Label: Document Records.
Release Date: May 18, 1995.
Releases: 2000; June 28, 2005.
Recording Time: 74 minutes.
Recording Date: October 31, 1927 - September 24, 1929.
Styles: Acoustic Chicago Blues, Classic Female Blues, Regional Blues.
Victoria Spivey, who made her initial reputation with dark and somewhat scary blues lyrics, altered her style during the period covered by this second of four "complete" Document CDs. She is heard in a series of double entendre songs (usually issued in two parts) with singer/guitarist Lonnie Johnson, including "New Black Snake Blues," "Toothache Blues," "Furniture Man Blues," and "You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now." Also, Spivey is heard with an all-star group led by pianist Clarence Williams (including cornetist King Oliver and guitarist Eddie Lang) that unfortunately does not get much space to stretch out; on two classic performances ("Funny Feathers" and "How Do You Do It that Way") on which she is joined by Louis Armstrong's Savoy Ballroom Five (with pianist Gene Anderson in Earl Hines' place); and guesting on two versions apiece of those same two songs with Henry "Red" Allen's Octet (which was really Luis Russell's Orchestra). Spivey, who was a strong singer from the start, is featured throughout in peak form, showing that she could not only sing blues but good-time jazz of the era.
by Scott Yanow
Credits: Henry "Red" Allen - trumpet; Gene Anderson - piano; Louis Armstrong - trumpet; Paul Barbarin - drums; Eubie Blake - composer; Mancy Carr - banjo; J. Davis - composer; Eddie Durham - trombone; Ruth Naomi Floyd - composer; Pops Foster - sax (baritone); Porter Grainger - piano; J.C. Higginbotham - trombone; Teddy Hill - sax (tenor); Charlie Holmes - sax (alto); Lonnie Johnson - composer, guest artist, guitar, percussion, primary artist, vocals; King Oliver - cornet; Eddie Lang - guitar; Albert Nicholas - clarinet; Johnny Parth - compilation producer, producer; Andy Razaf - composer; Fred Robinson - trombone; Luis Russell - piano; Omer Simeon - clarinet; Zutty Singleton - drums; Chris Frazer Smith - liner notes; Victoria Spivey - composer, piano, primary artist, vocals; Jimmy Strong - sax (tenor); Gerhard Wessely - remastering; Clarence Williams - composer, piano.
Tracks: 1) Nightmare blues - Victoria Spivey; 2) Murder in the first degree - Victoria Spivey; 3) Jelly look what you done done - Victoria Spivey; 4) Your worries ain`t like mine - Victoria Spivey; 5) A good man is hard to find - Victoria Spivey; 6) My handy man - Victoria Spivey; 7) Organ grinder blues (take a) - Victoria Spivey; 8) Organ grinder blues (take c) - Victoria Spivey; 9) New black snake blues, part 1 - Victoria Spivey and Lonnie Johnson; 10) New black snake blues, part 2 - Victoria Spivey and Lonnie Johnson; 11) No, papa, no! - Victoria Spivey; 12) Toothache blues, part 1 - Victoria Spivey and Lonnie Johnson; 13) Furniture man blues, part 1 - Victoria Spivey and Lonnie Johnson; 14) Furniture man blues, part 2 - Victoria Spivey and Lonnie Johnson; 15) Mosquito, fly and flea - Victoria Spivey; 16) Toothache blues, part 2 - Victoria Spivey; 17) You done lost your good thing now! part 1 - Victoria Spivey; 18) You done lost your good thing now! part 2 - Victoria Spivey; 19) Funny feathers - Victoria Spivey; 20) How do you do it that way? - Victoria Spivey; 21) Funny feathers blues (take 1) - Victoria Spivey, featured vocal with Henry Allen and His New York Orchestra; 22) Funny feathers blues (take 2) - Victoria Spivey, featured vocal with Henry Allen and His New York Orchestra; 23) How do they do it that way? (take 1) - Victoria Spivey, featured vocal with Henry Allen and His New York Orchestra; 24) How do they do it that way? (take 2) - Victoria Spivey, featured vocal with Henry Allen and His New York Orchestra.