Ice Cream Man
Tone Cool / Rounder
John Brim made several classic Chicago blues recordings in the 1950s, and he occasionally has surfaced over the past four decades. He guested on Bob Margolin’s recent Alligator album and Margolin has helped Brim with this, his first ever full album.
Margolin is joined by harmonica player Jerry Portnoy and others to help Brim reprise three of his Parrot/Chess recordings, Tough Times, Ice Cream Man and Be Careful. Margolin’s presence is major a factor in why this captures much of the feel of Brim’s fifties recordings on these three, on Brim’s originals (the topical Wake Up America) and versions of Muddy Water’s Standin’ Around Cryin’ (with splendid Margolin slide) and Little Walter’s Can’t Hold Out Much Longer. Brim, like Jimmy Rogers, sings in a cleanly articulated, relaxed manner.
While he may sound a tad rusty four decades older, he still sings with a warm, relaxed honesty. Margolin’s dedication to perpetuating the classic Chicago blues sound makes this a solid session of interest to any with an interest in Chicago blues.
This review originally appeared in the November 1994 Jazz & Blues Report (Issue 194). I likely received a review copy from Rounder Records.Here is his original rendition of the title track. This may be only available used or as a download.