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Live At the Knickerbocker Cafe

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Album Review

Live at the Knickerbocker Cafe was recorded in the late '70s, toward the end of Left Hand Frank's unheralded career. For much of his life, he worked as a sideman, never officially releasing a studio album as a leader. This album (originally released on the French MCM label) is the only addition to a meager discography, but it demonstrates just how much he had to offer. Left Hand Frank didn't shake up the Chicago blues tradition, choosing to celebrate it instead, and the result is a kinetic, entertaining set of greasy blues. There are a few unexpected flourishes, such as the reverb detour "Surfin' with Frank," that keep things interesting, and the end result is cool little Chicago blues gem from a guitarist that was sadly underrecorded.


Born: October 5, 1935 in Greenville, MS

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '90s

Southpaw guitarist Frank Craig (like many of his peers, he played an axe strung for a right-hander, strapping it on upside down) never really transcended his reputation as a trusty sideman instead of a leader -- and that was just fine with him. But he stepped into the spotlight long enough to sing four fine tunes for Alligator's Living Chicago Blues anthologies in 1978. Craig was already conversant with the guitar when he moved to Chicago at age 14. Too young to play inside the Club Zanzibar (where...
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Live At the Knickerbocker Cafe, Left Hand Frank
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