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Author Topic: Guitar Duets in Country Blues  (Read 13180 times)

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Offline GhostRider

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Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« on: February 03, 2005, 04:02:52 PM »
Hi All:

Some of my favorite?country blues tunes are guitar duets. I've just got a new favorite, Little Rock Blues by Pearl Dickson (I don't know who the guitarists are). This tune got me to thinkin' about the styles of CB guitar duets.

In songs like Little Rock Blues and Unknown Blues by Tater and Gay the two guitars are very musically seperate, one doing intricate treble string runs and the other ornate bass notes and patterns. The arrangements weave back and forth with one guitar then the other taking the lead. Hardly a chord is played.

Then there's the "Boom-Chang" type, like Dan Sain and Frank Stokes, Frank Brasswell and BBBroonzy and Memphis Minnie and Little Son Joe. . In these the lead guitar plays a normal sort of tune while the other adds supporting bass notes and runs and strummed chords. In this type the lead guitar part can be played as a arrangement by its self, which is not the case with the case mentioned above where neither part played alone would.

Another is the sort of arrangement is Johnnie Temple and Charlie McCoy's Lead Pencil Blues. Here the singer (Temple) plays a boogie pattern a la' Robert Johnson on the bass string with intersperced treble runs. The McCoy part consists of treble notes and runs. Here, unlike the Boom-Chang type, it's the bass part that can be played seperately not the treble part.

Delta guitar duets like Patton-Brown and Bracey-Tommy Johnson are sort of like two guitarists playing the same song together. Different parts, but either could probably make an adequate accompanyment by its self.

Another is the "Together" style, like Joe Callicott and Garfield Akers. Often in their duets, like the great Cottonfields Blues, it doesnt sound like two guitars, only one. Now thats tight.

Anyway, just some thoughts. What are your favorite guitar duets in CB? I remember hearing one with two slide guitar parts but I have forgetten the name.

Later,
Alex
« Last Edit: December 15, 2005, 10:30:37 AM by Pyrochlore »

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2005, 09:11:25 AM »
Hi Alex,
I like this topic you've proposed.  I'll get the ball rolling--
   * Dennis Crumpton & Robert Summers--"Go I'll Send Thee" (this may be the double slide number you spoke of)
   * Big Joe Williams and Henry Townsend--"Somebody's Been Borrowin' That Stuff"
   * Mississippi Bracey and Charlie McCoy--"Cherry Ball"
   * Fred McMullen & Curley Weaver with Ruth Willis--"Man of My Own"
   * Charlie Patton and Willie Brown--"Moon Goin' Down"
All best,
Johnm

Offline dj

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2005, 11:14:24 AM »
Memphis Minnie and Kansas Joe did a nice 2 slide duet called My Wash Woman's Gone.  Joe sang lead, so unfortunately it's not on the JSP Memphis Minnie set.  But the Juke has 2 copies of it..

Offline waxwing

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2005, 11:29:42 AM »
John touched on a whole area where the guitar duet was very popular with his listing of Fred McMullen & Curley Weaver. All those Atlanta guys loved to have a second guitar going. Much of McTell's catalogue is backed by Weaver. Most of Buddy Moss' releases had either Weaver or McMullen seconding. There were others I'm less familiar with. These guys had a pretty tight style worked out, for the most part falling into Alex's category where the first guitar was playing a stand alone arrangement and the second guitar was playing bass runs sometimes switching to treble fills. Don't really have any favorites, but the Atlanta scene seems to have been very tight-knit and created a lot of great duets.
All for now.
John C.



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Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2005, 02:19:27 PM »
Hi all,
I've been thinking of some more of these that I particularly like.  They include:
   * "Bottleneck Blues" by Sylvester Weaver and Walter (?) Beasley.  This was on the first Yazoo anthology devoted to Bottleneck guitar.
   * "Just Pickin'" by Roy Harvey and Leonard Copeland.  This was on the old Yazoo release, "Mr. Charlie's Blues", and it is really an amazing number, the way they have things worked out.
   * "Last Go Round" by Frank Stokes and Dan Sane.  One of their wilder numbers.  On it, Dan Sane is tuned about a step-and-a-half low, and the two of them just rock out.
It's fun to try and remember these.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Buzz

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2005, 04:20:52 PM »
Hi, all!
John M: You introduced us to several of these duets in PT...but  I have yet to get to that MD! And Del and you have showed us Minnie/McCoy Piledriver Blues, which has a cool twangy riff seconded by Joe, as I recall. Got to put some of these duets on my "to do" list! :P

