Label: Document Records
Release Date: April 1, 1997
Releases: 1997, 2000, 2005
Recording Time: 70 minutes
Recording Date: June, 1923 - December, 1923
Styles: Classic Female Blues, Early American Blues, Pre-War Blues
Ida Cox was one of the most powerful blues singers of the 1920s, ranking just below Bessie Smith. The Document label has reissued all of Cox's 1920s recordings on four CDs, leaving out many of the alternate takes (since there are a great deal from 1923-24) to be put out on a later series. The first CD has the master takes of all of Cox's recordings from 1923, plus four alternates. Except for the closing "Bear-Mash Blues," which finds the singer joined by her future husband Jesse Crump on piano, the music either features accompaniment by pianist Lovie Austin (an underrated blues player) or assistance from Austin, the great cornetist Tommy Ladnier and clarinetist Jimmy O'Bryant. Cox was one of the few singers from this early period who could overcome the technical limitations of the primitive recording equipment and really communicate with the listener. Among the highlights from her first year on records are "Any Woman's Blues," "Graveyard Dream Blues" (which is heard in three versions), "Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues," "Moanin' Groanin' Blues," "Come Right In" (which has some lines that would become quite familiar in later songs) and "I've Got the Blues for Rampart Street." Highly recommended.
by Scott Yanow
Credits: Lovie Austin - composer, piano; Eddie Boyd - composer; John Cowley - liner notes; Ida Cox - composer, piano, primary artist, vocals; Jesse Crump - piano; Tommy Ladnier - cornet; Jimmy O'Bryant - clarinet, piano; Johnny Parth - compilation producer, producer; Gerhard Wessely - remastering.
Tracks: 1) Any Women's Blues; 2) Bama Bound Blues; 3) Lovin' Is the Thing I'm Wild About; 4) Graveyard Dream Blues (1442-1); 5) Graveyard Dream Blues (1442-2); 6) Weary Way Blues; 7) Blue Monday Blues; 8) I Love My Man Better Than I Love Myself; 9) Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues (Take 3); 10) Ida Cox's Lawdy, Lawdy Blues (Take 4); 11) Moanin' Groanin' Blues; 12) Chattanooga Blues; 13) Chicago Bound Blues (Take 2); 14) Chicago Bound Blues (Take 3); 15) Come Right In; 16) I've Got the Blues for Rampart Street (Take 3); 17) I've Got the Blues for Rampart Street (Take 4); 18) Graveyard Dream Blues; 19) Mama Doo Shee Blues; 20) Worried Mama Blues; 21) So Soon This Morning Blues; 22) Mailman Blues; 23) Confidential Blues; 24) Bear-Mash Blues.