Boo Boo Davis’ rigorous touring schedule got severely curtailed last year when Covid hit, so he fought cabin fever by writing and recording some new tunes. With the help of the guitar/drums outfit from the Netherlands, ElectroBluesSociety, Davis has been conjuring up a few tracks while stuck back home in East St. Louis.
The first of these came out in January, 2021, and we dug the haunting, trance boogie groove of “Secret.” Boo Boo and his Dutch friends did it again with “See A Better Day.”
“See A Better Day” is another perfect blend of Davis’ genuine, American mid-century blues with Jan Mittendorp’s and Jasper Mortier’s studio sensibilities. Everything — from Boo Boo Davis’ voice and harmonic, Mittendorp’s stinging guitar and Mortier’s funky pulse and standup bass — just bellows out from a muddy, analog-ish and smoky haze.
Boo Boo Davis’ latest single comes to us courtesy of Black and Tan Records. Get yourself a download or stream of “See A Better Day” today from iTunes, Spotify or Deezer.
were used last week in the latest episode (season 1 eps 3) of Resident Alien; an American science fiction mystery comedy-drama television series, based on a comic book of the same name by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse, that premiered on January 27, 2021 on SyFy.
here is a little review on the new single from ElectroBluesSociety feat Boo Boo Davis.
Boo Boo Davis is one of the last of old school electric bluesmen but even a deadly virus pandemic can’t slow him down much. Sure, musicians can’t tour right now but they can still compose and record, so Davis has been collaborating long distance from East St. Louis with his longtime touring band ElectroBluesSociety out of The Netherlands. It’s still too early for their follow up to a collection of Chicago blues covers, but they got started and already put out a completed track for the world to enjoy.
“Secret” (Black and Tan Records) is exactly what we’ve come to expect from a Boo Boo Davis song that’s been given the ElectroBluesSociety treatment. Jan Mittendorp (guitar) and Jasper Mortier (drums and bass) lays in a trance boogie groove and does just enough studio manipulation to make it spine-tingling haunting, amplifying the blues feel instead of covering it up. But it’s not like they have to do that much because Boo Boo’s voice can sound ominous on its own.
After a year of upheaval, we’re glad there are some things that didn’t change. Thankfully, Boo Boo Davis never will.
B&T 976 – ElectroBluesSociety feat Boo Boo Davis – Secret
Since 1998 we have been touring with Boo Boo Davis in Europe at least 2 or 3 times each year since 1998. Usually, we also wrote and recorded a lot of new music during these tours. At first Covid-19 meant a complete stop to all this. But the music couldn’t be stopped, and we started to exchange musical ideas and send them back and forth between the Netherlands and East St Louis (where Boo Boo is living). Special thanks go to Chris Brown for helping with this.
So, despite the fact that we cannot be at the same spot right now we are still able to create new music together. This single is the first result of that new way of working, and it is available on all digital platforms
We are working on a lot more songs and we will release them them in the coming months. Stay tuned.
ElectroBluesSociety are an ‘experimental electro blues’ duo from The Netherlands, comprising Black & Tan label boss Jan Mittendorp on guitar and various electronics, and bass player/drummer Jasper Mortier. The label has worked frequently with Drew, Mississippi-born bluesman James ‘Boo Boo’ Davis since releasing his debut album in 1999, and during a European tour in 2018, Boo Boo, now in his seventies, Jan and Jasper laid down seven songs during three hours in the studio. They went back to basics for these performances and added the electronics afterwards. The tracks were originally released as singles (ie.digital releases of single tracks) during 2018 and 2019, and were generally well-received; this new release, styled as an ‘EP’, gathers them together. As the label name reveals, these tracks are cover versions, of course, from Howlin’ Wolf – Boo Boo would frequently perform his songs with his brothers in Saint Louis in the ’60s – and Elmore James, who was a friend of his father’s. Oh, and don’t worry about those ‘electronic additions’ – they may sound a little peculiar on the intro to ‘Back Door Man’, and that track is perhaps the most experimental here, but they are not really that obtrusive overall, and might help with attracting younger audiences. Boo Boo’s rural-sounding, Wolf-ish vocals and raw, wailing harmonica work are good enough to make up for it throughout anyhow. A little surprisingly, ‘Tell Me’ is an unexpected personal favourite, a very, very fine performance with a wonderful vocal.This is a digital only release from Black & Tan subsidiary KuvVer and it is available on all the usual download and streaming platforms. Boo Boo’s scheduled European tour was cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak, a serious loss of income for him – buythis and support a genuine bluesman.
A couple of months ago I told y’all about this EP that vintage bluesman Boo Boo Davis put out with ElectroBluesSociety sensibly titled Chicago Blues Covers. This makeshift trio (Davis, guitarist Jan Mittendorp and drummer Jasper Mortier) made a mess of covers of electric blues standards charged by the retro-modern studio finagling of the ElectroBluesSociety and the sheer aura of one Boo Boo Davis. And they laid down the tracks for these songs all in one afternoon in 2018. Now we learn that their label KuvVer Records has dropped another track from apparently that same session, Howlin’ Wolf’s “Killing Floor.” Boo Boo’s rendition carries the same machismo as Wolf’s but aside from that, it sounds almost like a wholly different song. If anything, the analog-y, reverb-drenched sonics of this two year-old recording sounds even more ancient than the fifty-six year-old original and Mortier keeps the song lively with a booming backbeat. Davis voice echoes from the bottom his soul but his blues harp shouts louder and authoritatively. Even if you’ve heard this song a thousand times before, your experience with it isn’t complete without hearing ElectroBluesSociety and Boo Boo Davis tackle it. They give old blues back its youthful vitality because they know how to make it brash and raw.
today we released a new single on KuvVer Records, one of our sub labels.
