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Jelly Roll King

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Album Review

A master of swampy juke joint blues, Frank Frost brought his own version of deep south harmonica and vocals to a mix of Slim Harpo and Jimmy Reed-like tunes in a career that is notable both for its longevity and for its unfailing vitality. This release from Britain's Charly Records is actually a great place to discover Frost, since it combines on one disc several of the tracks he did for famed Memphis producer Sam Phillips in 1962 for the Sun Records subsidiary, Phillips International, along with tracks Frost cut for Scotty Moore (yep, Elvis Presley's old guitar player) and the Louisiana label Jewel Records a couple of years later. Sides from the two sessions fit together seamlessly, and having "Jelly Roll King" and "Big Boss Man" from the Sun date bumping up against "My Back Scratcher" from the Jewel date makes this arguably the best Frost comp out there.

Biography

Born: 15 April 1936 in Auvergne, AR

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Although the atmospheric juke joint blues of Frank Frost remained steeped in unadulterated Delta funk throughout his career, his ongoing musical journey took him well outside his Mississippi home base. He moved to St. Louis in 1951, learning how to blow harp first from Little Willie Foster and then from the legendary Sonny Boy Williamson, who took him on the road -- as a guitar player -- from 1956 to 1959. Drummer Sam Carr, a longtime Frost ally, was also part of the equation, having enticed Frost...
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Jelly Roll King, Frank Frost
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