats Domino, Pt. 2 – 1953-55

The “Juke In The Back” is proud to feature Fats Domino, one of the most influential and popular recording stars of both Rhythm & Blues and Rock n’ Roll music. Fats’ streak of hit records was nearly unbroken from 1950-1963 and he did it without changing his core sound. He just kept on playin’ the New Orleans boogie woogie music that he grew up with. Antoine “Fats” Domino Jr. got his first recording contract in early December of 1949 as bandleader Dave Bartholomew introduced him to Lew Chudd, the head of LA’s Imperial Records. Within days, they were in Cosimo Matassa’s famous J&M studios cutting Fats’ first record, “The Fat Man,” which sold over one million copies and made him a star. In part two of this two part series, Matt The Cat will spin the A and B sides of EVERY Fats Domino R&B charting single from mid-1953 thru his enormous crossover success in 1955 with “Ain’t It A Shame.” That record not only spent 11 weeks on top of the R&B charts, but it also crossed over and hit #10 on the Pop charts. Pat Boone would take his cover version to #1, thus giving Fats Domino even more Pop exposure. This show will also feature some great non-charting records and fabulous instrumentals from this time period as well. So c’mon and dig the R&B roots of Fats Domino, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rose Mary – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
3. You Said You Love Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
4. Something’s Wrong – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
5. Don’t Leave Me This Way – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
6. You Done Me Wrong – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
7. Little School Girl – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
8. Thinking Of You – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
9. I Know – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
10. Don’t You Know – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
11. Helping Hand (A Long Way From Home) – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
12. Ain’t It A Shame – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Where Did You Stay – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
14. La-La – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
15. You Can Pack Your Suitcase – Fats Domino – Imperial 1954
16. Swanee River Hop – Fats Domino – Imperial 1956
17. Domino Stomp (Twistin’ The Stomp) – Fats Domino – Imperial 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #263

Air Week: May 18-24, 2015

Fats DominoFats Domino, Pt. 1 – 1950-53

The “Juke In The Back” is proud to feature Fats Domino, one of the most influential and popular recording stars of both Rhythm & Blues and Rock n’ Roll music. Fats’ streak of hit records was nearly unbroken from 1950-1963 and he did it without changing his core sound. He just kept on playin’ the New Orleans boogie woogie music that he grew up with. Antoine “Fats” Domino Jr. got his first recording contract in early December of 1949 as bandleader Dave Bartholomew introduced him to Lew Chudd, the head of LA’s Imperial Records. Within days, they were in Cosimo Matassa’s famous J&M studios cutting Fats’ first record, “The Fat Man,” which sold over one million copies and made him a star. In part one of this two part series, Matt The Cat will spin the A and B sides of EVERY Fats Domino R&B charting single from 1950 to 1953. Part 2 will pick it up and spin the charting singles up through Domino’s big Pop crossover success with “Ain’t It A Shame” in 1955. We’re diggin’ on the R&B roots of Fats Domino, this week on the “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. The Fat Man – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950
3. Detroit City Blues – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950
4. Every Night About This Time – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950
5. Korea Blues – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950
6. Careless Love – Fats Domino – Imperial 1951
7. Rockin’ Chair – Fats Domino – Imperial 1951
8. Going Home – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
9. Reeling And Rocking – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
10. Poor Poor Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
11. Trust In Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
12. How Long – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Dreaming – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
14. Going To The River – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
15. Mardi Gras In New Orleans – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
16. Please Don’t Leave Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
17. The Girl I Love – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953
18. Don’t Lie To Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1951
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #262

Air Week: May 11-17, 2015

Gwen Johnson: Unsung Ladies of R&BUnsung Ladies of R&B

This week, the “Juke In The Back” solutes the Unsung Ladies of R&B! We’ll dig deep into a stack of shellac from some women you know, like Varetta Dillard, Ann Cole and The Cookies, as well as from some that you may not know, such as Gwen Johnson and Bonita Cole. Matt The Cat will also feature an audition tape by the seldom heard Olive Brown, which was never issued at the time. None of the chanteuses on this week’s program have catalogs deep enough to be main features, so we’ve gathered them together so they can shine on their own program. Pick up on what these ladies are puttin’ down on this week’s “Juke In The Back” and the “soul that came before Rock n’ Roll.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Mercy, Mr. Percy – Varetta Dillard with Orch– Savoy 1953
3. Easy, Easy, Baby – Varetta Dillard – Savoy 1952
4. New Orleans – Gwen Johnson & Q. Batiste & His Orch – Peacock 1953
5. Young Boy – Gwen Johnson & Q. Batiste & His Orch – Peacock 1954
6. A Trumpet Blows Away Your Blues – Gwen Johnson & Q. Bastiste & His Orch – Peacock 1954
7. Are You Satisfied – Ann Cole w/ Dave McRae Orch – Baton 1956
8. In The Chapel – Ann Cole w/ The Suburbans & Orch– Baton 1957
9. Got My Mo-Jo Working – Ann Cole w/ The Suburbans & Orch – Baton 1957
10. Roll Like A Big Wheel – Olive Brown – previously unissued
11. Letter To My Girlfriend – Olive Brown – previously unissued
12. Looking For A Home – Olive Brown – previously unissued
13. GREAT 78 – Life’s Like That – Bonita Cole with Bill Fort’s Orch. – Duke 1953
14. (Hold Me, Hold Me, Hold Me) Don’t Let Go – The Cookies – Lamp 1954
15. Precious Love – The Cookies – Atlantic 1955
16. In Paradise – The Cookies – Atlantic 1956
17. Down By The River – The Cookies – Atlantic 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #261

Air Week: May 4-10, 2015

CloversThe Clovers, Pt. 3 – 1956-58

The Clovers were the most successful rhythm & blues vocal group from 1951 to 1955, racking up 16 top 10 R&B singles during that time-frame. Three of those singles went to #1. Though they didn’t have a huge career defining hit, like The Dominoes did with “Sixty Minute Man,” The Clovers claim to fame was consistency. You always knew what you were going to get with a Clovers record. Most of their songs were mid-tempo with tight, limited instrumentation, beautifully blended harmonies and catchy, memorable lyrics. This week, “Juke In The Back” presents part 3 of a 3 part feature on this ground-breaking pre-rock n’ roll group. In part 3, we’ll cover EVERY Clovers’ release (both A and B sides) from early 1956 to the middle of 1958. 1956 was the group’s last year as hit-makers. They scored two R&B top ten hits with “Hey Doll Baby” and “Love, Love, Love” (which also hit the pop charts) and then they didn’t score another hit until their final hit, “Love Potion #9″ in mid-1959. But during this dry spell, The Clovers managed to release some memorable, quality records, such as the Chuck Willis penned, “From The Bottom Of My Heart,” the jivin’, “Down In The Alley” and the catchy, “The Gossip Wheel.” Also, during this time, the group left Atlantic Records and jumped to their manager’s Poplar label before ending up on United Artists in 1959. It’s the final chapter of my 3 part special on the amazing Clovers, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Hey Doll Baby – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
3. Love, Love, Love – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
4. Your Tender Lips – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
5. From The Bottom Of My Heart – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
6. Bring Me Love – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
7. Baby Baby, Oh My Darling – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
8. Here Comes Romance – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
9. You Good Looking Woman – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
10. I I I Love You – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
11. So Young – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
12. Down In The Alley – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
13. GREAT 78 – A Lonely Fool – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
14. There’s No Tomorrow – The Clovers – Atlantic 1957
15. Wishing For Your Love – The Clovers – Atlantic 1958
16. All About You – The Clovers – Atlantic 1958
17. The Gossip Wheel – The Clovers – Poplar 1958
18. Please Come On To Me – The Clovers – Poplar 1958
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #260

Air Week: April 27-May 3, 2015

The CloversThe Clovers, Pt. 2 – 1953-56

The Clovers were the most successful rhythm & blues vocal group from 1951 to 1955, racking up 16 top 10 R&B singles during that time-frame. Three of those singles went to #1. Though they didn’t have a huge career defining hit, like The Dominoes did with “Sixty Minute Man,” The Clovers claim to fame was consistency. You always knew what you were going to get with a Clovers record. Most of their songs were mid-tempo with tight, limited instrumentation, beautifully blended harmonies and catchy, memorable lyrics. This week, “Juke In The Back” presents part 2 of a 3 part feature on this ground-breaking pre-rock n’ roll group. In part 2, we’ll cover EVERY Clovers’ release (both A and B sides) from mid-1953 to the beginning of 1956. During this time, lead vocalist Buddy Bailey was drafted, so Charlie White, formally of the Dominoes and The Checkers was brought in to sing on “Good Lovin’,” which hit #2 on the R&B charts as well as the classic “Lovey Dovey.” When things didn’t work out with White, the group hired Billy Mitchell, who lends his versatile voice to “Your Cash Ain’t Nothin’ But Trash” and “In The Morning Time,” until Buddy Bailey was discharged and could return to lead the group. It’s part 2 of 3 on the amazing Clovers, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Good Lovin’ – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
3. Comin’ On – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
4. The Feeling Is So Good – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
5. Lovey Dovey – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
6. Little Mama – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
7. Your Cash Ain’t Nothin’ But Trash – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
8. I’ve Got My Eyes On You – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
9. I Confess – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
10. Blue Velvet – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
11. If You Love Me – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
12. Love Bug – The Clovers – Atlantic 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Alrighty Oh Sweetie – The Clovers – Atlantic 1954
14. In The Morning Time – The Clovers – Atlantic 1955
15. Nip Sip – The Clovers – Atlantic 1955
16. If I Could Be Loved By You – The Clovers – Atlantic 1955
17. Devil Or Angel – The Clovers – Atlantic 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #259

Air Week: April 20-26, 2015

CloversThe Clovers, Pt. 1 – 1950-53

The Clovers were the most successful rhythm & blues vocal group from 1951 to 1955, racking up 16 top 10 R&B singles during that time-frame. There of those singles went to #1. Though they didn’t have a huge career defining hit, like The Dominoes did with “Sixty Minute Man,” The Clovers claim to fame was consistency. You always knew what you were going to get with a Clovers record. Most of their songs were mid-tempo with tight, limited instrumentation, beautifully blended harmonies and catchy, memorable lyrics. Atlantic co-founder Ahmet Ertegun oversaw their quality control, writing every one of their #1 records. This week, “Juke In The Back” begins a 3 show feature on this ground-breaking pre-rock n’ roll group. In part 1, we’ll cover EVERY Clovers’ release (both A and B sides) from their debut on Rainbow Records in 1950 to their mid-1953 Atlantic releases. In-between, you’ll find almost #1s, “One Mint Julep” and “Crawlin'” as well as their monster hits, “Don’t You Know I love You So,” “Fool, Fool, Fool” and “Ting-A-Ling.” We even get the inside scoop on how the Clovers were signed to Atlantic from an interview Matt The Cat conducted with the late Ahmet Ertegun several years ago. It’s part 1 of 3 on the amazing Clovers, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”
1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Yes Sir, That’s My Baby – The Clovers – Rainbow 1950
3. When You Come Back To Me – The Clovers – Rainbow 1950
4. Don’t You Know I Love You So – The Clovers – Atlantic 1951
5. Skylark – The Clovers – Atlantic 1951
6. Fool, Fool, Fool – The Clovers – Atlantic 1951
7. Needless – The Clovers – Atlantic 1951
8. One Mint Julep – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
9. Middle Of The Night – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
10. Ting-A-Ling – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
11. Wonder Where My Baby’s Gone – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
12. Hey Miss Fannie – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Yes, It’s You – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
14. I Played The Fool – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
15. Crawlin’ – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
16. Here Goes A Fool – The Clovers – Atlantic 1953
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #258

Air Week: April 13-19, 2015

Cobra RecordsCobra Records Story

Cobra Records left quite a bite, even thought this little West Side Chicago label was only in existence for three short years. Cobra was started by television repair shop owner Eli Toscano in the summer of 1956. Toscano was lucky enough to snag Willie Dixon from Chess Records to write, produce and scout talent for his new label. They hit gold right out of the gate, when Cobra’s first release, “I Can’t Quit You Baby” by Otis Rush went to #6 on the national R&B charts. Cobra would not score another hit record, but they are credited with popularizing the West Side blues style of their young artists; Otis Rush, Magic Sam and Buddy Guy. In fact, Magic Sam’s “All You Love” and Otis Rush’s “Double Trouble” are considered bonafied blues classics today. Betty Everett recorded her first sides for Cobra and Ike Turner recorded some of his last before forming Ike & Tina Turner. So get ready to fall under the spell of Cobra Records as Matt The Cat spins this little label’s best sides on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. I Can’t Quit You Baby – Otis Rush – Cobra 1956
3. Rock and Roll Boogie – The Clouds – Cobra 1956
4. Have A Good Time – Shakey Horton – Cobra 1956
5. Mambo Fiesta – The Calvaes – Cobra 1956 \
6. Violent Love – Otis Rush & His Band – Cobra 1956
7. Shake It – Duke Jenkins – Cobra 1957
8. I Don’t Care Who Knows – Harold Burrage – Cobra 1957
9. My Love – Betty Everett – Cobra 1957
10. All Your Love – Magic Sam – Cobra 1957
11. Look Whatcha Done – Magic Sam – Cobra 1958
12. Double Trouble – Otis Rush & His Band – Cobra 1958
13. GREAT 78 – Love Me With A Feeling – Magic Sam – Cobra 1957
14. I’ll Weep No More – Betty Everett & The Willie Dixon Band – Cobra 1958
15. Roll Your Money Maker – Shakey Jake & The Willie Dixon Band – Artistic 1958
16. Try To Quit You Baby – Buddy Guy & His Band – Artistic 1958
17. (I Know) You Don’t Love Me – Ike Turner’s Kings Of Rhythm – Artistic 1959
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #257

Air Week: April 6-12, 2015

Louis Jordan 6Louis Jordan, Pt. 6 – 1950-56

The “Juke In The Back” presents Part 6, the final part of our mammoth, 6 part series, on the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 54 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Matt The Cat closes the series focussing on 1950 through ’56, just as Rock ‘n Roll was breaking. Jordan scored his 18th and final #1 R&B record in 1951 with “Blue Light Boogie Pt. 1 & 2″ and experimented with fronting a big band for a time in ’52. By the end of ’53, Jordan’s 15 year stint with Decca Records ended. He next recorded some stellar sides for Aladdin Records, Vic, X and Mercury, but the hits were long gone. The singles on this week’s program show that even in the lean times, Louis Jordan still put out quality records. He made some strong efforts at trying to capture the Rock n’ Rollers, but his time in the musical limelight was over. There is no denying that Louis Jordan is almost single-handily responsible for the development of post War Rhythm & Blues as well as the birth of Rock n’ Roll. The “Juke In The Back” is proud to have dedicated 6 programs to this legendary performer and American Icon.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Onion – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
3. Blue Light Boogie Pt. 1 & 2 – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
4. I’ll Never Be Free – Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
5. (I’ll Be Glad When You’re Dead) You Rascal You – Louis Armstrong and Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
6. Tamburitza Boogie – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
7. Lemonade – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1951
8. (You Dyed Your Hair) Chartreuse – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1951
9. Teardrops From My Eyes – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1951
10. Weak Minded Blues – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1951
11. Bone Dry – Louis Jordan & His Orch. – Decca 1951
12. GREAT 78 – Life Is So Peculiar – Louis Armstrong and Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
13. I Want You To Be My Baby – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1953
14. Messy Bessy – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Aladdin 1954
15. Rock ‘N’ Roll Call – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Vic 1956
16. Caldonia – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Mercury 1956
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #256

Air Week: March 30-April 5, 2015

Louis Jordan 5Louis Jordan, Pt. 5 – 1948-50

The “Juke In The Back” presents Part 5 of our mammoth, 6 part series, featuring the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 54 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Part 5 of our series focuses on mid-1948 thru the beginning of 1950. During this time, Jordan only scored 2 #1 records and so it has become a much overlooked period in his career, even though he released some very strong singles. We’ll hear two songs that were featured in motion pictures as well as 2 duets, one with Martha Davis and another one with Ella Fitzgerald. Though the hits weren’t as strong as previous years, Jordan did score a career highlight with “Saturday Night Fish Fry,” which topped the R&B Chart for an impressive 12 weeks. His competition in the R&B Field was getting much stronger, but Louis Jordan and His Tympany Five continued to record and release top-notch material. Pianist Bill Doggett is even featured on a few sides. This is the second to last part of my loving tribute to the great and influential Louis Jordan.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Pinetop’s Boogie Woogie – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
3. Don’t Burn The Candle At Both Ends – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
4. We Can’t Agree – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
5. Daddy-O – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five and Martha Davis – Decca 1948
6. Pettin’ and Pokin’ – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
7. Roamin’ Blues – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 19498. You Broke Your Promise – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
9. Cole Slaw (Sorgum Switch) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
10. Every Man To His Own Profession – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
11. Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan and His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
12. Beans and Cornbread – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
13. GREAT 78 – All For The Love Of Lil – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
14. Saturday Night Fish Fry, Pt. 1 & 2 – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
15. School Days – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1949
16. Push Ka Pee She Pie (The Saga Of Saga Boy) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1950
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #255

