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16.8.08

Johnny Winter




Johnny Winter - And - 1970 - Columbia

Johnny Winter, the great Texas blues guitarist put together a new band, "And" in 1970, and is joined by the great Rick Derringer, who coproduces and provides such great songs as "Look Up," "Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo," "On The Limb," and "Funky Music." Johnny Winter is a lifelong devotee of Muddy Waters, whose influences can be heard throughout this album. There is a great band of crack musicians assembled on this album which is a fine example of early seventies blues rock. Check out three of Johnny Winters' great albums, "The Progressive Blues Experiment," "Second Winter" and "Live In NYC '97." Although Johnny Winter has achived many accolades in his career, he has still not achieved the fame of much less talented blues rock artists.

TRACKS / COMPOSERS

"Guess I'll Go Away" (Johnny Winter) (3:28)
"Ain't That A Kindness" (Mark Klingman) (3:29)
"No Time To Live" (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood) 4:66
"Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo" (Rick Derringer) (3:31)
"Am I Here?" (Randy Zehringer) (3:24)
"Look Up" (Rick Derringer) (3:34)
"Prodigal Son" (Johnny Winter) (4:18)
"On The Limb" (Rick Derringer) (3:36)
"Let The Music Play" (Allan Nicholls, Otis Stephens) (3:15)
"Nothing Left" (Johnny Winter) (3:30)
"Funky Music" (Rick Derringer) (4:55)

BAND

Johnny Winter - Vocals, Guitar, Harmonica
Rick Derringer - Vocals, Guitar
Randy Jo Hobbs - Bass
Randy Zehringer - Percussion

REVIEW

A bad title for a terrific album. The title implies: Superstar and ... the boys. But this album is much more than Johnny Winter being Mister Ultimate Speedfingers while an anonymous rhythm section tries to keep up. Johnny plays with his new band, not on top of them. The new band consists of three ex-McCoys, a dyed-in-the-wool Rock Band. They still are. And good musicians—especially Rick Derringer, the guitarist-singer who shares the limelight with Johnny Winter. This album contains—surprise!—no blues. It is Rock and Roll at its very best. Good, solid songs—a few of them instant classics. The singing is funky, full of raspy screams, pushing the music towards some sort of ultimate ... edge. The soul of the album is the interplay between Johnny Winter and Rick Derringer. On stage, it's easy to see how it works. Derringer plays guitar straight from the groin: solid-snaky rock lines. The root. Winter seems to play guitar in a state of transported ecstasy, like the bare electric skeleton of rock dancing in the mind-juice river. The branch. Winter's guitar-imagination has greater scope than Derringer's. Winter's guitar builds on Derringer's, elaborating, decorating, getting slinky and sliding right out of your brain. All without ever losing the beat, the sexual thread of the music. Together, they sound like Hendrix playing behind Clapton. In fact, the album will remind you of the best moments of early Hendrix and early Cream. "Am I Really Here" sounds much like Cream's "White Room." The vocal to "Rock and Roll Hoochiekoo" has the same slide-punch inflections as Hendrix's singing. There are more examples of Influences At Work Here, but Winter and Derringer are much too good to be mere imitations. They have learned; they have transcended their influences and come up with something all their own. Playing in a rock context has improved Winter's playing (if you can believe that possible). He seems more down-to-earth, more believable. You can dance to it. In fact, you'd better. The material is surprisingly good — especially Derringer's compositions. "Rock and Roll Hoochiekoo" and "Funky Music" are both sturdy good-time rockers, and would make fine singles. Winter's compositions, though intense and moving, tend to lack form. They sometimes, as on "Nothing Left," fall apart in your ear. But what the hell. This is fine stuff, by far the best thing Johnny Winter has done. And that's saying something. (RS 69) © David Gancher, Posted: Oct 29, 1970, © 2008 Rolling Stone

BIO

Blues guitarist Winter became a major star in the late '60s and early '70s. Since that time he's confirmed his reputation in the blues by working with Muddy Waters and continuing to play in the style, despite musical fashion. Born in Beaumont, TX, Winter formed his first band at 14 with his brother Edgar in Beaumont, and spent his youth in recording studios cutting regional singles and in bars playing the blues. His discovery on a national level came via an article in Rolling Stone in 1968, which led to a management contract with New York club owner Steve Paul and a record deal with Columbia. His debut album (there are numerous albums of juvenilia), Johnny Winter, reached the charts in 1969. Starting out with a trio, Winter later formed a band with former members of the McCoys, including second guitarist Rick Derringer. It was called Johnny Winter And. He achieved a sales peak in 1971 with the gold-selling Live/Johnny Winter And. He returned in 1973 with Still Alive and Well, his highest-charting album. His albums became more overtly blues-oriented in the late '70s and he also produced several albums for Muddy Waters. In the '80s he switched to the blues label Alligator for three albums, and has since recorded for the labels MCA and Pointblank/Virgin. The early-2000s were quiet as far as new Winter recordings, but there were a number of significant reissues. Alligator issued the best of their years with the artist as Deluxe Edition in 2001, Columbia/Legacy covered his 1969-1971 period with their 2002 release Best of Johnny Winter, and Fuel 2000 came up with Winter's earliest recordings and compiled them on 2003's Winter Essentials 1960-1967. Sony reissued Winter's 1969 self-titled album with five bonus tracks in 2004, the same year the man returned with his first new album in nearly eight years, I'm a Bluesman. The archival reissues continued with Fuel's Introduction to Johnny Winter in 2006, which collected sides Winter recorded in his pre-Columbia years between 1960 and 1967 for the Dart, KCRO, Frolic, Todd, Hall-Way, and Pacemaker imprints. © William Ruhlmann, All Music Guide

