High & Low Down/Over Easy Lightnin' Slim


Ace Records
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For a (some would say thankfully) short period at the beginning of the 1970s, there was a vogue for dressing up the blues with the trappings of the progressive rock and soul of the day. The down-home qualitities of singers like Muddy Waters were swamped by wah-wah guitars, electric pianos, busy rock drumming and overblown horn sections. Muddy's Electric Mud remains a disastrous episode, but other projects often produced more interesting results. The final Excello albums by Lightnin' Slim and Whispering Smith featured additional horn sections (more for the former, less for the latter) but the sheer grit and down-home bluesiness of the singers' vocals, more than compensated for the more adventurous instrumental stylings. Slim's album was produced by Jerry 'Swamp Dogg' Williams and comes with the usual quota of Swamp Dogg quirkiness. Smith's album is far more rootsy, a Louisiana blues affair, with only minor intrusions from the horns. Slim and Smith toured together frequently in their final years and these two 'contemporary' albums fit together as well as the two artists did on stage.


Track listing


Side 1

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