Monday, June 26, 2017

Fat Possum Records' historic Worried Blues LP/CD series

Furry Lewis' Worried Blues
Fat Possum Records is known these days for the label’s cutting edge rock releases by bands like Temples, Communions, or Bash & Pop. Back in the ‘90s, though, the up-and-coming indie imprint was a hothouse of blues, releasing albums by artists like R.L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough, Mississippi Hill Country veterans whose commercial breakthroughs during the age of college radio and alt-rock helped put Fat Possum on the map.

On July 21, 2017 Fat Possum will revisit its stories past with the release of the ten-album Worried Blues series on vinyl, CD, and digital download, available exclusively from Amazon Music. Worried Blues features rare, lost, and long out-of-print recording from ten architects of 20th century blues music: R.L. Burnside, Mississippi John Hurt, Skip James, Houston Stackhouse, Rev. Gary Davis, Honeyboy Edwards, Furry Lewis, Little Brother Montgomery, Rev. Robert Wilkins, and Bukka White, each of which are represented by an individual collection in the Worried Blues series.

Much of the material found on the Worried Blues albums was recorded from 1963 to 1972 by Gene Rosenthal, the founder of Adelphi Records, with help from legendary guitarist and musicologist John Fahey. The artists represented by the series provide a rich tapestry of blues music from across the Mississippi Delta and hill country, all of them rather obscure until rediscovered by a new generation of fans. Although these recordings were released on CD in the early ‘90s, they’ve all been out-of-print for over 20 years and have never been released on vinyl. There’s a lot of history here, as well – Skip James’ recordings for Rosenthal were his first in 30 years while historic recordings by Bukka White and Mississippi John Hurt, made at the dawn of the ‘60s “folk blues” revival, sat in the archives for decades before their brief release by Adelphi.

Bukka White's Worried Blues
The Worried Blues series covers a lot of stylistic ground as well. Although all ten artists hail from Mississippi, their individual hue of blues differs greatly, from John Hurt’s ragtime-flavored fretwork to Furry Lewis’ slide-guitar and from Skip James’ mournful sound to R.L. Burnside’s ebullient Hill Country stomp. These are no cut-rate budget releases, either, each Worried Blues album including 10 to 16 songs by the artist; the vinyl releases include a digital download card. Check out the Fat Possum Records website for track listings for each individual album, and you can buy them through our links to the vinyl releases on below.

Fat Possum's Worried Blues series:
R.L. Burnside's Worried Blues 
Rev. Gary Davis' Worried Blues
Honeyboy Edwards' Worried Blues
Mississippi John Hurt's Worried Blues
Skip James' Worried Blues
Furry Lewis' Worried Blues
Little Brother Montgomery's Worried Blues
Houston Stackhouse' Worried Blues
Bukka White's Worried Blues
Rev. Robert Wilkins' Worried Blues

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