Sylvester Weaver

Guitar Blues

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Guitar Blues is P-Vine's 25-track salute to Louisville bluesman Sylvester Weaver (1897-1960), an early master of slide guitar who specialized in manipulating a knife over the frets. Whereas Document poured 43 titles into a two-volume retrospective, P-Vine sifts through the evidence and delivers an excellent chronologically arranged sampler containing many of his best works on record. Most of his primary accomplishments are present, including a taste of the guitar and banjo solos, a brief glimpse of his work with early blues singer Sara Martin, the groundbreaking sessions with 14-year-old Helen Humes, and the fabulous guitar duets with Walter Beasley. It's not certain that these old sides sound any cleaner here than they do on the Document discs, and to some extent that's really beside the point. After all, you're listening back to 1923, several years before the introduction of the electrical recording process, so maybe it's best to focus instead upon the innate qualities of the music itself and the vessel in which it is delivered. What really matters is that P-Vine was the first label to assemble a comprehensive mini-history of Sylvester Weaver's musical accomplishments, and that's pretty important. On the downside, anyone familiar with his complete discography as presented by Document will note the omission of some titles that maybe ought not to have missed the boat. As a single-disc effort, P-Vine's Guitar Blues is a milestone in the rediscovery of Sylvester Weaver. For a more complete portrait, go directly to the Document editions. And remember that Weaver also lives near the beginning of Document's complete Sara Martin chronology, as well as the earliest volume of Helen Humes in the Classics Chronological series.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
3:07
2 2:59
3
feat: Sara Martin
2:58
4
2:57
5 3:18
6
3:07
7
2:59
8
feat: Sara Martin
2:57
9
3:21
10
3:06
11 3:03
12
feat: Helen Humes
3:08
13
feat: Helen Humes
2:58
14
2:53
15 3:00
16
3:04
17
feat: Helen Humes
2:57
18
feat: Helen Humes
3:01
19 2:54
20 2:46
21
2:57
22
2:52
23 2:54
24
2:54
25
2:54
blue highlight denotes track pick