Friday, August 14, 2015

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-James Cotton

Artist:James Cotton
Song:How Long Can A Fool Go Wrong
Album:How Long Can A Fool Go Wrong

Blues harmonica player James Cotton started out as a sideman in the 50s and became a leader in the late 60s. His recordings from the 70s on Buddah Records are probably his most popular. And the great thing is he's still touring today. He was born July 1, 1935 in Tunica, MS. Cotton heard Sonny Boy Williamson II on the radio and he went to Arkansas to meet him. When Williamson moved north to Milwaukee, he left his band to Cotton. That didn't work out so Cotton moved to Chicago to play with Howlin' Wolf and then he replaced Little Walter in the Muddy Waters band in 1955. He was in the Waters band for ten years. Cotton formed his own band and played shows when he wasn't touring with Janis Joplin. In the late 60s, Cotton recorded for Verve, Vanguard and Capitol. Then he signed with Buddah Records and in 1974 he released 100% Cotton. This is considered to be one of Cotton's best albums. The key figure on this album is legendary guitarist Matt "Guitar" Murphy who was best known for his work with Memphis Slim. Murphy was mainly a sideman and session musician. He's always a treat to listen to. The other musicians were Charles Calmese on bass and Kenny Johnson on drums. This was followed by the 1975 album High Energy and then the 1976 live album Live & On The Move. The band on this is the same as 100% Cotton along with Mike Zaitchik on keyboards and George Gregory on sax. These two classic James Cotton albums have been repackaged on CD in 2011 by Blues Boulevard as How Long Can A Fool Go Wrong. Cotton currently records for Alligator Records. His latest CD Cotton Mouth Man was released in 2013. He also continues to tour and you should check him out if he's coming your way. James Cotton was inducted into the Blues Hall Of Fame in 2006. Here's James Cotton with Douglas Fagan on sax, Eddie Hawrysch on piano, Michael Coleman on guitar, Herman Applewhite on bass and Merle Perkins on drums performing How Long Can A Fool Go Wrong at the 1983 Montreux Jazz Festival.

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad he is still around. I may have heard of him and his harmonica at one point or another. Good to hear not all the old Bluesman are gone.