Ry Cooder - Ry Cooder (1970)

Ry Cooder is an American musician, best known for his skill as a slide guitarist and his interest in American roots music.

Ry Cooder first came to prominence in the 60s as part of L.A.'s folk music scene. He was in a band called The Rising Sons, with Taj Mahal, Jesse Lee Kincaid, Gary Marker and Ed Cassidy from 1964 to 1966 (they never released an album, but recordings by them were eventually put out in 1992). He also started to earn himself a reputation as a session musician, working alongside artists as diverse as Captain Beefheart, Dale Hawkins, Pat Boone, Phil Ochs and The Rolling Stones. He proved himself to be a master of stringed instruments, and was much in demand for his guitar and mandolin work. Most importantly he earned himself a reputation as a brilliant bottleneck slide guitarist.
Eventually he got himself a recording contract with Reprise Records, and his self-titled debut album came out in 1970. It includes support from bassist Chris Ethridge, drummers Milt Holland and Johnny Barbata, pianist Van Dyke Parks, fiddle player Bobby Bruce, and Ritchie Hayward and Roy Estrada (the original rhythm section of Little Feat, whose debut album he also featured on). Stylistically, it turned out to be a rootsy folk-blues mix, with inventive arrangements highlighted by his distinctive slide guitar. With his song selection he showcased his interest in American roots music, with tunes ranging
from those by well known folk performers such as Woodie Guthrie and Leadbelly, to more obscure artists such as Tommy Tucker and Blind Alfred Reed, all put together with scholarly passion. This roots fusion would come to define Cooder's solo work from this point onward, and it started to earn him great acclaim.

|> Into The Purple Valley (1972)
More from Ry Cooder


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