Air Week: March 23-29, 2015

Louis JordanLouis Jordan, Pt. 4 – 1947-48

The “Juke In The Back” presents Part 4 of our mammoth, 6 part series, featuring the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 56 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Part 4 of our series focuses on the incredible hit-making years of 1947 and ’48. Jordan scored 4 #1 records in 1947, spending an amazing 40 weeks at the top of the Race Record Chart (the name of the R&B chart at that time). The year was kicked off with “Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens,” which topped the chart for 17 weeks and nearly every record that Decca issued on Jordan that year was a major seller. “Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens” became the catchphrase of 1947, along with “Open The Door, Richard.” The latter was a tune based on a Black Vaudeville routine, which hit #2 on the R&B charts by 4 different artists, including Louis Jordan. Count Basie’s version of “Richard” crossed over to #1 on the Pop Chart, making “Richard” a huge crossover success. We’re also highlighting the first half of 1948. It’s still a big year for Jordan, but the hits begin to slow down a bit. He only scored 1 #1 in ’48. The “Juke” is jumpin’ with Jordan this week on part 4 of “Juke In The Back”‘s tribute to the “King Of The Jukeboxes, Louis Jordan.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
3. Let The Good Times Roll – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
4. Texas And Pacific – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
5. I Like ‘Em Fat Like That – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
6. Open The Door, Richard! – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
7. Jack, You’re Dead – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
8. I Know What You’re Puttin’ Down – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
9. Boogie Woogie Blue Plate – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
10. Early In The Morning – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
11. Look Out – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
12. Barnyard Boogie – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
13. GREAT 78 – It’s So Easy – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1947
14. How Long Must I Wait For You – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
15. Reet, Petite & Gone – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
16. Run Joe – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1948
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #254

Air Week: March 16-22, 2015

Louis Jordan 3Louis Jordan, Pt. 3 – 1946

The “Juke In The Back” presents Part 3 of a mammoth, multi-part series, featuring the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 56 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Part 3 of our series focuses on the entire year of 1946. Jordan scored 5 #1 records that year and spent 35 out of 52 weeks at the top of the Race Record Chart (the name of the R&B chart at that time). One of those #1s was a duet with the great Ella Fitzgerald. We’ll also hear Jordan duetting with another musical titan, Bing Crosby. Decca Records put their 2 biggest stars together, but unfortunately that tune only hit #14 on the Pop Chart. “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie” topped the chart for 18 weeks and then it was knocked out of the top spot by another Louis Jordan record, “Ain’t That Just Like A Woman.” He was at the top of his game in 1946, selling more records than any other African-American artist. We’ll also dig on a V-Disc Jordan cut for those serving overseas in the Armed Forces as well as some choice B sides. The “Juke” is jumpin’ with Jordan this week on part 3 of “Juke In The Back”‘s tribute to the “King Of The Jukeboxes, Louis Jordan.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. How High Am I – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – V-Disc 1945
3. Somebody Done Changed The Locks On My Door – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
4. Buzz Me – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
5. Don’t Worry ‘Bout That Mule – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
6. Salt Pork, West Virginia – Louis Jordan & His Typmany Five – Decca 1946
7. Reconversion Blues – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
8. Beware – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
9. Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Cryin’ – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
10. Stone Cold Dead In The Market (He Had It Coming) – Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
11. (Yip Yip De Hootie) My Baby Said Yes – Bing Crosby & Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
12. Choo Choo Ch’Boogie – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
13. GREAT 78 – Petootie Pie – Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
14. That Chick’s Too Young To Fry – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
15. Ain’t That Just Like A Woman (They’ll Do It Every Time) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
16. If It’s Love You Want Baby, That’s Me – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1946
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

 

Episode #253

Air Week: March 9-15, 2015

Louis Jordan 2Louis Jordan, Pt. 2 – 1942-45

The “Juke In The Back” presents Part 2 of a mammoth, multi-part series, featuring the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 56 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Part 2 of our series picks up in 1942, right before Jordan’s first hit record, “I’m Gonna Leave You On The Outskirts Of Town,” and covers his first 5 #1 records, which began with “What’s The Use Of Getting Sober (When You’re Gonna Get Drunk Again” in 1943. The hits started as Decca assigned legendary jazz producer Milt Gabler to produce his sessions. Their first session together took place right before the Recording Ban of 1942 went into effect. During the ban, the musicians union refused to let artists record for any recording company until their royalty demands were met. This kept Jordan out of the studio for over a year. Once the ban ended in September of ’43, Jordan was back in the studio cutting hit record after hit record. It’s during this time that he became the “King Of The Jukeboxes.” So don’t miss one fantabulous Louis Jordan record on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Mama Mama Blues (Rusty Dusty Blues) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1942
3. I’m Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town – Louis Jordan & His Typany Five – Decca 1942
4. Knock Me A Kiss – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1942
5. I’m Gonna Leave You On The Outskirts Of Town – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1942
6. What’s The Use Of Getting Sober (When You’re Gonna Get Drunk Again) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1942
7. The Chicks I Pick Are Slender and Tender and Tall – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1942
8. Five Guys Named Moe – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1943
9. That’ll Just ‘Bout Knock Me Out – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1943
10. Ration Blues – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1943
11. G.I. Jive – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1944
12. Is You Is Or Is You Ain’t My Baby – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five
13. GREAT 78 – Deacon Jones – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1943
14. Mop! Mop! – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
15. You Can’t Get That No More – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
16. Caldonia – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #252

Air Week: March 2-8, 2015

Louis JordanLouis Jordan, Pt. 1 – 1938-41

The “Juke In The Back” begins a mammoth, multi-part series, featuring the most important musical figure of the 1940s, Louis Jordan. He was the most successful African-American artist of the decade, selling millions of records to both Black and White audiences. Jordan charted 57 singles between 1942 and 1951, scoring 18 #1 R&B hits and 56 top 10s. Several of his records even crossed over into the Pop Top 10, which was an almost unheard of feat at the time. Jordan was born in Brinkley, AR in 1908 and thanks to his musician father, began touring with the Rabbit Foot Minstrels before he was even in his teens. His love of music, performing and baseball took him to Arkansas Baptist College and soon he was playing in bands in Philadelphia and New York. He started his own band after being fired by legendary drummer Chick Webb. His first records with the Elk’s Rendezvous Band were not hits, but they cast a light on the tight arrangements, the comedic delivery and good feelin’ jump blues that was to become Louis Jordan’s trademark. Part 1 features Jordan’s earliest recordings from 1938 to 1941. There are no certified hits, but these records show the blueprint for the future superstar. Matt The Cat’s series on Louis Jordan will cover all his important records up through 1951, so don’t miss a show!

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Toodle-Loo On Down – Rodney Sturgis with Lovie Jordon’s Rendezvous Band – Decca 1939
3. Honey In The Bee Ball – Louie Jordon’s Elks Rendezvous Band – Decca 1939
4. So Good – Rodney Sturgis with Louie Jordon’s Rendezvous Band – Decca 1939
5. Doug The Jitterbug – Louie Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
6. Keep A-Knockin’ – Louie Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
7. At The Swing Cat’s Ball – Louie Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
8. Sam Jones Done Snagged His Britches – Louie Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
9. Honeysuckle Rose – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
10. Fore Day Blues – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1939
11. After School Swing Session (Swinging With Symphony Sid) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1940
12. GREAT 78 – Barnacle Bill The Sailor – Louie Jordon’s Rendezvous Band – Decca 1939
13. You Run Your Mouth And I’ll Run My Business – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1940
14. Do You Call That A Buddy (Dirty Cat) – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1940
15. Pan Pan – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1941
16. Boogie Woogie Came To Town – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1941
17. Saxa-Woogie – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1941
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #251

Air Week: February 23-March 1, 2015

Wynonie HarrisWynonie Harris, Pt. 2

It’s part 2 of our 2 part series on Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris, one of the greatest blues shouters of all time. This week, Matt The Cat focuses on Harris’ hit-making years of 1948-1952, when he ruled the rhythm & blues charts. “Grandma Plays The Numbers,” “All She Wants To Do Is Rock,” “Bloodshot Eyes,” “Lovin’ Machine” and many more Wynonie Harris classics spun in high numbers on the jukeboxes, so drop a nickel in the “Juke In The Back,” cause “Mr. Blues” is gonna ROCK!

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Blowin’ To California – Wynonie Harris – King 1948
3. Grandma Plays The Numbers – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
4. I Feel That Old Age Coming On – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
5. Drinkin’ Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
6. All She Wants To Do Is Rock – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
7. I Want My Fanny Brown – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
8. Battle Of The Blues Pt. 2 – Wynonie Harris & Big Joe Turner – Aladdin 1949
9. Sittin’ On It All The Time – Wynonie Harris – King 1949
10. I Like My Baby’s Pudding – Wynonie Harris – King 1950
11. Good Morning Judge – Wynonie Harris – King 1950
12. Rock Mr. Blues – Wynonie Harris – King 1950
13. GREAT 78 – Mr. Blues Is Coming To Town – Wynonie Harris – King 1950
14. Oh, Babe! – Wynonie Harris & The Lucky Millinder Orch.– King 1950
15. Bloodshot Eyes – Wynonie Harris – King 1951
16. Lovin’ Machine – Wynonie Harris – King 1951
17. Quiet Whiskey – Wynonie Harris – King 1954
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #250

Air Week: February 16-22, 2015

Wynonie HarrisWynonie Harris, Pt. 1

The “Juke In The Back” is overflowin’ with records by one of R&B’s greatest blues shouters and entertainers: Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris. Part 1 of this 2 part series focuses on Wynonie’s early recordings from 1944-1948. Matt The Cat digs deep in his “juke” archives to pull out many of Harris’ early records that often get ignored. We’ll dig on Harris’ first 2 singles with the Lucky Millinder Orchestra and cover his releases with Philo, Apollo, Aladdin and King. Three versions of the early rock n’ roll anthem, “Good Rockin’ Tonight” will also be examined. So get ready to shout “Hoy! Hoy!” as Mr. Blues is coming to town on this week’s “Juke In The Back” with Matt The Cat.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. S.K. Blues Pt. 1 – Joe Turner With Pete Johnson’s All Stars – National 1945
3. Good Rockin’ Tonight – Roy Brown – DeLuxe 1947
4. Hurry, Hurry – Lucky Millinder & His Orch. – Decca 1944
5. Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well? – Lucky Millinder & His Orch. – Decca 1945
6. Around The Clock, Part 2 – Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris and Johnny Otis’ All Stars – Philo 1945
7. Young Man’s Blues – Wynonie “Blues” Harris – Apollo 1945
8. Wynonie’s Blues – Wynonie “Blues” Harris – Apollo 1945
9. Playful Baby – Wynonie “Blues” Harris – Apollo 1946
10. My Baby’s Barrel House – Wynonie (Mr. Blues) Harris – Bullet 1946
11. Time To Change Your Town – Wynonie “Blues” Harris – Apollo 1946
12. Mr. Blues Jumped The Rabbit – Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris and His All Stars – Aladdin 1947
13. GREAT 78 – Cock-A-Doodle-Doo – Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris and Johnny Otis’ All Stars – Philo 1945
14. Good Rockin’ Tonight – Wynonie Harris – King 1948
15. Lollipop Mama – Wynonie Harris – King 1948
16. Good Rockin’ Tonight – Elvis Presley – Sun 1954
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #249

Air Week: February 9-15, 2015

Big MaybelleBig Maybelle

The “Juke In The Back” highlights the often ignored early career of Big Maybelle, one of the great female blues shouters. She was born Mabel Louise Smith in 1929 and cut her first record with Christine Chatman’s Orchestra for Decca in 1944. Mabel Smith made her first solo recordings for King in 1947 before being signed to Okeh Records by Fred Mendelsohn in 1952. He renamed her Big Maybelle and she hit the R&B charts right out of the gate with her first Okeh release, “Gabbin’ Blues.” Maybelle would score a few more hits for them before following Mendelsohn over to Savoy Records in 1956. That year, she hit the national spotlight with her interpretation of the standard, “Candy.” Matt The Cat reviews the vocal power and soul of this truly original blueswoman, Big Maybelle, on this week’s “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. The Thrill Is Gone – Roy Hawkins – Modern 1951
3. Hurry Hurry – Christine Chatman & Her Orch – Decca 1944
4. Too Tight Mama – Mabel Smith – King 1947
5. Gabbin’ Blues – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1952
6. Way Back Home – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1953
7. Jimmy Mule – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1953
8. My Country Man – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1953
9. I’ve Got A Feelin’ – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1954
10. Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1955
11. One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show – Big Maybelle – Okeh 1955
12. Candy – Big Maybelle – Savoy 1956
13. GREAT 78 – Bad Dreams Blues – Mabel Smith – King 1947
14. That’s A Pretty Good Love – Big Maybelle – Savoy 1956
15. Mean To Me – Big Maybelle – Savoy 1956
16. All Night Long (Live at Newport, 1958) – Big Maybelle
17. Rock House – Big Maybelle – Savoy 1957
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #248

Air Week: February 2-8, 2015

Cab CallowayCab Calloway 

If you’re “hep to the jive” and can “dig the scene,” then you’re in for a treat on this week’s “Juke In The Back.” Matt The Cat presents Cab Calloway: the “Father of R&B,” the “Grandfather of Rock n’ Roll” and the “Hi De Ho Man.” There is no question that Cab Calloway planted the seeds that would grow into Rhythm & Blues on his 1931 Brunswick single “Minnie The Moocher.” That song would go on to have a life of its own, inspiring sequels and re-recorded versions for the rest of Calloway’s career. The tune would be revived yet again in 1980, when it and Cab Calloway were featured in the “Blues Brothers” film. Cab accomplished so much in his career, from breaking down the color barrier in motion pictures to introducing the world to scat singing and jive talking. He had a musical language and style all his own and we celebrate the great, influential Cab Calloway on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Minnie The Moocher – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Brunswick 1931
3. St. Louis Blues – Cab Calloway & The Missourians – JSP 1930
4. St. James Infirmary – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Brunswick 1931
5. Kickin’ The Gong Around – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Brunswick 1931
6. Reefer Man – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Brunswick 1932
7. Chinese Rhythm – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Brunswick 1934
8. (Hep-Hep!) The Jumpin’ Jive – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Vocalion 1939
9. Are You Hep To The Jive – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Okeh 1940
10. Blues In The Night – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Okeh 1942
11. The Honeydripper – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Columbia 1946
12. GREAT 78 – Are You All Reet – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Okeh 1941
13. Everybody Eats When They Come To My House – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Columbia 1947
14. The Calloway Boogie – Cab Calloway & His Orch – Columbia 1948
15. Minnie The Moocher – Cab Calloway & His Orch – RCA 1978
16. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #247

Air Week: January 26-February 1, 2015

1955 Jukebox Rhythm Review1955: Jukebox Rhythm Review, Pt. 2

The ol’ Rockola Jukebox is back in the spotlight as we present part 2 of a 2 part feature on the biggest R&B jukebox records of 1955. It was a year of many firsts. 1955 was the first full year of Rhythm & Blues records consistently crossing over into the Pop Chart. Matt The Cat will point out just how popular some of these records were in the Pop Market. 1955 was also the debut year for Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry and Etta James. Fats Domino had 6 charting singles this year, 3 of which topped the R&B chart. 1955 was the year of “Blackboard Jungle”‘s tremendous success in helping to deliver Rock n’ Roll music to the mainstream through the popularity of its theme song, “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock.” In Part 2, we’ll spin the last R&B chart-topper to NOT cross over into the Pop Chart as well as a healthy dose of vocal group records gaining jukebox spins. Smiley Lews, The Clovers and The Drifters, with a new lead singer, continued to score hits and make 1955 a year to remember. Part 2 covers the jukebox hits from July through December.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Every Day – Count Basie & His Orch – Clef 1955
3. A Fool For You – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1955
4. Only You (And You Alone) – The Platters – Mercury 1955
5. Maybellene – Chuck Berry & His Combo – Chess 1955
6. It’s Love Baby (24 Hours A Day) – The Midnighters – Federal 1955
7. Why Don’t You Write Me? – The Jacks – RPM 1955
8. At My Front Door – The El Dorados – Vee-Jay 1955
9. I Hear You Knocking – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1955 – early sept, hit #3 JB and #2 sales and airplay
10. Nip Sip – The Clovers – Atlantic 1955 – Charted Sept 24, hit #10
11. All By Myself – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
12. Play It Fair – Lavern Baker – Atlantic 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Story Untold – The Nutmegs – Herald 1955
14. Hands Off – Jay McShann’s Orch. – Vee-Jay 1955
15. When You Dance – The Turbans – Herald 1955
16. Adorable – The Drifters – Atlantic 1955
17. Poor Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #246

