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New Music Monday

Last year…. I was into adapting classical music to the blues or putting blues into classical with my release of my newest CD, “Bluesy Bach & Friends”.

This year I have been getting into pure blues, especially electric blues and even more specifically as played by Albert King, Freddie King and BB King.  Already released this year are my covers of Freddie King’s “Key to the Highway” and “Hide Away”.  Next up to bat is Albert King.  And on August 31st my cover of AK’s cover of “Crosscut Saw” will be released.

Check it out:

So…..Many blues artists have contended with the “sinner or saint” struggle and started out in church and moved to the blues, or vice versa!  Use this form to Pre-Save “Crosscut Saw” to be the first to hear if this song is about a sinner or saint!

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New Music Wednesday – Hide Away

Hi friends,

It’s New Music Wednesday and Hide Away was released today and is now streaming on Spotify and other digital platforms. As always, you can find more info on the Music Store page on my site.

Hide Away Cover Art by Christopher J.

Officially the original Hide Away was written by Freddie King and Sonny Thompson, but like a lot of blues songs, it’s actual pedigree is a bit cloudier. Freddie apparently mentioned that he incorporated parts from several other songs into Hide Away such as The Walk, Guitar Boogie Shuffle and Peter Gunn, but arranged in his own way. Also, Hide Away got its title from a blues club in Chicago called “Mel’s Hide Away Lounge”, which I have been told was located on Roosevelt Road (12th Street) near Halsted. My version includes a new solo part way through the tune. See if you can spot it.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame listed Hide Away as one of the “500 songs that shaped rock and roll”.  The song also crossed over out of the blues market and charted on the Billboard Hot 100 list, making it one of the best performing songs by a blues artist in the pop genre.

Enjoy!

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PS: During my searching to see if Mel’s Hide Away Lounge is still there in Chicago (it’s not…) I discovered there are a lot of places around the USA (and world) named “Hide Away” or “Hideaway”. See below!

Hide Away locations

Enzo’s Hideaway Tunnel Bar
1560 E Buena Vista Dr, Disney Springs, Orlando, US 32830-8431
Enzo's Hideaway Tunnel Bar
The Hideaway Bar
516 Virginia Dr, Orlando, FL 32803
The Hideaway Bar 516 Virginia Dr, Orlando, FL 32803
The Hideaway Bar & Grill
At: Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort
6550 Adventure Way, Orlando, FL 32819
The Hideaway Bar & Grill At Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort
The Hideaway Lounge
2627 S Parker Rd, Aurora, CO 80014
The Hideaway Lounge 2627 S Parker Rd, Aurora, CO 80014
and this one too…
Also The Hideaway Lounge 2627 S Parker Rd, Aurora, CO 80014
Hideaway Lounge
7466 Blackmon Rd Ste C, Columbus, GA 31909
Hideaway Lounge 7466 Blackmon Rd Ste C, Columbus, GA 31909
Hideaway Lounge
505 Ramsey Road, Jacksonville, NC  28546
Hideaway Lounge 505 Ramsey Road, Jacksonville, NC 28546
Hideaway Jazz Club
1 Empire Mews, London SW16 2BF UK
Hideaway Jazz Club 1 Empire Mews, London SW16 2BF UK
Hemingway’s Bar & Hideaway
438 Houston St, Nashville, TN 37203
Hemingway's Bar & Hideaway 438 Houston St, Nashville, TN 37203
AJ’s Hideaway Bar & Grill
5048 River Rd N, Keizer, OR 97303
AJ's Hideaway Bar & Grill 5048 River Rd N, Keizer, OR 97303
Hideaway Guest House And Bar
420-183 i Buakhow 15, Moo 9, Nongprue, Banglamung, Chonburi, 20150 Pattaya, Thailand
Hideaway Guest House And Bar Thailand
Hideaway Tavern
939 SE 2nd St, Bend, OR 97702
Hideaway Tavern 939 SE 2nd St, Bend, OR 97702
Hull’s Hideaway Restaurant & Tavern
37 Potomac River Rd Monterey, Virginia 24465
Hull's Hideaway Restaurant & Tavern 37 Potomac River Rd Monterey, Virginia 24465
Sam’s Hideaway Tavern
750 S Krome Ave, Homestead, FL 33030
Sam's Hideaway Tavern 750 S Krome Ave, Homestead, FL 33030
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Spotify Give Away

I have a Spotify Give Away going on:  Pre-Save to have my upcoming single “Hide Away” added to your library on the release date of July 1st! AND, If you connect now you can enter for a chance to win a free, autographed copy of my CD, ‘Bluesy Bach & Friends’!

 

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New Music, New Video: Amazing Grace – How Sweet the Sound

Hey friends — Just letting you know that inspiration struck me and I finished some new recording and video editing in record time.  My latest recording is now on YouTube, or right here: It’s New Music, New Video: Amazing Grace – How Sweet the Sound.

Amazing Grace was written by former captain of a slave trading ship, John Newton and published in 1779.

Lyrics

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see!

‘Twas grace, that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved!
How precious did that grace appear,
The hour I first believed!

Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come.
‘Tis grace hath brought me safe, thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise,
Than when we first begun.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

 

 

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New Music – Key to the Highway

Podcast audio

My cover of Key to the Highway is released and should now be available on many digital platforms including Amazon, Apple Music, Spotify and other places. And of course you can find all the information you need about it right on my website on the Music Store page which includes links to those major distributors.

I spent much of my COVID house arrest, and even before that, getting into the blues and especially Freddie King’s music including learning about the origins of the song Key to the Highway.

The history of the song’s origins are little bit murky. It is generally credited to Charles Segar and sometimes to Big Bill Broonzy or to both. From what I can tell, the song started out as standard 12 bar blues form with the Segar version, but when Broonzy recorded it along with Jazz Gillum it was reworked into the 8 bar form which I have used. The Segar recording is a piano driven tune at a medium tempo.

Like I said, the Charles Segar version was 12 bar form and featured the piano as the primary instrument. Then along came Jazz Gillum and Big Bill Broonzy who recorded their version featuring harmonica and acoustic guitar in 1940 in an 8 bar blues format.

The chord progression for the 8 bar format is as follows:
I V7 IV IV I V7 I–IV I–V7

Broonzy followed that with his own solo version a year later on the Okey label in 1941.

After Broonzy passed away in 1958, Little Walter recorded his own cover of “Key to the Highway”. Little Walter’s version changed it to more of a Chicago blues feel with backing by a full band of course with a full compliment of blues harmonica.

But then along came the King…….Freddie King that is. And he reworked Key again to a harder driving more intense sound with his guitar as lead instrument along with his powerful vocals. Freddie’s cover of Key to the Highway appeared on his “Getting Ready” album released in 1971 by Shelter Records. There is also a video of Freddie playing Key to the Highway live at the 1972 Sugar Bowl half time show.

My version of Key to the Highway took Freddie King as inspiration along with a dose of Magic Sam thrown in there for good measure. My recording is in the key of B flat. And for the guitar work I chose an Ibanez Artcore semihollowbody with Super58 pickups playing with a “Carol Kaye” bass pick (plectrum for you Brits). Vocals were recorded through a simple Shure SM-58 mic.

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