When I created Alligator Records, the very first promo piece to promote that very first Hound Dog Taylor album was headed "Genuine Houserockin' Music." That became our slogan, and we wear it proudly today. "Genuine" because the music we record is deeply rooted in the blues tradition (even when it pushes the standard definition of blues) and is created by musicians who have honed their songs not on synthesizers in their bedrooms, but in front of real audiences, responding to the emotional needs of their listeners. "House" instead of "theatre" or "arena" or "stadium," because our music is ultimately intimate, even when it's big and loud. It's not meant to be presented. It's meant to be shared between the musicians and the audience, like everyone at Florence's shared the music with Hound Dog Taylor. And "Rockin'" because it's designed to move you. Most of Alligator's records will move your feet or your body, but we've tried to make records that will move that other part of youï¿½your soul. Sometimes that can mean music that cleanses your inner pain by pulling it out of you, the "hurts so good" that is so special to the blues. And sometimes it just means the pure release and fun of musicians pouring their energy into a great groove.
Jesse Dee's "I Won't Forget About You" on the Steve Katsos Show (4/30)
Brownie McGhee Born With The Blues 1966-1992
Tennessee-born, Carolina-influenced, New York-based (in his “folk boom” glory) and a Californian at the time of his death, Brownie showed a wide stylistic range from turn-of-the-century ragtime (Come on, Keep It Coming) to the lyrical sophistication of such original songs as Conversation With a River. His flair for the dramatic aside and autobiographical insight augment passionate vocals and splendid guitar work in 14 performances provide a moving retrospec...
JAMES COTTON APPEARS ON NPR'S WEEKEND EDITION SATURDAY ON MAY 11, 2013
NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday featured blues harmonica legend James Cotton on Saturday, May 11.