Air Week: January 19-25, 2015

1955 Jukebox Rhythm Review1955: Jukebox Rhythm Review, Pt. 1

The ol’ Rockola Jukebox is back in the spotlight as we present part 1 of a 2 part feature on the biggest R&B jukebox records of 1955. It was a year of many firsts. 1955 was the first full year of Rhythm & Blues records consistently crossing over into the Pop Chart. Matt The Cat will point out just how popular some of these records were in the Pop Market. 1955 was also the debut year for Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry and Etta James. It was the last year for Johnny Ace, who scored the biggest hit of his career, posthumously. 1955 was the year of “Blackboard Jungle”‘s tremendous success in helping to deliver Rock n’ Roll music to the mainstream through the popularity of its theme song, “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock.” In Part 1, we’ll look at just how big a record “Unchained Melody” was, with 2 versions topping the R&B Chart and crossing over to the Pop Top 10. Little Walter, Ray Charles and Ruth Brown continued to score hits and make 1955 a year to remember. Part 1 covers the jukebox hits from January to June and Part 2 will focus on July through December. 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Earth Angel (Will You Be Mine) – The Penguins – Dootone 1954
3. Sincerely – The Moonglows – Chess 1954
4. Pledging My Love – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1955
5. Ling Ting Tong – The Charms – DeLuxe 1954
6. I Got A Woman – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1954
7. The Wallflower – Etta James & “The Peaches” – Modern 1955
8. My Babe – Little Walter & His Jukes – Checker 1955
9. What’cha Gonna Do – Clyde McPhatter & The Driftes – Atlantic 1955
10. Unchained Melody – Roy Hamilton – Epic 1955
11. Don’t Be Angry – Nappy Brown – Savoy 1955
12. Bop-Ting-A-Ling – Lavern Baker & The Gliders – Atlantic 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Unchained Melody – Al Hibbler – Decca 1955
14. Ain’t It A Shame – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955
15. Bo Diddley – Bo Diddley – Checker 1955
16. As Long As I’m Moving – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1955
17. (We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock – Bill Haley & His Comets – Decca 1954
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #245

Air Week: January 12-18, 2015

Pee Wee CraytonPee Wee Crayton 

The “Juke In The Back” honors one of the greatest, yet more underrated originators of electric blues guitar: Pee Wee Crayton.  Matt The Cat digs deep into Crayton’s musical catalog and dusts off more than just his three charting R&B hits.  You’ll also get to hear the fantastic and inspired recordings he cut in New Orleans with bandleader Dave Bartholomew as well as his Vee-Jay Records sides.  Pee Wee Crayton’s story comes to life through his music on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Disc Jockey Nightmare – Earl Bostic – King 1949
3. Bip Bam – Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters – Atlantic 1954
4. Blues After Hours – Pee Wee Crayton – Modern 1948
5. Texas Hop – Pee Wee Crayton – Modern 1948
6. I Love You So – Pee Wee Crayton – Modern 1949
7. Daybreak – Pee Wee Crayton – Aladdin 1952
8. When It Rains It Pours – Pee Wee Crayton – Aladdin 1952
9. Every Dog Has His Day – Pee Wee Crayton – Imperial 1954
10. Hurry Hurry – Pee Wee Crayton – Imperial 1954
11. You Know Yeah – Pee Wee Crayton – Imperial 1955
12. Runnin’ Wild – Pee Wee Crayton – Imperial 1955
13. Great 78 – Central Avenue Blues – Pee Wee Crayton – Modern 1948
14. Telephone Is Ringing – Pee Wee Crayton – Vee-Jay 1956
15. I Found Peace Of Mind – Pee Wee Crayton – Vee-Jay 1957
16. Oh, Oh, Oh Baby – The Checkers – King 1953
17. I’m Living My Life For You – Lavern Baker – Atlantic 1954
18. I’ll Be Forever Loving You – The El Dorados – Vee-Jay 1955
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #244

Air Week: January 5-11, 2015

Charles BrownCharles Brown: 1949-52

Charles Brown was the “King of Smoky Blues” for over 50 years. Growing up in Texas City, TX, he studied classical piano while focusing his interests on science, becoming a chemistry teacher for a short time. A move to Los Angeles in 1943, hooked him up with Johnny Moore, who hired him to sing and play piano with The Three Blazers. Right out of the gate, they scored a huge, #2 R&B record in 1946 with “Driftin’ Blues” and would go on to hit the top ten no less than 10 times over the next 2 years. This week’s “Juke In The Back” focuses on Charles Brown’s career after he left Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers in 1948. As a solo artist, Brown kept the hits coming, racking up 5 top 10 records in 1949 alone. He scored 2 #1s with “Trouble Blues” in ’49 and “Black Night” in ’51, 2 of the best selling records in their respective years of release. Brown’s star began to fade as Rock n’ Roll entered the mainstream during the mid-’50s, but he would have a giant comeback in the 1980s and ’90s, finally getting inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall Of Fame in ’99. Matt The Cat examines his hit-making years of 1949-52 on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Johnny Moore’s Three Blazer’s Medley Of Hits w/ Charles Brown – Philo, Modern & Exclusive Records 1946-48
3. Get Yourself Another Fool – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
4. Long Time – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
5. It’s Nothing – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
6. Trouble Blues – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
7. Honey Keep Your Mind On Me – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
8. In The Evening When The Sun Goes Down – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
9. Homesick Blues – Charles Brown & His Smarties – Aladdin 1949
10. Let’s Have A Ball – Charles Brown & His Smarties – Aladdin 1949
11. I’ll Miss You – Charles Brown w/ Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1949
12. My Baby’s Gone – Charles Brown & His Band – Aladdin 1950
13. GREAT 78 – Oh! Oh! Sugar – Charles Brown Trio – Aladdin 1949
14. Black Night – Charles Brown & His Band – Aladdin 1951
15. I’ll Always Be In Love With You – Charles Brown & His Band – Aladdin 1951
16. Seven Long Days – Charles Brown & His Band – Aladdin 1951
17. Hard Times – Charles Brown & His Band – Aladdin 1952
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #243

Air Week: December 29, 2014 – January 4, 2015

Johnny Moore's Three BlazersJohnny Moore’s Three Blazers 

This week’s “Juke In The Back” is dedicated to one of the true unsung heroes of 1940s and ’50s rhythm & blues, Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers. The group is mostly remembered as the springboard for vocalist/pianist Charles Brown and today they are generally only recognized for their 1946 smash, “Driftin’ Blues.” However, back in the late 1940s, The Three Blazers scored R&B hit after hit. Between Johnny Moore’s influential guitar licks and Charles Brown’s tasty piano, The Three Blazers were at the top of their genre. However, their sound fell out of favor as soon as the blues shouters and jump blues combos took over, setting the stage for the coming rock n’ roll explosion. Their first records were made for the tiny Atlas label in 1944 and featured an uncredited Frankie Laine on vocals. They then backed up Ivory Joe Hunter in 1945, before Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers hit the bigtime in 1946. Matt The Cat will cover Johnny Moore’s years with Charles Brown as well as those following Brown’s departure. This week’s “Juke In The Back” is the definitive look at Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers, vintage R&B icons.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Melancholy Madeline – Oscar Moore w/ The Three Blazers – Atlas 1944
3. Blues At Sunrise – Ivory Joe Hunter w/ Johnny Moore’s 3 Blazers – Exclusive 1945
4. Driftin’ Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Philo 1946
5. Sunny Road – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1946
6. So Long – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Modern 1946
7. New Orleans Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1947
8. Changeable Woman Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1947
9. Groovy Movie Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1948
10. Jilted Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1948
11. More Than You Know – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Modern 1948
12. Lonesome Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1948
13. GREAT 78 – Johnny Ace’s Last Letter – Johnny Moore’s Blazers – Hollywood 1955
14. Where Can I Find My Baby – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1949
15. Walkin’ Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – RCA Victor 1949
16. Dragnet Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Modern 1953
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #242

Air Week: December 22-28, 2014

New YearsR&B Christmas Leftovers & New Year’s Resolutions

Matt The Cat has dug up some more R&B Christmas treasures and added a few tunes about New Years for this week’s continuation of the “Juke In The Back” R&B Christmas Special. The holiday juke is jumpin’ with cool tunes by Big John Greer, Champion Jack Dupree, Lowell Fulson, The Moonglows, Marvin & Johnny and many more. The range of topics is wide, from dancing Santas to lonely Christmases to making up with your baby on New Year’s Eve. So get hungry for some Christmas leftovers and plan your New Year’s resolutions this week with Matt The Cat on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Far Away Christmas Blues – Little Esther With The Johnny Otis Orch – Savoy 1950
3. It’s Christmas – Marvin & Johnny – Aladdin 1958
4. Santa Claus Blues – Champion Jack Dupree – Davis 1945
5. Santa Claus Got Stuck In My Chimney – Ella Fitzgerald – Decca 1950
6. We Wanna To See Santa Do The Mambo – Big John Greer – Groove 1955
7. Lonesome Christmas – Lowell Fulson – Swingtime 1950
8. Just A Lonely Christmas – The Moonglows – Chance 1953
9. I’ll Miss You This Christmas – Marvin & The Chips – Virginia 1955
10. Be Bop Santa Claus – Babs Gonzales – Bruce 1954
11. Mr. Santa’s Boogie – The Marshall Brothers – Savoy 1951
12 Wonderful Christmas Night – Dan Grissom – Jewel (Unissued) 1948
13. GREAT 78 – Merry Xmas – Little Willie Littlefield – Modern 1949
14. Hello, Mr. New Year – The Coolbreezers – Bale 1958
15. Happy New Year Baby – Johnny Otis & His Orch – Excelsior 1947
16. Ringing In A Brand New Year – Billy Ward & His Dominoes – Federal 1953
17. What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve – The Orioles – Jubilee 1950
18. The Christmas Song – King Cole Trio – Capitol 1946
19. White Christmas – Charlie Parker – Recorded Live, 12/25/1948

Episode #241

Air Week: December 15-21, 2014

R&B ChristmasRhythm & Blues Christmas

The entire “Juke In The Back” is loaded with the greatest R&B Christmas records from the late 1940s and 1950s. It’s the yuletide soul that came before rock n’ roll. From the all-time classics by Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters and The Orioles to some rarer Christmas plattahs from Amos Milburn, JB Summers and The Five Keys. So grab some ‘nog and get groovin’.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rockin N Rollin With Santa Claus – The Hepsters – Ronel 1955
3. Jingle Jangle – The Penguins – Mercury 1955
4. Christmas In Jail – The Youngsters – Empire 1956
5. Boogie Woogie Santa Claus – Mabel Scott – Excelsior 1948
6. Hey Santa Claus – The Moonglows – Chance 1953
7. Christmas Date Boogie – Joe Turner – Downbeat 1948
8. Dig That Crazy Santa Claus – Oscar McLollie – Modern 1954
9. Christmas In Heaven – Billy Ward & His Dominoes – Federal 1953
10. Christmas Spirits – Julia Lee & Her Boyfriends – Capitol 1947
11. Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956
12. (It’s Gonna Be A) Lonely Christmas – The Orioles – Jubilee 1949
13. I Want A Present For Xmas – J.B. Summers & The Blues Shouters – Gotham 1949
14. GREAT 78 – Let’s Make Christmas Merry, Baby – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1950
15. It’s Christmas Time – The Five Keys – Aladdin 1951
16. White Christmas – Clyde McPhatter & The The Drifters – Atlantic 1954
17. Merry Christmas Baby – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1947
18. Silent Night – The Ravens – National 1948
19. White Christmas – Charlie Parker – Recorded Live, 12/25/1948

Episode #240

Air Week: December 8-14, 2014

1945 Rhythm Review1945: Jukebox Rhythm Review

This week, the “Juke In The Back” brings the jukebox into the spotlight as we journey back 70 years and dig on the top requested jukebox records from the entire year of 1945. This was a pivotal year for Rhythm and Blues Music as 1945 marked the beginning of a new sound in Black Music. As the war raged on, many of the African-American big bands found it hard to afford such large ensembles, so they slimed down to rhythm combos. Around the same time, blues singers were expanding their sound to go beyond just a guitar or piano accompaniment. They began adding rhythm sections and thus, Rhythm and Blues was born. 1945 marked the first year that this new style of music dominated the Black Community and the juke joints they patronized. 1945 was a strong year for jump blues cats like Louis Jordan, Joe Turner and Lionel Hampton. The blues cats faired well this year as Pvt. Cecil Gant had one of the year’s biggest hits with his self-penned, “I Wonder,” which was also successfully covered by Roosevelt Sykes and Louis Armstrong. Joe Liggins burst on the scene with “The Honeydripper,” the biggest selling record of the year and quite possibly the entire decade! Matt The Cat’s got a pocket full of nickels and he’s ready to warm up the “Juke In The Back,” so we can all dig that big beat jive of 1945!
1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall – Ink Spots and Ella Fitzgerald – Decca 1944
3. Somebody’s Gotta Go – Cootie Williams & His Orch – Majestic 1945
4. I Wonder – Pvt. Cecil Gant – Gilt Edge 1945
5. V-Day Stomp – The Four Clefs – Victor 1945
6. Tippin’ In – Erskine Hawkins & His Orch – Victor 1945
7. Strange Things Happening Every Day – Sister Rosetta Tharpe – Decca 1945
8. Rock Me Mamma – Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup – Bluebird 1945
9. Caldonia – Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five – Decca 1945
10. Boogie Woogie On A Saturday Night – 5 Red Caps – Joe Davis 1945
11. Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well – Lucky Millinder & His Orch – Decca 1945
12. That’s The Stuff You Gotta Watch – Buddy Johnson & His Orch – Decca 1945
13. GREAT 78 – I Wonder – Roosevelt Sykes & His Piano – Bluebird 1945
14. The Honeydripper (part 1) – Joe Liggins & His Honeydrippers– Exclusive 1945
15. S. K. Blues Part 1 – Joe Turner with Pete Johnson’s All-Stars – National 1945
16. Beulah’s Boogie – Lionel Hampton & His Orch – Decca 1945
17. Things Have Changed – Big Maceo – Bluebird 1945
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #239

Air Week: December 1-7, 2014

LittleCaesarLittle Caesar

Today Harry “Little” Caesar is best remembered as an actor from movies and TV and the voice behind 1952’s “Goodbye Baby,” one of the strangest R&B hits of all-time. But the story of Little Caesar and his slow rise to fame is one of American folklore. He was raised by his steel working father after his mother died before his first birthday. While working various jobs to help support his family, Caesar got into trouble and spend six months in jail. After getting out of the military, he found himself on the West Coast with a budding musical career. He practically invented the story song, complete with acting between him and his platter co-star “Rusty” Russell. “Goodbye Baby” may have been his only national hit, topping out at #5, but there is so much more to Little Caesar and this week Matt The Cat is proud to bring this underrated R&B singer into the spotlight. We’ll dig on his recorded output for John Dolphin’s Recorded In Hollywood Label, RPM Records and Big Town Records from 1952-53 on the “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Runaway – Jesse Stone & His Band – Atlantic 1954
3. But Officer! – Sonny Knight w/ Orch. – Aladdin 1953
4. Don’t Mention The Blues To Me – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
5. Talkin’ To Myself – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
6. Going Down To The River – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
7. Long Time Baby – Little Caesar – Recorded in Hollywood 1952
8. Goodbye Baby – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
9. If I Could See My Baby – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
10. Lying Woman – Little Caesar & Rusty – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
11. Here’s A Letter – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1953
12. Your Money Ain’t Long Enough – Little Caesar w/ The Que Martyn Orch – Recorded In Hollywood 1953
13. GREAT 78 – Move Me – Little Caesar – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
14. Atomic Love – Little Caesar w/ The Red Callender Sextet – Recorded In Hollywood 1953
15. Tried To Reason With You Baby – Little Caesar w/ Maxwell Davis & His Orch. – RPM 1953
16. Big Eyes – Little Caesar w/ Que Martyn’s Orch – Big Town 1953
17. What Kind Of Fool Is He – Little Caesar w/ Que Martyn’s Orch – Big Town 1953
18. Cadillac Baby – Little Caesar – Unissued
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #238

