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Underground/Avant garde Blues

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by page, Oct 7, 2005.


  1. Alright, Im curious to know if there is any blues out there that is avant garde or weird. Id like to hear some blues artists that do more than solo over a chord proggression.Or maybe a bluesman with a really cool voice....? Any suggestions? Id like to get mainly newer artists, but if theres some killer old , eccentric bluesmen, then let me know. Some of the blues I dig ,if it helps, is : Derek Trucks, Muddy Waters, Robert Johnson,John Mayall, Jack Bruce and Little Milton. Thanks for the help.
     
  2. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Check out the Blues recordings of guitarist James Blood Ulmer.
     
  3. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Off the top of my head Tom Waits.


    ...

    :D
     
  4. DaveBeny

    DaveBeny

    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    A second recommendation for James "Blood" Ulmer.

    Also, have you heard Muddy Waters' 'Electric Mud'? Some real wild psychadelic blues, featuring some of Chicago's finest avant&jazz players - Pete Cosey, Phil Upchurch and others.
     
  5. Cedell Davis
    RL Burnside
     
  6. Hmm... "weird or avant garde blues".... wouldn't that be Jazz? :)

    Seriously though, I don't know exactly what you're looking for, but some of my favorite older blues guys are blind lemon jefferson and blind willie mctell. Reason being that both really seemed to be able to play the old fingerstyle blues really well, weren't just plodding away over a chord progression, and both sang pretty well. I'm not sure if that's what you're looking for but I would imagine you would dig both of them :)
     
  7. Kelly Coyle

    Kelly Coyle Supporting Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    Mankato, MN
    I think you could count Ornette Coleman, Albert Ayler, Sonny Sharrock, and Archie Shepp in this category. But I suspect it's Ulmer you're really looking for. You might like Ronald Shannon Jackson, too.
     
  8. Adam Barkley

    Adam Barkley Mayday!

    Aug 26, 2003
    Jackson, MS
    I'd like to hear Ornette Coleman playing blues. Any suggestions of recordings?
     
  9. Kelly Coyle

    Kelly Coyle Supporting Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    Mankato, MN
    Well, the only one I know of that's a real blues is on this collection disc I have here somewhere. I'll see if I can find it. It's very strange -- a gospel style piano pounding out this riff over and over while the rest of the band does what they usually do. But Ornette is often is talked about as having a blues sensibility, just without the chord changes. But none of the "avant" guys we've been talking about (Ulmer, et al.) move to the IV chord in the fifth bar...
     
  10. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.

    I lived with Ornette for a while, and he would at times play some of the most interesting blues related melodies,if one listens closely to Ornette you will notice a strong blues presence(very warm and gut bucket),tho not known as a blues artist,in his early teens in Texas he was in some Blues and R&B bands.
     
  11. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Boston, MA
    :eek: That must've been one heavy experience!

    Jauqo, where does he live now?
     
  12. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.



    It was kool and very very real,thats where I did some studying with him and his Harmolodic concept.we would play duets together.at the time he was living in Lower east Manhatten(Greenwich village)in what once was a high school(5 floors)and he lived in the entire building alone but this is where he would have killer rehearsals 24 hrs a day if he chose(my bed room was once a giant former NY high school). but he now lives in Harlem.I have recordings that I did a couple of years ago with Bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma and Drummer G.Calvin Weston(both from Ornettes electric band Prime Time,that I haven't released yet.)
     
  13. The Owl

    The Owl

    Aug 14, 2005
    Atlanta GA
    WOW!!! That is an amazing once in a lifetime experience alright!

    This Owl wonders, how would one snag an entire High School as a living space? I could see it has VERY clear advantages as far as rehearsing but must be a BEAR to maintain.
     
  14. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Ornette felt that the building was very appropriate for his needs.part of the first floor was a day care center that ornette allowed to exist in the building for the community.he would have artist from all over the world and from the USA depending on what project he was working on coming by staying,rehearsing etc.there is an interesting documentary that came out in the late 80's that focuses on his life and music called Ornette Made in America Directed by
    Shirley Clarke.

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0089742/

    I remember when NASA contacted Ornette for a possible flight into space(seriously),Ornette fondly laughed it off and said if he could take all his friends,NASSA continued to try to get him to do it but as all can see he never did.
     
  15. The Owl

    The Owl

    Aug 14, 2005
    Atlanta GA
    I'll have to look for that film. I've liked Ornette's music for quite some time, I can't ALWAYS get my brain around it but regardless it really is avery dynamic and unique musical concept well worth investigating and participating in.
     
  16. cdef

    cdef

    Jul 18, 2003
    NET
    If you want weird, Captain Beefheart with his mid-to-late 60's Magic Band had a surrealist take on the blues that's as weird as it gets. I'd recommend the album "Strictly Personal" initially for that. Some older guys you want to check out (if you haven't) are Howling Wolf, Skip James, Sleepy John Estes, Lightnin' Hopkins and Mississippi Fred McDowell. Also, Guitar Slim, a wild performer and a sonic precursor of Jimi Hendrix.

    www.beefheart.com
     
  17. Kelly Coyle

    Kelly Coyle Supporting Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    Mankato, MN
    Hey, while we're on the subject, check out Hadsil Adkins. I don't know if it's blues or not -- and there's no bass -- but I dig it.
     
  18. CAPTAIN BEEFHEART: The previous poster mentioned "strictly personal". It does have strange blues, but i've always had a problem with the psychadelic production on it. For more experimental, rawer sounding blues-type stuff, i'd suggest maybe "Spotlight Kid" instead. Just personal opinion, they're both worth checking out.

    Also, John Zorn's album "Spillane". Features blues on the first few tracks. Albert Collins doing strange Zorn-stuff. Also odd...
     
  19. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    Buddy Guy - Sweet Tea

    Yeah, YOU tell him it ain't blues!

    Dang!

    :D

    Joe.
     
  20. cdef

    cdef

    Jul 18, 2003
    NET
    Hey, now we're talking Beefheart! I used to dislike the phasing and stuff too, mainly because Don (and Frank) condemned it, but in later years I find I actually like it. That record sounds very unique. Still, Beefheart's a big subject, and if you can bend your head around "Trout Mask Replica" (the touchstone of art blues/rock, IMO), we have a nice long thread ahead of us. Better make it a new one, though.

    Ornette's band on "Dancing In Your Head" sounded to me like they'd listened to Beefheart's guitar policy a lot.