Blues, Rags and Hollers
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As much of a cult following as they have among blues and folk fans, Koerner, Ray & Glover aren't exactly the kind of act who will attract interest from noted documentary filmmakers or PBS' American Masters series. So Tony Glover himself co-directed this 1986 documentary, which began as a half-hour film, and was eventually expanded to the two-hour form in which it's presented on this DVD. Its low-budget, humble origins are sometimes evident, though only the occasional fluctuation in sound levels is a significant drawback. Too, the relative scarcity of vintage footage — it wasn't until April 1982, nearly 20 years after their first recordings, that they appeared on television — means it has to rely heavily on talking heads and still photos. As much as a DVD can be said to grow on you over the course of its two-hour running time, however, this low-key but affectionate portrait does. John Koerner, Dave Ray, and Tony Glover all speak extensively about their individual and group histories, their idiosyncratic combination of folk and blues, and their sporadic recordings. Indeed, about as much time's given to their various side projects as their work together as a trio, and while the early- to mid-'60s recordings that established their reputation aren't neglected, there's a lot of coverage of what they did in the subsequent two decades as well. What comes across most memorably is the humble, droll diffidence of all them toward fame and fortune; in the case of Koerner and Ray in particular, they just didn't seem too bothered with getting ahead in the music business, simply playing for kicks and rolling willy-nilly with whatever whimsical paths their music or lives took. The documentary also reveals some interesting non-musical activities of Glover's that even fans of the trio might not be aware of, including his stint as a popular radio DJ, his rock journalism, and his friendship with Patti Smith long before she started to perform music. This won't win any major awards for striking or slick documentary filmmaking, but if there was an award for the least pretentious documentary of a significant recording act, it could well win that prize. The DVD includes a couple updates as to their surprisingly extensive activities in the two decades following 1986 (including, sadly, Dave Ray's death in 2002), as well as 25 minutes of performance footage from the 1990s.
I live in Miineapolis,Mn,USA where these guys live. Sadly,Dave Ray left this earth a few years back. I can still go see Spider and Glover on many nights. These guys are LEGENDS and live as humble as any one could be. I've had the honor back in the day to watch and listen to Koerner,Ray and Glover around town and I can tell you it was the finest I've ever heard. Up there with the best of the BEST! Spider John is one if the finest guitar players on the planet. This is where the Blues crossed over......way back 1963!
Formed: 1962 in Minneapolis, MN
Years Active: '60s, '70s, '90s
Top Albums and Songs by Koerner, Ray & Glover
||Black Betty||Lots More Blues, Rags and Hollers||0:59||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Linin' Track||Blues, Rags and Hollers||2:14||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Ramblin' Blues||Blues, Rags and Hollers||2:42||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Titanic||The Return of Koerner, Ray & Glover||4:09||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Down to Louisiana||Blues, Rags and Hollers||2:53||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Black Dog||Lots More Blues, Rags and Hollers||2:08||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Jimmy Bell||Blues, Rags and Hollers||2:43||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||One Kind Favor||Blues, Rags and Hollers||3:56||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||Statesboro Blues||The Return of Koerner, Ray & Glover||3:07||$0.69||View In iTunes|
||The Boys Was Shootin' It Out Last Night||The Return of Koerner, Ray & Glover||2:19||$0.69||View In iTunes|