Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Blues, Pop
Reissue of classic album by this folk-blues band fronted by Corky Siegel and Jim Schwall, remastered and featuring the original artwork. This album, originally released on Wooden Nickel Records in 1971, features seven trac... more »
Reissue of classic album by this folk-blues band fronted by Corky Siegel and Jim Schwall, remastered and featuring the original artwork. This album, originally released on Wooden Nickel Records in 1971, features seven tracks, including 'Hush Hush'. 1999 release.
Hippie blues, right in the pocket
R. Hutchinson | a world ruled by fossil fuels and fossil minds | 12/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hallelujah! This has been one of my favorite records since it came out nearly 30 years ago, and it's finally on CD. I am sad to say that I never heard Siegel-Schwall live -- they broke up before I was old enough to get into the clubs. But there used to be a great underground station in Chicago, WGLD, that used to air statements by Vietnam Veterans Against the War and communiques from the Weather Underground (actually they broadcast out of Oak Park -- some of the DJs went on to start WXRT), and the DJs always used to play Siegel-Schwall the day after their weekly gig at the Quiet Knight (953 W. Belmont, right under the "El"). That's where I heard this great album. It's a classic, every song is perfect. Corky and Jim share the lead singing, and the band is TIGHT. Rollow Radford, who later played with Sun Ra, deserves notice for his bass playing. Each side of the original LP ended with a long, live number -- the first side ends with Jim singing "Corrina," (which is mistakenly not listed above), and the second side ends with the hilarious "Hush, Hush." I did frequent the Quiet Knight in the late 70s -- I saw Muddy Waters, Terry Callier, Bruce Cockburn, Ellen McIlwaine and others there, and some of the "QK" bookings continued after it became Tut's, a new wave club. And one of the best live shows I ever saw was the Jim Schwall Band in Mattoon in the fall of 1976, with Sharon Smith on organ and the Mountain Bus rhythm section, if I remember right. Schwall was smoking, and the band was tight as hell. I remember him pulling on a bottle of Jack Daniels and leaning over the lip of the stage, sounding like a cross between Garcia and Hendrix. Anyway, this album is a forgotten gem. It's their best, but "Where We Walked," the Vanguard collection, is great too."
A Cool Blues Breeze From the '70's
Michael Strom | Chicago, IL USA | 05/05/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Every region used to have its own version of the Siegel-Schwall Band, a fun, uptempo blues-based group that always delivered the good times at their regular gig at a popular night spot. Chicago being such a hotbed of the blues, we had quite a few. But the Siegel-Schwall Band ruled the roost for years from their weekly gig at the Quiet Knight (back then, all the North Side clubs had lame-sounding-in-retrospect names). This finally-reissued CD shows them in prime form live on their home court.Siegel-Schwall was not one of those heavy-footed, overamped blooze bands like the plodders from England (e.g., Humble Pie, et al). They were witty, with a light touch that seemed unfailingly upbeat. Plenty of shuffles & boogies, very few of the slow, lumbering DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH variety. Very Jimmy Reed, including their signature cover of "Hush Hush."Corky Siegel was (still is, I suppose; he's still out there playing) a terrific harp & keyboard player. The set here alternates betwen Siegel showpieces (some on harp, some on piano) and Schwall's numbers featuring his guitar work, some of it Elmore James-ish slide. One of the highlights is Siegel's sexy, sinuous "Devil." The song list shown as of the date of this review omits another club favorite, their cover of the now overly-familiar "Corrina," that transcends the cliches. In all fairness, Siegel-Schwall's lineage goes far back enough into the 60's that it wasn't a hoary old chestnut when they started playing it live. Those who heard it then will want to know that it is on the CD, & it's as good as you remember.The sound transfer is as good as you could expect for the age & source material. It ain't Mobile Fidelity, but it does sound good."
The Tightest Little Band in Chicago
R. Hutchinson | 08/14/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"No real "blues" lead singer, although Corky has an oddly entertaining voice. Quirky, sort of folksy song selections. But what an unbelievably tight and together outfit. Most of this recording was made live at the Quiet Knight on Belmont Ave. in Chicago. The place no longer exists, except in the memories of those who saw Siegel-Schwall, and other local Chicago bands there. Listen particularly to Hush-Hush, and Corrina (which is not listed in the Amazon song list). Every one of these guys knew where the others were at every moment. And specifically on Corrina, the drum work by Shelly Plotkin is up there with Mickey Waller on "Every Picture Tells a Story" and Keith Moon on "Won't Get Fooled Again", honest. Don't be put off by the vocals, this was a great band."