Leothus Lee Green

Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 2

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The second half of Leothus Lee Green's recorded legacy is made up of 22 recordings he made in Chicago, New York and Aurora IL between November 4, 1930 and October 11, 1937. Green came up with Little Brother Montgomery in Vicksburg, MS during the early '20s. By 1925 he was mentoring young Roosevelt Sykes; the recordings on this compilation clearly reveal Green's influence upon Sykes, whose earthy, casual voice is audible in the shared dialogue throughout "Train Number 44." By 1930, Green was settling into a style that was more ruminative than the rowdier, Cow Cow Davenport-like approach used on a few of his earlier recorded performances. Occasionally he'd sing with an emotionally stoked vibrato, but most of the time his voice has a comforting depth comparable to that of Big Maceo Merriweather. The personnel listings on this compilation are as dicey as anything else associated with Leothus Green; the guitarist on "Memphis Fives" is believed to have been Peetie Wheatstraw, and other possible identities for guitar players heard throughout the compilation include Sleepy John Estes, Charlie Pickett and Willie B. James. Someone, presumably Hammie Nixon, gently uses a whiskey jug to blow basslines on "You May Be Beautiful But You Got to Die" and "Good Morning Susie, I'm Gonna Beat Your Bread."

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