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Snooky Pryor

Only recently has Snooky Pryor finally begun to receive full credit for the mammoth role he played in shaping the amplified Chicago blues harp sound during the postwar era. He's long claimed he was the first harpist to run his sound through a public address system around the Windy City -- and since nobody's around to refute the claim at this point, we'll have to accept it! James Edward Pryor was playing harmonica at the age of eight in Mississippi. The two Sonny Boys were influential to Pryor's emerging style, as he played around the Delta. He hit Chicago for the first time in 1940, later serving in the Army at nearby Fort Sheridan. Playing his harp through powerful Army PA systems gave Pryor the idea to acquire his own portable rig once he left the service. Armed with a primitive amp, he dazzled the folks on Maxwell Street in late 1945 with his massively amplified harp. Pryor made some groundbreaking 78s during the immediate postwar Chicago blues era. Teaming with guitarist Moody Jones, he waxed "Telephone Blues" and "Boogie" for Planet Records in 1948, encoring the next year with "Boogy Fool"/"Raisin' Sand" for JOB with Jones on bass and guitarist Baby Face Leroy Foster in support. Pryor made more classic sides for JOB (1952-1953), Parrot (1953), and Vee-Jay ("Someone to Love Me"/"Judgment Day") in 1956, but commercial success never materialized. He wound down his blues-playing in the early '60s, finally chucking it all and moving to downstate Ullin, IL, in 1967. For a long while, Pryor's whereabouts were unknown. But the 1987 Blind Pig album Snooky, produced by guitarist Steve Freund, announced to the world that the veteran harpist was alive and well, his chops still honed. A pair of solid discs for Antone's, Too Cool to Move and In This Mess Up to My Chest, followed. Pryor stayed busy until his death in 2006. ~ Bill Dahl, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

hahaha wooooh
oh yeah
hah
yessir
RIP BROTHER
Snooky Pryor Mississippi Boy
lol haha
oh yeah!!!!!
oh, YEAH!!!!!!!! ! ! hahahahahaha heck yeah
That's gotta be the best harmonic playing Ive ever heard.
very good
wicked
My dad used to work at Fort Sheridan. But it may have been a little later than Snooky's time. Wish Dad was still around to ask him :0
The bluzzz burnzzz go'in down here 5m14y
wohoo
rockyfletche r . r f
Just heard him on down child blues band radio a lost treasure sounds really clean!
orondomailma n
Considering the equipment available to Snooky at the time of this recording the sound is very clean and pure harp.
Gotta love that sweet down home style... gets into your soul.
Wow
Makes ya feel goooood!
Luv me some o school blues.
Did not hear him on my john Mayall and the blues breakers radio odd?
That's J Geils I can spell!!Yeah check out John Mayall's bio impressive.. . .
Pleased to hear him on John Mayall radio,J Giles to Muddy waters thanks Pandora
awesome
Still tryin to learn how to play my harmonica, if only I can stop scarin our dog its the only audience I have lol :D but still tryin lol.
one of the best harp player's that ever lived.great guy too.jammin gino
Mmmmmmmm!
I gotta find out where Snooky found that woman that is so kind to him,more than likely in a dream
mvzbfg
Snooky was great, so is his son Rip though he has his own style. I've seen him fronting bands with incredible lung power and control. In his one man shows he plays harmonica, guitar and foot percussion, as well as singing. His unique style comes through on recordings, here's a sample: http://www.m y s p a c e . c o m / r i p l e e p r y o r / m u s i c / s o n g s / l o s t - a - g o o d - w o m a n - 3 5 8 6 5 4 6 1
I really dug his harp playing I learned something that I didn't know that playing a harmonica is called play the harp he was great WOW!!!!!
All blues is good but if you want to hear the origin of blues, check out Delta Blues. Robert Johnson to be more precise.
Got to see him live about 10 years ago at the bean blossom blues fest. Still rocked it out from a wheelchair.
sazajac
simple, straightforw a r d , LOUD harp. He da man.
danwalker.ha l l
Badd to th bone
this is dope as helll got here from my stevie ray vaughan playlist and hes amazing
he's the best, groove on...
JUST HEARD SNOOKY, I'VE HEARD TONS OF BLUES, BUT LIKE YOU ALL SAID HE'S HOTT
This dude is the real deal !!!!!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! 1
jerryhighers
love the blues
the best
WORD
tonyvenny
bad mo
aaavac
fantastic
ya got to love it . ITS SO COOI.......
affajbar
and his bidnezz is da blues! SLAMMMMMM'NN
I'm IN
Yeah, Snooky...... . . . . . . !
Him & Carey Bell! vYup...
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