Sunday, July 23, 2006

Jump In The Line!

The 23th of July 1958 is a special date for all, who have heard and appreciate the music, song and guitarplaying of the incredible phenomenon named Joseph Spence. This date Joseph Spence was recorded live by Sam Charters for the Folkways archieve and label at the backporch of his home in Nassau, The Bahamas. The effect of these recordings on countless musicians and a still growing band of fans is beyound the possibility of describing. A small profile from the Wikipedia encyclopedia may help casting some more light on the subject.
"Joseph Spence (born August, 1910 in Andros, Bahamas - died March 18, 1984 in Nassau, Bahamas) was a Bahamanian guitarist, singer and blues musician. He is well known for his vocalizations and humming while performing on guitar. Several modern folk, blues and jazz musicians, including Taj Mahal, Ry Cooder, Woody Mann and John Renbourn were influenced by and have recorded variations of his arrangements of gospel and Bahamanian pop tunes. The earliest recordings of Joseph Spence were field recordings by folk musicologists such as Sam Charters. Nearly all of the recorded songs are in a Drop D tuning, where the sixth string is tuned to a low D rather than E, so that the guitar sounds, from sixth to first D A D G B E. The power of his playing derives from moving bass lines and interior voices and a driving beat that he emphasizes with foot tapping. To this mix he adds blues coloration and calypso rhythms to achieve a unique and easily identifiable sound. He has been called the folk guitarist's Thelonious Monk."
More info on Joseph Spence available here and here
Soundclips from the July 1958 recordings available here


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