Paul Butterfield Blues Band – The Resurection Of PigboyCrabshaw (1967)

FrontCover1The 1968 edition of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band featured a larger ensemble with a horn section, allowing for a jazzier feeling while retaining its Chicago blues core. They also adopted the psychedelic flower power stance of the era, as evidenced by a few selections, the rather oblique title, and the stunning pastiche art work on the cover. Butterfield himself was really coming into his own playing harmonica and singing, while his band of keyboardist Mark Naftalin, guitarist Elvin Bishop, drummer Phil Wilson, electric bassist Bugsy Maugh, and the horns featuring young alto saxophonist David Sanborn was as cohesive a unit as you’d find in this time period. Butterfield’s most well-known song “One More Heartache” kicks off the album, a definitive blues-rock radio favorite with great harmonica and an infectious beat urged on by the top-notch horns.

The band covers “Born Under a Bad Sign” at a time when Cream also did it. “Driftin’ & Driftin'” is another well-known tune, and at over nine minutes stretches out with the horns cryin’ and sighin’, including a definitive solo from Sanborn over the choruses. There’s the Otis Rush tune “Double Trouble,” and “Drivin’ Wheel” penned by Roosevelt Sykes; Butterfield wrote two tunes, including “Run Out of Time” and the somewhat psychedelic “Tollin’ Bells,” where Bishop’s guitar and Naftalin’s slow, ringing, resonant keyboard evokes a haunting feeling. This is likely the single best Butterfield album of this time period and you’d be well served to pick this one up. (by Michael G. Nastos)

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Personnel:
Elvin Bishop (guitar)
Paul Butterfield (harmonica, vocals)
Gene Dinwiddie (saxophone)
Keith Johnson (trumpet)
Bugsy Maugh (bass, vocals on 07.)
Mark Naftalin (keyboards)
Dave Sanborne (saxophone)
Phil Wilson (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. One More Heartache (Tarplin/Rogers/White/Robinson/Moore) 3.42
02. Driftin’ And Driftin’ (Brown/Williams/Moore) 9.10
03. Pity The Fool (Malone) 6.06
04. Born Under A Bad Sign (Jones/Bell) 4.11
05. Run Out Of Time (Dinwiddie/Peterson/Butterfield) 3.05
06. Double Trouble (Rush) 5.42
07. Drivin’ Wheel (Sykes) 5.59
08. Droppin’ Out (Butterfield/Zimmerman) 2.21
09. Tollin’ Bells (Dixon) 4.22

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Paul Butterfield Blues Band – Same (1965)

frontcover1The Paul Butterfield Blues Band is the debut album by Paul Butterfield, released in 1965 on Elektra Records, EKS 7294 in stereo, EKL 294 in mono. It peaked at #123 on the Billboard pop albums chart. In 2003, the album was ranked number 476 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, moving up to number 468 in the revised 2012 list, and also is ranked at #11 on Down Beat magazine’s list of the top 50 blues albums.

In late 1964, a friend of Elektra house producer Paul Rothchild told him that the “best band in the world was on stage at a blues bar in Chicago.” Rothchild took a plane to Chicago to see the Butterfield quartet, and later the same night went to a different club and saw guitarist Mike Bloomfield with a different band. According to Rothchild, it was at his impetus that Paul Butterfield hired Bloomfield as his second guitar alongside Elvin Bishop. The Butterfield rhythm section of Jerome Arnold and Sam Lay had been hired away from Howlin’ Wolf.

Sessions were arranged for December, 1964, but these were abandoned for live recordings from the Cafe Au Go Go in New York City after the band’s appearance at the Newport Folk Festival. The earlier studio recordings were eventually released on The Original Lost Elektra Sessions in 1995. Upon hearing the live tapes, Rothchild still remained dissatisfied, and the band went into the studio in September 1965 in an attempt to record the album for the third time. The guitar solos were all played by Bloomfield, Bishop relegated to rhythm guitar. Keyboardist Mark Naftalin was drafted in at the September sessions and asked to join the band by Butterfield, expanding it to a sextet.

The album presents band originals and songs in the style of electric Chicago blues. It is one of the first blues albums recorded in America featuring a white singer,[citation needed] trailing a few years behind the British blues movement where white singers and musicians had been performing and recording blues since the 1950s.

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Even after his death, Paul Butterfield’s music didn’t receive the accolades that were so deserved. Outputting styles adopted from Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters among other blues greats, Butterfield became one of the first white singers to rekindle blues music through the course of the mid-’60s. His debut album, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, saw him teaming up with guitarists Elvin Bishop and Mike Bloomfield, with Jerome Arnold on bass, Sam Lay on drums, and Mark Naftalin playing organ. The result was a wonderfully messy and boisterous display of American-styled blues, with intensity and pure passion derived from every bent note. In front of all these instruments is Butterfield’s harmonica, beautifully dictating a mood and a genuine feel that is no longer existent, even in today’s blues music. Each song captures the essence of Chicago blues in a different way, from the back-alley feel of “Born in Chicago” to the melting ease of Willie Dixon’s “Mellow Down Easy” to the authentic devotion that emanates from Bishop and Butterfield’s “Our Love Is Drifting.” “Shake Your Money Maker,” “Blues With a Feeling,” and “I Got My Mojo Working” (with Lay on vocals) are all equally moving pieces performed with a raw adoration for blues music. Best of all, the music that pours from this album is unfiltered…blared, clamored, and let loose, like blues music is supposed to be released. A year later, 1966’s East West carried on with the same type of brash blues sound partnered with a jazzier feel, giving greater to attention to Bishop’s and Bloomfield’s instrumental talents. (by Mike DeGagne)