Air Week: November 24-30, 2014

Early Solomon BurkeSolomon Burke, The Early Years: 1955-60

This week we salute Solomon Burke, the “King of Rock n’ Soul” and the “Juke In The Back” is loaded with his very first recordings from 1955 to 1960.  As a teenager in Philadelphia, Burke was recording for Apollo Records in NYC, but none of his nine Apollo singles charted.  He then cut two singles for the Singular Label before his fortunes turned around and he began recording with Atlantic Records.  You won’t hear anything that will blow you mind from Burke’s early recordings, but they all have a quality that would stick with him for the rest of his career.  Hear how the “Bishop Of Soul” evolved into the giant he became on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Too Much Lovin’ – The “5” Royales – Apollo 1953
3. Be Baba Leba – Helen Humes With Bill Doggett Octet – Philo 1945
4. Just Out Of Reach (Of My Two Open Arms) – Solomon Burke – Atlantic 1961
5. Christmas Presents From Heaven – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1955
6. Why Do Me That Way – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1956
7. To Thee – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1956
8. No Man Walks Alone – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1956
9. A Picture Of You – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1956
10. This Is It – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1957
11. For You And You Alone – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1957
12. My Heart Is A Chapel – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1958
13. Great 78 – Don’t Cry – Solomon Burke – Apollo 1958
14. It’s All Right – Solomon Burke – Singular 1959
15. This Little Ring – Solomon Burke – Singular 1960 & Mala 1960
16. Don’t Blame It On Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1956
17. Don’t Feel Sorry For Me – Jimmy Beasley – Modern 1956
18. Flying Home – Lionel Hampton & His Orch. – Decca 1942
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #237

Air Week: November 17-23, 2014

Titus TurnerUnderrated R&B Pioneers: Titus Turner & Buddy Lucas

The “Juke In The Back” spotlights two extremely underrated R&B pioneers this week: Titus Turner and saxophonist Buddy Lucas.  Turner recorded some amazing R&B sides for Regal, Okeh, Wing, King and many other top labels, but he just couldn’t score a sizable hit on his own.  Today he is mostly remembered as a songwriter and his songs were hits by the likes of Little Willie John (“All Around The World,” “Leave My Kitten Alone”) and Ray Charles (“Sticks And Stones,” “Get On The Right Track”).  Buddy Lucas is mostly remembered today as a great session player, but he scored a few hits under his own name in the early 1950s for the Jubilee Label.  Matt The Cat tells their stories and plays some of their greatest sides.  Hear what you’ve been missing on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Oop Shoop – Shirley Gunter & The Queens – Flair 1954
3. Big Foot May – Hal Paige – Atlantic 1953
4. Stop Trying To Make A Fool Of Me – Titus Turner – Regal 1951
5. Got So Much Trouble – Titus Turner – Okeh 1952
6. Jambalaya – Titus Turner – Okeh 1952
7. Livin’ In Misery – Titus Turner – Okeh 1953
8. (Going Down To) Big Mary’s – Titus Turner – Okeh 1953
9. My Lonely Room – Titus Turner – Okeh 1954
10. All Around The World – Titus Turner – Wing 1955
11. Sweet And Slow – Titus Turner – Wing 1955
12. Have Mercy Baby – Titus Turner – King 1957
13. GREAT 78 – Big John – Titus Turner – Wing 1955
14. Diane – Buddy Lucas & His Band Of Tomorrow – Jubilee 1952
15. Heavenly Father – Edna McGriff With Buddy Lucas & His Band Of Tomorrow – Jubilee 1952
16. My Pinch Hitter – Buddy Lucas Feat. Almeda Stewart – Groove 1954
17. 7-11 – The Gone All Stars Featuring Buddy Lucas – Gone 1958
18. Night Train – The Buddy Lucas Band – Vim 1960
19. I Will Return – The Cobras – Modern 1955
20. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #236

Air Week: November 10-16, 2014

Billy StewartBilly Stewart: The Early Years

Many 1960s soul legends had their start in 1950s R&B and this week, the “JukeIn The Back” takes a listen to Billy Stewart’s early records for the Chess and Okeh labels. You can really hear Stewart’s distinctive singing style develop on his early recordings with Bo Diddley’s band providing the musical backing and the DC vocal group The Marquees (Marvin Gaye was a member) singing behind him. We’ll also spend a few days in jail as Matt The Cat spins a few “prison song” 78s. There are other surprises as well, so don’t miss this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rockin’ At Cosmo’s – Lee Allen – Aladdin 1956
3. Mary Lou – Young Jesse & The Cadets – Modern 1955
4. Love Is Stange – Bo Diddley – Prev. Unreleased 1956
5. Billy’s Blues Part 1 – Billy Stewart – Chess 1956
6. Billy’s Blues Part 2 – Billy Stewart – Chess 1956
7. Billy’s Heartache – Billy Stewart – Okeh 1957
8. Baby, You’re My Only Love – Billy Stewart – Okeh 1957
9. Fat Boy – Billy Stewart – Chess 1962
10. Shirley – The Rainbows – Pilgrim 1956
11. Ten Days In Jail – The Robins – RCA Victor 1953
12. Jailhouse Blues – Andre Williams – Fortune 1958
13. A Prisoner’s Prayer – The Prisonaires – Sun 1953
14. GREAT 78 – Please Mr. Jailer – Wynona Carr – Specialty 1956
15. Prison Blues – T-Bone Walker – Capitol 1947
16. Need Your Love So Bad – Little Willie John – King 1955
17. Little Maiden – The Chords – Cat 1954
18. Baby It’s You – The Spaniels – Vee-Jay 1953
19. Three Hours Past Midnight – Johnny “Guitar” Watson – RPM 1956
20. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #235

Air Week: November 3-9, 2014

The CadillacsThe Cadillacs 

The Cadillacs began their journey in 1953 as The Carnations and when they changed their name they helped usher in a new era of automobile names for R&B vocal groups. Lead tenor Earl “Speedo” Carroll and bass singer Bobby Phillips forged a friendship that would carry on from their days growing up in Harlem until the day each of them passed on. While together, The Cadillacs produced some of the coolest jump tunes from the classic “Speedo” to the jazzy “Down The Road” and the killer “No Chance.” As a ballad group, Speedo and the boys recorded the version of the immortal “Gloria” that all other vocal groups are measured against as well as other gorgeous tunes like “You Are” and “The Girl I Love.” Matt The Cat features an interview with Earl Carroll himself, so that he can tell The Cadillacs story in his own words. We lost Earl Carroll and a little piece of early rock n’ roll on November 25, 2012, but Speedo will never be forgotten in the hearts of those who dig REAL vocal group harmony.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Speedo – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
3. Earl Carroll Interview #1 
4. Gloria – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
5. I Wonder Why – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
6. Wishing Well – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
7. No Chance – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
8. Earl Carroll Interview #2 
9. Speedo – The Cadillacs – LIVE on Alan Freed’s Rock & Roll Dance Party 1956 
10. Down The Road – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
11. Earl Carroll Interview #3 
12. You Are – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
13. GREAT 78 – I Want To Know About Love – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
14. Zoom – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
16. Woe Is Me – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
17. The Girl I Love – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
18. Speedo Is Back – The Cadillacs – Josie 1958 
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #234

Air Week: October 27-November 2, 2014

Richard BerryRichard Berry

Richard Berry is truly one of the unsung heroes of early rhythm & blues and rock n’ roll. That he wrote and recorded the original version of “Louie Louie” is only scratching the surface of this renaissance man of R&B. As a teenager at LA’s Jefferson High School, he was a founding member of The Flairs, one of the first great vocal groups to hit the LA Scene. From there, Berry recorded some solo sides for the Flair, Modern, RPM and Flip labels. Matt The Cat takes a look and listen to Richard Berry’s early catalog, digging out some of his greatest sides from his first record with The Flairs to the solo ballad, “One Little Prayer,” his uncredited vocals on The Robins’ “Riot In Cell Block #9″ and Etta James’ “The Wallflower (Roll With Me Henry)” to the classic “Have Love Will Travel.” Plus, we’ll hear Richard Berry’s story in HIS own words through an interview conducted by former DJ James Austin from the mid-1980s (used with permission). In the interview, Berry gives a detailed history of how “Louie Louie” was inspired, written and received. So catch an intimate visit with the late Richard Berry, a rhythm & blues icon, on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Speedo – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
3. Earl Carroll Interview #1 
4. Gloria – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
5. I Wonder Why – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
6. Wishing Well – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
7. No Chance – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
8. Earl Carroll Interview #2 
9. Speedo – The Cadillacs – LIVE on Alan Freed’s Rock & Roll Dance Party 1956 
10. Down The Road – The Cadillacs – Josie 1955 
11. Earl Carroll Interview #3 
12. You Are – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
13. GREAT 78 – I Want To Know About Love – The Cadillacs – Josie 1954 
14. Zoom – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
16. Woe Is Me – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
17. The Girl I Love – The Cadillacs – Josie 1956 
18. Speedo Is Back – The Cadillacs – Josie 1958 
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #233

Air Week: October 20-26, 2014

Halloween R&B w/ Screamin' Jay HawkinsHalloween Rhythm & Blues

Matt The Cat experiences some paranormal rhythms coming out of his “Juke In The Back” as we celebrate the truly spooky, sinister and down-right crazy sounds of a vintage rhythm & blues Halloween. Eugene Fox meets the devil, The Hollywood Flames take us to Frankenstein’s Den and Bill Doggett throws a Monster’s Party. It’s a treat, not a trick to hear an alternate take of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ 1956 classic, “I Put A Spell On You,” with EXTRA screaming and a killer sax solo payed by Sam “The Man” Taylor. So clear your voodoo calendar and dig the sounds from the outer bounds on this week’s Halloween edition of the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Voodoo Voodoo – Lavern Baker – Atlantic 1961
3. King Kong – Big T Tyler – Aladdin 1957
4. Frankenstein’s Den – Hollywood Flames – Ebb 1958
5. Castin’ My Spell – The Johnny Otis Show – Capitol 1959
6. Black Cat Blues – Lowell Fulson – Down Beat 1948
7. Monster’s Party – Bill Doggett – King 1959
8. Peak-A-Boo – The Cadillacs – Josie 1958
9. I Put A Spell On You (Alt. Take)– Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – Okeh 1956
10. Screamin’ Ball (At Dracula Hall) – The Duponts – Roulette 1958
11. Bo Meets The Monster – Bo Diddley – Checker 1958
12. Legend Of Sleepy Hollow – The Monotones – Argo 1958
13. GREAT 78 – Witchcraft – The Spiders – Imperial 1955
14. Nightmare – Big Mama Thornton – Peacock 1953
15. Sinner’s Dream – Eugene Fox – Checker 1954
16. Cadillac Funeral – Peppermint Harris – Cash 1955
17. Alligator Wine – Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – Okeh 1958
18. Halloween Spooks – Lambert, Hendricks & Ross – Columbia 1962
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #232

Air Week: October 13-19, 2014

Ray CharlesRay Charles, Part 4: 1957-58

This week, the “Juke In The Back” presents the final part of a 4 part feature on the early musical career of the great, Ray Charles, which will cover 1948-58. In part 4, we’ll dig on the A and B sides of every Ray Charles single release on Atlantic Records from the summer of ’57 through the very end of ’58. This period is truly the cradle of Soul Music, as Ray continues to mesh church-like feeling with secular subject matter. His use of The Raylettes grows and he even gives Mary Ann Fisher (who was not a Raylette) a solo vocal on “What Kind Of Man Are You.” We’ll spin the hits, “Swannee River Rock (Talkin’ ‘Bout That River),” “Rockhouse, Pt. 2″ and “(Night Time Is) The Right Time” as well as many should have been hits. Some of Ray Charles’ greatest live recordings from this period will also be highlighted to showcase Ray’s live performances as the road was just as important as the studio during this point in his career. We’ll also hear a few outtakes from the recording session that yielded “The Right Time.” Matt The Cat digs the end of Ray’s first ten years in music as “Juke In The Back”‘s in-depth look at the early work of Ray Charles comes to a close.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Swanee River Rock – Ray Charles w/ Chorus & Orch – Atlantic 1957
3. I Want A Little Girl – Ray Charles w/ Chorus & Orch– Atlantic 1957
4. Talkin’ ‘Bout You – Ray Charles w/ Orch & Chorus– Atlantic 1958
5. What Kind Of Man Are You – Ray Charles w/ Orch & Chorus– Atlantic 1958
6. Yes Indeed – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1958
7. I Had A Dream – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1958
8. You Be My Baby – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1958
9. Rockhouse, Pt. 1 – Ray Charles w/ His Orch – Atlantic 1958
10. Rockhouse Pt. 2 – Ray Charles w/ His Orch – Atlantic 1958
11. Tell All The World About You – Ray Charles w/ The Raylettes – Atlantic 1958
12. The Right Time (Outtake and single edit) – Ray Charles w/ The Raylettes – Atlantic 1958
13. GREAT 78 – My Bonnie – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1958
14. A Fool For You (Live At Newport, 1958) – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1958
15. I’ve Got A Woman (Live At Newport, 1958) – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1958
16. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

 

Episode #231

Air Week: October 6-12, 2014

Ray CharlesRay Charles, Pt. 3: 1954-57

This week, the “Juke In The Back” presents part 3 of a 4 part feature on the early musical career of the great, Ray Charles, which will cover 1948-58. In part 3, we look at every one of Ray’s Atlantic single releases from December, 1954 to June, 1957. After a long stint in New Orleans, playing with Guitar Slim’s band and arranging the session that yielded the #1 smash, “The Things That I Used To Do,” Ray has his own #1 hit with “I’ve Got A Woman,” the song that introduced the world to the new genre of Soul Music. By 1955, the Ray Charles “sound” was finally solidified. He would score 3 #1 R&B hits in the span of just one year. Some of Ray’s most important records were recorded during this period, like the Gospel-tinged “It’s All Right” and “Hallelujah I Love Her So” as well as the blues classic, “Blackjack.” The addition of The Cookies, singing a churchy backup on “Drown In My Own Tears” and “Lonely Avenue” only serve to expand Ray’s sound. Next week’s show will highlight Ray Charles’ live recordings and single releases through 1957 and ’58.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. I’ve Got A Woman – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1954
3. Come Back Baby – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1954
4. A Fool For You – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1955
5. This Little Girl Of Mine – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1955
6. Blackjack – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1955
7. Greenbacks – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1955
8. Mary Ann – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1956
9. Drown In My Own Tears – Ray Charles & His Band – Atlantic 1956
10. Hallelujah I Love Her So – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1956
11. What Would I Do Without You – Ray Charles – Atlantic 1956
12. Lonely Avenue – Ray Charles His Orch & Chorus– Atlantic 1956
13. GREAT 78 – Leave My Woman Alone – Ray Charles His Orch & Chorus– Atlantic 1956
14. I Want To Know – Ray Charles His Orch & Chorus – Atlantic 1957
15. Ain’t That Love – Ray Charles His Orch & Chorus – Atlantic 1957
16. It’s All Right – Ray Charles with Chorus & Orch – Atlantic 1957
17. Get On The Right Track Baby – Ray Charles with Chorus & Orch – Atlantic 1957
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946 

