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Cryin' and Singin' the Blues

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Album Review

Gatemouth Moore (Arnold Dwight Moore) has been called the last of the blues shouters, a title that isn't entirely accurate. His forte, at least prior to turning to gospel late in his career, was in midtempo bluesy ballads that really fall a lot closer to jazz than they do to gutbucket blues. He was also a strong and gifted songwriter, and at least one of his songs, the articulate "Did You Ever Love a Woman," is an absolute lost classic. This compilation pulls together all his work for National Records between 1945 and 1946, and includes "Did You Ever Love a Woman" as well as the stately and haunting "Christmas Blues" and two takes of the clever "I Ain't Mad at You Pretty Baby," which features a lead horn riff drawn from Count Basie's "Jumpin' at the Woodside." Singing in front of such stellar jazz players as Budd Johnson, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney, Dick Vance, and John Hardee, Moore's voice moves from soft to gritty and back again as each song demands, always with an affecting and intangible feeling of joy, even as the lyrics hint at romantic desolation. Moore moved on to King Records following these sessions, and re-recorded many of the titles found here, before leaving secular music behind in 1949.


Born: November 08, 1913 in Topeka, KS

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s

Blues shouter and later gospel preacher, Gatemouth Moore got his start in Kansas City while still a teenager, singing for the bands of Bennie Moten and Walter Barnes. Graced with a smooth but powerful voice similar to Charles Brown, Moore spent the 1940s penning and recording songs, most notably "Have You Ever Loved a Woman," which would later be covered by B.B. King and the previously mentioned Charles Brown. Others would revisit Moore's songs, too, with Rufus Thomas covering Gatemouth's "Somebody's...
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Cryin' and Singin' the Blues, Gatemouth Moore
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