Willie Mabon / Sunnyland Slim / Jimmy Walker / Bind John Davis / Erwin Helfer – Heavy Timbre

13,50 12,10


Chicago Boogie Piano

Track Listing:
Blind John Davis: 1. Davis Boogie - 1:51   2. A Little Everyday - 4:24   3. I Almost Lost My Mind - 3:19   Sunnyland Slim: 4. She's Got a Thing Goin' On - 2:39   5. Canadian Walk - 3:17   6. Gotta See My Lawyer - 3:34   Willie Mabon: 7. I Don't Know - 4:13   8. World of Trouble - 3:35   9. The Seventh Son - 3:41   Jimmy Walker: 10. Four O'Clock Blues - 3:04   11. I Just Want to Hold On - 3:56   Erwin Helfer: 12. The Fives - 3:02   13. Improvizations - 3:45   Erwin Helfer & Sunnyland Slim: 14. Big Joe - 4:06   Sunnyland Slim: 15. Promote Sunnyland a Drink - 2:35   Blind John Davis: 16. Kansas City - 2:35   Willie Mabon: 17. Slow Blues - 4:32   Blind John Davis & Sunnyland Slim: 18. Johnny Sunny Blues - 3:21   Jimmy Walker: 19. Mr. Freddie Blues - 1:51

Willie Mabon / Jimmy Walker / Bind John Davis / Erwin Helfer (piano) , Sunnyland Slim (piano, organ on 14,18)


1. AllMusic - Dave Nathan
On one glorious day in June of 1976, five of Chicago's most prominent piano blues/boogie-woogie players got together for a session reminiscent of rent parties of the past, when this music was played loud and long enough to cause eviction, thereby avoiding the payment of overdue rent. Sirens Records made the original recording and has reissued it with five bonus tracks from the same session. On the bonus material, laughing, glass-clinking, and conversation are picked up. The outcome is more than a hour of blues/boogie-woogie played in the Chicago tradition. That city, as much as any, can claim to be the Mecca for this kind of music. Two of the style's more famous pacesetters, Albert Ammons and Meade "Lux" Lewis, were working as taxi drivers before being "discovered" by impresario John Hammond. Here Blind John Davis leads off with three cuts, vocalizing on two of them. Sunnyland Slim opens his tunes with a short announcement of what he's going to do and then does it. Willie Mabon's approach is somewhat lower in volume with less momentum that the two preceding artists, more in line with traditional blues. The next two artists, Jimmy Walker and Erwin Helfer, who recorded together during the 1960s and 1970s, are not as well known as their compatriots, at least outside of Chicago. But their performance confirms that they belong in this rarefied company. One of the class tracks is "Big Joe," where Sunnyland Slim plays organ on a duet with Helfer. Each of the players was a fine exponent of this style of music on their own. But when thrown together in something akin to a competitive setting, the playing reaches heavenly levels. This collection of a jazz piano form which unfortunately has lost some of its burnish over the years is highly recommended.

2. Living Blues - May/June 2002
In 1976, Chicago piano blues aficionados Steven Dolins, Barry Dolins, and David Goldberg produced this session on three acknowledged keyboard masters (Mabon, Sunnyland, and Davis), a veteran who deserved to be better known (Walker), and an already-seasoned but still-youthful prodigy (Helfer). Its reissue is both an important historical document and a listeners' delight … Rollicking fun, soulful intimacy, celebration of life – it doesn't get any more real than this.”

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