Various Artists – Swamp Pop by the Bayou


In stock


Release Date:  2014

Label:  Ace UK


Track List

1. Vince Anthony & The Blue Notes – Sneakin’ Home
2. Jay Richards With The Blues Kings – Hear Love Knockin’
3. Bobby Webb And The Jets – Tell Me
4. Warren Storm – Oh Oh Baby
5. Rocket Morgan – Too High A Price (To Pay For Love)
6. Jivin’ Gene & The Jokers – Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
7. Frankie Lowery – I Ain’t Had No Sleep
8. Johnny Bersin & The Dial Tones – I Ran Around
9. John Fred – Good Lovin’
10. Ronnie Bennet -t In This Letter
11. Tommy Strange – Lonely Lonely Heart
12. Frankie Lowery – She’s Walking Toward Me
13. Rocket Morgan – Did You Leave Something Else (For Me)
14. Charles Page – No Season On Squeezing
15. Johnnie Allan & The Krazy Kats – The Convict And The Rose
16. Doug Charles & The Boogie Kings – You’re On My Mind
17. Warren Storm – This Life I Live
18. Guitar Jeff – You Jezebel
19. George – I’m Ready
20. Tommy Strange – What Am I To Do
21. Peto Marlow & The Rhythm Kings – Operator This Is Elbert
22. Donnie Williams & The Blue Notes – Cry Your Heart Out
23. Gene Terry & The Down Beats – What Can I Do (I Still Love You)
24. Warren Storm – I’m Leaving You
25. Bee Arnold – Deedle Dee Deedle Dee
26. Buck Rogers & His Jets – Rose Marie
27. Rocket Morgan – Walkin’ Home
28. John Fred & His Playboys – Down In New Orleans



Another installment in Ace’s ongoing and reliably riotous journey through the independent imprints that dotted the jukebox and record stores of southern Louisiana and southeastern Texas in the late ’50s and early ’60s, Swamp Pop by the Bayou focuses on the young white rock & rollers who picked up guitars after hearing not only Elvis Presley but Little Richard, Fats Domino, and Huey “Piano” Smith, along with a bunch of other rock & rollers and R&B cats from New Orleans. In a sense, these groups and singers were garage rockers, knocking out the sound they so loved, but they also specialized in the laid-back shuffles and rollicking rhumbas of the Crescent City. These rhythms gave these rock & rollers a distinctive regional sound, a sound that would be later called swamp pop but that term didn’t exist back when these sides — several of which are unissued until now — were cut between 1959-1961. They were simply playing rock & roll, never what it was called, and this spirit is palpable in these simple, sometimes raw, recordings that retain a cheerful, vibrant immediacy; there’s not much of a sense that the groups were really striving to have a hit but rather were happy to play some music. Most of these 28 cuts favor an easygoing roll rather than frenetic rock but it’s never lazy: it’s joyous, through and through. A few of these names are recognizable to aficionados of Louisiana rock & roll and R&B — Warren Storm, Jivin’ Gene, and Johnnie Allan pop up, as do John Fred & the Playboys, revealing how they were rockers long before “Judy in Disguise” — but, like on the previous Bayou compilations produced by Ian Saddler for Ace, there’s a heavy emphasis on rarities, with half of these songs making their debut here. These unheard tunes are hardly bad: instead, they’re as good as the singles that appeared at the time and, combined, they emphasize just how rich the Louisiana bayou was in the early ’60s and how good the music still sounds.  Stephen Thomas Erlewine

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