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Ricky Allen - Ricky Allen Live (2001)
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Ricky Allen - Ricky Allen Live (2001)

6-05-2014, 14:55
Music | Blues

Ricky Allen - Ricky Allen Live (2001)

Artist: Ricky Allen
Title Of Album: Ricky Allen Live
Year Of Release: 2001
Label: Jefferson Records
Genre: Modern Electric Blues, Chicago Blues
Format: MP3
Quality: 320 kbps, 44.1 Khz
Total Time: 40:58
Total Size: 96 Mb
Covers: Front

01. Everyday I Have The Blues (4:39)
02. Help Me Mama (4:21)
03. You Were My Teacher (4:48)
04. I Can't Stand No Signifying (4:50)
05. Little By Little (5:11)
06. Stormy Monday (6:55)
07. Cut You A-Loose (4:52)
08. Ouch! (5:17)

Despite a number of good sized hits in the 60's Chicago singer Ricky Allen has remained an almost totally neglected figure. Almost as strange as this total neglect is the story behind this fine live recording cut at the 2001 Monsteras Blues festival in Sweden.

Allen's latest comeback (he attempted comebacks in the early 80's and 90's) was engineered by the Scandinavian Blues Society after some of the members came across Allen's old singles. They found Allen living in Chicago in early 2001 and by May this live set was recorded. It was Allen's first time outside of the USA besides a few dates in Canada. It's certainly odd that it took a bunch of Swedish blues fans to jump-start Allen's comeback. Allen was quite popular through the early to mid-60's cutting several local and national hits like "You Better Be Sure", "Ouch!" and "Cut You A Loose" which hit #20 on the R&B charts and #126 on the pop charts. After disbanding his band in the early 70's he drifted off into blues obscurity. Live proves that Allen still has some gas left in his tank and is a surprising and welcome recording.

Allen is backed by by a surprisingly good Swedish band formed around the same instrumentation found on Allen's classic recordings. Allen runs through a program of covers and his own classics in front of a very enthusiastic crowd. Vocally Allen has has lost some of the range of those early recordings but is still in good voice. This is a very solid set of blues making it all the more inexplicable why Allen hasn't been able to sustain a comeback career. The set opens with a fine version of the crowd pleasing "Everyday I Have The Blues" before dipping into his own material like the bouncy "Help Me Mama", the shuffling "I Can't Stand No Signifying", a tough version of "Little By Little" and of course "Cut You A-Loose." Allen and the band sound like they've been playing together for years. It's obvious Allen is very much enjoying himself and he definitely has the crowd in the palm of his hands. The record is rounded out with a well written set of liner notes documenting Allen's career and some nice photos.
It's seems to a sad fact that many older bluesman are much better received overseas than they are in their own country. Whether or not this live recording will usher in a full fledged comeback for Allen it's great to have him back in the spotlight no matter how long it lasts. ~Jeff Harris

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nrwsps   User offline   22 May 2014 06:43


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