Luther "Houserocker" Johnson

Takin' a Bite Outta the Blues

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Luther "Houserocker" Johnson isn't a huge name in the blues market, although he did enjoy a small following in Atlanta when he recorded Takin' a Bite Outta the Blues for Ichiban in April 1990. That album didn't bring him fame, though it did give blues enthusiasts outside of Atlanta (where Ichiban was based) the chance to hear him. Not fantastic but likable and sincere, Takin' a Bite Outta the Blues left no doubt that Johnson (who should not be confused with fellow bluesman Luther "Guitar Junior" Johnson) was very much a disciple of the late Chicago blues icon Jimmy Reed. The influence of Reed is impossible to miss on familiar classics like Ray Charles' "What'd I Say," B.B. King's "Rock Me, Baby," and a number of songs that Reed wrote ("Hush, Hush," "Where Can My Baby Be") or defined (Willie Dixon's "Pretty Thing"). Several years after its 1990 release, Takin' a Bite Outta the Blues went out of print; however, half of the songs on the album were reissued on Ichiban's 1998 collection, Retrospectives.

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