Widely known by his nickname, The Honeydripper, (for his youthful prowess around the girls), Roosevelt Sykes was a successful and popular blues pianist and singer who had a significant influence on blues and jazz piano with his characteristic brand of pounding barrelhouse boogie.
Born in Arkansas in 1906, he played and toured throughout the southern USA during the '20s entertaining the black male audiences in the rural working areas. Spotted by a Columbia talent scout, he was sent to New York to make his first recordings for the Okeh label. He moved to Chicago, absorbing the growing influence of urban blues, often writing in an unusual 8-bar gospel format, rather than the familiar 12-bar blues. Overtaken somewhat by the growth of electric blues after WWII, he partially retired and moved to New Orleans, but re-emerged during the folk boom of the '60s to record for the new audience his music was finding, until his death in 1983. He left a legacy of great blues recordings, rollicking boogies and entertaining lyrics about the good and not-so-good life.
This cd features a collection of his recordings for Decca and Okeh in New York and Chicago in 1940 and 1941, the majority of which were penned by Sykes himself.
Highly regarded UK label Acrobat Music launched its US operations on October 21st 2008 with re-issues that offer high quality and excellent value. All of the Premier Collection titles are showcased in deluxe packages with unique, consistent packaging, which include o-cards, extensive liner notes and either a large number of tracks or lengthy play time.