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Personnel:
Jerome Arnold (bass)
Elvin Bishop (guitar)
Mike Bloomfield (guitar)
Paul Butterfield (vocals, harmonica)
Sam Lay (drums, vocals on 05.)
Mark Naftalin (organ)

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Tracklist:
01. Born In Chicago (Gravenites) 2.55
02. Shake Your Money-Maker ( James) 2.27
03. Blues With A Feeling (Jacobs) 4.20
04. Thank You Mr. Poobah (Bloomfield/Butterfield/Naftalin) 4.05
05. Got My Mojo Working (Morganfield) 3.30
06. Mellow Down Easy (Dixon) 2.48
07. Screamin’ (instrumental) (Bloomfield) 4.30
08. Our Love Is Drifting (Butterfield/Bishop) 3.25
09. Mystery Train (Parker/Phillips) 2.45
10. Last Night (Jacobs) 4.15
11. Look Over Yonders Wall (Clark) 2.23

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I was born in Chicago at nineteen and forty-one
I was born in Chicago at nineteen and forty-one
Well, my father told me
“Son, you had better get a gun”

Well, my first friend went down
When I was seventeen years old
Well, my first friend went down
When I was seventeen years old

Well, there’s one thing I can say about that boy
He gotta go

Well, my second friend went down
When I was twenty one years of age
Well, my second friend went down
When I was twenty one years of age

Well, there’s one thing I can say about that boy
He gotta pray

Well, now rules are alright
If there’s someone left to play the game
Well, now rules are alright
If there’s someone left to play the game

All my friends are going
And thing’s just don’t seem the same
Oh, thing’s just don’t seem the same, babe

Written by Nicholas George Gravenites

Paul Butterfield Blues Band – Live (1970)

FrontCover1For the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, this two-LP set proved that it all came down to Butterfield himself and his abilities as a leader in the end. For all of the adulation heaped on Mike Bloomfield, Elvin Bishop, et al., the group was ultimately an extension of Butterfield’s abilities as a leader and player, and this set proved that Butterfield and the bandmembers he had assembled in 1971 had more than two LPs’ worth of live playing in them that was worth releasing and worth buying. And that wasn’t the half of it — talk about ironies — at the time the Paul Butterfield Blues Band recorded this live album, they were at their peak as a concert act; they were getting all the bookings they wanted at the best clubs in the biggest cities in the country, and a lot of other places as well, in front of enthusiastic audiences who were devouring their blues-jazz-rock-R&B hybrid sound as fast as they could pump it out on-stage. They just weren’t selling many PaulButterfieldrecords, which was why few people ever got to hear this album. The four-man horn section and the single guitar are a long way from the band that dazzled audiences six years earlier on East-West, or at Monterey in 1967; this is big-band Chicago blues with a jazz base and a killer sound, ranging all over the musical map without peer. In the midst of all of those seemingly louder instruments blowing away, however, one can still find a great showcase for Butterfield’s blues harp on numbers like Big Walter Horton’s “Everything’s Gonne Be Alright.” The sound, recorded on then state-of-the-art equipment at the L.A. Troubadour, is excellent and the performances are as tight as anything ever delivered by the band, in many ways fulfilling the promise of the longer numbers represented on their earlier studio albums. The original double LP is still worth finding for vinyl enthusiasts. (by Bruce Eder)

This is the disc with 9 bonus tracks from the same concert !

Recorded live the Troubadour, Los Angeles, March 21 – 22, 1970

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Personnel:
Paul Butterfield (vocals, harmonica, piano)
George Davidson (drums)
Brother Gene Dinwiddie (saxophone, vocals)
Ted Harris (keyboards)
Rod Hicks (bass, vocals)
Trevor Lawrence (saxophone)
Steve Madaio (trumpet)
Ralph Wash (guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. Everything Going to Be Alright (Jacobs) 10:08
02. Love Disease (Butterfield) 4.01
03. The Boxer (Hicks) 6.38
04. No Amount of Loving (Butterfield) 5.53
05. Driftin’ And Driftin’ (Brown/Williams) 13.43
06. Intro to Muscians 1.45
07. Number Nine (Harris) 10.10
08. I Want To Be With You (Dinwiddie) 3.55
09. Born Under A Bad Sign (Bell/Jones) 5.43
10. Get Together Again (Butterfield) 6.29
11. So Far, So Good (Hicks) 9.17
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12. Gene’s Tune (Dinwiddie) 12.30
13. Nobody’s Fault But Mine (Redding) 6.58
14. Losing Hand (Calhoun) 14.29
15. All In A Day (Hicks) 8.11
16. Feel So Bad (Willis) 4.44
17. Except You (Ragavoy) 4.51
18. You’ve Got To Love Her With A Feelin’ (King/Thompson) 5.24
19. Love March (Dinwiddie/Wilson) 12.25

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