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Author Topic: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country  (Read 2805 times)

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Offline Rivers

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R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« on: December 30, 2006, 10:22:27 AM »
I'm sure we're all familiar with the R. Crumb trading cards, the blues set anyway. He did two other series featuring jazz and early country artists. They are now all collected together in book form. Cheryl, a.k.a. Devil Girl ;), got it for me for Christmas and it's fabulous to have it alongside the R. Crumb Handbook which I also highly recommend.

The country section is particularly interesting, with renderings and write-ups of some terminally obscure artists. This includes the likes of Mumford Bean & His Itawambians who put out a single record on OKeh.

The book is of very high quality and the cards are reproduced in a 7" x 5" format so you can really dig Crumb's technique if such things interest you. I used to (still do a little bit) draw comics so naturally I'm rapt.

There's a nice intro from Terry Zwigoff outlining the history of the cards and art-technical details. Write-ups on the musicians are by Richard Nevins, Stephen Calt and David Jasen and, apart from wishing they were much more detailed and longer, I can't find much to criticize. Calt's entries are easy to pick out though!

The accompanying CD contains what you might expect, a total of 21 well-chosen tracks, 7 blues, 7 jazz and 7 country. I've so far resisted the urge to crack open the pristine CD packaging inside the back cover but there's some cool stuff on there I don't think I've heard so it's just a matter of time.

http://www.amazon.com/Crumbs-Heroes-Blues-Jazz-Country/dp/0810930862

« Last Edit: December 30, 2006, 10:29:23 AM by Rivers »

Offline blueshome

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2006, 03:32:12 AM »
Santa also brought this my way. I agree it's a great thing to have, although the bios on the blues guys are very brief, and every one of the country fiddle players seems to have been the best - I guess someone liked fiddles!

I also received "Between Midnight & Day", a book of photos of "rediscovered" bluesers by Dick Waterman - some really great pictures and a few nice insights.

mississippijohnhurt1928

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2007, 02:51:44 PM »
Oh Yeah, I Was Strolling Through The Bookshop And Saw That One Day, It Looks Good!

Offline outfidel

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2007, 05:33:24 AM »
Last night, I was flipping through his Heroes of the Blues trading cards, and noticed that he does not have a Robert Wilkins card in the set. I thought I'd seen a Wilkins portrait by Crumb before -- is it included in the book?
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Offline Rivers

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2007, 04:03:54 PM »
There's no Wilkins portrait in the book either.

Are you thinking of the Yazoo 1077 cover art? It's "crumbesque" in some ways but not Crumb, credited to Robert Kanarek.

Offline outfidel

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2007, 04:42:51 PM »
No, I wasn't thinking of that cover. I don't see the image when I google it -- maybe I just imagined it.

I wonder why Crumb didn't do a Wilkins card? He would seem to be a more important figure than some of the Heroes of the Blues figures, like Clifford Gibson or Ed Bell.
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Offline Johnm

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2007, 05:18:31 PM »
Hi Outfidel,
Maybe you're thinking of the cover to the Robert Wilkins instructional video I did for Stefan Grossman.  The artist, whose name I can not remember, is from Pittsburgh, and was very much working Crumb's side of the street, visually.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Rivers

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2007, 06:50:03 PM »
By sheer coincidence I happened to have Paul Oliver's Blues Fell This Morning on my desk when I dug out the Wilkins Yazoo CD

Robert and the guy exiting stage right have switched hats, a kid and a dog have materialized...
« Last Edit: January 31, 2007, 06:52:24 PM by Rivers »

Offline outfidel

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Re: R. Crumb - Heroes of Blues, Jazz & Country
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2007, 09:17:03 AM »
John - It may have been your video cover that I had in mind. I was definitely picturing the older, rediscovered Wilkins with his hat & glasses on shown from the waist up.

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