Document Records - Vintage Blues and Jazz

Document Records
Mississippi Sheiks Vol 3 1931 - 1934


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Mississippi Sheiks

    TRACK LIST

Mississippi Sheiks
01 - Shake hands and tell me goodbye Listen
02 - Bed spring poker Listen
03 - When you`re sick with the blues Listen
04 - I`ve got blood in my eyes for you Listen
05 - Shooting high dice Listen
06 - Isn`t a pain to me Listen
07 - She`s crazy about her lovin` Listen
08 - Tell me to do right Listen
09 - The new stop and listen blues Listen
10 - Go `way woman Listen
11 - New shake that thing Listen
12 - The new sittin` on top of the world Listen
13 - He calls that religion Listen
14 - Don`t wake it up Listen
15 - Please baby Listen
16 - I`ll be gone, long gone Listen
17 - Kitty cat blues Listen
18 - Show me what you got Listen
19 - Hitting the numbers Listen
20 - It`s done got wet Listen
21 - Pencil won`t write no more Listen
22 - I am the devil Listen
23 - Baby, please make a change Listen

Mississippi Sheiks
 
Includes; Walter Vincson, vocal, guitar; Lonnie Chatman, vocal, violin; Bo Carter, vocal, guitar, violin.
 
Genres: String Band, Mississippi Blues, Country Blues
 
Informative booklet notes by Chris Smith
Detailed discography
 
From this album's booklet notes:
The Mississippi Sheiks wrapped up their two days in Atlanta with four titles which show off Walter Vinson's guitar playing to particular advantage, as well as including some clever lyrics: When You're Sick With The Blues is hokum, but Bed Spring Poker gives an unusual warning of the dangers of sexual gambling. I've Got Blood In My Eyes For You was one of four titles from these sessions issued on Columbia, the parent company of Okeh. Around the time Columbia 14660-D was released, in June 1932, the Sheiks were recording for Paramount, which was in turn to terminate its 12/13000 race series towards the end of that year. The last two discs issued were both by the Mississippi Sheiks; all through the Depression they had been favourites with black record buyers, and it's not surprising that they were Paramount's last throw of the dice. Nor, perhaps, is it surprising that much of the session was devoted to remakes and rewrites. Inevitably, they cut further - and very fine - versions of Stop and Listen and Sitting On Top Of The World, and Don't Wake It Up (taken at a tearing speed) and Please Baby were second attempts at songs recorded in Atlanta the previous year. Shooting High Dice used the tune of W. C. Handy's "St. Louis Blues", while New Shake That Thing was a tribute to the enduring popularity of Papa Charlie Jackson's hit from 1925, given engaging new lyrics that celebrate the ability of Southerners to have fun.
 
Apart from reworking old numbers, the Sheiks also made some excellent originals: She's Crazy About Her Lovin´┐Ż showcases some of the finest and most intuitive playing recorded by either Vinson or Lonnie Chatmon, and He Calls That Religion is a biting attack on clerical hypocrisy. The most unusual song was the last: I'll Be Gone, Long Gone is unsurprising in being one more lyric to the melody of "Sitting On Top Of The World", but, uniquely for the Sheiks, it is a piano-guitar duet. As usual, Walter Vinson is the guitarist and vocalist.
Even in 1933, there was still a little recording of blues singers going on, and in June of that year the Sheiks were allocated a block of eight Columbia matrices, although only two titles were issued. Despite the standard discography, there are two guitars present along with Lonnie's fiddle. One of the guitars is Walter Vinson; the other has been assumed to be Bo Carter. It's quite possible, but the duetting, especially on Kitty Cat Blues, has a heavier, more percussive touch than that on "Sales Tax" (see DOCD-5086), where Bo is definitely present, and the second guitarist might be Charlie McCoy, who settled in Chicago about this time.
 
Bo Carter was definitely present on 26th and 27th March 1934 and he is said by "Blues & Gospel Records" to be the vocalist and guitarist for the Sheiks on these dates, with Sam Chatman on second guitar, and Lonnie on violin as usual.
 
Walter Vinson might be present on one of the sessions, as may be heard on DOCD-5086. Vinson was definitely present at both sessions, but it appears that he was absent for the titles on this CD; the guitar picking is characteristic of Bo Carter. After much listening it can be concluded that Bo is the singer as well. Unsurprisingly, he recorded a version of Sitting On Top Of The World, although he gave it ingenious lyrics about the numbers game. It's Done Got Wet was a joyful celebration of the end of Prohibition, with a scat episode, and Bo imitating Walter's intrusive "r" ("Oh-rit's done got wet", etc.).
 
These six titles are all notable for the superb interplay between Bo's guitar and Lonnie's violin, which produces a quite different sound to that of the usual Sheiks duo.
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