Episode #230

Air Week: September 29-October 5, 2014

Ray CharlesRay Charles, Pt. 2: 1952-54

This week, the “Juke In The Back” presents part 2 of a four part feature on the early musical career of the great, Ray Charles, which will cover 1948-58. We pick Ray’s musical story up in 1952, just as Atlantic Record acquires his recording contract from Jack Lauderdale’s Swing Time Records for under $3000. Atlantic now has a very talented musician that has yet to sell enough records to be a headliner. It’s co-founder Ahmet Ertegun’s goal to help Ray Charles find his own “voice” and show the world what he has to offer. The first 2 years at Atlantic are a bit rocky, but 1954 shows promise as Ray returns to the national R&B chart after a 2 year hiatus. “It Should’ve Been Me” and “Don’t You Know” both make the R&B Top 10 and start Ray on a long road of hit records. Matt The Cat plays the A and B side of every one of Ray’s singles released from September, ’52 to August, ’54. We’ll also dig on some rehearsal tapes from early 1953, which show the early stages of Ray’s classics “Mess Around” and “It Should’ve Been Me.” Next week’s show will highlight Ray Charles’ mid-’50s output for Atlantic.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Ahmet Ertegun on Ray Charles Interview with Matt The Cat
3. The Midnight Hour – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1952
4. Roll With My Baby – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1952
5. The Sun’s Gonna Shine Again – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
6. Jumpin’ In The Mornin’ – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
7. Mess Around – Ahmet Ertegun & Ray Charles – Rehearsal Tape 1953
8. Mess Around – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
9. Funny (But I Still Love You) – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
10. Funny (But I Still Love You) – Ray Charles – Rehearsal Tape 1953
11. Feelin’ Sad – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
12. Heartbreaker – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1953
13. GREAT 78 – Sinner’s Prayer – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1954
14. It Should’ve Been Me – Ray Charles & Ahmet Ertegun – Rehearsal Tape 1953
15. It Should’ve Been Me – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1954
16. Losing Hand – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1954
17. Don’t You Know – Ray Charles & His Orch – Atlantic 1954
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #229

Air Week: September 22-28, 2014

RayCharles1Ray Charles, Pt. 1: 1948-1952

This week, the “Juke In The Back” begins a four part feature on the early musical career of the great, Ray Charles, which will cover 1948-58. Born in poverty during The Great Depression, the young Ray Charles Robinson overcame the tragedy of losing his younger brother at age 5, going completely blind at age 7 and losing his mother at age 15. These experiences forced Ray to step up his musical game, cut out on his own and make something of himself. He moved to Seattle in 1947 and began recording with Jack Lauderdale’s LA-based Down Beat Records in 1949. His first single hit #2 on the national R&B charts. By 1951, he was back on the charts with 2 more hit singles for Swing Time Records. This week, Matt The Cat takes a look at Ray’s early career BEFORE he hooked up with Ahmet Ertegun and Atlantic Records in ’52. Next week, we’ll look at Ray’s early Atlantic recordings and eventually, we’ll take Ray Charles’ story up to 1958. Some great early sides by Brotha Ray are jumpin’ out of this week’s “Juke In The Back.”
1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947

2. Confession Blues – The Maxin Trio – Down Beat 1949
3. I Love You, I Love You (I Will Not Let You Go) – The Maxin Trio – Down Beat 1949
4. Blues Before Sunrise – The Maxim Trio – Down Beat 1949
5. How Long Blues – The Maxim Trio – Down Beat 1949
6. I’ve Had My Fun – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1949
7. Th’ Ego Song – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1949
8. Late In The Evening Blues – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1949
9. I’ll Do Anything But Work – Ray Charles – Swing Time 1949
10. All To Myself – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1950
11. Baby Let Me Hold Your Hand – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1951
12. Kissa Me Baby – Ray Charles & Orch – Swing Time 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Lonely Boy – Ray Charles Trio – Swing Time 1951
14. Baby Let Me Hear You Call My Name – Ray Charles – Jax 1952
15. Walkin’ and Talkin’ – Ray Charles – Rockin’ 1952
16. Misery In My Heart – Ray Charles – Swing Time 1953
17. Ray Charles w/ Ahmet Ertegun at a 1953 Rehearsal for Atlantic Records
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #228

Air Week: September 15-21, 2014

The Penguins

The Penguins’ “Earth Angel” was the first rhythm & blues song to crossover into the pop world in such a big way that it announced the beginning of what was to be called “rock n’ roll.”

“Earth Angel” remains one of the most eduring songs in the history of recorded music and yet when it was released in late 1954, it received very little promotion from the record company. It’s a rare example of a song that became a huge hit based on its own merits. The Penguins’ lead vocalist, Cleve Duncan, who passed away on November 6, 2012 while waiting in line to vote, talks with Matt The Cat about The Penguins’ beginnings, “Earth Angel” and the 1950s music scene. Cleve Duncan tells the Penguins’ story in his own words, while Matt The Cat digs deep into the archives to pull out some surprises, like both of the Penguins’ live performances from a 1956 Alan Freed show. Grab a few nickels, as we pay tribute to one of LA’s great vocal groups while the juke jumps with the best of The Penguins.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Earth Angel – The Penguins – LIVE on Alan Freed’s Rock n’ Roll Dance Party – 1956
3. Ice – The Penguins – LIVE on Alan Freed’s Rock n’ Roll Dance Party – 1956
4. Interview With Cleve Duncan #1 – Matt The Cat
5. Hey Senorita – The Penguins – Dootone 1954 
6. Love Will Make Your Mind Go Wild – The Penguins – Dootone 1954 
7. Ookey Ook – The Penguins – Dootone 1954 
8. Interview With Cleve Duncan #2 – Matt The Cat
9. Don’t Do It – The Penguins – Mercury 
10. Be Mine Or Be A Fool – The Penguins – Mercury 1955 
11. Promises, Promises, Promises – The Penguins – Mercury 1955
12. Interview With Cleve Duncan #3 – Matt The Cat
13. Pledge Of Love – The Penguins – Atlantic 1957 
14. GREAT 78 – Dealer Of Dreams – The Penguins – Wing 1956 
15. Let Me Make Up Your Mind – The Penguins – Dooto 1958
16. Interview With Cleve Duncan #4 – Matt The Cat
17. Memories Of El Monte – The Penguins – Original Sound 1963 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #227

Air Week: September 8-14, 2014

Little Esther

Esther Mae Jones is one of the First Ladies of R&B, yet her 1950s output under the name Little Esther is sadly overlooked. Little Esther was discovered by bandleader Johnny Otis in 1949, when she was only 14 years old. Otis immediately added her to his musical ensemble. He had scored a few hits before, but nothing could have prepared Otis for his HUGE 1950 breakthrough record, “Double Crossing Blues,” featuring Little Esther and The Robins. Otis and his group dominated the R&B lists in 1950, scoring three #1 hit records and six R&B top tens, all featuring Little Esther. This week, Matt The Cat examines Little Esther’s records with Otis as well as her duets with The Dominoes, Bobby Nunn, Little Willie Littlefield and her many solo sides for the Federal and Savoy labels. Esther Jones would gain much recognition as Esther Phillips in the 1960s and ’70s, but as a teen in the 1950s, Little Esther laid the groundwork for musical genius. The spotlight shines bright on Little Esther, this week on the “Juke In The Back.” This is the “soul that came BEFORE rock n’ roll.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Mean Ole Gal – Little Esther with Johnny Otis & His Orch – Modern 1950
3. Double Crossing Blues – Johnny Otis Quintette – Savoy 1950
4. Misery – Little Esther w/ The Johnny Otis Orch. – Savoy 1950 
5. Mistrustin’ Blues – Little Esther and Mel Walker w/ The Johnny Otis Orch. – Savoy 1950 
6. Cupid’s Boogie – Little Esther and Mel Walker w/ The Johnny Otis Orch. – Savoy 1950 
7. Deceivin’ Blues – Little Esther and Mel Walker w/ The Johnny Otis Orch. – Savoy 1950
8. Wedding Boogie – Johnny Otis Congregation – Savoy 1950 
9. The Deacon Moves In – Little Esther w/ Earle Warren Orch. – Federal 1951
10. I’m A Bad, Bad Girl – Little Esther w/ Earle Warren Orch. – Federal 1951
11. Heart To Heart – Little Esther & The Dominoes w/ Earle Warren Orch. – Federal 1951
12. Ring-A-Ding Doo – Little Esther w/ The J. & O. Orch. – Federal 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Aged & Mellow Blues – Little Esther – Federal 1952
14. Saturday Night Daddy – Little Esther & Bobby Nunn – Federal 1952
15. Turn The Lamps Down Low – Little Esther & Little Willie Littlefield – Federal 1953
16. Cherry Wine – Little Esther – Federal 1953 
17. You Can Bet Your Life – Little Esther – Savoy 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #226

Air Week: September 1-7, 2014

Rare 78rpm ShellacBack Of The Box: Rare 78rpm Shellac

This week, Matt The Cat digs deep inside the back of the “Juke In The Back” to dust off some 78rpm shellac plattahs that never get played. It’s a great opportunity to hear rare records by Edith Mackey, Dillard Croon Jr. & The Croon Brothers and Little Mr. Midnight. We’ll also load the juke with Albert Collins’ first single for the Kangaroo Label as well as Sollie McElroy’s first record after leaving The Flamingos. Have you ever heard of Gladys De Vore & The Flips? Dig on their 1956 single for Sapphire Records. We’ll also throw in a Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris side just for good measure. So get ready to jump, jive and wail to some seldom heard gems on this week’s “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Have You Seen My Baby – Choker Campbell & His Band – Atlantic 1954
3. She Walked Right In – Morris Pejoe & His Band – Atomic-H 1959
4. Skillet’s Gonna Fry – Edith Mackey – Vee-Jay 1956
5. Come Back To Me – The Teardrops – Sampson 1953
6. Drinkin’ By Myself – Wynonie (Mr. Blues) Harris – Bullet 1946
7. Poppa Stoppa – Thelma Baxter & The Durham Brothers – Cosmopolitan 1954 (?)
8. Ebony Chant – Danny Overbea w/ King Kolax & His Orch. – Checker 1953
9. Straighten Up Baby – Willard Harris & The Czars of Rhythm – Ekko 1956
10. Let’s Get Together And Make Some Love – Jimmy Lewis & His Band – Atlantic 1951
11. Collins Shuffle – Albert Collins & His Rhythm Rockets – Kangaroo 1958
12. Yes Ma’am – Gladys De Vore & The Flips – Sapphire 1956
13. GREAT 78 – I Ain’t Guilty – The Crawford Brothers – Aladdin 1957
14. Big Foot Mae – Hal Paige – Atlantic 1953
15. Dearest Darling – The Chimes – Royal Roost 1953
16. Pardon My Tears – The Moroccos – United 1955
17. It’s You I Love – Dillard Croon Jr & The Croon Brothers – Vee-Jay 1958
18. Four O’Clock Blues – Little Mr. Midnight – Regal 1950
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #225

Air Week: August 25-31, 2014

Lloyd PriceLloyd Price: 1952-53

The legendary Lloyd Price joins Matt The Cat on the “Juke In The Back” this week to discuss his early career on Specialty Records and the recording of “Lawdy Miss Clawdy.” Lloyd paints a picture of New Orleans during the early 1950s that you won’t hear anywhere else. Mr. Price also gives us the “story behind the story” on how he wrote “Just Because” and how his cousin Larry Williams tried to take it away from him. His greatest records from 1952-53 are also featured on this very special edition of the “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. She’s My Baby – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950
3. That’s How You Got Killed Before – Dave Bartholomew – Imperial 1950
4. Lloyd Price Interview 1 – Lloyd Price & Matt The Cat
5. Lawdy Miss Clawdy – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1952
6. Mailman Blues – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1952
7. Lloyd Price Interview 2 – Lloyd Price & Matt The Cat
8. Ooh, Ooh, Ooh – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1952
9. Restless Heart – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1952
10. Ain’t It A Shame? – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953
11. Tell Me Pretty Baby – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953
12. Great 78 – Where You At? – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953
13. What’s The Matter Now? – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953
14. Lloyd Price Interview 3 – Lloyd Price & Matt The Cat
15. So Long – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953
16. Lloyd Price Interview 4 – Lloyd Price & Matt The Cat
17. Just Because – Lloyd Price – KRC 1956 & ABC/Paramount 1957
18. I Didn’t Want To Do It – The Spiders – Imperial 1954
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #224

Air Week: August 18-24, 2014

Howlin' WolfHowlin’ Wolf: The Early Years

This week, the “Juke In The Back” focuses on the great Howlin’ Wolf’s earliest recordings.  Before he became a huge star on Chess Records in Chicago, Wolf was a local celebrity in Memphis, recording with Sam Phillips (before Phillips started Sun Records).  Matt The Cat spins Wolf’s demo acetates and his 1951 recordings, some of which Phillips sold to RPM Records in LA and others he sold to Chess in Chicago.  Howlin’ Wolf was a mammoth man in both voice and stature and you’ll hear how it all began on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Pachuko Hop – Chuck Higgins & His Mellotones – Combo 1952
3. New Orleans Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Exclusive 1947
4. Cherry Red – Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson & His Orch – Mercury 1946
5. Howlin’ Wolf Talks, No. 1 – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess Box 1991
6. Baby Ride With Me (Ridin’ In The Moonlight) (Demo Acetate) – Howlin’ Wolf – 1951
7. Riding In The Moonlight – Howlin’ Wolf – RPM 1951
8. How Many More Years (Demo Acetate) – Howlin’ Wolf – 1951
9. How Many More Years – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1951
10. Moanin’ At Midnight – Howlin’ Wolf – RPM 1951
11. Moanin’ At Midnight – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1951
12. GREAT 78 – Mr. Highway Man – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1952
13. Passing By Blues – Howlin’ Wolf – RPM 1951

14. Crying At Daybreak – Howlin’ Wolf – RPM 1951
15. Wolf Is At Your Door – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1952
16. Howlin’ Wolf Boogie – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1952
17. Why – Shirley Gunter & The Queens – Flair 1955
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #223

Air Week: August 11-17, 2014

The Excello Records StoryThe Excello Records Story

Drop a nickel in the ol’ Rockola Juke as Matt The Cat dedicates the entire hour to the great little Nashville R&B label, Excello Records. Ernie Young started Excello as a sister label to his Nashboro Label and both labels were housed in his Ernie’s Record Mart building in Nashville. For a city mostly known for Country Music, Nashville sure had a lot of great R&B acts and we’re going to hear some of ’em this week. From The Marigolds to Arthur Gunter to Slim Harpo, Excello’s fantastic R&B catalog is in the spotlight on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Step By Step – The Boyer Brothers – Excello 1952

3. Wail Daddy – The Charlie Dowell Orch. With Willie Lee Patton – Excello 1953
4. Down South In Birmingham – Del Thorne & Her Trio – Excello 1953
5. Skip’s Boogie – Kid King’s Combo – Excello 1953
6. Banana Split – Kid King’s Combo – Excello 1953
7. Drive Soldier Drive – “Little Maxie” Bailey – Excello 1953
8. I’m Your Country Man – Shy Guy Douglas – Excello 1953
9. Drivin’ Down The Highway – The Blue Flamers – Excello 1954
10. Baby Let’s Play House – Arthur Gunter – Excello 1954
11. It’s Love Baby (24 Hours A Day) – Earl Gaines With Louis Brooks & His Hi-Toppers – Excello 1955
12. Rollin’ Stone – The Marigolds – Excello 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Congo Mambo – Guitar Gable – Excello 1956
14. Calling All Cows – The Blues Rockers – Excello 1956
15. My Mumblin’ Baby – Rudy Green – Excello 1956
16. Pleadin’ For Love – Larry Birdsong – Excello 1956
17. Chicken Hearted Woman – Clarence Samuels – Excello 1956
18. Little Darlin’ – The Gladiolas – Excello 1957
19. I’m A King Bee – Slim Harpo – Excello 1957
20. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #222

Air Week: August 4-10, 2014

FlamingosThe Flamingos, Pt. 3 – 1957-59

Terry Johnson of The Flamingos joins Matt The Cat this week as the “Juke In The Back” jumps and grooves with part three of our three part feature on The Flamingos, one of the most influential and best remembered vocal groups of the 1950s. In part three, we’ll dig on both sides of all The Flamingos single releases for the Decca and End labels covering 1957-59. With the additions of guitarist, arranger and vocalist Terry Johnson and vocalist Tommy Hunt in 1957, The Flamingos’ music takes on a heavy pop influence. Decca doesn’t provide much promotion, so their 3 original Decca releases flop. Once on George Goldner’s End Label, their fortunes turn as “Lovers Never Say Goodbye” hit the chart at the beginning of 1959. They quickly follow it up with the smash standard, “I Only Have Eyes For You,” which crosses over to the Pop Chart. Terry Johnson tells Matt The Cat the story behind those hits as well as how he came to join the group. He’s still performing as The Flamingos today. Don’t miss the final chapter of The Flamingos on this week’s “Juke In The Back.” 

