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Eddie Kirkland

How many Jamaican-born bluesmen recorded with John Lee Hooker and toured with Otis Redding? It's a safe bet there was only one: Eddie Kirkland, who engaged in some astonishing on-stage acrobatics over the decades (like standing on his head while playing guitar on TV's Don Kirshner's Rock Concert). But you would never find any ersatz reggae grooves cluttering Kirkland's work. He was brought up around Dothan, Alabama before heading north to Detroit in 1943. There he hooked up with Hooker five years later, recording with him for several labels as well as under his own name for RPM in 1952, King in 1953, and Fortune in 1959. Tru-Sound Records, a Prestige subsidiary, invited Kirkland to Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey in 1961-1962 to wax his first album, It's the Blues Man! The polished R&B band of saxophonist King Curtis intersected with Kirkland's intense vocals, raucous guitar, and harmonica throughout the exciting set. Exiting the Motor City for Macon, Georgia in 1962, Kirkland signed on with Otis Redding as a sideman and show opener not long thereafter. Redding introduced Kirkland to Stax/Volt co-owner Jim Stewart, who flipped over Eddie's primal dance workout "The Hawg." It was issued on Volt in 1963, billed to Eddie Kirk. By the dawn of the '70s, Kirkland was recording for Pete Lowry's Trix label; he also waxed several CDs for Deluge in the '90s. Kirkland remained active into the 21st century, and was in Florida to perform at a show in the Gulf Coast community of Dunedin when he died from injuries sustained when the automobile he was driving collided with a Greyhound bus in Crystal River on February 27, 2011. Eddie Kirkland was 87 years old. ~ Bill Dahl
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Devil's Jump-Indie Label Blues 1946-1957

Disc 1

1. Horse Shoe Boogie

2. Ruby Moore Blues

3. Little Mary

4. Cheatin' Around

7. Hastings Street Opera, Pt. 1

8. Hastings Street Opera, Pt. 2

9. Stomp Boogie

10. Who's Been Jiving You

11. Wig Wearin' Woman

12. New York Central

13. Black Man Blues

14. Poor Joe

15. Forgive Me Darling

16. Please Don't Think I'm Nosey

17. Since I Seen Your Smiling Face

19. Blinds Blues

20. Slappin' The Boogie

23. Your Little Wagon

Disc 2

3. New Little Girl, Little Girl

4. Nightmare Blues

5. Late Last Night

6. Lend Me Your Love

7. Pacemaker Boogie

8. Wandering Blues

9. Don't Go Baby

10. Slim's Boogie

11. A Letter Home

14. Down At The Depot

15. Alabama Boogie

16. Penny Pinchin' Mama

17. Do It No More

18. Gonna Hop On Down The Line

19. Do Right

20. Something's Wrong With My Little Machine

21. Old Battle Ax

22. Hello Miss Jessie Lee

23. Dealing With The Devil

Disc 3

1. Low Land Blues

2. Round The World Boogie

3. My Baby's Acting Funny

4. It's My Time To Go

5. Devil's Jump

6. I'm Gonna Kill That Woman

7. Stop Messing Around

8. Pet Milk Blues

9. Moaning Blues

10. The Numbers

11. Root Hog

12. Gone Gone Gone

13. Baby' Don't Leave

14. (Sometimes I Feel Like A) Motherless Child

15. Life Is Like That

16. Baby Blues

17. In My Father's House

18. Mother Dear Mother

19. Side Walk Boogie

20. Early In The Morning

21. Miss Anna B

22. Door Bell Blues

23. Why'd You Do It

24. Boogie Baby

25. '54 Blues

Disc 4

4. I Believe I'll Go Downtown Again

5. Dixie Flyer

7. Midnight Jump

8. Hastings Street Woogie Man

9. Detroit Boogie

10. Heart Trouble Blues

11. Slim's Stomp

14. Up And Down

16. I'll Never Walk In Your Door

17. Black Cat Trail

19. I'm A Boogie Man

20. My Baby Left Me

21. I Stayed Down

22. I Was In St. Louis

x

Track List: North Point Music: Beginnings

1. Speechless (No One Like You)

2. Our Great God (Live)

3. God Of The Impossible

4. Here And Now (Live)

5. Marvelous

7. It Is Well

9. When The Waters Rise

11. Let My Soul Sing

15. Shine Like Stars

18. You Alone (Live)

Comments

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