- Album name: Memphis Swamp Jam
- Artist name: Various, including Booker White, Piano Red, Nathan Beauregard, Sleepy John Estes, Fred McDowell, Johnny Woods, Napoleon Strickland, Furry Lewis, R.L. Watson, Josiah Jones
- Year: 1969
- Number of discs: two
- Label: Blue Thumb Records
- Collection: Friedman
- Distinguishing characteristics: hole drilled through top left corner
- Buy it on Amazon: $204.00
Level of familiarity before listening
I haven’t heard of this record or any of the musicians on it.
What I expected
Blues (and I regret that I don’t think I can distinguish Memphis blues from other locations’ blues).
What it was actually like
I thought I would find this pretty enjoyable, but it wasn’t nearly as entertaining as I had expected: imagine a guy with either a guitar or a harmonica, singing and playing for 90 minutes or so.
I did really like Booker White’s growly voice on side one, and Johnny Woods’ harmonica on side three, but I did not care for the fife and drums in the Napoleon Strickland section, which felt pretty out of place for a blues record.
My favorite song on the record was Memphis Rag, an instrumental with multiple guitars that all interacted well with each other, and the very similar Praying On The Old Camp Ground & Lonesome Blues was also great. Both of those songs should have been longer.
3/5: interesting, but not for me