The Revenge of Blind Joe Death: The John Fahey Tribute Album

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The Revenge of Blind Joe Death: The John Fahey Tribute Album
Revenge of blind joe death.jpg
Compilation album by
Various artists
ReleasedAugust 22, 2006
GenreAmerican Folk, Blues, American primitive guitar, New Acoustic
LabelTakoma
ProducerJon Monday
Tributes to John Fahey chronology
Friends of Fahey Tribute
(2006)
The Revenge of Blind Joe Death: The John Fahey Tribute Album
(2006)
The Great Koonaklaster Speaks: A John Fahey Celebration
(2007)

The Revenge of Blind Joe Death: The John Fahey Tribute Album is a tribute CD to guitarist John Fahey released in 2006 by Takoma Records.

History[edit]

This John Fahey tribute album was produced by Jon Monday, former art director and later Vice President and General Manager of Fahey's label, Takoma Records. It contains a collection of interpretations of Fahey compositions and original compositions played in Fahey's style. All the performers were either friends, students, collaborators or label-mates of Fahey.

The final song, recorded to sound like a scratchy 78 rpm record, is credited to Blind Joe Death himself, Fahey's alter-ego during his early career. The actual performer is not revealed.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic3.5/5 stars[1]
PopMatters7/10 stars[2]

In his Allmusic review, critic Mark Deming praised the album and many of the performances, but also wrote "... the sense of creative adventure and musical risk that was so much a part of John Fahey's music is largely missing, and a number of the guitarists here offer renditions that are so close to the sound and style of the original that they seem almost pointless except as a show of technique..." and that it is "a well-intentioned labor of love, but its polished surfaces lack the edgy textures that were so important to Fahey's work"[1]

Daniel Spicer of PopMatters singled out specific performances as "less successful" as others, but called the album "commendable and hugely enjoyable tribute to a unique giant of American music." He singles out George Winston's harmonica version of "Sally Goodin" as "a relentless, barrage of percussive blowing that whips up a dark vortex of drones and overtones, dragging the listener down to a tiny point of non-existence. It really must be heard to be believed."[2]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)PerformerLength
1."Sunflower River Blues"John FaheyDale Miller3:13
2."Sally Goodin"TraditionalGeorge Winston2:44
3."St. Louis Blues"W. C. HandyMichael Gulezian4:34
4."The Alligator Walks Sideways on Sunday" Alex de Grassi2:53
5."Desperate Man Blues"TraditionalCharlie Schmidt3:38
6."Dance of the Inhabitants of the Palace of King Phillip XIV of Spain"FaheyCanned Fish4:08
7."Sun Gonna Shine on my Mardis Gras" David Doucet3:38
8."Thinking of John Fahey" Country Joe McDonald2:12
9."In Christ There Is No East or West"TraditionalPeter Lang2:09
10."Joe Kirby Blues"FaheyTerry Robb3:06
11."The Yellow Princess"FaheySean Smith5:35
12."Steamboat Gwine Round the Bend"FaheyHenry Kaiser and John Schott7:10
13."Red Pony"FaheyNick Schillace3:25
14."Assassination of John Fahey" Stefan Grossman4:17
15."& 50 Cents Gets You a Cup of Coffee" Rick Ruskin3:29
16."Requiem for John Fahey" Phil Kellogg3:03
17."Days Have Gone By in the Halls of Valhalla" Andrew Stranglen2:37
18."On the Banks of the Owchita"FaheyNels Cline and Elliott Sharp3:42
19."Jesus is a Dying-Bed Maker"TraditionalPat O'Connell3:56
20."John Henry"TraditionalBlind Joe Death2:24

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Deming, Mark. "Revenge of Blind Joe Death > Review". Allmusic. Retrieved May 2, 2010.
  2. ^ a b Spicer, Daniel. "Revenge of Blind Joe Death > Review". PopMatters. Retrieved May 2, 2010.