In my show and on this CD I try to share my love of 20s and 30s blues. We recorded these songs in the same way musicians recorded at that time, one take maybe two and that’s it. If it did not work it did not go out. My excellent producer Mike West and I did very little post production so the recordings are more authentic, organic and spontaneous. Hope you enjoy them.
Kansas City Blues is roughly based on the 1927 “Jim Jackson’s Original Kansas City Blues” but he would never recognize it. C Rag, is a modern tune in one of the dominant styles of the day, Piedmont or ragtime. Bad Luck with Women is an original with the rhumba beat and feel of one of the hot spots of early blues and all music, New Orleans. Cascade Rag is an up tempo rag by my friend Kenny Sultan. Little Red Rooster was written by the great Willie Dixon, and recorded by Howlin’ Wolf drawing from Charlie Patton and Memphis Minnie.. Boogie Woogie Dance, is an instrumental from Tampa Red, “The Guitar Wizard.” the first black musician to play the national steel-bodied resonator guitar (his was gold plated.) St James’ Infirmary Blues is an old Anglo-Irish, folk blues now very traditional. Buck Dancer’s Choice is a dance tune for house parties and juke joints with a nod to Merle Travis, Hesitation Blues, was originally recorded in 1919 for the RCA Victor Talking Machine Company and done by scores of artists since. Lightning Strikes is a lively Texas shuffle boogie. Walking Blues, is from the great Robert Johnson by way of his mentors, Son House Charlie Patton and others.
COMMENTS AND REVIEWS;
I am thoroughly enjoying the C.D. and find that Mr. Nichols sings “catchy” music that tend to go over and over in your mind, well after you’ve stopped listening – i.e., “I’m gonna move to Kansas City …,” “I’ve got bad luck with women …,” – a tune I don’t need to be singing out loud since I am one … a woman, that is -- not a “bad luck type” woman though!
KANSAS CITY BLUES NEW REVIEW
Carol Babcok April 24, 2013
Patrick alternated between delta and country blues, surrounding each song with its historical context. He told stories about single songs performed by different people in different decades and covered artists including Robert Johnson, Jimmy Reed, Peetie Wheatstraw, Howlin’ Wolf, Blind Blake and Lazy Lester Johnson.
Pat’s narrative not only gave the song more meaning but also provided an effective segue through each set. . . . Patrick believes that when we talk about the performers and their music we give due credit to our roots.
The styles featured . . . varied from finger picking his acoustic guitar to playing slide on a national steel resonator. This may be simple instrumentation, but Pat’s rich mellow sound drew even the casual patrons and hapless diners in. The novices were introduced and compelled to learn more while the seasoned listeners were satisfied by the skilled performance reminded of why they loved the blues.
It is truly refreshing to hear excellent acoustic blues, rich in meaning and performed by a brilliant talent.
BOB BUTLER KANSAS CITY ART CRITIC
“Patrick Nichols’ performance kicked off the Library’s America’s Music series in spectacular form. His guitar playing – especially on the splendid National steel – was infectious. His explanations of the songs to an audience that may not have known much about the blues were informative. . . . “Above all else, Patrick was supremely entertaining.