Lonnie Brooks – Sweet Home Chicago (1975)

FrontCover1Lonnie Brooks (born Lee Baker Jr., December 18, 1933 – April 1, 2017) was an American blues singer and guitarist. The musicologist Robert Palmer, writing in Rolling Stone, stated, “His music is witty, soulful and ferociously energetic, brimming with novel harmonic turnarounds, committed vocals and simply astonishing guitar work.” Jon Pareles, a music critic for the New York Times, wrote, “He sings in a rowdy baritone, sliding and rasping in songs that celebrate lust, fulfilled and unfulfilled; his guitar solos are pointed and unhurried, with a tone that slices cleanly across the beat. Wearing a cowboy hat, he looks like the embodiment of a good-time bluesman.” Howard Reich, a music critic for the Chicago Tribune, wrote, “…the music that thundered from Brooks’ instrument and voice…shook the room. His sound was so huge and delivery so ferocious as to make everything alongside him seem a little smaller.” (by wikipe

The French Black & Blue label was savvy enough to spirit Brooks into a studio when he was touring the continent in 1975 as part of Chicago Blues Festival ’75. As befits the jam-session ambience of the date (pianist Willie Mabon, harpist Mack Simmons, and two-thirds of the Aces are on hand), hoary standards predominate: “Crosscut Saw,” “Things I Used to Do,” “Mama Talk to Your Daughter,” and the ubiquitous title track (which remains a signature song). The omnipresent “The Train and the Horse” returns as well. (by Bill Dahl)

Lonnie Brooks.jpg

A prolific musician known for his intense guitar solos and his raspy but strong singing voice, Mr. Brooks told The Chicago Tribune in 1992 that the blues did not come naturally to him at first.

“Then one night, I saw Magic Sam in a little blues club on the South Side,” he said, referring to the blues singer and guitarist born Samuel Maghett. “He went onstage right after he’d gotten into a big fight with his girlfriend, and it was like he was taking it out on his guitar.

“I seen how it came from the heart, so I went home to the basement, and got into that mood that Magic Sam had been in, and the blues came to me.” (nytimes.com)

Oh yes … that´s the Blues and the Blues only !


Alternate frontcovers

Fred Below (drums)
Lonnie Brooks (guitar, vocals)
Willie Mabon (piano)
Dave Myers (bass)
Little Mac Simmons (harmonica)
Hubert Sumlin (guitar)


01. Sweet Home Chicago (Johnson) 5.01
02. Two Guitars Shuffle (Brooks) 6.24
03. Crosscut Saw (Clennan) 5.40
04. Reconsider Baby (Fulson) 3.12
05. Things I Used To Do (Jones) 4.12
06. The Train And The Horse (Brooks) 5.08
07. Crazy About My Baby (Jacobs) 5.32
08. Big Leg Woman (Temple) 3.28
09. Mama Talk To Your Daughter (Brooks) 3.25
10. Woke Up This Morning (King) 4.11