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Interview with Terry Johnson on “The Ladder Of Love”

3. The Ladder Of Love – The Flamingos – Decca 1957
4. Let’s Make Up – The Flamingos – Decca 1957
5. Helpless – The Flamingos – Decca 1957
6. My Faith In You – The Flamingos – Decca 1957
7. Where Mary Go – The Flamingos – Decca 1958
8. The Rock and Roll March – The Flamingos – Decca 1958
9. Interview with Terry Johnson on “Lovers Never Say Goodbye”
10. Lovers Never Say Goodbye – The Flamingos – End 1958
11. That Love Is You – The Flamingos – End 1958
12. But Not For Me – The Flamingos – End 1959
13. I Shed A Tear At Your Wedding – The Flamingos – End 1959
14. GREAT 78 – At The Prom – The Flamingos – End 1959
15. Love Walked In – The Flamingos – End 1959
16. Interview with Terry Johnson on “I Only Have Eyes For You”
17. I Only Have Eyes For You – The Flamingos  – End 1959
18. Goodnight Sweetheart – The Flamingos – End 1959
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #221

Air Week: July 28-August 3, 2014

FlamingosThe Flamingos, Pt. 2 – 1954-56

The “Juke In The Back” jumps and grooves this week as Matt The Cat presents part 2 of a three part feature on The Flamingos, one of the most influential and best remembered vocal groups of the 1950s. In part two, we’ll dig on both sides of all The Flamingos single releases for the Parrot and Checker labels from the end of ’54 to the end of ’56. During this time, the group’s lead tenor Sollie McElroy resigned, but they gained a fantastic lead voice in Nate Nelson. In ’56, while recording for Chess’ Checker subsidiary, The Flamingos scored their first two national R&B hits when “I’ll Be Home” hit number 5 and “A Kiss From Your Lips” topped out at number 12. By the end of ’56, members Zeke Carey and Johnny Carter were drafted and this marked another period of great change for the group. Part 3 will focus on 1957-59 with guitarist and former Whispers’ vocalist Terry Johnson joining the group. Matt The Cat will highlight an interview with Johnson for a first hand account of what went on in one of the greatest vocal groups of all time. Grab some nickels and dig on the fantabulous Flamingos, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. On My Merry Way – The Flamingos – Parrot 1954

3. I Really Don’t Want To Know – The Flamingos – Parrot 1954
4. Get With It – The Flamingos – Parrot 1954
5. I’m Yours – The Flamingos – Parrot 1955
6. Ko Ko Mo – The Flamingos – Parrot 1955
7. When – The Flamingos – Checker 1955
8. (Chick A Boom) That’s My Baby – The Flamingos – Checker 1955
9. Please Come Back Home – The Flamingos – Checker 1955                                              
10. I Want To Love You – The Flamingos – Checker 1955
11. I’ll Be Home – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
12. Need Your Love – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
13. GREAT 78 – Just For A Kick – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
14. A Kiss From Your Lips – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
15. The Vow – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
16. Shilly Dilly – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
17. Would I Be Crying – The Flamingos – Checker 1956
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #220

Air Week: July 21-27, 2014

The FlamingosThe Flamingos, Pt. 1 – 1953-54

The “Juke In The Back” jumps and grooves this week as Matt The Cat begins a 3 part feature on The Flamingos, one of the most influential and best remembered vocal groups of the 1950s. In part one, we’ll dig on both sides of all six single releases that the Flamingos had on Chance Records in 1953-54. These are The Flamingos very first recordings and most of them feature the amazing Sollie McElroy on lead tenor. The Flamingos would become known as one of the greatest and smoothest sounding R&B vocal groups of the 1950s and would achieve cross-over success by the end of the decade. In part 2, we’ll focus on their mid-career with their Parrot and Checker singles and then in part 3, their Decca and End recordings will be spotlighted. Dig The Flamingos on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. How Can You Leave A Man Like This – Lavern Baker – Atlantic 1953
3. Tryin’ To Get To You – The Eagles – Mercury 1954
4. Someday, Someway – Flamingos – Chance 1953
5. If I Can’t Have You – Flamingos – Chance 1953
6. That’s My Desire – Flamingos – Chance 1953
7. Hurry Home Baby – Flamingos – Chance 1953
8. Golden Teardrops – Flamingos – Chance 1953
9. Carried Away – Flamingos – Chance 1953
10. Plan For Love – Flamingos – Chance 1953
11. You Ain’t Ready – Flamingos – Chance 1953
12. Cross Over The Bridge – Flamingos – Chance 1954
13. GREAT 78 – September Song – Flamingos – Chance UNRELEASED
14. Listen To My Plea – Flamingos – Chance 1954
15. Blues In A Letter – Flamingos – Chance 1954
16. Jump Children – Flamingos – Chance 1954
17. Dream Of A Lifetime – Flamingos – Parrot 1954
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #219

Air Week: July 14-20, 2014

Motown Artists Before Motown (The Miracles)Motown Artists Before Motown

The entire “Juke In The Back” this week features Motown’s biggest acts, BEFORE there even was a Motown Records and before those acts were household names. Matt The Cat spins the earliest records by The Miracles (1958), The Four Tops (1956), The Supremes (as The Primettes) and many more. Marvin Gaye’s first recordings with The Marquees are discussed with fellow group member, Reese Palmer. You’ll get the real story behind the story as to how DC’s Marquees became the “new” Moonglows as well as hear the original Bo Diddley produced version of the Marquees’ “Wyatt Earp,” which Okeh Records wouldn’t release. All this and more on this week’s, “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Whistle My Love – The Pips – Brunswick 1958

3. Every Beat Of My Heart – The Pips – Huntom 1961 & Vee-Jay 1961
4. Could It Be You? – Four Tops – Chess 1956
5. Woke Up This Morning – Four Tops – Chess 1956 – PREV UNRELEASED
6. Got A Job – The Miracles – End 1958
7. Money – The Miracles – End 1958
8. Tears Of Sorrow – The Primettes (The Supremes) – Lu Pine 1960
9. I’ll Let You Know – Del-Phis (Martha & The Vandellas)– Checkmate 1961
10. You – Eddie Holland – Mercury 1958
11. Moments To Remember You By – The Romeos (Lamont Dozier) – Fox 1957, Atco 1958
12. Shock – Briant Holland (Brian Holland) – Kudo 1958
13. Roll On – Futuretones (Edwin Starr) – Tress 1957
14. GREAT 78: Come On – The Distants (Temptations) – Northern 1960 & Warwick 1960
15. I know – Futuretones (Edwin Starr) – Tress 1957
16. Wyatt Earp – The Marquees (Marvin Gaye) – Okeh 1958
17. Mama Loochie – Harvey & The Moonglows (Marvin Gaye) – Chess 1959
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #218

Air Week: July 7-13, 2014

Marvin Phillips

Marvin Phillips is important to post WWII rhythm & blues, because he, along with Jesse Belvin helped to popularize the R&B duo. Jesse and Marvin scored an enormous hit in 1952 with the ballad, “Dream Girl,” thus paving the way for future R&B duos like Shirley & Lee, Gene & Eunice, Robert & Johnny, Don & Dewey and Marvin’s own, Marvin & Johnny. This week’s “Juke In The Back” takes a look at Marvin Phillips’ impressive career, from his first record in 1950, singing lead with Richard Lewis & The Barons to Marvin & Johnny’s short stint on Aladdin Records in 1957. Along the way, Jesse Belvin weaves in and out of Marvin’s singing career and a diverse array of records are recorded. Matt The Cat spotlights this oft unsung hero of Los Angeles R&B, Marvin Phillips, on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Forever – Richard Lewis & The Barons – Modern 1950 
3. Tall, Brown Woman – Big Jay McNeely w/ 3 Dots & A Dash – Imperial 1951
4. Wine Woogie – Marvin Phillips & The Men From Mars – Specialty 1952
5. Dream Girl – Jesse & Marvin – Specialty 1952 
6. Baby Doll – Marvin & Johnny & The Marsmen – Specialty 1953 
7. Salty Dog – Marvin Phillips – Swing Time 1953 
8. Anna Marie – Marvin Phillips – Swing Time 1954 
9. How Long She Been Gone – Marvin & Johnny & The Marsmen – Specialty 1954 
10. Cherry Pie – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1954
11. Tick Tock – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1954 
12. Kiss Me – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1954 
13. GREAT 78 – Ain’t That Right – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1955
14. Ko Ko Mo – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1955 
15. Will You Love Me – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1955
16. Have Mercy Miss Percy – Long Tall Marvin – Modern 1956
17. Yak Yak – Marvin & Johnny – Aladdin 1957
18. Sweet Dreams – Marvin & Johnny – Modern 1955
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #217

Air Week: June 30-July 6, 2014

4th Of July R&B Picnic4th Of July: R&B Songs About Food

What’s more American than celebrating America’s birthday with some good ol’ red, white and Rhythm & Blues about THE Fourth of July staple: food? Dig in on an hour of classic R&B about hot dogs, cole slaw, potato salad, ribs and ice cream sung by the heroes of the “soul that came before rock n’ roll” on the Juke In The Back.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rib Joint – Sam Price & His Texas Bluesicians – Savoy 1956 
3. House Of Blue Lights – Ella Mae Morse With Don Raye – Capitol 1946
4. Smoky Joe’s Caf – The Robins – Spark 1955
5. Chicken Shack – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1956
6. Everybody Eats When They Come To My House – Cab Calloway – Columbia 1947
7. Pass The Biscuits Please – Andre Williams – Fortune 1957
8. Beans & Cornbread – Louis Jordan – Decca 1949 
9. Corn Bread – Hal Singer Sextette – Savoy 1948 
10. Hot Dog – Chris Powell & The Five Blue Flames – Okeh 1949
11. Dumplin’s – Doc Bagby – Okeh 1957
12. Monkey Hips & Rice – The “5” Royales – King 1954
13. GREAT 78  – Cole Slaw – Frank Culley – Atlantic 1949
14. Pork Chops & Mustard Greens – Ernie Andrews With Maxwell Davis Orch – Imperial 1951
15. Cabbage Greens #2 – Champion Jack Dupree – Okeh 1940
16. The Frim Fram Sauce – King Cole Trio – Capitol 1945 
17. Solid Potato Salad – Ella Mae Morse – Capitol 1943 (Prev. Unreleased)
18. Ice Cream Man – John Brim – Chess 1953 
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #216

Air Week: June 23-29, 2014

Memphis SlimMemphis Slim

Memphis Slim dubbed himself the “Ambassador Of The Blues” and for good reason. He spread the gospel of America’s music around the world during his almost 50 year career. This week, Matt The Cat and the “Juke In The Back” take a look at Slim’s prodigious contribution to the genre. He began recording as Pete Chatman (his real name is John Chatman) in 1940 and by the end of the year was already known as Memphis Slim, a name given to him by a producer at Bluebird Records. His prolific career really took off after WWII, when he cut some incredible sides for Miracle Records, a little Chicago independent label. He scored a #1 R&B hit in 1948 with “Messin’ Around,” which is seldom heard or celebrated today. He would enter the R&B lists four more times during the late 1940s and twice in the early ’50s for the Premium and United Labels. Even though the US Senate honored Memphis Slim in the early ’70s with an “Ambassador of Good Will” title, he is hardly recognized today for his important contribution to Blues, Rhythm & Blues and early Rock n’ Roll. Get the story behind the story of Memphis Slim on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Diggin’ My Potatoes No. 2 – Peter Chatman & His Washboard Band – Okeh 1940
3. Beer Drinking Woman – Memphis Slim – Bluebird 1940
4. Rockin’ The House – Memphis Slim – Miracle 1947
5. Messin’ Around – Memphis Slim & His House Rockers – Miracle 1948
6. Frisco Bay – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1949
7. Blue And Lonesome – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1949
8. Help Me Some – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1949
9. Nobody Loves Me – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1949
10. Angel Child – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1949
11. Really Got The Blues – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers– Premium 1950
12. Havin’ Fun – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Premium 1950
13. GREAT 78 – Kilroy Has Been Here – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Miracle 1947
14. No Mail Blues – Memphis Slim & His Orch. – Mercury 1951
15. Mother Earth – Memphis Slim & The House Rockers – Premium 1951
16. The Come Back – Memphis Slim & His House Rockers – United 1953
17. Sassy Mae – Memphis Slim & His House Rockers – United 1954 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #215

Air Week: June 16-22, 2014

The Cardinals

The Cardinals only scored 3 R&B hits, but all 3 made the top ten and are considered classics today. The group formed in Baltimore in late 1946 and came to the attention of Ahmet Ertegun and Herb Abramson, co-founders of Atlantic Records in very early 1951. They were signed immediately and soon Atlantic sent their house arranger, Jesse Stone, down to Baltimore to work with the group and prep them for their first recording session, which was held in March, 1951. The Cardinals, who were known as the Mellotones at that time, were used to singing pop songs. Jesse Stone had to give them that R&B sound. Their first release, “Shouldn’t I Know,” climbed the R&B charts and put The Cardinals on the map. Their version of “The Wheel Of Fortune” in 1952 is considered the definitive R&B version of that song today as is their 1955 rendition of the Chuck Willis penned tune, “The Door Is Still Open.” Lead tenor Ernie Warren has one of the most beautiful and distinguishable voices in all of early R&B and Matt The Cat brings The Cardinals’ music and legacy to life on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. For Awhile – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1953 (Prev. Unreleased)
3. Shouldn’t I Know – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1951
4. Pretty Baby Blues – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1952 
5. I’ll Always Love You – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1952
6. Wheel Of Fortune – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1952 
7. She Rocks – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1952 
8. Lovie Darling – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1953 
9. You Are My Only Love – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1953 
10. Under A Blanket Of Blue – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1954
11. Misirlou – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1955
12. The Door Is Still Open – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1955 
13. GREAT 78 – Kiss Me Baby – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1952 
14. Come Back My Love – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1955
15. Lovely Girl – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1955 
16. Choo Choo – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1956 
17. The End Of The Story – The Cardinals – Atlantic 1956 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #214

Air Week: June 9-15, 2014

Rosco GordonRosco(e) Gordon

This week, the “Juke In The Back” spotlights the “Prince of Primitive Cool,” Rosco Gordon. His mostly self-penned tunes, feature his unique blend of mid-tempo shuffle with a slightly behind-the-beat rolling barrelhouse piano line. He was a master at making his recordings sound rough, but there was also a lot of blues sophistication buried under the simplicity. In his early recording days at RPM Records, his name was spelled Roscoe. He would later revert back to its original spelling of Rosco. His 2nd RPM release hit the national R&B top ten in 1951, but it was 1952’s “Booted” and “No More Doggin'” that put Gordon at the forefront of Rhythm & Blues popularity. His biggest hit came in 1959 with “Just A Little Bit” on Vee-Jay. It hit #2 on the R&B lists and crossed over to #64 on the Pop Chart. More people bought this record than of his others. Rosco Gordon is often overlooked, but this week Matt The Cat sets the record straight. He was an innovator, influencing the Jamaican Ska movement of the early ’60s, a hit maker and a unique and talented bluesman. Gordon’s records spin on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Roscoe’s Boogie – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1951
3. Saddled The Cow (And Milked The Horse) – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1951
4. Booted – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1952
5. Cold Cold Winter – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1952
6. No More Doggin’ – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1952
7. Maria – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1952
8. Lucille (Looking For My Baby) – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1953
9. Hey Fat Girl – Rosco Gordon – Duke 1953
10. T Model Boogie – Rosco Gordon – Duke 1953
11. You Figure It Out – Rosco Gordon – Duke 1954
12. Just Love Me Baby – Rosco Gordon – Sun 1955
13. GREAT 78 – Ouch! Pretty Baby – Roscoe Gordon & His Orch – RPM 1951
14. Cheese And Crackers – Rosco Gordon – Sun 1956
15. Tummer Tee – Rosco Gordon w/ Joe Scott Orch – Duke 1957
16. Going Home – Rosco Gordon – Vee-Jay 1959
17. Just A Little Bit – Rosco Gordon – Vee-Jay 1959
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #213

