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Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials

Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials were among the premiere party bands to come out of Chicago during the '70s and '80s. Often compared to Elmore James and Hound Dog Taylor, fiery, flamboyant slide guitarist Lil' Ed Williams and his group have continued to play dedicated, rough-edged, and hard-rocking dance music, establishing an international reputation that has lasted into the new millennium. A native of Chicago, Williams was first inspired by his uncle, renowned slide guitarist J.B. Hutto, with whom he studied as a young teen. Hutto not only taught him slide, but also introduced Williams to bass and drums. Williams' half-brother, James "Pookie" Young, was also a student of Hutto, and later became the bassist for the Blues Imperials. The brothers co-founded their group in the early '70s and went professional in 1975, playing at Big Duke's Blue Flame on the West Side. The gig earned them a whopping six bucks, which the group members split evenly. In those early years, Williams worked days at a car wash while Young drove a school bus.

Despite their humble start, Williams and the Blues Imperials kept performing at night and by the early '80s had developed a substantial regional following. Signing to Alligator in the mid-'80s, they released their debut album, Roughhousin', in 1986 and found themselves receiving national attention. They began playing urban clubs and festivals all over the country and eventually toured Canada, Europe, and Japan. They released their second album, Chicken, Gravy & Biscuits, in 1989, and the success continued as the Blues Imperials began appearing with such artists as Koko Taylor and Elvin Bishop during the Alligator Records 20th anniversary tour. They released their third album, What You See Is What You Get, in 1992.

If Ed, Pookie, and the latest members of the revamped Blues Imperials never did much to modernize their blues or develop a new sound, that was just fine with the band's followers ("Edheads," no less), to whom the raucous, rocking slide guitar heritage of Hutto, Hound Dog Taylor, and Elmore James is blues nirvana. Following its third album, the group went on hiatus for a few years, during which Lil' Ed Williams released two albums on Earwig, 1996's Keep on Walkin' with Dave Weld and 1998's Who's Been Talking with Willie Kent. In 1999 the band reconvened and released Get Wild. They followed it up with Heads Up, their fifth Alligator record, in 2002. Their sixth, Rattleshake, appeared in 2006, followed by their seventh, Full Tilt, two years later. ~ Jim O'Neal & Sandra Brennan, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

Saw them at Pensacola beach in apr 2014. Just checked in to the Paradise Inn and couldn't believe there was Blues in a beach shack. Wow. Unforgettabl e ! Don't know if anyone appreciated what they were really hearing.
dougieyellow j a c k e t
Their s**t is hot!!!
wow :) aint got no words that can express this sound
Love this song makes me wanna dance lol Woooohoooo where da girls lol lmao
boywonder194 9
So enjoyable so much blues so enjoyable.
FOR A GOOD OLD BOY LIKE ME THIS GUYS. NO WHAT MUSIC IS ALL ABOUT .JUST A HAND FULL OF GUYS ARE THIS GREAT

HoooHaaa! Feets Wont Stop... !
This is what happens when you hear the blues for the first time, pick up a guitar and don't look back
hotbutteredg e r g
I can head SRV in this guitar, or more these guys in SRV's playing. Great blues!
dont read this because it actually works. You will get kissed on the nearest possible friday by the love of your life. tommorrow will be the best day of your life. however if you do not post this comment to at least 3 songs you will die in 2 days. now youve started reading this so dont stop. this is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in at least 143 minutes when if done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters this is scary cuz it actually works
more, more.more, love it.
Glad to be an EdHead -incendiary slide at its best!
This is RAW BLUES and he sings it BEST! His every word and note is
incredible and swift as a shooting star! hay boy you got it real GOOD!
I love ya babe! take that to the bank!
mrschaffins
fun!
kvons1
Nobody's Fault But My Own-----can' t touch this one.
I am now glad to be included as a Ed Head
noodo

Oh yeah!!! This is one cool dude.







You can't get blues better than this on Pandora
Been a fan since late 80's
boogiespeed
saw'em at Pauley's Hotel, Albany NY's oldest bar...
(and it's an OLD town..) back in 95 or '96.

Whoa daddy. Allas woith the price of admission!

Play da Blues!
Been an ed head since the begining. even got to see them here in grand junction Colorado a few years back what a treat being an ex Chicago boy
no flash, no mess, just the real deal........ . * s i g h s with joy*
This outfit is what I call straight-up- a h e a d no-chaser thrown right at you style of blues. Two thumbs up and even my big toe.
Pretty smokin' playing. Got to check these guys out in-depth.
These guys played the Trinidaddio Blues Festival in Trinidad, Colorado this year. Blew us all away! Great live presence!
my son took me to a little dive of a blues club on halsted these guys were fantastic cant get enough
I remember this band from the 80's playing the bars in Madison. Loved them! Very good at engaging the audience. Good to hear them again!
luv this band- straight up blues - best is " walk the dog "
thanxs

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