LiTTLE JUNIOR PARKER: Junior Parker Rocks "Rocks"? Oh, my God! Oh, my God! The blu-esman with his velvet voice, the black crooner whispering ballads could thus "rock" during a long CD of 31 tracks? Of course, it was Junior Parker who composed and created Mystery Train (inspired, according to his own words, by the way. of Cannonball Blues of the Carter Family of which he was a fan), one of the most obvious rock standards' n' roll of course, friend of Elvis Presley, his Barefoot Rock is a very credible loan in the manner of Elvis and of course, Parker has also recorded - amid slow blues and ballads - a good quantity of fast tracks... which.. gathered here with intelligence, effectively give a CD well.... rocking!
Herman Parker, born in 1932 in West Mem-phis, started playing harmonica at a very young age and with his friend James Cot-ton thanks to Sonny Boy Williamson (Rice Miller) who often took them on his lap when he performed in his weekly radio program King Biscuit Flow-.the three of them playing the harmonica in unison under the name Sonny Boy and the Juniors! It was still as a teenager that "Junior" Parker became a member of the Howlin' Wolf orchestra, toured with him in the Delta before being spotted by Ike Turner and Jules Bihari, recording his first tracks for the Modern label, in which his velvety voice and insinuating intonations hit the mark with the young blacks of Memphis.
The continuation of his prolific career is well known E es séances for Sun in 1953 under the leadership of Sam Phill ps (who gives Mystery Train) who however sees little future for him, thus letting Parker sign for Don Robey's Duke label in Houston for which he will record constantly during the decade and experience many big hits several of which have become classics and are found largely on this CD: / War na Ramble. Mother In Law Blues. Next 77me You See Me. Dri-ving Wheel, Yonder's Wall (after Jazz Gillum). Annie Get You Yoyo. Not to mention his superb version of Sweet Home Chicago in 1958, which will make it into the Top 40 of the blues of the 1920s and 1930s the standard we know today. As always with the Bear Family label, re-mastering, sound quality. Presentation with a very copious illustrated booklet by Bill Dahl and a complete discography are at the top. If you don't already have these titles, this CD is absolutely essential. (Gérard Herzhaft) Bear Family BCD17535