Jones performs straight Chicago blues in the vein of his mentor and friend as he redoes some of Wolf tunes along with some similarly structured originals and a few tunes associated with Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson, Little Walter and John Lee Hooker, although played in a Wolf-style.
Jones is an expressive singer who suggests Wolf but whose slurred diction does detract a bit from the forcefulness of the performances and the band plays idiomatically. On its own, an enjoyable, if unexceptional, recording. Martin Lang's harp playing also really stands out on this track. It is too bad that this tune is only on the DVD. On "Wander", another Tail dragger tune, we are treated to the fine guitar style of guest Jimmy Dawkins.
Dawkins has a rich deep tone and great blues licks in his guitar playing. He truly plays the blues. His interaction with Rockin' Johnny's guitar is good on this track. I must say, for me, the DVD is the way to go with this recording. Watching Tail Dragger strut his stuff, work the audience, pump up the band and present his vocals to us is one great blues show. It is really good to see Rockin' Johnny back playing the blues. Thanks again to Delmark Records and Bob Koester for presenting and preserving the blues as it should be.
A special note to my friend, Kevin Johnson of Delmark Records, just for seeing him in the audience enjoying the blues show at Rooster's Lounge. Labels: January-February Newsletter. This is deep blues Chicago style circa characterized by the interplay of wailing full tone harp and slashing electric guitars.
The world and music has changed a lot since those glory days of the postwar Chicago blues, but Tail Dragger has not. And that is a good thing. The Chicago blues was the music of the great black diaspora from the American south to the cities of the north that started during World War II. Like millions who arrived before him, he was working class.