Son House – Father of Folk Blues – Analogue Productions 45RPM 200g Vinyl
“Just had to get in touch to let you know that my copy of Son House’s Father Of The Blues — on QRP 45 RPM is totally amazing. I’ve been collecting records for 40 years and have a modest collection of 900 LPs — most first pressings from the late ’60’s on — but nothing compares to this pressing from your company! Wow! Quiet pressing, amazing sound, fabulous packaging — just fantastic. At 54 I’ve just bought the best quality album ever. I’ve bought originals, classic records, modify, Japanese etc. but this is the best in every detail. Well done to you all to produce an LP this classy! Thanks.” — Kevin O’Connor, Waterford Ireland
“AP’s reissue of this recording is extremely transparent, naturally balanced, and fulfills the ‘it’s like he’s playing in my room!’ audiophile cliché. The record sounds mono at times, but that is how the album was originally mixed. … Ryan K. Smith used the original two-track stereo tape from the Sony archives and referenced an original Columbia ‘360 Sound’ pressing to master this correctly and it shows. Never have I heard a blues recording that is so musically raw yet so sonically exceptional. Further, the QRP-pressed platters are silent and flat as pancakes.” Music = 10/11; Sound = 11/11 – Malachi Lui, AnalogPlanet.com.
Mississippi’s Son House was already legendary for a small collection of live field recordings made by folklorist Alan Lomax in 1941 and 1942, and for having taught some important licks to both Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters before he was rediscovered by a new generation of college-age fans in 1964.
The “Father of the Delta Blues” recorded this namesake LP for Columbia Records a year later in 1965. It’s become, in the words of Living Blues magazine — “Essential recordings by one of the greatest bluesmen ever.” And now, Analogue Productions presents a reissue unmatched in sonic quality and luxury presentation. For our version we turned to Ryan Smith at Sterling Sound to remaster the recording from the original master tapes. The freshly cut lacquers — for this version we’ve cut the album at 45 RPM for truer cartridge tracking and decreased distortion on the inner groove — were then plated and pressed on 200-gram vinyl by our own Quality Record Pressings. The Hybrid Stereo SACD version was authored for SACD by Gus Skinas at the Super Audio Center in Boulder, Colo.
Son was born Eddie James House, Jr., on March 21, 1902, in Riverton, Miss. By the age of 15, he was preaching the gospel in various Baptist churches as the family seemingly wandered from one plantation to the next. He didn’t even bother picking up a guitar until he turned 25; to quote House, “I didn’t like no guitar when I first heard it; oh gee, I couldn’t stand a guy playin’ a guitar. I didn’t like none of it.” But if his ambivalence to the instrument was obvious, even more obvious was the simple fact that Son hated plantation labor even more and had developed a taste for corn whiskey. After drunkenly launching into a blues at a house frolic in Lyon, Miss., one night and picking up some coin for doing it, the die seemed to be cast; Son House may have been a preacher, but he was part of the blues world now.
Now, sit back and enjoy one of the genere’s greatest, on a reissue that’s the best that’s been made to date. So authentic, so real – that’s the Analogue Productions difference.
“Muddy Waters’ Folk Singer wasn’t the only blues LP recorded with the due care rarely shown to albums in the genre, prior to the revival. Son House’s rediscovery in the early 1960s reads like a Hollywood script, but all of the elements are there to make you realize that this John Hammond-produced LP, 50 years on, was one of the most important. Just House and his bottleneck acoustic guitar: his sheer presence must has been terrifying to those unfamiliar with the intensity of rural, unamplified blues. Every track is astounding, but skip straight to the voice-only ‘John The Revelator’ for an instant taste of House’s abilities to captivate. And he lived long enough, too, to savor his renaissance.” — Sound Quality = 92% — Ken Kessler, HiFi News, November 2016
1. Death Letter Blues
3. Louise McGhee
4. John The Revelator
5. Empire State Express
6. Preachin’ Blues
7. Grinning In Your Face
9. Levee Camp Moan
10. Motherless Children (bonus track)