Various Artists – Holy Smoke – Don´t Let Love Fool You (2018)

FrontCover1.jpgHere´s a real great compilation with 28 tracks from the grat R & B Era in the USA and we heart aritsts like Jimmy Shaw, Eddie Moore, Jay Nelson, Sonny Boy Williams, Jimmy Mcphail, Little Johnny Cook or Joe Boots.

“Don’t let love fool you!” Attached to this latest release of predominantly rhythm and blues artists from along-gone era is a message warning of the potential pitfalls that can be associated with that thing known as ‘love’. Without wishing to put any dampeners on any future romance, KoKo Mojo sets out its stall with another twenty-eight tracks that certainly rock and blow away any suggestions of the blues. In fact, what any listener is likely to experience for their listening pleasure via ‘Holy Smoke’ is a collection of tracks culled from history and selected for their addictive qualities when it comes to rhythm, but also their relevance to the subject matter at heart here. Therefore, expect songs that are filled with lovesick sentiments where infatuation can take hold – Baby Clifford King ‘Want To Jump With You’ or Tony Allan’s vocals capturing the mood to perfection during the album’s title track – or unrequited love via the forceful rhythm and blues of ‘Don’t You Want A Man Like Me’ from Jay Nelson.


There’s a wonderful performance from Juke Boy Barner who delivers what sounds like a ramshackle performance during ‘Rock With Me Baby’, only for closer inspection to reveal that there’s deft hands at work here with far more going on under its bonnet. This, however, is only the beginning as from here on, the variety displayed ups its game further from Prince Royals’ superbly understated and centre of attention, ‘Anna Mae’, to the “great” Eddie Alexander & The Greats ‘I’m In Love’ (complete with accompanying ducks!), before rattling off a whole host of sophisticated rhythm and blues numbers such as ‘My Pretty Baby’ (Ernie Williams), ‘Ding Dong Babe’ (Jimmy McPhail), ‘I’ll Be True To You’ (Billy Fair & Orch.), and Little Johnny Cook with ‘Try Your Love’. There’s too much goodness to be found here, despite any notions of hearts being broken, because ‘Holy Smoke’ offers a passionate and classy taste of rhythm and blues that’s packing enough variety to keep any listener entertained for many hours. Top of its class! (by Nathan Olsen-Haines)

In other words: If you plan your next BBQ-Party, don´t forget to play this album … and you´ll have a real hot and crazy party !

This entry is dedicated to all these unknown heroes of Rhythm & Blues !!!


01. Baby Clifford King: Want To Jump With You (King) 3.26
02. Johnny Stewart: A Whole Lot Of Lovin’ (Trimble) 2.04
03. Jimmy Shaw: Take A Chance On Me (Shaw/Harris) 2.22
04. Tony Allan: Holy Smoke Baby (E. Mesner/L. Mesner) 1.32
05. Jay Nelson: Don’t You Want A Man Like Me (Miller/Nelson) 2.02
06. The Jaguars: Ginny Ginny (Johnson/Penniman) 2.28
07. Rufus Gordon: Long Tall Sally (Johnson/Penniman/Blackwell) 2.08
08. Nat The Cool Cat: Come By Here (Andersen) 2.49
09. Juke Boy Barner: Rock With Me (Welson) 2.52
10. Prince Royals: Anna Mae (unknown) 2.42
11. Elmar Parker: You Know I Love You (Parker/Christian) 2.08
12. Eddie Alexander & The Greats: I’m In Love (Jenkins) 2.17
13. Ernie Williams: My Pretty Baby (Gordon/Williams/Web) 1.58
14. Freddie Williams & The Keynotes: Linda Lu (Sharpe) 2.55
15. Piney Brown: Sugar In My Tea (Price/Brown) 2.27
16. Jimmy McPhail: Ding Dong Babe (Harris/Francis) 2.41
17. Billy Fair & Orchestra: I’ll Be True To You (Darge/Weller) 2.20
18. Little Johnny Cook: Try Your Love (Keys/(Woods/Burton) 2.17
19. Leo Price & Band: Hey Now Baby (Price) 2.31
20. Jimmy Trotter: Hungry And Thirsty (Trotter) 1.56
21. Sonny Boy Williams: Alice Mae Blues (Williams) 2.28
22. Lenny Johnson: Walk Ginny Walk (Otis) 2.17
23. Eddie Moore: Touch Of Your Love (Johnson/Moore) 2.15
24. Hayward Lee: My Love (Lee) 2.14
25. Johnny Spain: I’m In Love (Scott/Terry) 2.33
26. Joe Boots: Squeeze Me (Boots) 2.12
27. Modest ‘Show Stopper’ Clifton: Pretty Little Baby (Clifton) 1.55
28. Frank Linkenberg: Ball Of Fire (Butler/Graham) 2.08