In 2018 ElectroBluesSociety did a recording session with Mississippi blues man Boo Boo Davis. During one of the European tours of Boo Boo they went in the studio and in 3 hours they recorded 8 songs. Together they went back to the classic Chicago blues and afterwards added a little electro blues. Here is another Howlin Wolf cover from that session. This track is released digital only and available on all the download and streaming platforms.
Činjenica je da sa starim, provjerenim bluesmanom teško možete “fulati”. Nizozemski duo ElectroBluesSociety feat. Boo Boo Davis EP-jem “Chicago Blues Covers” objavljenim 31. svibnja preko izdavačke kuće KuvVer Records zapravo ne bježe od svoje životne i glazbene priče. Drugo je pitanje koliko su u svemu tome uspjeli…
EP “Chicago Blues Covers” je zapravo okupljena kolekcija singlova koji su nastali tijekom 2018. i 2019. za europske turneje Boo Boo Davisa. Naime, eksperimentalni elektro blues duo ElectroBluesSociety ušli su u studio i nakon tri sata svirke dobili smo sedam skladbi koje su objavljivane kao singlovi a sada su svi izdani kao ovaj EP. Chicago blues spajan s elektro bluesom a sve kroz poznate blues standarde dali su više–manje uspješne rezultate. Što to znači? U nekim odabranim pjesmama ovaj spoj je bio uspješan i nadahnut, u drugim je ostao pomalo sterilan i nedorečen. A sve ovisi opet na koji način se doživljava i reaktivira cijela ova glazbena priča. Chicago blues klasici Howlina’ Wolfa i Elmorea Jamesa teško da mogu “fulati”, mogu samo biti, da to tako napišem, sterilni i pomalo nedorečeni u glazbeno-prezentacijskoj formi. Pred nama je zapravo nastojanje da se uglazbi staro i novo, tradicionalno i moderno i da onda sve to ostavi upečatljivi dojam kod slušatelja. Moram priznati da je taj glazbeni projekt ostavio uglavnom dobar dojam na mene osobno, što ne znači da će svi to doživjeti na taj način.
Davis je rođen i odrastao u gradiću Drew, u srcu Delte. Znamo da je cijelo to područje bogato pamukom, koji je zahtjevao puno radne snage, među baš tim radnicima, bilo je dosta sjajnih glazbenika, koji su obilježili blues kao glazbeni stil. Primjerice, Charley Patton samo je jedan od njih. Ljudi su trebali da ih netko odmakne od teškog rada, od sunca, znoja, i da im u smiraj dana ponudi nešto što će ih oraspoložiti i dati im snage za novi radni dan. To je zapravo bila glavna zadaća glazbenika koji su izvodili blues, boogie, R&B i sve ono što ima dodirnih točaka s ovim glazbenim pravcima. Od najranijeg djetinjstva Boo Boo okružen je glazbom, crkvenim pjevanjem, a njegov otac Sylvester Davis, osim što je bio nadničar, svirao je s imenima kao što su John Lee Hooker, Elmore James i Roberta Pete Williams. Nije čudno što Davis Jr. pamti kako su svi oni vježbali u njihovoj kući i to je zapravo urezalo itekekve duboke i neraskidive veze i brazde u njegovom biću.
S nepunih osamnaest već je nastupao s ocem i starijom braćom. Sve to značilo je biti non-stop “on the road” po cijeloj Delti. U ranim šezdesetim Boo Boo i njegova braća odlaze na sjever, u St. Louis, gdje su nastupali uz velikane glazbene scene St Louisa (Albert King, Ike Turner, Chuck Berry i drugi).
The Davis Brothers Blues Band svaki vikend bio je kućni bend u Tabby’s Red Room u istočnom St. Louisu punih osamnaest godina. Činjenica je da ga život nije mazio, to je 100% točno jer Davis nije naučio čitati ni pisati, jednostavno nije bilo vremena ili novaca za njegovo školovanje, no pronašao je načina da opstane u modernom svijetu. Da se ne osjeća manje vrijednim, dapače, Boo Boo Davis stekao je reputaciju izvrsnog blues glazbenika, kome taj i takav blues pomaže da zadrži svoj duhovni mir i život na razini dostojne čovjeka. Jer treba preživjeti svaki novi dan i to je zapravo taj život. Iz njega Davis čupa elemente za svakodnevni opstanak i o tome on pjeva. Život donosi i dobro i loše, on je običan i jednostavan i stvaran je.
Ušavši u studio Davis samo krene i pjesme izlaze jedna za drugom. Na ovom tonskom zapisu uz Boo Boo Davisa na vokalu i usnjaku uz eksperimentalni elektro blues duo, koji su snimili ovih sedam skladbi onako u uživo, bez puno mudrovanja, kako su nekada to radili i snimali legendarni blues glaznenici. Baš zato sve ovo što čujete zvuči tako stvarno i životno Davis i ElectroBluesSociety odradili su doista dobar posao. A sve ostalo ovisi o ukusima slušatelja i poklonika bluesa.