Living Blues - 5-6/91
"Lightnin' Hopkins is one of the blues' most prolific artists...these cuts come from the early years of Hopkins' blues revival heyday and are tight and unrelaxed."
Solo performer: Lightnin' Hopkins (vocals, guitar).
Producers: Kenneth S. Goldstein, Mack McCormick.
Recorded at ACA Studios, Houston, Texas on July 26, 1961. Includes original release liner notes by Mack McCormick. Originally released on Prestige/Bluesville (1045).
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
Recorded in 1961 for Prestige, a label best known for jazz, BLUES IN MY BOTTLE presents Sam "Lightnin'" Hopkins in a strictly solo setting. Armed with only his plaintive vocals and an acoustic guitar, Hopkins gets to the very heart of the blues, his unadorned style placing nuance and emotion above volume and precision. Every song on this 11-track album--particularly the lonely "Sail On, Little Girl, Sail On," the bleak "Death Bells," and the resigned "Jailhouse Blues"--is a testament to the strength of Hopkins's playing in such a minimal and informal environment.
Although the Texas bluesman was just shy of 50 during these sessions, his world-weary voice makes him seem much older, lending an added gravity to these tales of life, love, travel, and isolation. Those looking for a direct link between Hopkins and his legendary predecessors Blind Lemon Jefferson and Robert Johnson will find it on this potent outing of top-notch country blues.