Get this crazy baby off my head!


Lacy Gibson

Lacy Gibson - Switchy Titchy - 1982 - Black Magic

Lacy Gibson has had a long and varied career, mainly as a sideman and/or musical director for bigger stars. An excellent instrumentalist, at home in blues, jazz, or rock, he has recorded with artists as varied as Sun Ra, Duke Ellington, Junior Wells, and Buddy Guy. He plays guitar with understated precision and rhythmic authority, very like the great Robert Cray. Although Lacy Gibson's recorded solo output is very sparse, "Switchy Titchy" is a well above average modern Chicago blues album, and a good example of Lacy's talents. The back up musicians are pure class, especially Abe Locke on horns. Buy his 1996 "Crying For My Baby" album.


1 Take My Love - John
2 Easy Woman - Gibson
3 Quaker City - Dogget
4 My Love Is Real - Gibson
5 Somebody Somewhere - Gibson
6 Come Back Baby - Trad
7 Switchy Titchy - Gibson
8 You Better Be Sure - McAdoo
9 Five Long Years - Boyd
10 Lucky Lou - Williams


Lacy Gibson (Guitar), (Vocals)
Snapper Mitchum (Bass (Electric)
Allen Batts (Piano)
Sunnyland Slim (Piano)
Abe Locke (Sax (Tenor))
Robert Covington (Drums)


Lacy Gibson's Switchy Titchy is one of those compact discs that seemed unspectacular when it was first released on vinyl, but upon reissue proves to be a purer blues product than much of what initially overshadowed it. This 1982 session features the Chicago guitarist backed by a compact combo that included pianist Sunnyland Slim and reedman Abb Locke. Gibson's guitar style is rhythmic and chord-oriented, with rather hinky lead breaks. Anyone fond of the sort of playing that influenced Rusty Zinn and Rick Holmstrom will find him of interest. His voice isn't extremely strong, but it has an appealing burnish. Some cuts have a rock'n'roll zest to them, most notably "Somebody Somewhere," which is much in the style of Little Richard sans those trademark falsetto whoops. The opening "Take My Love" is similarly lively, with paint-peeling saxophone from Locke. The title track is too much on the cute side; better is "Easy Woman," low and slow, with appropriately mournful piano work from Sunnyland. Gibson's guitar break is jazzy, with a brief but tasty Wes Montgomery-type fillip in one of the choruses. Gibson also does two instrumentals, one a positively perky take on a Bill Doggett oldie, "Quaker State." It's good, but downright killer is his version of "Lucky Lou," an obscure but influential Jody Williams item. Otis Rush copied it rather flagrantly on "All Your Love," and it additionally foretold everything that ever happened in the genre of surf guitar. Gibson does it up in masterful guitar noir style, backed by rumbling tom-toms, speaker-rattling bass and sax that sounds like ripping leather. Sound quality is a bit bass-y, and the 36 minutes or so of playing time is a short count for those used to CD overkill. But all in all, it's good music from one of Chicago's seasoned sidemen in a rare role as bandleader. Liner notes by Dick Shurman are generous and informative. © Tim Schuller, © 1996 by Blues Access, Boulder, CO, USA.

Switchy Titchy is the best record Lacy Gibson has recorded to date. Gibson's variation on Chicago blues includes some horns pinched from Southern soul-blues records, and it's a little bit more laidback than the pile-driving sound often associated with the style. He makes up for the relaxed pace with his round, clean guitar tones and big, powerful vocals, both of which are spotlighted throughout Switchy Titchy. Best of all, that playing is married to a strong song selection, featuring a couple of originals and a lot of forgotten classics. That unpredictable song selection makes the entire album sound fresh and lifts the record above many of its modern blues peers. © Thom Owens, All Music Guide


Born 1 May 1936, Salisbury, North Carolina, USA. Gibson's family settled in Chicago in 1949 and he quickly became involved in the city's blues scene, receiving tips on blues guitar playing from musicians such as Muddy Waters and T-Bone Walker. Besides working with innumerable blues artists, he was also involved in the jazz scene. He recorded with Buddy Guy in 1963 and worked on many sessions. Gibson had two singles of his own on the Repeto label, and had material released on albums by the Alligator, Red Lightnin', El Saturn, and Black Magic labels. He is a strong vocalist and very talented blues guitarist who seems to be equally at home in small west-side Chicago bars or European concert halls. [ Source: Encyclopedia of Popular Music ]


Slowly returning to musical action following major surgery, guitarist Lacy Gibson has been an underappreciated figure on the Windy City circuit for decades. Lacy and his family left North Carolina for Chicago in 1949. It didn't take long for Gibson to grow entranced by the local action -- he learned from veterans Sunnyland Slim and Muddy Waters and picked up pointers from immaculate axemen Lefty Bates, Matt "Guitar" Murphy, and Wayne Bennett. Gibson made a name for himself as a session player in 1963, assuming rhythm guitar duties on sides by Willie Mabon for USA, Billy "The Kid" Emerson for M-Pac!, and Buddy Guy on Chess. Gibson made his vocal debut on the self-penned blues ballad "My Love Is Real" at Chess the same year, though it wasn't released at the time (when it belatedly emerged, it was mistakenly attributed to Guy). A couple of bargain basement 45s for the remarkably obscure Repeto logo (that's precisely where they were done -- in Lacy Gibson's basement!) preceded Gibson's inconsistent album debut for then-brother-in-law Sun Ra's El Saturn label. Ralph Bass produced an album by Gibson in 1977, but the results weren't issued at the time (Delmark is currently releasing the set domestically). A stint as Son Seals's rhythm axeman (he's on Seals's Live and Burning LP) provided an entree to Alligator Records, which included four fine sides by Gibson on its second batch of Living Chicago Blues anthologies in 1980. Best of all was a Dick Shurman-produced album for the Dutch Black Magic logo in 1982, Switchy Titchy, that brilliantly spotlighted Gibson's clean fretwork and hearty vocals. After he regained his health in the mid-'90s, Lacy Gibson entered the studio and recorded Crying for My Baby, which was released in 1996. © 2008 GetBack Media Inc. All Rights Reserved.


Anonymous said...

link is dead, can you please re-up, thanks

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