Long John Baldry emerged in the early 60s as part of the British blues boom, singing in various London clubs where he made a name for himself with his growling voice and distinctive appearance (he was 6ft 7in). His recording debut came in 1962, when he was the featured singer on three tracks from Blues Incorporated's R&B From The Marquee, one of the first British blues albums. He was associated with many of the other soon-to-be-famous musicians who hanged out with Blues Incorporated, including future members of the Rolling Stones.
When harmonica player Cyril Davies left Blues Incorporated to form his own group, Baldry went with him to become a member of Cyril Davies' R&B All Stars. When Davies died in 1964, the group became Long John Baldry & His Hoochie Coochie Men, and he recorded his first album with them. Long John's Blues was a great collection of jazz-flavoured R&B numbers, including such classics as Muddy Waters' "I Got My Mojo Working", Willie Dixon's "My Babe" and "Hoochie Coochie Man", Eddie Boyd's "Five Long Years" and John Lee Hooker's "Dimples". A great find for fans of early 60s British blues.
The Hoochie Coochie Men later recruited a young Rod Stewart as a second vocalist, and then became The Steampacket in 1965, with Brian Auger on organ and Julie Driscol as a third vocalist.
|> Looking At Long John (1966)
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