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(1951-60) (55:53/22) more

Sticks McGhee: Vol.2

(1951-60) (55:53/22)

Article properties: Sticks McGhee: Vol.2

McGhee, Stick - Vol.2 CD 1
01 New Found Love Sticks McGhee
02 Meet You In The Morning Sticks McGhee
03 My Little Rose Sticks McGhee
04 No More Reveille Sticks McGhee
05 Little Things We Used To Do Sticks McGhee
06 Blues In My Heart And Tears In My Eyes Sticks McGhee
07 Whiskey Women And Loaded Dice Sticks McGhee
08 Head Happy With Wine Sticks McGhee
09 I'm Doin' All This Time (And You Put Me Down) Sticks McGhee
10 Dealin' From The Bottom Sticks McGhee
11 The Wiggle Waggle Woo Sticks McGhee
12 Jungle Juice Sticks McGhee
13 Ease My Worried Mind Sticks McGhee
14 Things Have Changed Sticks McGhee
15 Travelin' On Sticks McGhee
16 Help Me Baby Sticks McGhee
17 Double Crossin' Liquor Sticks McGhee
18 Six To Eight Sticks McGhee
19 Get Your Mind Out Of The Gutter Sticks McGhee
20 Sad Bad Glad Sticks McGhee
21 Money Fever Sticks McGhee
22 Sleep In Job Sticks McGhee
Stick McGhee and His Buddies As the younger brother of a future blues legend, 'Stick'... more
"Sticks McGhee"

Stick McGhee and His Buddies

As the younger brother of a future blues legend, 'Stick' McGhee gets the short end of the you-know-what in the history books despite originating a genuine classic. Born Granville Henely McGhee on March 23, 1917 in Kingsport, Tennessee, he got his nickname from using a stick to push the four-wheeled cart that his polio-stricken brother Walter rode around in (maybe you know him better as Brownie).

While Brownie got started on building his legend as a bluesman during the early '40s, Stick served in the Army during World War II. That's where the inspiration for Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee arose, as an obscene barracks chant. He joined Brownie in New York after the war and in 1947 waxed a cruder rendition of Drinkin' Wine without his sibling for J. Mayo Williams' little Harlem logo. It went nowhere fast. Williams dumped his 78 pressings on a New Orleans distributor who got it some unexpected airplay. Atlantic Records heard about it and jumped into the fray, recutting the rollicking ditty on February 14, 1949 in New York with Brownie on lead guitar and second vocal, Wilbert 'Big Chief' Ellis on piano, and bassist Gene Ramey. Their hustle was rewarded with a #2 R&B smash that spring.

Stick found following it up successfully a tough proposition. Despite some fine encores for Atlantic (Tennessee Waltz Blues was his only other chart entry in '51), London, Essex, King, Savoy, and Herald, Stick's fortunes went the wrong way while Brownie and his harp-blowing partner Sonny Terry achieved enduring stardom. Lung cancer claimed Stick on August 15, 1961 in the Bronx, aged only 44.

If Stick has been all but forgotten, his signature song hasn't. It was the first thing Jerry Lee Lewis ever performed in public, and he's cut several versions over the decades (his '57 Sun rendition is impossible to beat). Rockabilly wildmen Johnny Burnette, Malcolm Yelvington, and Whitey Pullen had their way with the tune, as did R&B shouters Wynonie Harris, Sonny Parker (with Lionel Hampton's orchestra), Big John Greer, Larry Dale, and the Treniers. Hoy hoy hoy!

Bill Dahl
Chicago, Illinois


Electric Blues 1939-2005. - The Definitive Collection!


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