Paul Jones – Music News

The year we celebrate the first Rolling Stones concerts, Paul Jones releases a collection to remind us that he was also there in the early days of the British blues boom and has been a constant in the blues ever since. He was actually invited by Brian Jones and Keith Richards to form a band with them but later joined Manfred Mann while the other two turned to Mick Jagger, at Alexis Korner’s request, and the Rolling Stones were born .

The album has 21 tracks, all featuring him as writer or co-writer, from his time with Manfred Mann, The Blues Band, Mick Pini & Guido Toffoletti’s Blues Society as well as solo material and, in slightly loose order. -chronologically, it manages to show the progression of the dean of British Blues – a man with more accolades as a singer, harmonica player, radio DJ and father of the Blues than some of us have chromosomes.

The first material with Manfred Mann is raw, with Jones performing a much lower vocal pitch than his natural vocal style, but gradually improving as he found his natural style. His harmonica playing from the start was one of his strengths and it’s a constant through the 21 tracks here.

His solo material was never as successful as material with other bands, but tracks such as ‘Sonny Boy Williamson’, co-written with Jack Bruce and featuring only the two, and ‘The Pod That Came Back’ or ‘Suddenly I Like This is classic Blues and really works to show off his vocal quality.

The Blues Band was the band he formed with Tom McGuiness (ex-Manfred Mann) and Hughie Flint (ex-John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers) and the songs with this combo definitely sound the most adult and classic. ‘It’s Got To Be The Blues’ is a joy with a horn section and Dave Kelly’s slide guitar.

“Living For The Day” is a live track with Guido Toffoletti’s Blues Society (Toffoletti was another artist connected to Alexis Korner), a Blues with great swing and “Like Mother, Like Daughter” is with Mick Pini and a very laid back and the eighties number.

Paul Jones has been around since the start of the Blues Boom and his influence can be found throughout British Blues – this album is a fine collection of his own favourites.

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