BIO (Wikipedia)

John Dawson "Johnny" Winter III (born on 23 February 1944 in Beaumont, Texas, USA) is an American blues guitarist, singer and producer. He is the first son of John and Edwina Winter who were very much responsible for both Johnny's and younger brother Edgar Winter's early musical awareness. Both Johnny and Edgar have albinism. Johnny began performing at an early age with Edgar. His recording career began at the age of 15, when their band Johnny and the Jammers released "School Day Blues" on a Houston record label. During this same period, he was able to see performances by classic blues artists such as Muddy Waters, B. B. King and Bobby Bland. In 1968, Winter began playing in a trio with bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Uncle John Turner. An article in Rolling Stone magazine written by Larry Sepulvado helped generate interest in the group. The album Johnny Winter was released near the end of that year. In 1969 they performed at numerous rock festivals including Woodstock. Contrary to urban legend, however, Johnny did not perform with Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison on the infamous Hendrix bootleg recording "Woke up this Morning and Found Myself Dead" done at New York City's Scene Club. He has said, "Oh, I never even met Jim Morrison! There's a whole album of Jimi and Jim and I'm supposedly on the album but I don't think I am `cause I never met Jim Morrison in my life! I'm sure I never, never played with Jim Morrison at all! I don't know how that [rumour] got started." Winter struggled with a heroin addiction in the early part of his career. After eventually recovering from the addiction, in 1973, he returned to the music scene in classic form with Still Alive and Well, a song written by Rick Derringer saluting Winter for overcoming his addiction. In live performances, Winter often tells the story about how, as a child, he dreamed of playing with the blues guitarist Muddy Waters. In 1977, he accomplished this goal and produced the Muddy Waters album Hard Again. In 1978, he experienced continued success with the production of Waters' I'm Ready. He followed this in 1980, by producing Muddy's final effort, the album King Bee. Their partnership produced a number of Grammy-winning recordings throughout, and he recorded the album Nothing but the Blues with members from Muddy Waters' band. There are quite a few Johnny Winter albums that are considered "non-official." A majority of these albums were produced by Roy Ames, owner of Home Cooking Records/ Clarity Music Publishing. According to a Houston Press article dated Aug 28, 2003, Johnny Winter left town for the express purpose of getting away from him. Roy Ames died on August 14, 2003 of natural causes at age 66. As Ames left no obvious heirs, the ownership rights of the Ames master recordings remains unclear. As Johnny stated in an interview when the subject of Roy Ames came up, "This guy has screwed so many people it makes me mad to even talk about him." In a recent interview for North Bay Bohemian, a Northern California weekly, Johnny explained his current approach to music: "Most of the stuff I do is fairly old," he says, which befits the lifelong bluesman. But don't expect to hear "Rock 'n' Roll Hoochie Koo," even though that was one of his signature songs back in the day. On this tour, Winter says firmly, "we're not playing any rock and roll at all." Despite experiencing several health crises in recent years, rendering him incapable of performing without being seated, Winter still tours regularly. Sitting down, the venerated musician concentrates on blues numbers and eschews his rock hits. Winter produced two Grammy winning albums by Muddy Waters, Hard Again and I'm Ready. At least three of his own albums were also nominated for Grammy awards. He was one of the many acts to perform at the Woodstock Festival, playing a nine song set that featured his brother Edgar on two of the songs. He was on the cover of the first Guitar World in 1980. In 1988, he was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame. The Smashing Pumpkins paid homage to Winter by recording an instrumental song titled Tribute to Johnny, in which they try to emulate Winter's unique sound. The song was originally intended for their highly acclaimed 1995 album Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness but was rejected and eventually turned as b-side on their Zero single and also was included in their box-set The Aeroplane Flies High.

5 comments:

A.O.O.F.C said...

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wajorama said...

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A.O.O.F.C said...

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Fuzz said...

Saw these guys play this 9-26-70. Dyno mite!
I can't remember if I bought the LP before or after. Thanx.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi Fuzz. Thanks for comment. These guys could teach some of todays so called "rock" bands a few tricks. Keep in touch with A.O.O F.C