Has the juke played Paul Rishell's/Annie Raines version of Kansas City Blues and Washerwoman Blues? On the latter Rishell overdubs his playing with slide and reso, sounds like. Do I hear this right?
I am working on KC Blues and Washerwoman these days, as a matter of fact. Love the beat and rhythym of KCB, kind of infectious. I  will learn it on mando, and start playing it with a harpist, to see how it goes.  :-\
Interesting thread...
Miller
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Offline Rivers

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2005, 01:12:42 PM »
Minnie and her beaus were superb arrangers of guitar duets. My favorites would be Joliet Bound and Black Rat Swing.
Rag Mama Rag, Blind Boy Fuller and Gary Davis is a blisteringly tight piece of work, that must have been some session to have witnessed.
Cottonfield Blues 1 & 2, Akers & Callicott, are pretty amazing as they play around with the sound of the two guitars. To my ears they seem to be alternately dragging and pushing the beat, applying syncopated strumming patterns etc etc all of which adds up to something quite unique.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2005, 01:23:48 PM »
I couldn't agree with you more about "Cottonfields, pts. 1 and 2", Mark.  It is right at the top of the heap in this category, as far as I am concerned.  Had there only been a "Cottonfields", I think everyone would have agreed it was one of the greatest country blues ever, but then you have "Cottonfields, Part 2", and it is . . . better!  A miracle.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Rivers

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2005, 01:15:36 AM »
I remember we had a bash at the lyrics way back on the first version of the weenie list. I'll see if I can find the thread in the archives... Rivers wanders off into the archives...
« Last Edit: February 15, 2005, 01:27:22 AM by Rivers »

Tail Dragger

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2005, 07:28:45 AM »
There's also Eddie and Oscar: Eddie Schaffer/Chafer and Oscar Woods, two slide guitarists who actually accompanied Jimmie Davis.  It was Davis who arranged for Eddie and Oscar to record their own material.  The two tracks we've got by them are found on Document's 'Too Late, Too Late Volume Four: 1892-1937': "Nok-Em All" and the amazing "Flying Crow Blues," both recorded for Victor on February 8, 1932.  Eddie plays guitar while Oscar take the lead vocal and plays the steel guitar.

"Flying Crow Blues" has an interesting lyric: "Now she's gone, she's gone, boys, got that red and blue light behind, oh, the red light's for danger, blue light's for worried in mind".  The imagery, while slightly altered, later turned up in Robert Johnson's "Love In Vain," which, of course, was taken - melody-wise - from Leroy Carr's "When The Sun Goes Down," recorded for Bluebird on February 25, 1935, sadly the year of his early demise.

Of course, the above lyric/imagery is taken from Blind Lemon Jefferson's "Dry Southern Blues," recorded c. March 1926.  In it, Jefferson sings: "The blue light was my blues and the red light was my worried mind."

Tail Dragger

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2005, 06:15:34 PM »
Hi all,
I just thought of another favorite in this category--Will Weldon and Will Shade doing "Turpentine Blues".  The companion piece, "Hitch Me To Your Buggy and Drive Me Like a Mule" is close to being musically identical, but somehow doesn't have the same oomph for me.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2005, 12:06:43 PM »
Hi all,
I was thinking about this topic and realized that some of my favorite country blues duets are the Hi Henry Brown cuts--"Preacher Blues", "Nut Factory", "Titanic", and another I can't think of right now.  They all follow a pretty similar mold, two guitars playing in E standard, more or less right on top of each other, but it works really well.  Of course, Hi Henry's great vocals do not harm the over-all effect.
All best,
Johnm

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2005, 12:34:09 PM »
The other one is Skin Man. You're right, these are great songs. And they're like bonus Charley Jordan material.

Offline GerryC

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2005, 11:34:56 PM »
Good thread. It would be interesting to investigate how much influence the duets of the 20s and 30s had on the development of electric blues with the 'lead and rhythm' guitar set up of most of them. Any way... My favourite duets:
- Minnie & Joe, What's the Matter with the Mill
- Hattie Hart [vocal] with Alan Shaw and Willie Borum (guitars), I Let My Daddy Do That
Big Bill & Frank Brassens, Saturday Night Rub
Charlie Patton & Willie Brown, Moon Goin' Down

Incidentally, the two guitarists on Pearl Dickson's Little Rock Blues, mentioned early in this thread, were (it says here) Maylon and Richard Harney, aka Pet and Can. I know nothing about them, apart from the fact that they were a couple of mean pickers, but I'm sure somebody will have their entire life stories and recording careers in detail...

