Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Otis Rush

Otis Rush was born on April, 1934 in Philadelphia, Mississippi. Rush moved to Chicago in 1948, met Muddy Waters, and knew instantly what he wanted to do with the rest of his life. The omnipresent Willie Dixon caught Rush's act and signed him to Cobra Records in 1956.

His 1956-58 Cobra legacy is a magnificent one, distinguished by the Dixon-produced minor-key masterpieces "Double Trouble" and "My Love Will Never Die", the nails-tough "Three Times a Fool" and "Keep on Loving Me Baby", and the rhumba-rocking classic "All Your Love (I Miss Loving)".

An uneven but worthwhile 1975 set for Delmark, Cold Day in Hell, and a host of solid live albums that mostly sound very similar kept Rush's gilt-edged name in the marketplace to some extent during the 1970s and '80s, a troubling period for the legendary southpaw. In 1986, he walked out on an expensive session for Rooster Blues (Louis Myers, Lucky Peterson, and Casey Jones were among the assembled sidemen), complaining that his amplifier didn't sound right and thereby scuttling the entire project.

Finally, in 1994, the career of this Chicago blues legend began traveling in the right direction. Ain't Enough Comin' In, his first studio album in 16 years, was released and ended up topping many blues critics' year-end lists. Once again, a series of personal problems threatened to end Rush's long-overdue return to national prominence before it got off the ground. But he's been in top-notch form in recent years, fronting a tight band that's entirely sympathetic to the guitarist's sizzling approach. It still may not be too late for Otis Rush to assume his rightful throne as Chicago's blues king. MP3: You Reap What You Saw Video: All Your Love


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