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CD Review
Henry Qualls, Big Al Dupree &
Charles Young with "Jr. Boy" Jones
"Blues Across America the Dallas Scene"
Cannonball Records, 53 minutes, 12 tracks (4 each), 1997
Henry Qualls is a throw back to the early days of electric Texas country blues in the mold of Lightin' Hopkins and Fred McDowell. He plays a raw, elemental, powerful guitar and has a unique voice that comes right out of the dusty Texas soil. His slide guitar, played with a small lemon extract bottle is absolutely remarkable. I was fortunate enough to see him this past spring and summer and his performance remains one of the highlights of the year. He also has a great sense of humor as evidenced by his song "Squirrel Sandwich." Piano and saxophone player Big Al Dupree, a mainstay on the Dallas music scene for over 60 years, is as urban and smooth as Qualls is country and rough. Dupree's sophisticated, jazzy blues piano stylings are delivered in flawless fashion. He plays piano in a variety of styles from hot jazz, to slow blues. Listening to him play the piano elicits a moody atmosphere of sitting around the piano in a dim lit, smoke filled lounge. Charles Young is joined on some classy B.B. King sounding vocals by veteran Dallas blues guitarist "Jr. Boy" Jones. Another great collection of blues by artists we haven't had the opportunity to hear enough from. Hopefully this new Cannonball series will correct that oversight. By the way, Ron Levy, the musical force behind Cannonball, designed these new CD's with some creative features. There is a little cannonball rolling around in the CD shell and when you open the CD cover and remove the disc you see a replica of an old turntable. This is some great music I hope you enjoy as much as I did.

Big Al Dupree Review

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Copyright 1997, 1998 by Ray M. Stiles. All rights reserved.

Copyright 1997, 1998 by Ray M. Stiles. All rights reserved.