CD1 Bloodshot Eyes (Wynonie Harris) Feeling Happy (Joe Turner and His Blues Kings) My Girl Ivy (Jimmy Witherspoon an

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  • Various - The Last Shout! 3CD Boxset – Twilight Of The Blues Shouters 1954-1962 (CD)


    The forgotten superheroes of 20th-century black music, the leather-lunged blues shouters, dominated the US nightclub stages and R&B charts for half-a-dozen years or so following World War II, before being side-lined by the bourgeoning rock ’n’ roll storm in the early 1950s. Still considered a force with which to be reckoned in the US music industry of the mid-fifties, and still at the height of their vocal prowess, many of the biggest stars were granted one or two final shots to save their flagging recording careers during rock ’n’ roll’s heyday – their “Last Shout”. Compiled and annotated by R&B authority Dave Penny, this 3CD set from Fantastic Voyage endeavours to document the twilight of that proud musical genre and resurrect the ultimate releases from some of the great voices of R&B.

    The international blues boom of the 1960s – informed by the white Europeans’ predilection for more unsophisticated rural country blues and urban down-home blues, coupled with black America’s progressive, wholesale acceptance of gospel-steeped soul and funk – served to entomb the art of the jump blues shouter further and to remove the memory of an exciting musical form from general consciousness, until it began to be exhumed decades later.

    Featuring singers famous and obscure, The Last Shout! serves the best of the final commercial recordings issued for the African-American R&B market by the likes of Big Joe Turner, Wynonie Harris, Jimmy Witherspoon and Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. When they no longer sold to their market, some, like Turner and Witherspoon, were able to make a comfortable living on the jazz circuit, others pursued alternative careers in comedy, preaching, composing or acting, yet others remained tragically determined; trying to maintain an ever-dwindling touring schedule on the chittlin’ circuit and drinking themselves into an early grave. 97 tracks and a 20pp illustrated booklet offer a snapshot of time in the history of black music, when the undiminished power of the classic blues shouters was married to the urgent rhythms of the rock ’n’ roll era, resulting in some very special music indeed!

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