Get this crazy baby off my head!


Chris Jones & Steve Baker

Chris Jones & Steve Baker - Smoke and Noise - 2002 - Acoustic Music

"Though we have the greatest respect for the blues' tradition, we're not purists. The only way to touch people's hearts is to play with passion and commitment." So says harmonica maestro Steve Baker, and his duo partner Chris Jones adds: "The blues has as many different faces as the musicians who have played it down through the years. We do our best tolive up to this tradition." Their music is a seething mix of folk, acoustic blues and rock'n'roll. Outside their duo, Jones and Baker have long enjoyed excellent reputations as top-class accompanists, but together they share a particularly deep musical partnership, which brings out the very best of their individual capabilities. The combination of Chris Jones' expressive voice and inimitable guitar groove - played mostly in various open tunings - and the sometimes earthy, sometimes ethereal sound of Baker's harp, creates a unique energy which is all their own. Passion and awareness of tradition without shying away from tasteful modernisms are definitely central characteristics of their style. Modern acoustic blues-based music at its best! © www.bluesculture.com

You may not have heard of these musicians, but this is music of the highest calibre, where traditional blues, folk and acoustic rock are blended into a superb album. Despite being well known in blues circles in contintental Europe, especially Germany, and having collaborated with some great musicians, the late Chris Jones, and Steve Baker, individually or collectively never really received the recognition they deserve. This is not unusual for musicians who avoid commercialism and play traditional music of this type. If you like Robert Johnson, and more modern blues in the Little Feat style, you should enjoy this album which is HR by A.O.O.F.C. Please buy Chris Jones' great "No Looking Back" and "Free Man." albums, and if you can find it, buy the great "Abi Wallenstein & Steve Baker , "In Your Face" album.


1. Soul Storm Comin' - (Jones/Sunnyland)
2. I Don’t Know Why - (Chr. Jones)
3. Bourgeois Blues - (Ledbetter/Lomax)
4. Roadhouses & Automobiles - (Chr. Jones)
5. God Moves On The Water - (W. Johnson/Chr. Jones)
6. Ain’t Got Love - (Chr. Jones)
7. Willing - (L. George)
8. If Walls Could Talk - (B. Miller)
9. Long After You’re Gone - (Chr. Jones)
10. Set 'Em Up, Joe - (Chr. Jones)
11. Cold Creature - (Chr. Jones)
12. St. James Infirmary - (Traditional)


Chris Jones - Guitars, Lead Vocal
Steve Baker - Harmonica, Backing Vocal


"Smoke and Noise" is the third album on Acoustic Music by American guitarist-singer Chris Jones and English harmonica virtuoso Steve Baker - and they just keep getting better ! For years now they have been highly rated for their individual technique and their tightness as a duo by musicians, critics and blues connoisseurs alike, but have still to break though to the wider public they undoubtedly deserve. This album is earthy, soulful, skillfully crafted music of the highest quality - a masterly fusion of traditional blues, rock & roll, folk and acoustic funk that defies classification. With only guitar, vocals and blues harp they sound like a full band - on this superbly recorded live concert in Germany, which catches all the energy and intimacy of their stage performance. There are 8 excellent new Chris Jones compositions, and great new interpretations of Leadbelly's "Bourgeois Blues", Lowell George's "Willin", Bobby Miller's "If These Walls Could Talk" and the public domain classic "St James Infirmary". © 2007 Discovery Records -Specialist Music CDs & DVDs

With refreshing directness and dynamic intensity, the live recording "Smoke and Noise" captures the concentrated energy which one of the finest and most original blues duos performing today puts over on stage. Guitarist/singer Chris Jones and harp virtuoso Steve Baker need no introduction to blues lovers - through countless concerts these two exceptional musicians have won the hearts of a growing number of fans and garnered enthusiastic press reports along the way. The combination of Jones’ expressive vocals and unmistakable picking style with Baker’s uniquely recognizable harmonica sound creates its own category of musical energy. Earthy, soulful and skillfully crafted acoustic music of the highest quality – "Smoke and Noise" is a masterly fusion of traditional blues, rock&roll, songs, ballads and acoustic funk which defies classification. © http://jazz-blues-funk.nnm.ru/chris_jones_steve_baker_smoke_and_noise

Chris Jones (guitar, vocals) and Steve Baker (blues harp) take over the "Bourgeois Town" of Fulda to lay down some live tracks in the smoke and the noise of the German "Backstage" club, covering a fruitful ten year collaboration. It's literally rock'n'roll without a band. Both are extraordinary musicians and know how to play. Both, on their own as well as blending together. Most songs have been written by Chris. They cover a wide range of styles - country blues, folk, almost rock, ballads -, and a brilliant songwriter he is at times. Additionally there's the odd by Huddie Leadbetter, Lowell George, Bobby Miller, and finally the traditional "St. James Infirmary Blues". © The Mollis - Editors of FolkWorld; Published 02/2004


