Eddie King
@ Biscuits & Blues, January 23, 1998


Eddie King
Biscuits & Blues 1/23/98
Photo © 1998 by Ray Stiles
All rights reserved
Eddie King, born Edward Lewis Davis Milton on April 21, 1938 in Talledga, Alabama, is one of the large number of little known blues men laboring in near obscurity yet deserving wider recognition. Eddie King was part of the Chicago south and west side sound in the late 1950ís and 1960ís, growing up and playing with friends Luther Allison, Eddie C. Campbell, Magic Sam, Junior Wells and Freddie King.

After his mother died in 1950 he moved to Kentucky with some of his brothers and sisters, and then on to Chicago in 1954 with an uncle. His earliest musical influences were his parents. His dad played guitar and his mom sang. "My dad played country blues just like John Lee Hooker." Eddie was influenced by Muddy, Wolf and Junior Wells and the rest of the players on Maxwell Street. He learned guitar by pressing his face up against the storefront windows watching the guitar player. He would memorize how the guitar player placed his fingers on the fret board then run home and tried to repeat the same pattern.

It wasnít long before he started getting a reputation as a guitar player to be reckoned with. He talked about his "cutting heads" days on the south and west side with Buddy Guy and Freddie King. He said "they were better guitar players than I was but I had them scared, you know like Cassias Clay, I could put on a show." Eddie does have that swagger. He may be little is stature, but he sure knows how to pack a punch.


Eddie King
Biscuits & Blues 1/23/98
Photo © 1998 by Tom Asp
All rights reserved
Here is some other background on Eddie to bring us up to date. Regarding his name he said he was called Little Eddie (because of his size) and then Little Eddie King by friends because his guitar playing sounded like B.B. King. Little Mac Simmons gave him his first big break with Eddie on guitar and Detroit Junior on piano. He did a little recording with Willie Dixon and played second guitar on several Sonny Boy Williamson sides in 1960. Another important period in his career was as lead guitarist with Koko Taylor, spending more that 20 years with her during the 1970ís and 80ís. For the past 20 years he has lived in Peoria. He is turning 60 this year and he said he "still canít figure out what age does yet because I still have the energy of a young man." He recently release a very well received CD on Roesch Records (pronounced like fresh) called Another Cowís Dead (Roesch Records, RR0035) and is currently nominated for a W.C. Handy award for best comeback album of the year.


Eddie King
Biscuits & Blues 1/23/98
Photo © 1998 by Tom Asp
All rights reserved
Eddie King is a little guy with a big heart, loads of talent and genuine likeableness. He has that soul shouter quality in some of his vocals, is a very good singer and guitar player, somewhat styled after B.B. King. His guitar playing is a very tasteful straight ahead electric blues, not too flashy, but with a lots of soulful feeling and no wasted notes. He plays a variety of styles from the urban blues of Albert King, to the some county blues, to southern soul, to a more sophisticated B.B. King style and pulls it all together with an approach that quickly earns your respect. He also likes to mix up his songs for the crowd, playing blues, soul and R&B depending on how he is reading the audience at the moment.

On his first visit to the Twin Cities he was joined by Jamie Jenkins on bass, Kevin Gray and drums and Doug Daniels on Sax and keyboards. Bass player Jenkins has been with Eddie for several years now and they have a "good groove going" according to Eddie. During the show at Biscuits and Blues he played a fiery (chilly?) Albert Collins "If You Love Me Like You Say," and several songs from his new CD that demonstrated his fine song writing abilities ("Angel of Mercy" and "If Loving You Is Wrong").

Eddie King
Biscuits & Blues 1/23/98
Photo © 1998 by Tom Asp
All rights reserved
His song "Kitty Kat" featured his good sense of humor in the lyrics, some great rhythm and a fat guitar sound. During this song he walked up stairs while playing a solo to the astonished crowd upstairs and to the delight of the good size audience down stairs. At the start of the second set he said "If you donít have the new CD youíre missing out on something. If you have a bad heart donít buy it." Later in the evening he did another walk about the audience playing right to each individual, making them feel important (even that one lone guy way in the back of the room). Eddie King said he just wants to perform and wants people to like him. And like him we did!






Mailbox E-mail Ray Stiles at: mnblues@aol.com

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Copyright © 1998 by Ray M. Stiles
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the author.