Cheerily,

Gerry C
I done seen better days, but I'm puttin' up with these...

Offline waxwing

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #14 on: September 14, 2005, 12:25:08 AM »
That would be Richard "Hacksaw" Harney, a prodigious picker. I'm sure the juke has a tune or so of his and you can also see some amazing footage of him playing, in the '70s I think, on the Adelphi Records site. I think there is a link in a thread here somewhere. Search for "Hacksaw".
All for now.
John C.
"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it."
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Offline MTJ3

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #15 on: September 14, 2005, 08:35:04 AM »
Richard "Hacksaw" Harney's album, Sweet Man, is on the Blues Vault label under license from Adelphi, which recorded it in 1972 when Harney was 69 years old.  His playing is outstanding.  Why Harney never garnered wide acclaim among blues revivalists is probably explicable on grounds of health, but why the record didn't is a mystery to me.  Harney is another guy whose existence supports the iceberg theory of blues (i.e., what we hear on record is only the tip of the iceberg both for the genre and for the individual players).

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #16 on: September 21, 2005, 05:37:19 PM »
Hi all,
A few posts back on this thread, Uncle Bud observed that Hi Henry Brown's recordings were like bonus Charlie Jordan tracks.  He was certainly speaking the truth.  I was listening to "Preacher Blues" the other day and realized that the second guitarist is playing "Hunkie Tunkie Blues", but substituting the phrase from the seventh and eighth bars, played twice, for the savage opening lick Charlie Jordan played in the first four bars of "Hunkie Tunkie".  Apart from the substituted section, the second guitar part is "Hunkie Tunkie", note for note.
All best,
Johnm

Offline dj

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2005, 03:42:14 AM »
Quote
second guitarist is playing "Hunkie Tunkie Blues"

The second guitarist on those Hi Henry Brown songs is Charlie Jordan.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #18 on: September 22, 2005, 11:54:05 AM »
Hi David,
I realize I expressed myself poorly in my last post.  I assumed that Charlie Jordan was the second  guitarist on "Preacher Blues", I just never had remarked before on how "pre-digested" his guitar part on it is.
All best,
Johnm

Offline dj

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #19 on: September 22, 2005, 01:33:42 PM »
John M,

   Talk about expressing ones self poorly!  From your posts, I assumed that both Uncle Bud and you knew the identity of Brown's second guitarist.  But since neither of you explicitly mentioned Charlie Jordan, I thought I would so that someone reading this thread who wasn't as well acquainted with the genre would know why Jordan's name came up.

   But I wrote the post at 6:42 AM, before my first cup of tea, so it came out rather abbreviated.  :)

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2005, 12:49:08 PM »
Hi all,
I have been listening to several cuts in this category recently that I particularly like.  They are duets pairing Sleepy John Estes and Brownsville Son Bonds from 1941, in particular "Little Laura Blues", "Lawyer Clark Blues" and "Working Man Blues".  The first two songs are played in G, standard tuning, and "Working Man Blues" is played in C, standard tuning.  Unlike Frank Stokes and Dan Sane, Sleepy John and Son Bonds did not capo to different frets to play out of different positions.  Instead, they chose to play both guitar parts out of the same position, pretty much right on top of each other, somewhat in the style of Guitar Slim and Jelly Belly, though with a more forceful rhythmic feel.  On these cuts, Son Bonds is flat-picking very busily; you can hear his pick thwacking away, and John Estes is playing a more conventional finger-picked accompaniment.  They do not appear, based on the sound of it, to have made any attempt to stay out of each other's way, or occupy different registers, and the sound is very immediate and exciting, either despite or because of that approach.  Their duo sound is one that I have not heard explored by present-day players, and it has a lot of interesting possibilities.  Of course the fact that Sleepy John was one of the greatest singers of country blues, as well as a particularly interesting lyricist doesn't hurt the over-all effect of these songs.  They are terrific.
All best,
Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2005, 06:08:31 AM »
Another good duet is South Carolina Rag by Willie Walker.  I have been told that Willie flat picked his part and another, unnamed musician finger picked the other part..  That explains the rapid licks that Willie gets on that cut.  Does anyone know who the other guitar player was?  Of the folks I spoke with here in SC, no one seems to know.

Muddy Roads

Offline dj

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2005, 07:07:32 AM »
Sam Brooks was the second guitarist.  He apparently regularly played with Walker.

