James Stephens

b. March 10th, 1915 in Spartanburg (South Carolina)

d. February 10th, 1991 in Greensboro (North Carolina)

GREENSBORO ROUNDER

Flyright

October 1974 - September 1975

Il commence à jouer de l'orgue dès l'âge de 5 ans puis se met au piano deux ans plus tard. Il grandit à Spartanburg et devient rapidement musicien itinérant dans les medicine-shows à la manière de Pink Anderson. Guitar Slim fait notamment partie du John Henry Davis Medicine Show avec lequel il tourne sans relâche pendant 4 ans. A la fin des années 40, il s'installe à Greensboro où il travaille comme paysagiste ou homme à tout faire. Mais il n'a jamais abandonné la musique jouant guitare et piano lors de fêtes locales. Ce premier album fut capté par Kip Lornell en grande partie au domicile de Slim lors de plusieurs séances. Il joue de la guitare dans un style qui mixe Piedmont et Delta Blues et du piano sur deux titres. On trouve plusieurs moments intenses comme le superbe "War service blues" qu'il joue au piano, "The blood has made me whole" avec une belle technique au bottleneck, "Lonesome blues", "Penitentiary moan blues", "Trouble blues".

He started playing organ at the age of 5, then started playing piano two years later. He grew up in Spartanburg and quickly became a traveling musician in medicine shows like Pink Anderson. Guitar Slim is notably part of the John Henry Davis Medicine Show with which he toured tirelessly for 4 years. At the end of the 1940's, he moved to Greensboro where he worked as a landscaper or jack of all trades. But he never gave up music playing guitar and piano at local parties. This first album was captured by Kip Lornell largely at Slim's home during several sessions. He plays guitar in a style that mixes Piedmont and Delta Blues and piano on two tracks. There are several intense moments such as the superb "War service blues" which he plays on piano, "The blood has made me whole" with a beautiful bottleneck technique, "Lonesome blues", "Penitentiary moan blues", "Trouble blues".

AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE

Rounder

1975 ?

EIGHT HAND SETS & HOLY STEPS

Crossroads

Longleaf

1977 or 1978

THE INTRODUCTION TO LIVING COUNTRY BLUES USA

L+R

Evidence

October 1980

Deux superbes morceaux - "Come on in my kitchen" et "Lula's back in town" - capturés par les allemands Siegfried Christmann et Axel Küstner.

Two superb songs - "Come on in my kitchen" and "Lula's back in town" - captured by germans Siegfried Christmann and Axel Küstner.

LIVING COUNTRY BLUES USA vol.8

L+R

Evidence

October 1980

Axel Küstner et Siegfried Christmann enregistrèrent substantiellement Guitar Slim lors de leur voyage sur la côte Est. De nombreux titres furent gravés et disséminés dans plusieurs disques de la collection Living Country Blues USA éditée par le label allemand L+R. Dans ce huitième volume, la moitié du disque est consacré à Guitar Slim. Alternativement au piano et à la guitare, il délivre de très belles pièces comme "Lookout blues", "Lonesome home blues", "Bad luck blues".

Axel Küstner and Siegfried Christmann substantially recorded Guitar Slim during their trip to the East Coast. Many titles were recorded and disseminated in several volumes of the Living Country Blues USA collection issued by the german label L+R. In this eighth volume, half of the disc is devoted to Guitar Slim. Alternatively on piano and guitar, he delivers very beautiful tracks like "Lookout blues", "Lonesome home blues", "Bad luck blues".

LIVING COUNTRY BLUES USA vol.10

L+R

Evidence

October 1980

Un beau blues au piano "Lovin' blues" dans ce volume de la collection Living Country Blues USA.

A beautiful piano blues "Lovin' blues" in this volume from the Living Country Blues USA collection.

LIVING COUNTRY BLUES USA vol.11

L+R

Evidence

October 1980

On trouve ici une belle pièce religieuse "What a friend we have in Jesus".

Here is a beautiful religious piece "What a friend we have in Jesus".

LIVING COUNTRY BLUES USA vol.12

L+R

Evidence

October 1980

Deux titres de Guitar Slim dans cet album : "Lulu's back in town" et "Won't you spread some flowers on my grave".

Two Guitar Slim tracks in this album : "Lulu's back in town" and "Won't you spread some flowers on my grave".

PLAY IT A LONG TIME

Ornament

CMA

Chrisly

WALKIN' BOOGIE

Comerta

Drive

October 1980

Ce demi-album provient également des enregistrements de terrain de Siegfried Christmann et Axel Küstner pour la collection Living Country Blues USA. Ces titres n'avaient pas trouvé de place dans les différents volumes de la collection et furent donc édités à part. On trouve quelques pistes intéressantes qui méritent l'écoute : "Walkin' boogie", "Did you get that letter", "Hard headed blues". Le LP Ornament d'origine a connu beaucoup de rééditions diverses.

This half-album also comes from field recordings made by Siegfried Christmann and Axel Küstner for the Living Country Blues USA collection. These titles had not found a place in the different volumes of the collection and were therefore issued separately. There are some interesting tracks that are worth listening to : "Walkin' boogie", "Did you get that letter", "Hard headed blues". The original Ornament LP has seen many different reissues.