Rockstar Records Limited, Cork, Ireland
Rhythm Bomb Records – Koko-Mojo Records – Atomicat – Richard-Weize-Archives
KMCD047 Southern Bred Texas R&B Rockers (Texas 04)
Compilation: Mark Armstrong
Artwork: Michael van Merwyk
Mastering: Heiko Schulz for Black Shack Recordings
‘I’m Tore Down’, ‘Southern Bred Texas R&B Rockers’ (Koko Mojo KM-CD-47) offers more high-quality music on our fourth album of Texas Bred Rhythm & Blues artists. The concept finds traditional Blues musicians, early Rhythm & Blues performers and some new breed Rock ‘N’ Roll artists sitting comfortably together on the 28-track album.
The concept of these albums allows a variety of wide-ranging black music chosen by the theme of birth to be collected onto the albums. This makes the aural sound of the series different from that of a label-based collection.
The mixed variety of artists include hitmakers, Bobby Day, Ray Sharpe and Marie Adams from the Johnny Otis Show. Piano rockers are heard from; Roy Hawkins, Floyd Dixon, Ivory Joe Hunter, Charles Brown and Amos Milburn and chanteuse Camille Howard all of whom offer different techniques of keyboard playing.
The Downhome Blues comes from traditional roots performers; Harmonica Slim and Lightnin’ Hopkins. The guitar Blues artists include Pee Wee Crayton, Barbara Lynn, and Freddy King and with horns to drive the song along Cal Valentine and The Texas Rockers have a catchy hook in their instrumental tune. The album climaxes with the wild and raucous Blues rocker from Young Jessie. Together all the artists featured perform a variety of music and many styles of Roots music are featured on I’m Tore Down.
As with every album, there is more music to hear and enjoy and the vibrant music has a pleasing up-tempo feel throughout.
This ‘Koko Mojo’ album is compiled by well-known Dee Jay and face on the music scene Mark Armstrong, who has been Dee Jaying since his early teen years.
Our albums have; stunning design, sleeve notes, 28 songs, mastered for the best possible sound available. The disc is housed in an attractively designed cardboard sleeve, specially designed to avoid the use of plastic and be environmentally friendly.
The album is great to play at home and perfect for Dee Jays who will find good dance-floor filling songs.
Dee Jay Mark Armstrong
01 Bobby Day That’s All I Want (Byrd) 02:16
02 Roy Hawkins Trouble Makin’ Woman (Hawkins) 02:37
03 Mercy Dee Red Light (Walton) 02:31
04 Calvin Boze Working With My Baby (Boze) 02:14
05 Joe “Papoose” Fritz And His Orchestra I’m Not Suspicious, But (Unknown) 02:25
06 Camille Howard Fire-Ball Boogie (Howard) 02:25
07 Charles Brown and Amos Milburn Educated Fool (Smith) 02:18
08 Joe Houston Shtiggy Boom (Jarvis, Diamond) 02:35
09 Floyd Dixon Roll Baby Roll (Collins, Bocage) 02:16
10 Harmonica Slim Going Back Home (Travis, Glinn) 01:59
11 Lightnin’ Hopkins New York Boogie (Unknown) 02:45
12 Pee Wee Crayton Little Bitty Things (Crayton) 01:47
13 Peppermint Harris My Blues Have Rolled Away (Unknown) 02:02
14 Bud Harper This Woman I Love (Lighteard) 01:47
15 “Smokey” Hogg I’m Looking For My Baby (Hogg) 02:31
16 Marie Adams Ain’t Car Crazy (Charles) 02:45
17 Ivory Joe Hunter You Can’t Stop This Rocking And Rolling (Hunter) 02:16
18 Jesse Powell with The Caddy’s Ain’t You Gonna (Powell, Navarro) 02:17
19 Ray Sharpe Long John (Sharpe) 02:39
20 Andrew ”Smokey” Hogg You’re Gonna Look Like A Monkey (When You Get Old) (Williams, Hill) 02:29
21 T.V. Slim Flat Foot Sam Meets Jim Dandy (aka Flat Foot Sam Made A Bet) (Willis) 02:17
22 Barbara Lynn Teen Age Blues (Ozen) 01:32
23 Freddy King I’m Tore Down (Thompson) 02:37
24 Peppermint Harris She’s My Baby (Unknown) 02:11
25 Freddy King That’s What You Think (Whitfield, Washington) 02:35
26 Cal Valentine & The Texas Rockers The Boogie Twist (Part I) (Lyons) 02:43
27 “Smokey” Hogg Good Mornin’ Baby (Hogg) 02:32
28 Young Jessie I Smell A Rat (Stoller, Leiber) 02:22
The forth exploration of the Lone Star State of Texas Southern Bred artists includes early foot-stomping Rockin’ Blues music, some hit-making artists and more great unknowns. The richness of the music available makes each album of equally high music quality. The music is compiled together to get your pulse moving and the feet onto the dance floor.
