From the Record Shelves #77

Through Train Blues

LP Yazoo L-1039

Tampa Red had a sound, one of the best within the early jazz and blues idiom. It was based on his National guitar, on his open “E” (Vestapol) tuning and his glass bottle slide. But the control over these elements and the final production of tone was his own personal one, because you can always identify him on numerous recordings with different artists, as on this LP.

He often worked in pair with “Georgia Tom” Dorsey, but I have chosen another duo as it appears on his first recording in 1928. Tampa Red (Real name Hudson Whittaker) who accordingly was raised in Tampa, Georgia is singing and playing his guitar and is joined by Bert Cobb on tuba. The latter is famed for his playing with King Oliver’s Dixie Syncopators where he plays solos on Someday Sweetheart and Sobbin’ Blues, a very accomplished musician. Here he plays a real well constructed and varied bass part, a school example of how to accompany in the 12 bar blues format.