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Jazz & Blues
Fri December 7, 2012
Just a 'Spoonful' of blues ... and the rest is history
It’s a modern blues standard with roots in the 1920’s, one of Willie Dixon’s many great compositions, and it can trace its origin in part to a Charlie Patton song from 1929: “A Spoonful Blues."
In 1960 Howlin’ Wolf recorded "Spoonful," a track many consider one of the defining songs of modern blues. By the mid-60’s, many rock musicians started taking blues in different directions. Cream is considered the grand-daddy of rock trios, combining virtuosity with the ability to improvise. Here’s a great example, a rare up-close video of Cream live:
Literally hundreds of artists have recorded the song, but the group Slo Leak came close to re-inventing it in their “trance blues” version from 2008. Over 80 years after Charlie Patton, we’re still talking about a spoonful.
Here are the full versions of “Spoonful” tracked through time:
Charlie Patton: “A Spoonful Blues” 1929
Howlin’ Wolf: “Spoonful” 1960
Cream: “Spoonful” 1966
Slo Leak: “Spoonful” 2008