The Featured Artists
Artists who reappear in the series have links to their information which has been written on preceding albums.
Bobby Day (Bio KMCD46). He was a Rock ‘n’ Roll and Rhythm & Blues singer with additional talents namely, multi-instrumentalist, music producer and songwriter and That’s All I Want perfectly demonstrates these aspects. Roy Hawkins (Bio KMCD46). His hit recording The Thrill Is Gone has been flipped over and Trouble Makin’ Woman showcases his rocking side. Mercy Dee (Bio KMCD46). The double entendre jump tune Red Light was recorded in Stockton, California and was placed onto a long-play album. Calvin Boze (Bio KMCD46). Continuing the Boze story, he did not record after 1952, but he continued to play at jam sessions around Los Angeles. During Working With My Baby, he sings about finding the perfect woman. In later life he carved out a career as a social worker and school teacher.
Joe ‘Papoose’ Fritz was a saxophonist and singer born Joseph Fritz who lived and died in Houston, Texas (3 November 1924 – 12 June 1983). He served in the navy and is buried in a military cemetery. I’m Not Suspicious, But was a Peacock recording made with His Orchestra. Chanteuse Camille Howard (Bio KMCD46) boogies an up-tempo piano tune Fire-Ball Boogie it was issued as the flip-side of I’m Blue. The legendary pairing of Charles Brown and Amos Millburn (Milburn Bio KMCD39) resulted in the rockin’ Educated Fool which has a New Orleans style to it. Charles Brown birth name Charles Mose Brown (Texas City, Galveston County, Texas 13 September 1922 – Oakland, California, 21 January 1999). I use the name on his memorial and acknowledge other names are cited. His career began as the featured vocalist and pianist in Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers. Trivia in 1949 he became husband number five for singer Mabel Scott.
The record label proclaims the “Fabulous Joe Houston” (Bio KMCD39). As a double treat, Shtiggy Boom was sung by no less than tenor vocalist David Lynch and the Platters. I was fortunate to spend time with Houston at the second Rhythm Riot festival in Camber Sands, England in November 1999. He was smartly dressed in a light coloured three-piece suit, topped off with a cap and Rock Star sunglasses, he was very dapper. Upon his return in 2004 he gave another excellent show, but age was showing, and he passed away thirteen months later. Floyd Dixon (Bio KMCD46). For my ears, Roll Baby Roll has proto-Rock ‘n’ Roll elements with the Rhythm & Blues overtones being smoothed out. Harmonica Slim (Bio KMCD46). After the death of his mother, he gave up the Blues for good and was reborn as a minister. Lightnin’ Hopkins (Bio KMCD39). From an interview published by the Houston Institute For Culture and here part transcribed. “When he went into the studio, he recorded whatever came into his mind.” Let your ears decide on the spontaneity of New York Boogie.
