Washboard Sam belongs to a distinct group of urban blues musicians who have not managed to make it to the big blues revival of the 50's and 60's, and thus are known only to relatively few blues "experts" today. But the music here says otherwise !
Washboard Sam played the washboard and sang with a deep and raspy voice. He was a master of jazzed up tunes such as "Mama don't allow it", or slower, heavier blues such as "I'm a prowlin' groundhog".
His Washboard playing was magnificent. He had a way of making everything swing hard - slow and fast tunes alike. The bands accompanying him include mostly piano, guitar and bass, and they all contribute to the cohesive sound.
This CD is another proof that blues fans should not concentrate solely on the old and newer country blues (Patton, Johnson, House, Mcdowell, etc.) or on the post Muddy Waters Chicago blues (The Wolf, Buddy Guy, Othis Rush etc). There was a vibrant blues scene in Chicago of the 30's and 40's -sometimes called
"Bluebird Blues" - and Washboard Sam was one of its greatest practitioners - along with Big Bill Broonzy, Tampa Red, Sonny Boy Williamson I, Jazz Gillum, Casey Bill, Memphis Slim and others.
This CD is a must for everyone who enjoys the blues and who wants to listen to one of the best pre-war Chicago bluesmen.