I Am the Blues

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I Am the Blues
Studio album by Willie Dixon
Released 1970
Genre Blues
Length 43:29
Label Columbia
Producer Abner Spector[1]
Willie Dixon chronology
At the Village Gate
(1960)
I Am The Blues
(1970)
Catalyst
(1973)

I Am the Blues is the sixth studio Chicago blues album released in 1970 by the well-known bluesman Willie Dixon. It is also the title of Dixon's autobiography, edited by Don Snowden.

The album features songs written by Dixon and originally performed by other artists for Chess Records.

Original performances[edit]

Four of the nine songs on I Am the Blues – "Back Door Man", "Spoonful", "I Ain't Superstitious", "The Little Red Rooster" – were originally performed by Howlin' Wolf. "Back Door Man" and "Spoonful" were recorded by Howlin' Wolf in June 1960 featuring bass work by Willie Dixon, piano work by Otis Spann, drum work by Fred Below, and guitar work by Hubert Sumlin. "The Little Red Rooster" was recorded in June 1961 with guitar work by Howlin' Wolf and Hubert Sumlin, piano work by Johnny Jones, bass work by Dixon, and drum work by Sam Lay. "I Ain't Superstitious" was recorded in December 1961 with Howlin' Wolf, Hubert Sumlin, and Jimmy Rogers on guitar, Henry Gray on piano, Willie Dixon on bass, and Sam Lay on drums.[2]

The songs "You Shook Me" and "I'm Your Hoochie Coochie Man" were first recorded by Muddy Waters. "I'm You Hoochie Coochie Man" was recorded on January 7, 1954 with Waters on vocals and guitar, Little Walter on harmonica, Jimmy Rogers on guitar, Otis Spann on piano, Willie Dixon on bass, and Fred Below on drums.[3] "You Shook Me" was recorded on June 27, 1962.

"The Seventh Son" was recorded by Willie Mabon in 1955. "I Can't Quit You, Baby" was not even released on Chess Records, instead it was recorded and released by Otis Rush on the Cobra record label.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[4]
Robert Christgau (B)[5]

The Allmusic review of the album by Bruce Eder has the opinion that the production on the album was well done, but that the original performances were still better.[4] Robert Christgau feels that Dixon's singing ability on the album is not as good as it could be, because he doesn't need to be a good singer since he's a good composer and producer.[5]

Accolades[edit]

The album was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1986.[6]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Willie Dixon, except where indicated.

Side one
  1. "Back Door Man" – 6:08
  2. "I Can't Quit You, Baby" – 6:40
  3. "The Seventh Son" – 4:15
  4. "Spoonful" – 4:56
Side two
  1. "I Ain't Superstitious" – 4:03
  2. "You Shook Me" (Dixon, J. B. Lenoir) – 4:15
  3. "(I'm Your) Hoochie Coochie Man" – 4:48
  4. "The Little Red Rooster" – 3:36
  5. "The Same Thing" – 4:40

Personnel[edit]

The following people contributed to I Am the Blues:[1][7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b I Am the Blues (Vinyl sleeve). Willie Dixon. United States: Columbia Records. 1970. Back cover. 9987. 
  2. ^ The Definitive Collection (CD liner). Howlin' Wolf. United States: Geffen Records/Chess Records. 2007. p. 16. B0008784-02/CHD-9375 BK02. 
  3. ^ Chess Blues 1947-1967 (CD liner). various artists. United States: MCA Records/Chess Records. 1992. CHD4-9340. 
  4. ^ a b Eder, Bruce. Review: I Am the Blues by Willie Dixon at AllMusic. Retrieved January 16, 2011.
  5. ^ a b Christgau, Robert. "Willie Dixon: Consumer Guide Reviews" (PHP). Robert Christgau. Retrieved January 16, 2011. 
  6. ^ Past Hall of Fame Inductees. Blues Foundation. Retrieved January 16, 2011
  7. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2004) [First published in 1994]. The Great Rock Discography (Seventh ed.). New York City, New York: Canongate U.S. p. 430. ISBN 1-84195-615-5. 

External links[edit]