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Tommy Ridgley

Tommy Ridgley was on the Crescent City R&B scene when it first caught fire, and he remained a proud part of that same scene until his death in 1999. That was a lot of years behind a microphone, but Ridgley never sounded the slightest bit tired; his 1995 Black Top album Since the Blues Began rated as one of his liveliest outings.

Ridgley cut his debut sides back in 1949 for Imperial under Dave Bartholomew's direction. His "Shrewsbury Blues" and "Boogie Woogie Mama" failed to break outside of his hometown, though. Sessions for Decca in 1950 and Imperial in 1952 (where he waxed the wild "Looped") preceded four 1953-1955 sessions for Atlantic that included a blistering instrumental, "Jam Up," that sported no actual Ridgley involvement but sold relatively well under his name (incomparable tenor saxist Lee Allen was prominent).

New York's Herald Records was Ridgley's home during the late '50s. The consistently solid singer waxed "When I Meet My Girl" for the firm in 1957, encoring with a catchy "Baby Do-Liddle." From there, it was on to his hometown-based Ric logo, where he laid down the stunning stroll-tempoed "Let's Try and Talk It Over" and a bluesy "Should I Ever Love Again" in 1960. He recorded intermittently after leaving Ric in 1963, waxing a soulful "I'm Not the Same Person" in 1969 for Ronn.

Ridgley always remained a hometown favorite even when recording opportunities proved scarce. Happily, Since the Blues Began ranked with 1995's best albums, Ridgley sounding entirely contemporary but retaining his defining Crescent City R&B edge. Not long after the appearance of 1999's How Long, Ridgley passed away, on August 11th of that year. ~ Bill Dahl
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Tommy Ridgley Collection 1949-61

Disc 1

1. Shrewsbury Blues

2. Early Dawn Boogie

3. Boogie Woogie Mama

4. Lonely Man Blues

5. Tra La La (A)

6. Anything But Love

7. Once In A Lifetime

8. Come Home Baby

9. Tra La La (B)

10. Lawdy Lawdy Lawd Part 1

11. Lawdy Lawdy Lawd Part 2

12. Got You On My Mind

13. Booted

14. Lavinia

15. I Live My Life

16. Looped

17. Junie Mae

18. Monkey Man

19. Nobody Cares

20. Good Times

21. A Day Is Coming

22. Ooh Lawdy My Baby

23. I'm Gonna Cross That River

24. Wish I Had Never

25. Jam Up Twist

26. When I Meet My Girl

27. What'cha Gonna Do

Disc 2

1. Woncha Gone

2. Baby Do Little

3. Baby Do Little (Alternate Take)

4. Alone But Not Lonely

5. Just A Memory

6. Come Back Baby

7. Mairzy Doats And Dozy Doats

8. I've Heard That Story Before

9. I'll Be True

10. The Girl Across The Street

11. Tina

12. How I Feel

13. Memory Melody (Instrumental)

14. Real Gone Jam (Instrumental)

15. Ding Dong School

16. I've Got My Eyes On You

17. Lonely Tune (Instrumental)

18. Is It True

19. Let's Try And Talk It Over

20. Do You Remember

21. Please Hurry Home

22. Should I Ever Love Again

23. Double Eyed Whammy

24. Three Times

25. The Only Girl For Me

26. In The Same Old Way

27. The Girl From Kookamonga

x

Track List: Blues Classics 1949-1954

1. Shrewsbury Blues

2. Tra La La

3. Got You On My Mind

4. Lonely Man Blues

5. Good Times

6. A Day Is Coming

7. Lavinia

8. Boogie Woogie Mama

9. Nobody Cares

10. Early Dawn Boogie

11. Ooh Lawdy My Baby

12. I'm Gonna Cross That River

13. Anything But Love

14. Once In A Lifetime

15. Monkey Man

16. Come Home, Baby

17. Looped

18. Booted

19. I Live My Life

20. Jam Up

21. Junie Mae

22. Wish I Had Never

x

Track List: How Long?

1. How Long?

2. Bad Luck

3. You Are The Lady

4. The Way I Feel About You

5. About My Past

6. I Love You Yes I Do

7. I'm Gonna Cross That River

8. You Mean Everything To Me

9. All Wrapped Up In You

10. I Don't Want Nobody Else

11. Ooh Poo Pah Doo

x

Track List: Since The Blues Began

1. Pretty Lady

2. How Long (Must I Wait On You)?

3. Runnin' After You

4. About My Past

5. Since The Blues Began

6. I've Heard That Story Before

7. Heartbreak

8. Shack Up With Me

9. Let's Try To Talk It Over

10. Your Love Is All I Need

11. In The Same Old Way (1995)

12. The World Is Our Stage

13. You Mean Everything To Me

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