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Now You Can Talk About Me

George "Harmonica" Smith

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Album Review

Now You Can Talk About Me collects mid- and late-period Smith, with the harmonica genius' '60s sides for the microscopic imprint Sotoplay sampled on the first five cuts. The remainder of the album is from a 1982 session for the Murray Brothers label with Rod Piazza behind the board, which produced the Boogie'n with George album. Also included are the previously unreleased "Last Chance" and a powerful instrumental slow-burner. Junior Watson shines on guitar on these tracks and Smith's tone is big, fat, rich, and full of ideas galore on tunes like "Bad Start," "Astatic Stomp," "Sunbird," and the title track. But Smith's use of a chromatic harp will strike most blues mavens as something unique and out of the ordinary, as he tackles such standards as "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" and "Peg o' My Heart" with considerable élan, imparting both with a bluesy feel that Jerry Murad & the Harmonicats could only envision. If you like great blues harmonica playing, you're going to love Now You Can Talk About Me. Add Smith's name to the list of all-time greats near the top with this one.

Biography

Born: 22 April 1924 in Helena, AR

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

George Smith was born on April 22, 1924 in Helena, Arkansas, but was raised in Cairo, Illinois. At age four, he was already taking harp lessons from his mother, a guitar player and a somewhat stern taskmaster: it was a case of get-it-right-or-else. In his early teens, he started hoboing around towns in the South and later joined Early Woods, a country band with Early Woods on fiddle and Curtis Gould on spoons. He also worked with a gospel group in Mississippi called the Jackson Jubilee Singers. Smith...
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Now You Can Talk About Me, George "Harmonica" Smith
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