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Smokes Like Lightnin' (Remastered)

Lightnin' Hopkins

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Album Review

One of the most weirdly compelling elements of Smokes Like Lightnin' is Mack McCormick's liner notes, reproduced from the original 1963 LP. Almost breathtaking in their ferocity, McCormick's notes characterize Hopkins as a spoiled crybaby whose only redeeming quality is his ability to make music. The album, recorded in three 1962 sessions, consists simply of Hopkins and his guitar, except for three songs that are performed with a full band. The sound is spare and very loose, with a re-recording of "T Model Blues" and the dance song "Let's Do the Susie-Q," a musical exhortation that seems unlikely to inspire dancing. A brief and uneven album, Smokes Like Lightnin' is less compelling than Hopkins' '50s recordings, but strikes an appealingly lazy acoustic groove.

Biography

Born: March 15, 1912 in Centerville, TX

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s

Sam Hopkins was a Texas country bluesman of the highest caliber whose career began in the 1920s and stretched all the way into the 1980s. Along the way, Hopkins watched the genre change remarkably, but he never appreciably altered his mournful Lone Star sound, which translated onto both acoustic and electric guitar. Hopkins' nimble dexterity made intricate boogie riffs seem easy,...
Full Bio