Are you in the mood for some authentic Chicago blues, but don't want to visit the Windy City in January? A good alternative is the latest DVD from Tail Dragger, "Live At Rooster's Lounge." This stellar release from Delmark puts the viewer right in the middle of the west side Chicago blues club for a raw and raucous performance from James Yancey Jones, the aforementioned Tail Dragger.
The DVD is a follow-up to Tail Dragger’s first Delmark DVD, "My Head Is Bald - Live at Vern's Friendly Lounge." "My Head is Bald" was named best blues DVD by Living Blues magazine in 2005 and "Rooster's Lounge" is just as good. (Both titles also can be purchased as separate audio CDs.)
Thanks to the excellent camera work, “Live at Rooster’s Lounge” almost makes it seem as if the viewer is sitting in the lounge, as Tail Dragger stalks the premises not unlike his mentor, the late, great Howlin’ Wolf. The video captures Tail Dragger as he works the crowd and even flirts with the ladies. You can almost taste the beer and soul food as it’s served to the patrons.
Tail Dragger’s vocals are backed ably by guitarists Rockin' Johnny Burgin and Kevin Shanahan, harpist Martin Lang, bass player Todd Fackler and drummer Rob Lorenz. Dragger’s good friend, West Side blues legend Jimmy Dawkins, contributes his distinctive guitar sound to one song, “Wander,” a Tail Dragger original.
The set list includes a nice mixture of originals and covers from Howlin’ Wolf, Sonny Boy Williamson, Big Joe Williams, John Lee Hooker and Little Walter.
Delmark Web site
Tail Draggers’ Web site