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #23 on: October 18, 2005, 10:40:28 AM »
Sam Brooks was the second guitarist.? He apparently regularly played with Walker.
I can't for the life of me think where but back in the mists of time somebody was interviewed who knew Brooks and reported he was born blind in the 1890s and by trade a carpenter. I'm sure it wasn't Josh White, maybe it was Harry Gay when interviewed by Kip Lornell.
Perhaps those with a better recall than I can pinpoint it.

Offline a2tom

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2005, 03:42:04 PM »
Another good duet is South Carolina Rag by Willie Walker.  I have been told that Willie flat picked his part and another, unnamed musician finger picked the other part..  That explains the rapid licks that Willie gets on that cut. 

I grow to loathe reading about duets, as it blows away myths I was comfortable to live with, like that Willie Walker actually played that himself.  Sigh...

I have never tried to work that tune out myself, but it works together well, I guess, since I never noticed it was a duet!

tom

Muddyroads

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #25 on: October 19, 2005, 01:36:20 AM »
Thanks for the info on Sam Brooks.  There seems to be less information on Brooks than there is on Walker.  Found a website a UNC:  http://facstaff.unca.edu/sinclair/piedmontblues/walker.html

 that gives a brief bio of Walker and also lists the predominate Piedmont blues players..  A real nice web site with lots of information.

As far as playing South Carolina Rag on one guitar, it can be done but those flat picked runs are hard to duplicate and keep the bass line going.

Thanks again,

Muddy

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #26 on: October 19, 2005, 11:12:10 AM »
Found a website a UNC:? http://facstaff.unca.edu/sinclair/piedmontblues/walker.html
that gives a brief bio of Walker and also lists the predominate Piedmont blues players..?
Basically what that is is a summary of what can be read in far greater depth and detail on pages 173-178 of Bruce Bastin's Red River Blues. That said, all credit to such a worthy enterprise.

Offline MTJ3

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #27 on: October 23, 2005, 09:48:38 PM »
A sort of half-way point on the road to the Lonnie Johnson-Eddie Lang duets might be found in the instrumental break by Lonnie Johnson backed by Johnny St. Cyr on Louis Armstrong's "Savoy Blues."  The accompaniment by St. Cyr, who was an accomplished picker worthy of study, is generally of the "boom chang" variety, but he adds a lot of interest with his reharmonization, which is as follows:

I/IV-bVdim/I-V7/I/
IV/IV-bVdim/I-V7/I-VI7-VI7-bVI7/
V7/VI7-V7/I-VI7-bVI7-V7/I-V7-I-I

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #28 on: December 29, 2007, 02:34:24 PM »
Hi all,
A particularly beautiful Country Blues guitar duet that I've been listening to a lot lately is the Down Home Boys' recording of "Don't You Leave Me Here".  According to the notes that accompany the Document CD, "The Songster Tradition", DOCD-5045, it looks like the guitarists on that cut were Long "Cleve" Reed and Sunny Wilson.  I don't really know anything about them, but their duet sound on this cut is beautifully worked out, just magical.  One of them is playing out of G position in standard tuning (though not necessarily at concert pitch), and is closely shadowing the melody in the bass.  The other guitarist, I believe, is playing in Vestapol, capoed up, and is doing octave doubling of the melody by finding it at the same frets on the sixth and fourth strings, fifth and second strings and fourth and first strings, adopting a left-hand approach similar to what John Hurt employed for "If You Don't Want Me, Baby".  The way these two parts sound together is especially pretty, and I don't recall hearing anything like it elsewhere.
All best,
Johnm   

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #29 on: December 30, 2007, 09:13:33 AM »
Hi all,
A particularly beautiful Country Blues guitar duet that I've been listening to a lot lately is the Down Home Boys' recording of "Don't You Leave Me Here".  According to the notes that accompany the Document CD, "The Songster Tradition", DOCD-5045, it looks like the guitarists on that cut were Long "Cleve" Reed and Sunny Wilson.  I don't really know anything about them, but their duet sound on this cut is beautifully worked out, just magical.  One of them is playing out of G position in standard tuning (though not necessarily at concert pitch), and is closely shadowing the melody in the bass.  The other guitarist, I believe, is playing in Vestapol, capoed up, and is doing octave doubling of the melody by finding it at the same frets on the sixth and fourth strings, fifth and second strings and fourth and first strings, adopting a left-hand approach similar to what John Hurt employed for "If You Don't Want Me, Baby".  The way these two parts sound together is especially pretty, and I don't recall hearing anything like it elsewhere.
All best,
Johnm   

Indeed a wonderful tune, John. I had been working out a version for solo guitar in Spanish tuning a little while back. I'll need to return to it.


Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #30 on: April 22, 2009, 01:55:07 PM »
Hi all,
One Country Blues guitar duet I'm very partial to is Yank Rachell and Dan Smith's "Squeaky Work Bench Blues".  The way Yank played in G position in standard tuning was very unusual and especially cool.
All best,
Johnm

Offline banjochris

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #31 on: April 22, 2009, 05:35:14 PM »
Hi all,
One Country Blues guitar duet I'm very partial to is Yank Rachell and Dan Smith's "Squeaky Work Bench Blues".  The way Yank played in G position in standard tuning was very unusual and especially cool.
All best,
Johnm

Which reminds me, I haven't listened all that closely to Yank's guitar playing -- does anyone know, did he flatpick or fingerpick the guitar?
Chris

Offline frankie

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #32 on: April 22, 2009, 05:48:40 PM »
The way Yank played in G position in standard tuning was very unusual and especially cool.

The F chord during the break kicks ass.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #33 on: April 23, 2009, 04:18:11 PM »
Hi Chris,
I think Yank played both with a flatpick and with his fingers.  I saw him back Sleepy John at the Ann Arbor Blues Festival in the summer of 1970, I believe, and from my memory of that set, he backed Sleepy John on mandolin and electric guitar, and when he played electric, I believe I recall being surprised that he was using a pick to play Chicago-style single string runs.  Upon reflection, it's really not all that surprising for a mandolin player to play the guitar with a pick. 
His playing on his Blue Goose album which was from around the same period but a little bit later, I think, sounds like it is being finger-picked with thumb and index finger.  I think he most likely used the finger-picked technique on his early recordings on guitar, though I certainly couldn't state that definitively.
All best,
Johnm   

Offline banjochris

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #34 on: April 23, 2009, 04:24:29 PM »
Thanks, John. I saw Yank once at the Long Beach Blues Festival in the early 90s but I was too far back in the crowd to see that closely.
Chris

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #35 on: December 16, 2010, 07:54:44 AM »
Hi all,
I've been listening to the two tunes recorded by the duet team, Tarter & Gay, "Brownie Blues" and "Unknown Blues".  They had possibly the spiffiest duet sound going.  Both pieces are in F, and for both pieces, the seconding guitarist (don't know whether it was Tarter or Gay) is playing out of F position in standard tuning.  For "Brownie Blues", the lead guitarist is playing capoed one fret higher, out of the E position in standard tuning, and for "Unknown Blues", the lead guitarist is capoed up and playing out of the C position in standard tuning.  
Despite the fact that both songs are played out of the key of F and have substantially the same seconding guitar part, they end up sounding quite different because of the lead guitarist's working out of different positions.  Their playing arrangement on "Brownie Blues" with one guitarist working out of F position and the other out of E position was used by the Pruett Twins behind Lottie Kimbrough on her version of "Red River Blues".
All best,
Johnm
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 08:03:33 AM by Johnm »

Offline Pan

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #36 on: December 16, 2010, 08:33:45 AM »
Hi all,
I've been listening to the two tunes recorded by the duet team, Tarter & Gay, "Brownie Blues" and "Unknown Blues".  They had possibly the spiffiest duet sound going.  Both pieces are in F, and for both pieces, the seconding guitarist (don't know whether it was Tarter or Gay) is playing out of F position in standard tuning.  For "Brownie Blues", the lead guitarist is playing capoed one fret higher, out of the E position in standard tuning, and for "Unknown Blues", the lead guitarist is capoed up and playing out of the C position in standard tuning.  
Despite the fact that both songs are played out of the key of F and have substantially the same seconding guitar part, they end up sounding quite different because of the lead guitarist's working out of different positions.  Their playing arrangement on "Brownie Blues" with one guitarist working out of F position and the other out of E position was used by the Pruett Twins behind Lottie Kimbrough on her version of "Red River Blues".
All best,
Johnm


In the Living Blues article by Kip Lornell is interviewing a musician called Lesley Riddle, who apparently knew them. Riddle puts Tarter on the lead guitar and vocals. You can read the article on Stefan's site: http://www.wirz.de/music/tartgfrm.htm
Note that Stefan also has Lornell's interview of Harry Gay on his webpage.

I really love their playing! It's a shame that more recordings don't exist. I'd love to learn how to play Brownie's Blues, but the lyrics unfortunately put it out of a possible addition into one's repertoire.

