October 01, 2002
P-Vine Records
Blues, Acoustic Chicago Blues, Pre-War Country Blues, Country Blues, Regional Blues, Acoustic Blues

Album Review

The music of Amos Easton (Bumble Bee Slim) provides a neat bridge between Southern country blues and the urban Chicago-style blues that featured tight, propulsive combos. Slim wasn't as edgy as Big Bill Broonzy, say, or Muddy Waters, but he was every bit a modernist, allowing his easy, laconic vocal style to bring tremendous warmth, humor, and personality to his material, making songs like the loose and breezy "Everybody's Fishing" almost impossible to resist. Also included here is a glimpse of the nascent Bumble Bee Slim on one of his signature songs, "No Woman No Nickel." Slim seldom played guitar on his records, and on "No Woman" it's easy to see why, as he alternates between dexterity and nearly breaking down on guitar as he winds his way through the lyrics, although he ultimately makes the unsteadiness work as a sort of endearing virtue. A prolific writer, Slim could be resigned ("Back in Jail Again"), delightfully goofy ("Greasy Greens"), or eerily modern, even flirting at times with near-jazz arrangements. This collection has most of the essentials, including all of the above mentioned songs plus Slim staples like "Bricks in My Pillow" and "The Death of Leroy Carr," making it a decent single-disc survey of this intriguing musician. More serious listeners may want to invest in the nine-disc Complete Recorded Works from Document Records.
Steve Leggett, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. No Woman No Nickel
  2. Greasy Greens
  3. B & O Blues
  4. Sail On, Little Girl, Sail On
  5. Sad and Lonesome
  6. Climbing on Top of the Hill
  7. Ain't It a Cryin' Shame? (Tricky Woman Blues)
  8. Muddy Water Blues
  9. You Can't Take It Baby
  10. Everybody's Fishing
  11. Bricks in My Pillow
  12. Policy Dream Blues
  13. What's Wrong?
  14. Can't You Trust Me No More
  15. When the Sun Goes Down
  16. The Death of Leroy Carr (Dedicated to the Memory of Leroy Carr)
  17. Hey Lawdy Mama
  18. New Orleans Stop Time
  19. No More Biscuit Rolling Here
  20. Back in Jail Again
  21. She Never
  22. 12 O'Clock Southern Train
  23. You Sure Look Good to Me
  24. Woman for Every Man