Ain't Nothing You Can Do!
Delta Groove Music
Delta Groove just issued a new recording by the Chicago veteran John Primer and harmonica player Bob Corritore, who is one of the co-producers of this as well. Bring some the likes of Henry Gray or the late Barrelhouse Chuck on piano, Big John Atkinson or Chris James on guitar, Troy Sandow or Patrick Rynn on bass and Brian Fahey on drums and one has a terrific band for the traditional Chicago Blues follow-up to the acclaimed 2013 "Knockin' Around These Blues."
The material is a mix of strong originals and choice covers with the music evoking the late Muddy Waters (Primer was guitarist in Waters final band) with a touch of Magic Slim, with whom Primer played with for many years with the driving, insistent groove. The instrumentation here also lends this the sound of a Muddy Waters recording (with Corritore's harp lending the feel of the Waters Band when James Cotton was in it), although I believe Waters only recorded John Lee 'Sonny Boy' Williamson's "Elevate Me Mama," which has terrific piano from the late Barrelhouse Chuck.
Originals like the topical, opening "Poor Man Blues," who is living the best way he can, and the closing slow, closing Muddy Waters-styled "When I Leave Home," bookend terrific renditions of Johnny Temple's "Big Legged Woman," with Muddy Waters' styled slide; Snooky Pryor's Vee-Jay classic, "Hold Me In Your Arms," has Henry Gray on piano; Magic Slim's chugging "Gambling Blues"; and a Corritore feature, "Harmonica Boogaloo." The Chuck Brooks-penned title track was originally recorded by Albert King. It is a slow blues where Primer authoritatively tells his woman know that no matter what she does, nothing will stop John from loving her or drive him away. With solos from Henry Gray, Corritore Jon Atkinson and Primer himself, Primer and band conjures up the Mississippi King Bee (Muddy Waters) himself here (and elsewhere).
A rendition of Don Nix's "For a Love of a Woman" and Howlin' Wolf's "May I Have Talk With You," where Primer plays some Elmore James's style slide on a rollicking shuffle adaptation of Wolf's song round out a terrific recording that is as a good an evocation of classic Chicago blues (particularly the great Muddy Waters band of the late fifties through early seventies) as has been heard in the past few years.
I received a review copy from Delta Groove. Here is an album teaser.