Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Fred Green - Wham Slam Bam

Here I am, out of hibernation. I guess that I figure if the groundhog can be bothered to poke his head out, the least that I can do is comply. Mr. Groundhog surely must have predicted six more weeks of winter because it's already coming true. While it was 40 degrees yesterday, today is cold and windy, with wind chills in the single digits. Good call.

Today's record is one that I found out scavenging a couple of months ago. I was in an antique mall, where I found a big box of unsleeved singles that were priced at a quarter each. Of course, I love digging through a box like that, especially when right away I start finding gems. Such was the case on that day. The records were dusty and in well played condition but cheap and, in a moment of good fortune, most of the better titles cleaned up well enough to be keepers.

I always enjoy finding records on the Bobbin label because it's yet to let me down. The St. Louis imprint was active from 1958 to 1963 and released a little over 40 singles in all. Some of the better known artists on the label include Oliver Sain, Fontella Bass, Little Milton and Albert King. While Bobbin seems to have released mostly r&b, a few white rockers sneaked out too.

Fred Green wasn't a name that I was familiar with but the title "Wham Slam Bam" was more than promising. About all that I've found about him is that he belonged to a couple of vocal groups before recording for Bobbin, including the El Torros, who had a few singles on the Duke label.

"Wham Slam Bam" is some really rockin' r&b. From 1959, it begins with a Chuck Berry riff on the guitar. In fact, the guitar is the main instrumental accompaniment, as Green sings lead along with backing vocals. I wish that I could tell you more about who else is on the record, especially the guitarist. Could it be Albert King?

Fred Green is credited with writing "Wham Slam Bam", which clocks in at just under two minutes. Any and all additional information about him and his record are much appreciated.


Jukeboxmafia said...

Good one! Great guitar sound on this...

Anonymous said...

Todd: I believe the guitarist on Fred's session was Bennie Smith.Bennie was a legendary guitar player around St.Louis and much beloved. Fred was a guest on one of the radio shows I did on KDHX FM 88.1 or kdhx.org. If I find it I'll give you a copy at the March 1 St. Louis record show. Tony C

Todd Lucas said...

Tony, thanks for the info. Love the guitar on "Wham Slam Bam". Really looking forward to that record show. It's been slow going on the record front the past couple of months.


Anonymous said...

I know this post is rather old, but I am trying to find more information on Fred Green. Could you tell me when he was interviewed on KDHX? Is he still alive? What happened to Mr. Green? I can't find much after 1960.