Thursday , May 23 2024
Don't bother with this, Nick Jonas...

VCV: Louisiana Red & Little Victor’s Juke Joint – “I’m Louisiana Red”

It's time to get to know Iverson "Louisiana Red" Minter — nominated for five Blues Music Awards for performances on two albums — and I can't think of a better song to serve that purpose than "I'm Louisiana Red."

So who is Louisiana Red?  He was born in Bessemer, Alabama (also the hometown of the great Bo Jackson) in 1932.  He had lived the blues long before he could play them, his mother having died from pneumonia a week after he was born and his father was murdered by the Ku Klux Klan when Red was just five years old. 

That only tells part of the Louisiana Red story, and he tells part of that story in "I'm Louisiana Red."  Who is Louisiana Red?  He's a bluesman who's been working for more than 50 years and has recorded or played with just about any bluesman you've ever heard of and has recorded for Chess, Atlantic, and a slew of others.

"I'm Louisiana Red" is an introductory song he's recorded multiple times.  The version on Back To The Black Bayou adds the formidable talents of Little Victor as well as harp master Kim Wilson.  A modern recording of an old song can be a recipe for disaster, but Red's inimitable delivery and Wilson's vintage harp line give this authenticity without sounding like a formulaic rehash.  That delivery might be off putting to modern listeners like Nick Jonas, accustomed  to auto-tuned singers and other studio enhancements, but it comes from pure place so deep in the soul it can't be seen, only experienced.

There's only one Louisiana Red and he'd like to tell you about himself while he plays some blues the way they were meant to be played.  The pleasure is all yours.

About Josh Hathaway

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