New Orleans Street Singer [Bonus Tracks]

New Orleans Street Singer [Bonus Tracks]

by Snooks EaglinSnooks Eaglin

CD(Bonus Tracks)

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Ford "Snooks" Eaglin's first released recordings, the ones collected here, suggested to the world that Eaglin was a great lost country-blues player when he was, in fact, an excellent electric guitar player and a gospel-influenced singer who much preferred playing R&B with a band. When folklorist Harry Oster heard Eaglin busking with his guitar on a street in the French Quarter in 1958, he whisked him over to Louisiana State University and recorded the tracks collected here, either assuming that Eaglin was a folk artist, or possibly even asking him to portray one for the sake of the recording. Either way, New Orleans Street Singer was a revelation when it was released by Folkways Records a year later in 1959, presenting to the world a gifted guitar player and a naturally soulful singer who brought a kind of jazzy New Orleans feel and groove to the folk-blues standards he was covering. The album is no less a revelation in the 21st century in this expanded edition from Smithsonian Folkways, although hindsight allows us to realize that the folk stance was probably more Oster's preference than Eaglin's. The guitar work is quick and fluid, with lead bursts that surprise and delight, continually settling on unexpected but highly effective chordal resolves (the original instrumental "Sophisticated Blues" is a case in point), and the singing throughout is steady and informed, sounding a bit like Ray Charles, with tinges of both gospel and jazz phrasing. In Eaglin's hands traditional fare like "Saint James Infirmary," the near-ragtime "High Society," and the familiar "Mama, Don't You Tear My Clothes" (a variant of "Baby, Let Me Follow You Down") all become reborn and re-formed into definitive versions. The seven additional tracks expand the original album to around 70 minutes in length, and the alternate takes included of "Careless Love," "Driftin' Blues," and "The Lonesome Road" show that Eaglin didn't necessarily approach a song the same way twice in a row.

Product Details

Release Date: 08/30/2005
Label: Smithsonian Folkways
UPC: 0093074016527
catalogNumber: 40165
Rank: 45985

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Snooks Eaglin   Primary Artist,Guitar,Vocals

Technical Credits

Charles Brown   Composer
Walter Davis   Composer
Snooks Eaglin   Composer
Jimmy McCracklin   Composer
Memphis Slim   Composer
Dave Bartholomew   Composer
Sam Hopkins   Composer
Richard M. Jones   Composer
Mercy Dee Walton   Composer
Armand Piron   Composer
Gene Austin   Composer
Richard Burgess   Marketing,Marketing Coordinator
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup   Composer
Fats Domino   Composer
Shifty Henry   Composer
Harry Oster   Producer,Engineer
Rudy Toombs   Composer
Elijah Wald   Liner Notes,Annotation
Aaron Walker   Composer
Clarence Williams   Composer
Lee Michael Demsey   Contributor
John "BJ John" Smith   Marketing
Eddie Williams   Composer
Mark Gustafson   Marketing
Helen Lindsay   Public Relations
Joe Parisi   Cover Illustration
Betty Derbyshire   Financial Director
Todd Dodds   Management
Nathaniel Shilkret   Composer

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