Ignored Pioneers, Part 2

Some other Little Richard-style rockers. Honorable mention to Tony Harris and Big Al Downing.

S.Q. Reeder, Jr.
Eskew Reeder
Some people think Little Richard was doing a toned-down Esquerita impersonation. If he was, it must have been hard for him to control, more than a couple of Richard's Specialty sessions begin with Art Rupe begging him to "please, slow it down".
Blue Cap, Paul Peek used his pull as clapper boy and got Eskew signed to Capitol Records who actually released, Esquerita!, one of the rawest albums of the 50's, just maybe a few years too late in style. Despite it's greatness, I doubt "There's a hole in my heart and my love leaked out" got much air play. 
The liner notes to S.Q.'s 1959 LP say, "...Esquerita stoutly insists on his right to wear what he calls "Esquire-ita" outfits: generally a lace-ribbed jacket-shirt with a fist-sized rhinestone brooch at the top button, and wraparound, close-fitting sunglasses splashed with smaller rhinestones. An oversized wrist watch and band hold tightly onto one chopping arm and his long hair sails skyward."

Larry Williams
Lloyd Price's valet and the author of  "Slow Down", "She Said Yeah", "Bony Moronie", "Short Fat Fanny", Dizzy Miss Lizzy", 'Bad Boy" and several others. When rock music was young and dumb Larry was the man. Another old pal of Little Richard's, Larry ended up producing Richard's Okeh sessions in 1966 and '67 and ten years later almost killed him over a drug deal. William's was found shot in the head in Los Angeles home. His songs have been covered by everyone from Bill Haley to The Jam.    

Don Harris
Dewey Terry
Don and Dewey were also more successful as songwriters with Dale and Grace's 1963 #1, "I'm Leaving It Up To You". The Searchers' and Premiers both recorded "Farmer John" and The Olympics' "Big Boy Pete" in 1960. The duo's own recordings for the Specialty label, like "Justine" and the Sonny Bono penned, "Koko Joe" were a little too crazy for the radio. The pair also backed-up former label mate, Little Richard for his 1964 comeback.


Ignored Pioneers

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is back at it again, currently trying to decide if Randy Newman is more rockin' than Kraftwerk or Chic. Oooh, what about the Captain and Tenille?
The hall could easily avoid a lot of criticism by changing their name to the more accurate, Pop Music Hall of Fame. Instead, they clutch onto their misnomer and show us annually how little they know about rock music. Face it guys, you are all about the most popular music, whether you think it sounds cool or not. The hall knows damn well they will be inducting Christina Aguilera long before Arthur Lee and Love are ever considered. They don't dig The Sonics, like me and you, they don't get it.
Here are some more caricatures of the ignored, some of rock's founding fathers who have been left out of the hall for over 25 years now. I guess they figured they had all their bases covered with the induction of Jelly Roll Morton?

Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup
Arthur's 1947 release of "That's All Right" was Elvis' first record for Sun in July of 1954. Elvis also recorded Crudup compositions, "My Baby Left Me" and "So Glad You're Mine". Unfortunately, Crudup's royalties were not collected in his lifetime.

Mr. Blues, Wynonie Harris
Wynonie hit #1 in the R and B charts with "Good Rockin' Tonight" in June of 1948. "Bloodshot Eyes", "Good Morning, Judge", "Down Boy Down", "Blow Your Brains Out" and many more great songs done before Elvis was King.

Roy Brown
The composer and first recording of "Good Rockin' Tonight" in September of 1947. Chosen as Elvis' second release for Sun Records in September of 1954. Roy finally did hit the #1 spot with "Hard Luck Blues" in 1950. Hard luck was right though, soon after Roy was blackballed for trying to collect his royalties from King Records.

Amos Milburn
Amos had a #1 R and B hit with "Chicken Shack Boogie" in December of 1948 and a #2  with "One Scotch, One Bourbon, One Beer" in 1953. The Rolling Stones covered Amos' 1946 tune, "Down The Road Apiece" on 1965's The Rolling Stones, Now! LP.  

Roy Hall
Roy's "Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On" was released by Decca in September 1955. Roy's after-hours club in Nashville, The Music Box, was where a under-age Jerry Lee Lewis played piano 'til dawn. "Three Alley Cats" from 1956 is my favorite.

More to come...