The classy 1961 rhythm filled rocker Little Bitty Things by Pee Wee Crayton (Bio KMCD40) was arranged and conducted by Shorty Rogers with backing from The Evelyn Freeman Singers. Roger’s main career was based in Jazz music. Peppermint Harris (Bio KMCD39). He first recorded in Houston during 1948, as Peppermint Nelson. He had acquired the “Peppermint” sobriquet from a local dance-hall owner. While in a studio during 1949 recording for Bob Shad’s company Sittin’ In With Records, Shad forgot to write Nelson’s name on the tape box. Shad misremembered it as Harris when he came to print up the record labels. My Blues Have Rolled Away and She’s My Baby are both tight rockers from the formative years of Rhythm & Blues. In the late 50s and early 60s Texan “Big” Bud Harper was a San Antonio mainstay who became popular in the Northern Soul scene. The Downbeats were a Texas Bred group which worked together with Harper on the Sarg recording This Woman I Love. This song is from Harper’s formative years.
“Smokey” Hogg (Bio KMCD40). I’m Looking For My Baby, You’re Gonna Look Like A Monkey (When You Get Old) which featured Hadda Brooks on piano and Good Mornin’ Baby. Musically Hogg led a double life, playing downhome guitar Blues and sweet piano Blues. A short bio is offered for non-Texan Hadda Brooks birth name Hattie L. Hapgood (29 October 1916 – 21 November 2002). Vocalist and pianist Brooks lived and worked in Los Angeles, California. Marie Adams birth name Ollie Marie Givens (Linden, Texas 19 October 1925 – Houston, Texas 23 February 1998). She is mainly known through her association with Johnny Otis and her hit recording with The Three Tons of Joy. The captivating rocker Ain’t Car Crazy is a perfect example of her jump songs.
Ivory Joe Hunter (Bio KMCD39) was known as “The Baron of the Boogie”. The rocker You Can’t Stop This Rocking And Rolling appealed to the young record buying despite the age of the performer. Jesse Powell & The Caddy’s (Bio KMCD39). The Cadillacs were a Doo Wop group who due to differences in opinion during 1957 broke up and became two bands with one formation calling themselves The Caddies (the different spelling was on the label).
Ray Sharpe (Bio KMCD40). I was lucky enough to see Sharpe perform twice, at the Rhythm Riot, Camber Sands, England in 2006 and 2011. With his guitar in hand, he had not lost the flair for showmanship and indeed performed the featured song Long John. A honking Saxophone rocker from T.V. Slim (Bio KMCD 40) tells the tale of the Flat Foot character, who has challenged Jim Dandy on several macho aspects. To save his ‘reputation’ he must beat Jim Dandy on all the tasks.
Barbara Lynn (Ozen) (Beaumont, Texas, 16 January 1942) is a living legend in the Rhythm & Blues music. While performing in local clubs around Texas, she was signed to Jamie Records. In 1962 under the guidance of record producer Huey P. Meaux she made her first hit recording You’ll Lose A Good Thing. The left-handed guitar picker wrote the featured song Teen Age Blues. Electric Blues by Freddy King (Bio KMCD 39) who is one of the most renowned performers of the genre. The rhythm infused vocal stroll tempo I’m Tore Down gives this album its title. Eric Clapton covered and placed the song onto his 2012 album From The Cradle. His second song is from his formative years That’s What You Think is a vocal Blues rocker.
Cal Valentine And The Texas Rockers (Dallas, Texas, 28 May 1937 – 01 January 1997). The Boogie Twist (Part 1) the two part instrumental rocker continues on the next album. Young JESSIE was born Obediah Donnell Jessie (Dallas, Texas, 28 December 1936). Ace song writing team Stoller and Leiber while on the winning trail from Hound Dog, rework the format and penned the wild Blues Rocker I Smell A Rat. He performed in 2003, 2008 and 2015 at the Rhythm Riot, Camber Sands, England and each show was perfect. During his career, he worked as a solo performer, with The Hunters and The Flairs and sang with The Coasters on their Searchin’ and Young Blood hits.
The Blues Encyclopedia edited by Edward Komara, Peter Lee, Routledge Publishing.
The Blues is My Story, Sam Myers, Jeff Horton Univ. Press of Mississippi.
‘Houston Institute For Culture’
Texas State Historical Association
Artist personal web pages
Blackcat Rockabilly Europe
All About Blues Music
Numerous album sleeve notes