In Session 1952-1958 - Fooling Around Slowly CD
In Session 1952-1958 CD
The In Session series turns its attention to Al Smith.
The first six titles from October 1952 were the start of his recording career.
They were for Art Sheridan's Chance label, the first of which, under Smith's own name, was the ghostly 'Smoke Gets in Your Eyes'.
Big Bertha Henderson rocks her way through 'Rock Daddy Rock' before Bobby Prince finished out the session and has another couple before Sheridan closed Chance into VeeJay giving Al Smith even more artists to contend with.
His early VeeJay sessions produced The El Dorado's 'Annie's Answer' an answer to Hank Ballard's 'Annie Had a Baby' but this time explaining that 'Annie Ain't Had no Baby'.
The instrumental 'Living With Vivian' seems to be a reference to Vivian Carter, VeeJay' owner.
Poor old Dizzy Dizon dreams he's stuck on a soup line and his money troubles getting there.
Moving to a VeeJay subsidiary Falcon records, The Dells murmur their way 'One Two Cha Cha Cha' which incorporates the famous Bo Diddley penned riff from 'Love is Strange'.
Such was Smith's reputation that Duke Records from Houston, Texas sent Little Junior Parker to Chicago to record with Al Smith's Orchestra the result of which was 'Peaches' and 'Pretty Little Doll', both present here.
DooWop enters the frame with sessions with The Lyrics who become The Falcons, but not to be confused with the famous Detroit group of the same name.
Larry Birdsong name drops his way down in 'Fannie's Place' before we end with three more Smith instrumentals including a latin flavoured 'Left Field'.
This collection gives a slightly different view of the Chicago music scene away from the blues and R&B of Chess records but showed it had just as much talent.