September 6, 2021

Blues and Rhythm Show 327 on 93.3 CFMU (Hamilton, Ontario)

Swear to Tell the Truth for Tuesday, September 7, 2021 (10:00 to 12:00 noon)

The world is different in ways we could not have anticipated but it’s another new year on university campuses like McMaster’s, home to CFMU which for some reason allows us to present this weekly program on its airwaves. So, we’ll carry on as if this was just another new season of broadcasting at campus-community radio. On our first show of the fall, the day after Labour Day, we have a varied program: a few tracks we played on our debut CFMU program, including classics from Duke-Peacock, random tracks from Earl Hooker; R&B from the soft end of the spectrum; popular blues artists from the later 1930s; early protest blues and folk; death and Gospel; Soul from Muscle Shoals, Memphis and New Orleans.

“Well, I’ve always been in trouble ’cause I’m a black skin man” — Josh White

“What is this that I can’t see. This icy hand taken hold of me?” — Jeanette Carter

“I’m a son of a son of a slave” — Larry Darnell

On the Show:

Earl Hooker – Marie Adams – Bobby Bland – Four Kings & a Queen – Ruth Brown – Aretha Franklin – Georgia White – Curtis Jones – Almanac Singers – Erwin Webb & group – Maria Muldaur – Mae Gooch & Gospel Stars – Kennedy, Milteau, Segal – Jimmy Hughes – Larry Darnell – and others

Listen to the program each week at FM 93.3 in Hamilton or on CFMU online at cfmu.ca. The program will be available to stream or download until for eight weeks until November 2nd as a podcast. Just go the website, scroll through 40 shows to Tuesday 10:00 am bring up the right playlist and stream or download the show.

Next Week:



October 21, 2013

Blues and Rhythm Show 102 on 93.3 CFMU (Hamilton, Ontario)

Swear to Tell the Truth for Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013 (1:00-2:30 pm)

This week, we have a feature devoted to piano blues of the 1930s, 1929-1941, to be precise. The end of the 1920s saw a recording trend towards piano-guitar duos but, by the end of the thirties, larger combos prevailed and, though several of the leading figures on records were piano players, the piano may seem to have been less important as a lead or solo instrument in blues than at the beginning of the decade.  At the same time, the piano was prominent as part of an ensemble of  accompanying instruments on records by Big Bill, Memphis Minnie, Bumble Bee Slim, Tampa Red and many others in the second half of the 1930s.

Most blues recording in this era was controlled by a handful of individuals employed by or contracted to record companies, who among themselves determined who made blues records and what combination of instruments would be used on recordings. Lester Melrose controlled blues recording at both at Victor-Bluebird and at Columbia’s various subsidiaries. We don’t know to what extent the combos who made records reflected the way music was heard live. We do know that the Harlem Hamfats are said to have been a studio group who performed together rarely, if ever, live. In twenty years, the phenomenon of live music recreating recordings would be well under way. That development was in its infancy in the 1930s but the men controlling the studios for the three big companies were already utilizing certain performers, including piano players,  over and over, as studio musicians. This practice produced a certain sameness and predictability to recording sessions but the system was overturned after the war by the rise of the many independent labels recording blues and R&B–even though some of these companies would adopt a similar approach to the majors.

Our feature will look at some of the piano players who appeared most often as solo artists or leaders as well as at some players who were usually employed as accompanists to other artists.

We’ll also play a couple of numbers by preachers who made records, some West Coast bluesmen who are not household names, and a few minutes of soul out of Memphis.

On the Show:

Elder Solomon Lightfoot Michaux – King Solomon –  Al King – Lee Green – Lucille Bogan – Lil Johnson – Curtis Jones – Barbara and the Browns – Rita Chiarelli

Listen to the program at FM 93.3 in Hamilton or on CFMU online at cfmu.mcmaster.ca. The program will be available to stream or as a podcast until November 19th.

Contact Us

To reach us with comments or queries, write us at sweartotellthetruth@gmail.com.

You can also follow the program at sweartotellthetruth@nosignifying on Twitter.

Next week (October 29th)

Undetermined as of today. We’ll update.


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