Bought for a quarter in central Minnesota by my mother-in-law, this record’s artwork was enough to pique my interest. But then I see, “Minneapolis”!
On my last spin session, I discussed the work of Robert “One-Man” Johnson and his induction into the Central Iowa Blues Hall of Fame. Well, here’s another inductee!
The harmonica player on this album is Iowa legend Bobby Keith Dorr, or Bob Dorr as he’s known these days. Bob had quite the career in the music industry, first performing with local Iowa bands, then Little Red Rooster Band, then onto a long tenure with the Blue Band, all while maintaining a voice at Iowa Public Radio.
Something about this private pressing seems…better. It was issued by Crow For A Day Records in 1980; the sleeve is high quality cardboard and textured. Also, I’m going to have a soft spot for this record in my heart due to it being recorded at one of Minneapolis’ famous venue The Cabooze. I’d sometimes stop there after hanging out at legendary punk haunt The Triple Rock Social Club, as it was just under Highway 94 to get to the Cabooze.
This was recorded live in Minneapolis in 1979. All but two of the tracks on this album are blues standard covers. The originals are “Dance, Dance, Dance” , which is not a cover of the Steve Miller Band song, nor the Beach Boys’ song. The other original is “3 A.M. Back Door Lady” which can be heard below.
Whomever uploaded this video to YouTube mislabeled it as “Sweet Sadie”, the opposite side’s first track. Perhaps the labels on their record were reversed? Regardless, this original track is great! The harp playing from Bob gives the blues/funk crossover a perfect swagger and entrance for the rest of the song.
Its a shame the band didn’t put anything to studio, but this LP is a great addition to any collection for a blues harmonica/guitar fan. The musicianship is tight and unique, while the recording captures a room full of rowdy Midwesterners on the verge of an 80s digital music revolution. This keeps it simple. The covers are great, too. “Shake Your Moneymaker” blows the doors off the exits on a night even this sleepy dude wishes he was in attendance.
Thanks for reading!