one of the last.
Sad news that blues legend Otis Rush has passed away, aged 83, over the weekend.
Posted some time back, hell looking it’s over a decade ago, that along with the Three Kings – Albert, Freddie and B.B. – it was Otis Rush that really got me into the blues, much like most white people from the likes of Mike Bloomfield, on through Clapton, Peter Green and Stevie Ray Vaughan and on.
Four tracks got me thinking hell yes this is good stuff. Albert’s “Born Under a Bad Sign”, Freddie’s “Going Down”, B.B.’s “The Thrill Is Gone” and Otis Rush “All Your Love (I Miss Loving)”.
That biting tone, with a bit of reverb, going from slow to jump blues, then back to the slow riff.
Then the search for more Otis stuff, not so easy back then. But finally more of the Cobra era recordings, including the haunting “Double Trouble” and “My Love Will Never Die” along with the classic “I Can’t Quit You Baby” on some compilation albums. Getting the few albums he put out was hard and then in the 1990s all of a sudden he was back putting out two studio albums “Ain’t Enough Coming In” and “Any Place I’m Goin’” – his last studio recordings. Both excellent discs with Otis now playing a Fender Strat rather than the Epiphone Riviera or Gibson semi-hollow.
Those guitars strung for a right handed player but Otis of course turning them upside down and playing them left handed, which meant those bends he was famous for were pushed rather than pulled.
He was then on Later with Jools Holland, playing his classic “Homework”, originally released as a single in 1962, rerecorded on the ’94 “Ain’t Enough Comin’ In”. But Otis never got the breaks, throughout his career, which pretty much ended in 2003 when he suffered a stroke.
Though he claimed not to care for the term “West Side Sound” Otis Rush was part of that Chicago scene of the 1950s/60s, a pioneer and a blues great. There’s not many of them left.
Get yourself the Cobra recordings along with some of the live albums, like “Tops”…