Cheers

Pan
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 08:39:04 AM by Pan »

Offline unezrider

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #37 on: December 16, 2010, 08:56:10 AM »
hello friend,
would that be the same leslie riddle that a.p. carter traveled & song hunted with?
"Be good, & you will be lonesome." -Mark Twain

Offline Pan

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #38 on: December 16, 2010, 09:11:40 AM »
hello friend,
would that be the same leslie riddle that a.p. carter traveled & song hunted with?

I believe it would! I think I just read about in Bruce Bastion's Red River Blues.

Cheers

Pan

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #39 on: December 16, 2010, 11:05:14 AM »
Thanks for the additional information on Tarter & Gay, Pan.
All best,
Johnm

Offline TeardropValley

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #40 on: December 20, 2010, 02:22:45 PM »
Maybe it's because it's too obvious, but I'm surprised no one has mentioned Pink Anderson & Simmie Dooley's "Every Day in the Week Blues." It's a propulsive and harmonically complex tune with some great interplay, one doing running bass notes around some less than common chords while the other picks some great treble fills. And of course, their endearing, squeaky voices on top of it running through a fantastic melody. A real energetic tune.

Offline oddenda

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #41 on: December 20, 2010, 02:58:30 PM »
All the Dooley/Anderson duets are lovely - that's Simmie with the higher voice, by the way. I'm still partial to Willie Walker & Sam Brooks two sides (three, if you count the alternate take of SC Rag). In my field recording days, duos were rare: Baby Tate & McKinley Ellis; Baby Tate & Baby Brooks; Marvin & Turner Foddrell; Elester Anderson & George Higgs; Pernell Charity & unknown!

Peter B.

Offline Rivers

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #42 on: June 08, 2011, 05:42:43 PM »
If it counts when one of the guitars is lap steel Casey Bill Weldon and unk. guitarist on "You Shouldn't Do That" and "Go Ahead Buddy" deserve a mention here.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #43 on: April 06, 2012, 10:09:50 PM »
Hi all,
As has been mentioned in the Little Buddy Doyle lyric thread, his playing with Jack Kelly/Willie Tango/or somebody else was terrifically exciting.  Perhaps not a true duet in the sense that they were joined by a harmonica player, but a duet in the sense of two guitarists forming the core of the ensemble.  The six numbers they recorded together are well worth seeking out, and can be found on the JSP set, "Masters of Memphis Blues".
All best,
Johnm

Offline Shovel

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #44 on: April 07, 2012, 05:32:41 AM »
There's something so aggressive and bold about the first few bars of Maggie Campbell Blues.  You knew a couple of BAD boys were walking into the party playing that one.  It was going to be a good night.

Offline Pan

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #45 on: January 18, 2013, 04:22:41 PM »
Hi all

This is probably old news to most of you, but I've recently been enjoying the music of Walter Roland (who was perhaps better known as a pianist) and his playing partner Sonny Scott, who also played guitar on Roland's piano recordings, as well as some Lucille Bogan recordings, which the two accompanied.

Here's "Guitar Stomp" by the duo, which makes me think a lot of Big Bill Broonzy's tune called "Guitar Shuffle".



and the fun "Man, Man, Man":



Walter apparently recorded more as a pianist, but on his first session he recorded 3 solo songs, of which 2 were with guitar accompaniments, duplicating "Red Cross Blues" both as a piano and a guitar version. He has a kind of brushing style of playing, and in his "T-model Blues" has a solo guitar break as well.



Now off to study Sonny Scott!  :)

Cheers

Pan

Offline GhostRider

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #46 on: January 21, 2013, 12:45:40 PM »
Hi all,
I was thinking about this topic and realized that some of my favorite country blues duets are the Hi Henry Brown cuts--"Preacher Blues",

Yes, I really like this one, great lyrics. A few years ago I started to arrange this tune for solo guitar. I'll hve to get back to it.

Alex

Offline Johnm

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Re: Guitar Duets in Country Blues
« Reply #47 on: July 04, 2013, 10:11:52 AM »
Hi all,
Carl Martin's "Let's Have A Good Deal", for which he is joined by Willie B. James, is a rocking duet, with both players working out of E position in standard tuning.  It's also something of a "mystery title" since the title phrase appears nowhere in the song's lyrics--Carl Martin says, "Let's Have a NEW Deal" every time in his refrain.  The song can be found on the JSP set, "Ain't Times Hard".
All best,
Johnm

 


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