The second episode in this six-part series is entitled "Fatherís Influence..". It begins with a collection of interview clips from 13 different blues artists. They all pay homage to their fathers for (one way or another) getting them into blues music. Some of the varying ways mentioned include: listening to their fatherís record collection, having been taken to a blues concert by their father, having been given a guitar as a gift and being the offspring of an acclaimed blues musician. As he clinches to a whiskey bottle, a very weathered Dutch Mason states the highlight of his career is the fact that his son is now performing with him. "When Iím gone, he will be here" states Dutch proudly as he knows that he has passed the blues on to the next generation. The remainder of show 2 is broken into 3 features.
The first is about a unique CD that you can jam to. The discís tracks include bass, rhythm guitar, drums and piano only. It is a neat concept but this segment comes across too much like an info-mercial. Real blues is then depicted in its finest hour. Mako and his cameras were in the recording studio when a group of 5 seasoned and acclaimed musicians got together to celebrate Snooky Pryorís 80th birthday. It is a behind-the-scenes look at the sessions that resulted in the release of a stomping and sweaty disc called Snooky Pryor and His Mississippi Wrecking Crew. Viewers are subjected to a few minutes of the actual recording of one of the CDís tracks, "Corinna". Bob Stroger says he was "thrilled to partake" while Pinetop Perkins says he "love what Snooky do". With pride Pryor mentions, "Mel (Brown) understands my ways and I understand his ways". Brown explains, "itís a chance to talk to each other in music". Snooky then sums it all up with this analogy, "its just like sitting down to a good meal". For those who have heard the CD, now we know how this traditional blues nirvana was created. Mako admits it was a highlight in the making of this series to have been in the studio with these legends. Mudcat Ward provides plenty of insight about himself and being a blues bassist in the closing segment. He claims that the blues choose him and that he honed his chops by backing the likes of Big Mama Thornton when they came through town looking for a backing band. By far, the role of the bass player is to make the front player sound good. To be a good bass player you have to listen and understand what is going on. You have to be able to change timing and keys on the fly.
Unlike the first episode, there was no featured video this time. However this show had far superior interview segues which allowed the interview clips to flow into each other without disruption. Some of the artists interviewed are lesser known than others. Other than the featured interview with Mudcat, the interview segments are too brief to really get to know the artists. However they have been wisely edited together with a common factor of having been influenced in some way by their fathers. Those interviewed included: Doyle Bramhall II, Monster Mike Welch, Big Joe Maher, Chris Thomas King, Kenny Neal, Shawn Kellerman, Sherman Robertson, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, Ronnie Baker Brooks, John Hammond, Donald Kinsey, Johnny V, Snooky Pryor, Mel Brown, Pinetop Perkins, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith and Bob Stroger.
Look for reviews of the remaining 4 episodes to be added over the next few weeks.
For further information, contact: www.talkinblues.com
"TaLkin' bLuEs" TV Series - Episode 3
"TaLkin' bLuEs" TV Series - Episode 1
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