Air Week: June 2-8, 2014

Ike Turner

One of Rhythm & Blues’ greatest innovators was also one of its most notorious personalities. Ike Turner was born in the same place that the blues was born, in the heart of the Mississippi Delta in Clarksdale in 1931. He learned boogie woogie piano was the legendary Pinetop Perkins and soon taught himself how to play guitar. His band, The Kings Of Rhythm, recorded what some would come to name as the “first Rock n’ Roll Record” with “Rocket 88″ in 1951. The Chess label called them “Jackie Brenston & His Delta Cats,” but it didn’t matter, Ike Turner’s stamp is all over that groundbreaking record, which was based on Jimmy Liggins’ 1948 R&B classic, “Cadillac Boogie.” From there, Turner became a talent scout for both Sam Phillips at Sun Records and The Bihari Brothers at RPM Records. He played behind Howlin’ Wolf, Little Milton, Elmore James, Otis Rush and many others while also releasing his own important sides. Matt The Cat sorts through the many record labels and incarnations of The Kings Of Rhythm on this week’s “Juke In The Back,” as we honor one of music’s most tragic, but important figures, the legendary Ike Turner.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Rocket 88 – Jackie Brenston & His Delta Cats – Chess 1951
3. Real Gone Rocket – Jackie Brenston & His Delta Cats – Chess 1951 
4. You Know I Love You – B.B. King – RPM 1952 
5. How Many More Years – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess 1951 
6. Sho’ Nuff I Do – Elmore James – Flair 1954
7. I Miss You So – Dennis Binder & His Orch – Modern 1954 
8. Hoo-Doo Say – The Sly Fox – Spark 1954 
9. Peg Leg Woman – Willie King With The Ike Turner Band – Vita 1956 
10. I’m Tore Up – Billy Gayles With Ike Turner’s Rhythm Rockers – Federal 1956
11. I’m On Your Trail – Ike Turner – Royal American 1965 – Recorded 1958 
12. BoxTop – Ike Turner, Carlson Oliver & Little Ann – Tune Town 1958
13. GREAT 78 – Ho-Ho – Icky Renrut – Stevens 1959 
14. Matchbox – Ike Turner’s Kings Of Rhythm – Cobra 1959 (Unreleased at the time) 
15. Double Trouble – Otis Rush & His Band – Cobra 1958
16. Hey-Hey – Icky Renrut – Stevens 1959
17. Fool In Love – Ike & Tina Turner – Sue 1960 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #212

Air Week: May 26 – June 1, 2014


Johnny AceJohnny Ace

He is often called the “first casualty of rock n’ roll,” since his life was brought to a controversial end just as rock n’ roll was picking up steam in the mainstream, but Johnny Ace’s demise does not overshadow his impressive, yet short career. This week’s “Juke In The Back” highlights Ace’s early session with rising star, B.B. King, as well as a his rare first solo record, cut for the Bihari Brothers in 1951, but not released by them until 1953. Ace tasted success early, as his first single for the fledgling Duke Records soared to the top of the R&B charts. He would have 2 more #1 smashes, including “Pledging My Love,” which was released posthumously and hit an impressive #17 on the pop lists. Yes, Johnny Ace died young and became immortal in verse and tribute and Matt The Cat shows you why he was much revered on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. 3 O’Clock Blues – B. B. King – RPM 1951 
3. Midnight Hours Journey – Johnny Ace – Flair 1953 – Recorded 1951 
4. My Song – Johnny Ace w/ The Beale Streeters – Duke 1952 
5. Angel – Johnny Ace w/ The Beale Streeters – Duke 1953 – wr by Mattis & Ace
6. Cross My Heart – Johnny Ace w/ The Beale Streeters – Duke 1953 – #3, Ace on organ
7. Ace’s Wild – Johnny Ace w/ The Beale Streeters – Duke 1953 – inst w/ Ace on piano
8. The Clock – Johnny Ace w/ The Beale Streeters – Duke 1953 
9. Saving My Love For You – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1953
10. Yes Baby – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1953
11. Please Forgive Me – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1954 
12. Never Let Me Go – Johnny Ace /w Johnny Board & His Orch – Duke 1954 
13. GREAT 78 – How Can You Be So Mean – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Board & His Orch – Duke 1955
14. Pledging My Love – Johnny Ace w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1955
15. Anymore – Johnny Otis w/ Johnny Otis Orch – Duke 1955 
16. No Money – Johnny Otis w/ Johnny Board & His Orch – Duke 1955
17. Johnny Has Gone – Varetta Dillard – Savoy 1955 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #211

Air Week: May 19-25, 2014

1952: Jukebox Rhythm Review Pt. 2

This week, the jukebox is in the spotlight as Matt The Cat takes you back 60 years and highlights the top jukebox hits of the second half of 1952. You’ll hear a lot more than just the big #1 R&B hits this week as we dig deep into the jukebox lists to feature seldom heard tunes by Illinois Jacquet, Varetta Dillard and Sonny Thompson with Lula Reed. These are the top requested records that were spinning on the jukebox in the back of the establishment. It’s part 2 of 2 on the 1952 Rhythm Review on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Easy, Easy Baby – Varetta Dillard – Savoy 1952
3. Lawdy Miss Clawdy – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1952
4. I’ll Drown In My Own Tears – Sonny Thompson – King 1952
5. Call Operator 210 – Floyd Dixon – Aladdin 1952
6. Mary Jo – The Four Blazes – United 1952
7. Ting-A-Ling – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
8. My Song – Johnny Ace With The Beale Streeters – Duke 1952
9. Juke – Little Walter & His Night Cats – Checker 1952
10. The Bells Are Ringing – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1952
11. Beside You – The Swallows – King 1952
12. Goodbye Baby – Little Caeser – Recorded In Hollywood 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Rock Me All Night Long – The Ravens – Mercury 1952
14. Five Long Years – Eddie Boyd – J.O.B. 1952
15. You Know I Love You – BB King & His Orch – RPM 1952
16. Port Of Rico – Illinois Jacquet & His Orch – Mercury 1952
17. I Don’t Know – Willie Mabon & His Combo – Chess 1952
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #210

Air Week: May 12-18, 2014

1952: Jukebox Rhythm Review Pt. 1

This week, the jukebox is in the spotlight as Matt The Cat takes you back 62 years and highlights the top jukebox hits of the first half of 1952. You’ll hear a lot more than just the big #1 R&B hits this week as we dig deep into the jukebox lists to feature seldom heard tunes by John Greer & His Rhythm Rockets, Dinah Washington and Marie Adams. These are the top requested records that were spinning on the jukebox in the back of the establishment. It’s part 1 of 2 on the 1952 Rhythm Review on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Flamingo – Earl Bostic & His Orch – King 1951
3. Cry – Johnnie Ray & The Four Lads – Okeh 1951
4. She Moves Me – Muddy Waters – Chess 1952
5. 3 O’clock Blues – BB King – RPM 1952
6. Got You On My Mind – John Greer & His Rhythm Rockets- RCA Victor 1952
7. Night Train – Jimmie Forrest – United 1952
8. Wheel Of Fortune – Dinah Washington – Mercury 1952
9. Booted – Roscoe Gordon – RPM & Chess 1952
10. Dust My Broom – Elmo James – Trumpet 1952
11. One Mint Jullep – The Clovers – Atlantic 1952
12. I’m Gonna Play The Honky Tonks – Marie Adams – Peacock 1952
13. GREAT 78 – Baby Please Don’t Go – The Orioles – Jubilee 1952
14. 5-10-15 Hours – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1952
15. Moody’s Mood For Love – King Pleasure – Prestige 1952
16. Have Mercy Baby – The Dominoes – Federal 1952
17. Goin’ Home – Fats Domino – Imperial 1952
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #208

Air Week: May 5-11, 2014

Moonglows Pt. 2The Moonglows, Pt. 2

Much has been written about the great R&B vocal groups of the 1950s. Many of the classic groups were either great musicians and vocalists and never had the recognition or record sales to back it up or these groups were thrown together, they couldn’t sing very well and scored one, solid hit that still spins in the eternal jukebox of public consciousness. The Moonglows were one of the few groups to come out of the post World War II, pre-Elvis era, who were extremely talented and had the sales figures and notoriety to back it up. Originally called The Crazy Sounds, Harvey Fuqua and Bobby Lester led The Moonglows to a #1 R&B smash in 1954 with “Sincerely” on Chess, but that was after a somewhat bumpy start on Alan Freed’s Champagne Records and Chicago’s Chance Records. This week, Matt The Cat presents part 2 of a 2 part feature on the fantastic Moonglows, covering their career from 1956 through their breakup in 1958 and the singles that followed through the end of 1961. An interview with the late Reese Palmer reveals how Harvey Fuqua came to hire his group, The Marquees as the “new” Moonglows. This week’s “Juke In The Back” shares the rest of the story on this influential and important 1950s vocal group.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. We Go Together – The Moonglows – Chess 1956

3. Chickie Um Bah – The Moonglows
4. See Saw – The Moonglows – Chess 1956 – July
5. When I’m With You – The Moonglows – Chess 1956
6. Over and Over Again (slow version) – The Moonglows – Chess 1956
7. Over and Over Again (fast version) – The Moonglows – Chess 1956
8. Please Send Me Someone To Love – The Moonglows – Chess 1957
9. Mr. Engineer (Bring Her Back To Me) – The Moonglows – Chess 1957
10. The Beating Of My Heart – The Moonglows – Chess 1957
11. Here I Am – The Moonglows – Chess 1957
12. Sweeter Than Words – The Moonglows – Chess 1958
13. GREAT 78 – I Knew From The Start – The Moonglows – Chess 1956
14. Ten Commandments Of Love – Harvey & The Moonglows – Chess 1958
15. Mean Old Blues – Harvey & The Moonglows – Chess 1958
16. Twelve Months Of The Year – Harvey & The Moonglows – Chess 1959
17. Blue Velvet – Bobby Lester & The Moonglows – Chess 1961
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #208

Air Week: April 28-May 4, 2014

MoonglowsThe Moonglows, Pt. 1

Much has been written about the great R&B vocal groups of the 1950s. Many of the classic groups were either great musicians and vocalists and never had the recognition or record sales to back it up or these groups were thrown together, they couldn’t sing very well and scored one, solid hit that still spins in the eternal jukebox of public consciousness. The Moonglows were one of the few groups to come out of the post World War II, pre-Elvis era, who were extremely talented and had the sales figures and notoriety to back it up. Originally called The Crazy Sounds, Harvey Fuqua and Bobby Lester led The Moonglows to a #1 R&B smash in 1954 with “Sincerely” on Chess, but that was after a somewhat bumpy start on Alan Freed’s Champagne Records and Chicago’s Chance Records. This week, Matt The Cat presents part 1 of a 2 part feature on the fantastic Moonglows, covering their career from 1953 to 1955. Vocal harmony doesn’t get much sweeter than this, so don’t miss one note of this week’s “Juke In The Back” radio program.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. I Just Can’t Tell No Lie – The Moonglows – Champagne 1953
3. Baby Please – The Moonglows w/ Red Holloway Orch– Chance 1953
4. Secret Love – The Moonglows w/ Red Holloway Orch – Chance 1954
5. Real Gone Mama – The Moonglows w/ Red Holloway Orch – Chance 1954
6. I Was Wrong – The Moonglows w/ Red Holloway Orch – Chance 1954

7. 219 Train – The Moonglows w/ Red Holloway Orch – Chance 1954
8. Sincerely – The Moonglows – Chess 1954
9. Tempting – The Moonglows – Chess 1954
10. Shoo Doo-Be-Doo (My Loving Baby) – Bobby Lester & The Moonlighters – Checker 1954
11. So All Alone – Bobby Lester & The Moonlighters – Checker 1954
12. Most Of All – The Moonglows – Chess 1955
13. GREAT 78 – I’ve Been Your Dog (Ever Since I’ve Been Your Man) – Moonglows – Champagne 1953
14. She’s Gone – The Moonglows – Chess 1955
15. I’m In Love – The Moonglows – Chess 1955
16. In My Diary – The Moonglows – Chess 1955
7. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #207

Air Week: April 21-27, 2014

The Robins

This week, the “Juke In The Back” features The Robins, one of the earliest and most influential West Coast R&B vocal groups. They first appeared on wax in April of 1949 as the 4 Bluebirds, backed up by bandleader extraordinaire, Johnny Otis, who had discovered the group at his Barrelhouse Nightclub during a talent competition. Otis had the Robins duet with Little Esther on the 1950 smash, “Double Crossing Blues,” which spent more than 2 months at the top of the R&B charts. Real fame came when the group hooked up with the young, talented songwriting duo of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. On their Spark Records, the Robins scored with “Riot In Cell Block #9″ and “Smokey Joe’s Caf ,” two early rock n’ roll smashes. Two members would leave The Robins and form The Coasters with Leiber and Stoller and much of their history is complicated, but host Matt The Cat gets to the bottom of it all with this “Juke In The Back” look at The Robins’ early career. This truly is the “soul that came BEFORE rock n’ roll” and you’ll only hear it on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. My Baby Done Told Me – The Four Bluebirds – Excelsior 1949
3. Around About Midnight – The Robins – Score 1949
4. If It’s So, Baby – The Robins – Savoy 1949
5. If I Didn’t Love You So – The Robins – Savoy 1949
6. Double Crossing Blues – Johnny Otis Quintet, The Robins & Little Esther  – Savoy 1950
7. Turkey Hop – The Robins – Savoy 1950
8. School Girl Blues – The Robins – Recorded In Hollywood 1950
9. That’s What The Good Book Says – Bobby Nunn With The Robins – Modern 1951
10. How Would You Know – The Robins  – RCA 1953
11. Get It Off Your Mind – The Robins – RCA 1953
12. Double Crossin’ Baby – The Robin – Crown 1954
13. GREAT 78 – Rockin’ – Bobby Nunn With The Robins – Modern 1951
14. Riot In Cell Block #9 – The Robins – Spark 1954
15. Framed – The Robins – Spark 1954
16. Smokey Joe’s Caf  – The Robins – Spark 1954
17. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #206

Roy BrownRoy Brown 

Roy Brown was one of early R&B’s undisputed blues shouters. He burst on the scene in 1947 with the original recording of “Good Rockin’ Tonight,” which would become a rock n’ roll and blues classic when covered by Wynonie Harris, Elvis Presley and countless others. He managed to chart 16 R&B hits from 1947-1957, most of them in the late ’40s and early ’50s. Many of these songs never get played on the radio anymore, but this week’s “Juke In The Back” with Matt The Cat will set the record straight as we spin every charting hit of Roy Brown’s career. We’ll dig on Brown’s jump blues, his ballads and his late career New Orleans comeback. So get down to the sound of Good Rockin’ Roy Brown on this week’s “Juke In The Back,” the “soul that came BEFORE rock n’ roll!”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Good Rocking Tonight – Roy Brown w/ Bill Ogden & His Orch– DeLuxe 1948 
3. ‘Long About Midnight – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1948 
4. Rainy Weather Blues – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
5. ‘Fore Day In The Morning – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
6. Rockin’ At Midnight – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
7. Miss Fanny Brown – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
8. Please Don’t Go (Come Back Baby) – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
9. Boogie At Midnight – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1949 
10. Hard Luck Blues – Roy Brown W/ The Griffen Brothers Orch – DeLuxe 1950 
11. Love Don’t Love Nobody – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1950 
12. Cadillac Baby – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1950 
13. GREAT 78 – Lolly Pop Mama – Roy Brown w/ Bill Ogden & His Orch – DeLuxe 1948 
14. ‘Long About Sundown – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1950 
15. Big Town – Roy Brown W/ The Griffen Brothers Orch – DeLuxe 1951 
16. Bar Room Blues – Roy Brown & His Mighty-Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1951 
17. Let The Four Winds Blow – Roy Brown – Imperial 1957 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #205

