Let Me Tell You About The Blues: The Evolution Of Texas Blues

Various Artists
FORMAT: Audio CD - 3 Disc
Release date: 8 Mar 2010

"Sit back and enjoy this good value compilation"   JUKE BLUES


CAT No: FVTD047UPC TEXT: 5055311000473

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‘The blues come to Texas, loping like a mule,’ Blind Lemon Jefferson sang through a shower of surface noise as he made his recording debut in March 1926. He established the primacy of Texas blues musicians that continued unchallenged for the next 30 years, encompassing the likes of Henry ‘Ragtime’ Thomas, Texas Alexander, T-Bone Walker, Smokey Hogg, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Clarence ‘Gatemouth’ Brown, Clarence Garlow, Lil’ Son Jackson, Lowell Fulson and Frankie Lee Sims. Other famous musicians recorded when they were passing through Texas, and that included Lonnie Johnson, Walter Davis, The Mississippi Sheiks, Robert Johnson, Roy Brown, Joe Turner, Honeyboy Edwards, Memphis Slim and Jimmy McCracklin.

Two of the most influential blues musicians to come out of Texas in the postwar years were Lightnin’ Hopkins and T-Bone Walker, both of whom encountered Lemon Jefferson in their youth. Both also developed individual guitar styles, one cleaving to the country blues traditions that personified Texas blues, the other creating the basic vocabulary for all single-string electric guitar soloists, black and white. As Oak Cliff T-Bone, Walker made his recording debut in December 1929. It wasn’t until later, after a brief creative partnership with jazz guitarist Charlie Christian, that he developed the combination of jazz-inflected chords and single-string runs that would change the nature of guitar blues. Lightnin’ stayed within his country roots, creating an angular, minimalist style that became instantly recognisable, virtually defining Texas blues for the world at large.

Through the last years of the 1940s, small group Texas R&B also found its voice, driven by gifted pianists like Little Willie Littlefield, Lonnie Lyons and Willie Johnson (the latter heard here backing Hubert Robinson). Guitarist Goree Carter took his lead from T-Bone and appears here under two pseudonyms, Little T-Bone and Rocky Thompson. Gatemouth Brown’s guitar style grew from T-Bone’s, too, but he added aggression to the mix. Clarence Garlow used the same source, adding a Cajun edge to his work. Manny Nichols, Johnny Beck, Ernest Lewis and Soldier Boy Houston thrived within the country tradition, while Joe Turner led the way for blues shouters like Lester Williams, Peppermint Harris, Hubert Robinson, Clarence Samuels and Earl Gilliam. While remaining with their origins, both Smokey Hogg and Frankie Lee Sims became individual stylists. But no matter their diversity, all the artists represented here testify to the resilience of the Texas blues tradition.



  1. Jack O' Diamond Blues (Blind Lemon Jefferson)
  2. John Henry (Henry "Ragtime" Thomas)
  3. It’s Nobody’s Fault But Mine (Blind Willie Johnson)
  4. Traveling Man (Coley Jones)
  5. Denomination Blues (Part 1) (Washington Phillips)
  6. Penitentiary (Bessie Tucker)
  7. Texas And Pacific Blues (Frenchy’s String Band)
  8. Trinity River Bottom Blues (Texas Tommy)
  9. Jim Nappy (Hattie Burleson)
  10. Hard Dallas Blues (Ramblin’ Thomas)
  11. Texas Blues (Willie Reed)
  12. Carbolic Acid Blues (Bobbie Cadillac)
  13. You’ll Like My Loving (Otis Harris)
  14. Cryin’ For You Blues (Sammy Hill)
  15. Central Tracks Blues (William McCoy)
  16. No More Women Blues (Texas Alexander)
  17. Broken Levee Blues (Lonnie Johnson)
  18. Blue Goose Blues (Jesse "Baby Face" Thomas)
  19. Burn The Trestle Down (Texas Bill Day)
  20. Blue Bloomer Blues (Whistlin’ Alex Moore)
  21. Wichita Falls Blues (T-Bone Walker (as Oak Cliff T-Bone))
  22. Kentucky Blues (Little Hat Jones)
  23. Doggone Mean Blues (Gene Campbell)
  24. Nok-Em-All (Eddie & Oscar)
  25. Blue Ghost Blues (Walter Davis)


  1. Sales Tax (The Mississippi Sheiks)
  2. Backache Blues (Bo Carter)
  3. CWA Blues (Joe Pullum)
  4. Butcher Shop Blues (Bernice Edwards)
  5. Elm Street Woman Blues (Dallas Jamboree Jug Band)
  6. Ice Pick And Pistol Woman Blues (Black Boy Shine)
  7. Black Ace (The Black Ace)
  8. The Flying Crow (Black Ivory King)
  9. Kind-Hearted Blues (Andrew Hogg)
  10. Evil Blues (Andy Boy)
  11. Traveling Riverside Blues (Robert Johnson)
  12. Don’t Sell It (Don’t Give It Away) (Buddy Woods)
  13. East Texas Rag (Smith Casey)
  14. Short Haired Woman (Lightnin' Hopkins)
  15. Deep Sea Diver (Roy Brown)
  16. Wee Wee Hours (Charlie Bradix)
  17. Little Willie’s Boogie (Little Willie Littlefield)
  18. My Time Is Expensive (Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown)
  19. Winter Time Blues (Lester Williams)
  20. Throw A Little Boogie (Manny Nichols)
  21. No Letter Blues (Bea Johnson)
  22. You Gotta Lay Down Mama (Johnny Beck)
  23. Love’s A Gamble (Little T-Bone)
  24. Down In The Groovy (Lonnie Lyons)
  25. Bon Ton Roula (Clarence Garlow)


  1. Adam Bit The Apple (Joe Turner)
  2. Rosa Lee (Ernest Lewis)
  3. You Gotta Go (Smokey Hogg)
  4. Who May Your Regular Be (Mr Honey)
  5. Crossroads (Texas Alexander)
  6. Bull Corn Blues (Rocky Thompson)
  7. Dallas Be Bop Blues (Soldier Boy Houston)
  8. Raining In My Heart (Peppermint Harris)
  9. Why Oh Why (Did You Let Me Go) (Bettye Jean Washington)
  10. I’ve Played This Town (Willie Holiday)
  11. Got The Boogie Woogie Blues (Hubert Robinson with Willie Johnson, His Piano & Orchestra)
  12. Your Little Girl Is Gone (Joe Houston)
  13. Rockin’ And Rollin’ (Lil’ Son Jackson)
  14. I Don’t Want No Woman (L C Williams)
  15. If I Lose You Woman (Alexander Moore)
  16. She’s Gone With The Wind (The Sugarman)
  17. Why Don’t You Eat Where You Slept Last Night (Zuzu Bollin)
  18. Sittin’ And Thinkin’ (Memphis Slim)
  19. She’s Gone (Jimmy McCracklin)
  20. Reconsider Baby (Lowell Fulson)
  21. Wrong Doing Woman (Earl Gilliam)
  22. Chicken Hearted Woman (Clarence Samuels)
  23. Walkin’ The Streets (Lightnin’ Hopkins)
  24. What Will Lucy Do (Frankie Lee Sims)
  25. Mercy’s Blues (Mercy Baby)
  26. Just Like A Dog (Barking Up The Wrong Tree) (Big Mama Thornton)