Friday, June 09, 2006
Summer in Chicago. Well, not quite summer yet, but it might as well be. The festival season has begun, and nuthin' beats free music. All frakkin' summer long, every damn weekend, from big fests to neighborhood block parties. Shit, this is the city of live music (yeah, I'm talkin' to you New York).
Chicago's annual Blues Fest is this weekend, and while it's scaled back it's allowance of "freelance" performers (I still think the best blues you're gonna hear outside of strongholds like Mississippi jukejoints and back porches, and New Orleans, bless her soul, is found on the street corners and subway stations...some unknown beating out a rhythm on a shitty guitar), we've still got some prime history on tap on the "smaller" stages. I've already got my fix of James Blood Ulmer, Super Chikan, Bobby "Blue" Bland, David "Honeyboy" Edwards, Robert Lockwood Jr., and Homesick James mapped out for the weekend. And that's just the beginning. Each of those, and many more, deserve their own posts, and it'd be prudent for me to feature one of them today.
Instead I'm gonna throw a little Bo Carter your way. There's not a whole lot out there about Carter. He's one of those ghostly, disappeared artists, whispered about but rarely proclaimed. No spot in blues heaven reserved. No 72 virgins. Which is a shame, cuz ole Bo would have loved him some 72 virgin action. Dirty bugger, was old Bo. When mentioned at all, it's his legacy of raunchy, suggestive sides that come of note. He's not the godhead of guitar and/or harmonica magic of, say, a Robert Johnson or Little Walter. Nah, he's a lyrics guy, with a deep-rooted classic(whatever that is) blues voice...lonesome, desperate and keening. Remember, you couldn't really say "I fuck that bitch hard" back in the day. You could, I guess, but you might not get to commit that particular confession to wax it that particular style. Nah, you had to be creative in your sexual braggadocio. Methinks it made for a more creative and entertaining adventure in sound sensations. And that's Bo Carter. A master of the sexual metaphor. Of course you knew(know) what he's talking about. It's just more fun this way. I'm really not sure if anyone did it better, Squeeze My Lemon aside.
For your hot and sweaty summer needs, when we're all tryin' for a piece of action, you can't go wrong with a little Bo Carter. Git to gittin', then.
Bo Carter: Banana In Your Fruit Basket (mp3)
Bo Carter: Don't Mash My Digger So Deep (mp3)
Bo Carter: What Kind of Scent Is This (mp3)
For the love of god, please support your local, independent businesses. If you don't, the terrorists and immigrants will have won.