Sam CookeSam Cooke

The “Juke In The Back” features a full hour of Sam Cooke, one of the distinctive and expressive voices ever pressed in wax. Cooke’s early period singing gospel with the renowned Soul Stirrers is often cited, but hardly ever featured. Matt The Cat focuses on Sam Cooke’s early days from 1951 to 1957, begriming with his recordings with the Soul Stirrers up through his R&B and pop breakthrough of 1957. Matt is joined by author Peter Guralnick, who wrote the definitive biography on Cooke called “Dream Boogie: The Triumph Of Sam Cooke,” filling in the background on one of the 20th Century’s most revered singers. Cooke was also a noted songwriter, producer and entrepreneur, starting his own SAR Records in the late 1950s. Few African-American artists went further during the 1950s while jamming the juke boxes with tremendous gospel, R&B and pop hits. Hear the man who invented soul, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. You Send Me (Demo) – Sam Cooke – Unreleased 1957 
3. Peter Guralnick Interview 1 – Beginnings 
4. Peace In The Valley – The Soul Stirrers – Specialty 1951 
5. Peter Guralnick Interview 2 – Soul Stirrers 
6. Just Another Day – The Soul Stirrers – Specialty 1952 
7. Peter Guralnick Interview 3 – Sam’s Voice 
8. Touch The Hem Of His Garment – The Soul Stirrers – Specialty 1956 
9. Farther Along – The Soul Stirrers – Specialty 1956 
10. Peter Guralnick Interview 4 – Leaving Soul Stirrers 
11. Wonderful – The Soul Stirrers –Specialty 1956 
12. Peter Guralnick Interview 5 – Switch To Secular Music 
13. Lovable – Sam Cooke – Specialty 1957 
14. That’s Heaven To Me – The Soul Stirrers – Specialty 1957 
15. GREAT 78 – Summertime – Sam Cooke – Keen 1957 
16. I’ll Come Running Back To You – Sam Cooke – Specialty 1957 
17. Mean Old World – Sam Cooke – Specialty 1957 
18. You Were Made For Me – Sam Cooke – Keen 1958 
19. Win Your Love For Me – Sam Cooke – Keen 1958 
20. Somewhere There’s A Girl – Sam Cooke – Unreleased 1961 
21. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #204

Paul GaytenPaul Gayten

Paul Gayten is one of the unsung heroes of rhythm & blues and one of the many architects of rock n’ roll. This week, Matt The Cat spotlights Gayten’s great contributions to music on the “Juke In The Back.” Paul Gayten scored the first New Orleans’ hit of the post World War II R&B era with “True (You Don’t Love Me)” in 1947, thus kicking off a legacy of rhythm hit-making and influence from the Crescent City. His work with vocalists Annie Laurie and Chubby “Hip Shakin'” Newsome is legendary. As a songwriter, producer and talent scout for Chess Records, Gayten discovered and signed Clarence Henry and Bobby Charles and worked with Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley. Gayten made great contributions to R&B and Rock n’ Roll, but gets very little recognition these days. Matt The Cat and the “Juke In The Back” are out to change that with this week’s heartfelt dedication to the late, great Paul Gayten.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! – Paul Gayten – Regal 1951 
3. True (You Don’t Love Me) – Paul Gayten Trio – DeLuxe 1947 
4. Since I Fell For You – Annie Laurie w/ Paul Gayten & His Trio – DeLuxe 1947 
5. Hip Shakin’ Mama – Chubby “Hip Shakin’” Newsome & Her Hip Shakers– DeLuxe 1949 
6. Cuttin Out – Annie Laurie w/ The Paul Gayten Orch – Regal 1949 
7. Fishtails – Paul Gayten Orch – Regal 1949 
8. I’ll Never Be Free – Annie Laurie w/ Paul Gatyen & His Orch – Regal 1950 
9. I Ain’t Gonna Let You In Annie Laurie and The Paul Gayten Orch – Regal 1950 
10. 3×7=21 – Annie Laurie w/ Paul Gayten – Prev Unreleased Demo 
11. Cow Cow Blues – Paul Gayten – Okeh 1953 
12. You Better Believe It – Paul Gayten – Checker 1956 
13. GREAT 78 – Get It – Paul Gayten – Checker 1954 
14. The Music Goes Round and Round – Paul Gayten – Argo 1956 
15. Nervous Boogie – Paul Gayten – Argo 1957 
16. The Hunch – Paul Gayten – Anna 1959 
17. Ain’t Got No Home – Clarence Henry “Frog Man” – Argo 1956 
18. Suzette – Paul Gayten – Regal 1950 
19. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #203

New Orleans R&BNew Orleans R&B, Pt. 3

This week, it’s part 3 of “Juke In The Back”‘s 3 part series on the great, influential and infectious music that came out of New Orleans, one of America’s most fertile musical cities. In fact, the “Crescent City” is often cited as the birth place of Jazz, The Blues, R&B and Rock n’ Roll. While New Orleans certainly had its share of influential talent, from Louis Armstrong and Paul Gayten to Fats Domino and Dr. John, it’s hard to give one single region all the credit. The music that flowed from this fruitful ground is definitely something special and on part 3, Matt The Cat will look at New Orleans R&B from 1955 to 1957, highlighting records by Fats Domino, Dave Bartholomew, Eddie Bo, Huey “Piano” Smith, Smiley Lewis, Annie Laurie and many more. So get ready for some real jumpin’ musical jambalaya on your source for vintage Rhythm & Blues on the “Juke In The Back.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Those Lonely Lonely Nights – Earl King – Ace 1955 
3. Poor Me – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955 
4. Later, Alligator – Bobby Charles – Chess 1955 
5. So Glad She’s Mine – Charles “Hungry” Williams w/ Paul Gayten Orch– Checker 1956 
6. Try Rock n’ Roll – Bobby Mitchell – Imperial 1956 
7. Long Tall Sally – Little Richard – Specialty 1956 
8. Little Liza Jane – Huey Smith & His Rhythm Aces – Ace 1956 
9. Cotton Picking Hands – The Dukes – Imperial 1956 
10. Rockin’ At Cosimo’s – Lee Allen & Band – Aladdin 1956 
11. Blueberry Hill – Fats Domino – Imperial 1956 
12. Ain’t Got No Home – Clarence Henry “Frog Man” – Argo 1956 
13. GREAT 78 – Hey Bo – Eddie Bo – Apollo 1956 
14. It Hurts To Be In Love – Annie Laurie – DeLuxe 1957 
15. The Monkey – Dave Bartholomew – Imperial 1957 
16. Rockin’ Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu – Part 1 and 2 – Huey Smith & The Clowns – Ace 1957 
17. Let The Four Winds Blow – Roy Brown – Imperial 1957 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #202

New Orleans R&BNew Orleans R&B, Pt. 2

This week, it’s part 2 of “Juke In The Back”‘s 3 part series on the great, influential and infectious music that came out of New Orleans, one of America’s most fertile musical cities. In fact, the “Crescent City” is often cited as the birth place of Jazz, The Blues, R&B and Rock n’ Roll. While New Orleans certainly had its share of influential talent, from Louis Armstrong and Paul Gayten to Fats Domino and Dr. John, it’s hard to give one single region all the credit. The music that flowed from this fruitful ground is definitely something special and on part 2, Matt The Cat will look at New Orleans R&B from 1953 to 1955, highlighting records by Professor Longhair, Fats Domino, Dave Bartholomew, Lloyd Price, Shirley & Lee, Eddie Bo and many more. Next week on part 3, we’ll wrap up our series with a look at New Orleans R&B from 1955-1957. So get ready for some real jumpin’ musical jambalaya on your source for vintage Rhythm & Blues on the “Juke In The Back.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Ain’t It A Shame – Lloyd Price & His Orch. – Specialty 1953 
3. 4-11=44 – Bobby Mitchell & The Toppers – Imperial 1953 
4. The Things That I Used To Do – Guitar Slim & His Band – Specialty 1953 
5. Tipitina – Professor Longhair & His Blues Scholars – Atlantic 1954 
6. Jock-A-Mo – Sugar Boy & His Cane Cutters – Checker 1954 
7. I Didn’t Want To Do It – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
8. Blue Monday – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1954 
9. Toy Bell – The Bees – Imperial 1954 
10. Jam Up – Tommy Ridgley & His Band – Atlantic 1954 
11. Mardi Gras Mambo – The Hawketts – Chess 1955 
12. GREAT 78 – Jump Children – Dave Bartholomew – Imperial 1954 
13. Feels So Good – Shirley & Lee – Aladdin 1955 
14. I Hear You Knocking – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1955 
15. So Glad – Little Bo & Orch – Ace 1955 
16. Tutti Frutti – Little Richard & His Band – Specialty 1955 
17. Rich Woman – Li’l Millet & His Creoles – Specialty 1955 
18. Shrimp & Gumbo – Dave Bartholomew – Imperial 1955 
19. Ain’t It A Shame – Fats Domino – Imperial 1955 
20. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #201

New Orleans R&B, Pt. 3New Orleans R&B, Pt. 1

This week, “Juke In The Back” begins a 3 part series on the great, influential and infectious music that came out of New Orleans, one of America’s most fertile musical cities. In fact, the “Crescent City” is often cited as the birth place of Jazz, The Blues, R&B and Rock n’ Roll. While New Orleans certainly had its share of influential talent, from Louis Armstrong and Paul Gayten to Fats Domino and Dr. John, it’s hard to give one single region all the credit. The music that flowed from this fruitful ground is definitely something special and on part 1, Matt The Cat will look at New Orleans R&B from 1940 to 1953, highlighting records by Professor Longhair, Fats Domino, Dave Bartholomew, Lloyd Price and Shirley & Lee, just to name a few. Next week on part 2, we’ll look at the years 1953-55 and then we’ll wrap up the series with a look at 1955-57. So get ready for some real jumpin’ musical jambalaya on your source for vintage Rhythm & Blues on the “Juke In The Back.

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Where You At – Lloyd Price – Specialty 1953 
3. Junker’s Blues – Champion Jack Dupree – Okeh 1940 
4. True – Paul Gayten Trio – DeLuxe 1947 
5. ‘Long About Midnight – Roy Brown & His Mighty Mighty Men – DeLuxe 1948 
6. For You My Love – Larry Darnell – Regal 1949 
7. Stack-A’Lee Pt. 1 & 2 – Archibald & His Orch – Imperial 1950 
8. Mardi Gras In New Orleans – Professor Longhair & His New Orleans Boys – Atlantic 1950 
9. The Fat Man – Fats Domino – Imperial 1950 
10. Two Faced Woman (A Two Faced Man) – James Wayne & His Orch. – Imperial 1951 
11. Lawdy Miss Clawdy – Lloyd Price & His Orch. – Specialty 1952 
12. I’m Gone – Shirley & Lee – Imperial 1952 
13. GREAT 78 – Bald Head – Roy Byrd & His Blues Jumpers – Mercury 1950 
14. My Ding-A-Ling – Dave Bartholomew – King 1952 
15. Teachin’ & Preachin’ – Royal Kings – Specialty 1952 
16. The Bells Are Ringing – Smiley Lewis – Imperial 1952 
17. Going To The River – Fats Domino – Imperial 1953 
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #200

The SpidersThe Spiders

New Orleans is not known for its R&B vocal groups.  In a city where jazz, blues and zydeco thrive, one vocal group rose to the top: The Spiders.  In two short years, the Spiders landed enduring hits like “I Didn’t Want To Do It,” “I’m Slippin’ In” and “Witchcraft,” led by brothers Chuck and Chick Carbo.  They were produced by the legendary Dave Bartholomew and recorded at Cosimo Matassa’s J&M Studios with the cream of New Orleans’ session musicians.  When the hits stopped coming, Chuck Carbo left the group for a solo career, thus ending their time in the spotlight.  Matt The Cat explores The Spiders’ story on this week’s “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Jungle Juice – Stick McGhee – King 1953 
3. I’ve Been Around – Little Willie John – King 1956 
4. Bye & Bye – The Spiders – (Prev. Unreleased) Imperial 1953 
5. I Didn’t Want To Do It – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
6. Tears Began To Flow – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
7. I’m Slippin’ In – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
8. The Real Thing – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
9. 21 – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
10. Am I The One – The Spiders – Imperial 1955 
11. Bells In My Heart – The Spiders – Imperial 1955 
12. Witchcraft – The Spiders – Imperial 1955 
13. How I Feel – Chuck Carbo & The Spiders – Imperial 1956 
14. GREAT 78 – You’re The One – The Spiders – Imperial 1954 
15. A-1 In My Heart – The Spiders With Chuck Carbo – Imperial 1956 
16. Goodbye – The Spiders With Chuck Carbo – Imperial 1956 
17. Poor Boy – Chuck Carbo – Imperial 1957 
18. Wild, Wild Young Men – Ruth Brown – Atlantic 1953 
19. My Saddest Hour – The Five Keys – Aladdin 1953 
20. Smoke From Your Cigarette – The Mellows – Jay-Dee 1955 
21. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #199

Aladdin Records Part 2

The Aladdin Records Story, Pt. 2

The “Juke In The Back” concludes its two part series on Aladdin Records, one of the most important independent labels of the pre-rock era. Part 2 will pick up the Aladdin Records Story in 1950 and carry it through til rock n’ roll began hitting the mainstream in 1954. This week, we’ll hear more hits from Aladdin’s early hit-makers, Amos Milburn and Charles Brown. We’ll also dig some of the newcomers, like Floyd Dixon, Peppermint Harris, Calvin Boze, Shirley & Lee, the Five Keys and more. Aladdin was a rare label in that almost everything they pressed was worth hearing. If you ever see a discarded Aladdin 45 by an artist you’ve never heard before, pick it up, because chances are it’ll make you very, very happy. Matt The Cat hosts the Aladdin Records Story, Part 2, this week on the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947
2. Jay’s Frantic – Big Jay McNeely – Aladdin 1950
3. Safronia B – Calvin Boze & His All-Stars – Aladdin 1950
4. Shotgun Blues – Lightnin’ Hopkins Singing And Accompanying Himself On Guitar – Aladdin 1950
5. Bad Bad Whiskey – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1950 
6. Telephone Blues – Floyd Dixon With Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Aladdin 1951
7. Black Night – Charles Brown – Aladdin 1951
8. Blue Turning Grey Over You – Billie Holiday w/ Tiny Grimes Sextet – Aladdin 1951
9. Glory Of Love – The Five Keys – Aladdin 1951
10. I Got Loaded – Peppermint Harris – Aladdin 1951
11. Call Operator 210 – Floyd Dixon – Aladdin 1952 
12. I Need You, I Want You – Jack (The Bear) Parker Featuring Emmet Davis, Vocalist – 7-11 1952 
13. GREAT 78 – Hucklebuck With Jimmy – The Five Keys – Aladdin 1951 
14. I’m Gone – Shirley & Lee – Aladdin 1952 
15. Way Down Boogie – Harold Burrage w/ Jimmy Binkley & His Orch – Aladdin 1953
16. Don’t Leave Me Baby – Lowell Fulson & His Orch – Aladdin 1953
17. Don’t Let Go (Hold Me, Hold Me, Hold Me) – The Cookies – Lamp 1954
18. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946

Episode #198

Aladdin Records Pt. 1The Aladdin Records Story: Part 1

The “Juke In The Back” begins a two part special on one of the most important record labels of the pre-rock era, Aladdin Records. Eddie and Leo Mesner started Aladdin as Philo Records in 1945. It was one of the first independent labels on the West Coast and sought to fill in the R&B void left by major labels like Victor, Decca and Columbia. The Mesners hired Maxwell Davis to help with musical arrangements and back up their artists and got the label off to a jumpin’ start. In February of 1946, Philo became Aladdin and a record label icon was born. With artists like Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers featuring Charles Brown, Helen Humes, Illinois Jacquet, Wynonie Harris, Amos Milburn and some rare releases from a young Robins group, how could Aladdin possibly fail? They didn’t and in the process, they helped propel rhythm & blues into the mainstream, paving the way for the emergence of Rock n’ Roll. This week’s show focuses on the beginning of the label from 1945-49 and next week’s show will feature 1950 to the birth of Rock n’ Roll. Grab some nickels, because the party’s getting ready to start down at the Chicken Shack…with Matt The Cat and the “Juke In The Back.”

1. Swanee River Boogie – Albert Ammons – Mercury 1947 
2. Flyin’ Home Pt 1 & 2 – Illinois Jacquet & His All-Stars – Philo 1945 
4. He May Be Your Man – Helen Humes & The Bill Doggett Octet – Philo 1945 
5. Be-Baba-Leba – Helen Humes & The Bill Doggett Octet – Philo 1945 
6. Baby Don’t You Cry – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Philo 1945 
7. Driftin’ Blues – Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers – Philo 1945 
8. When I’m In My Tea – Jo Jo Adams With Maxwell Davis & His Band – Aladdin 1946 
9. Down The Road Apiece – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1946 
10. Guitar In My Hand – Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown Singing And Accompanying Himself On Guitar With Maxwell Davis & His Orch – Aladdin 1947 
11. GREAT 78 – (I Don’t Stand A) Ghost Of A Chance – Wynonie “Mr. Blues” Harris & His All-Stars Accompanied By The Harlemaires – Aladdin 1947 
12. Chicken Shack Boogie – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 1948 
13. Milky White Way – The Trumpeteers – Score 1948 
14. Trouble Blues – Charles Brown – Aladdin 1949 
15. Around About Midnight – The Robins – Score 1949 
16. After Hours – Erskine Hawkins – Bluebird 1946