Christopher Paul Jones, credited on albums as Chris Jones, (November 11, 1958 - September 13, 2005) was an American musician (guitars, vocals) and composer. He was born in Reno, Nevada, but lived in Germany ever since he had joined the U.S. Army for three years. At the age of five, Jones began playing the guitar. A few years later, he decided to become a professional musician and when he was 11 years old, he got admitted to a program at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland. There he discovered the idol of his younger years, Johann Sebastian Bach, to whom he dedicated his Sonata in D. For this sonata, Jones was awarded the conservatory's Young Composer of the Year award. Shortly thereafter, he discovered the blues and started listening to Robert Johnson, James Taylor and Little Feat. In 1976, Jones joined the U.S. Army and was stationed in Adenine's, Germany. During this time, the foundation for his musical career in Europe was laid. Over the following decades, he played guitar on albums of artists like Sara K., Allan Taylor and Reinhard Mey. He also toured and recorded solo and with the Blues harp musician Steve Baker. In August 2005, Jones was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in an advanced stage. He died on September 13, 2005, in Northeim, Germany. Like many American musicians, he did not have any health insurance and was not able to pay the hospital fees, but friends and other musicians helped him out either personally or by staging charity concerts. In 2000, Chris began to return to the states on a regular basis to visit various ailing family members, starting with his brother, Jan, who died shortly after. When Chris was on the east coast he would stay with friend Darin D'Onofrio and along with many shows at Darin's club, Otter Point Station, he would also play house concerts. With Allen Taylor, Chris played The Kennedy Center in Washington DC, amazing many of DC's elite with his ability to use a guitar to produce pure emotion. "If this is the end of the line, you ain't gonna hear me cryin', cause it's been a damn good run!" Christopher Paul Jones 2005. Jones' repertoire encompassed various musical styles, among them blues, country, folk and rock'n'roll. Many of his songs can't be easily placed into a specific genre. Most of the time, he played handmade Lakewood acoustic guitars and dobros.


"For years I dreamed of a series-made traditional wooden body harmonica with improved covers, assembled with screws. With the Marine Band Deluxe, this dream has finally become reality." Steve Baker is one of today's most influential harp players and an integral part of the modern harmonica scene. He was born and raised in London, England and now lives near Hamburg, Germany, where he first came in the late 1970s with the legendary jugband "Have Mercy". Steve has been a full-time professional for over 30 years and has earned an enviable reputation as an innovator and pioneer on this frequently under-estimated instrument. He has developed an instantly recognizable original style which is both expressive and lyrical, but is never merely an end in itself. It puts the music first and his playing is always directed at bringing out the best in the song rather than emphasizing his undoubted virtuosity. His subtle and rhythmically accented phrasing, combined with a rich command of timbre and tone, communicates an emotional intensity and depth of feeling which is rarely heard on the harmonica. For this reason he is often regarded as one of those players who have revitalized the instrument in Europe, and as one of its leading exponents worldwide. His unique sound draws on the blues harmonica tradition and combines it with elements from country, folk, funk, soul and jazz to create an exciting and individual fusion, which transcends stylistic boundaries while sounding totally natural. Steve Baker appears live most frequently with Abi Wallenstein & Blues Culture (www.bluesculture.com), averaging at least 50-60 shows a year in Germany and elsewhere. He is also appearing again in a duo with the excellent singer/guitarist Dick Bird, with whom he has a musical association going back over 30 years. Until the latter's untimely death in autumn 2005, Steve performed and recorded regularly with guitarist/songwriter extraordinaire Chris Jones. Jones and Baker released four critically acclaimed CDs together on Acoustic Music Records and toured in Australia, Poland, Russia and the USA as well as in western Europe. Steve has also made hundreds of recordings as a studio musician and can be heard on a wide variety of CD, film and TV productions. Since 1987 he has worked as a consultant for the worldwide leader in harmonica manufacture, Hohner, and has been closely involved in the development of several new models including the recently released Marine Band Deluxe. Steve is also a highly regarded author of harmonica literature and has written a number of instructional books. "The Harp Handbook" (Music Sales), first published in 1990 and now in its 4th edition, is considered the standard work on the diatonic harp and is often referred to as the "harmonica player's bible". The CD-ROM "Interactive Blues Harp Workshop" (1999, Voggenreiter) was the first work of its kind in this field. In 2000 and 2003 he published volumes 1 & 2 of his series "Blues Harmonica Playalongs" (available from Mel Bay in the USA/Canada and Music sales elsewhere). He is currently working on volume 3. Alongside these activities, Steve presente regular clinics in music stores and is one of the most active figures in harmonica education in Europe. In 2000 he gave the first ever course for harmonica at the renowned Schorndorf Guitar Days. Despite the initial scepsis of the organisers, his class was rapidly booked out and the harmonica course has subsequently become an essential part of the event. In 2003 Steve initiated the Harmonica Masters Workshops in Trossingen, home of the Hohner production facilities in Germany. The positive response (over 80 players from all over Europe took part) has led to sequels in 2004 and 2006. In 2004 he also gave a well attended harp course for the Mediterranean Music School in Tuscany. © www.hohner.eu/index.php?715


td said...

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Can you help?


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

High td. I don't use that file host anymore...too complicated! Try


Thanks, & keep in touch

Anonymous said...

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

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