Ain't Got No Home - The Best Of Clarence "Frogman" Henry
Clarence "Frogman" Henry
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Scoring an unexpected novelty hit with the title track in 1956, Henry disappeared from the charts for four years before roaring back with two smashes in the early '60s, "(I Don't Know Why) But I Do" and "You Always Hurt the One You Love." Actually, Clarence recorded a fair number of singles for Chess' Argo subsidiary between 1956 and 1964 in the relaxed New Orleans R&B styles of his big hits. Ain't Got No Home includes 18 of these sides, most of which were previously unavailable on U.S. album. Henry developed slightly over the course of his career, adding beefier horn sections that occasionally reached back to the spirit of Dixieland. Crescent City legends like saxophonist Lee Allen and pianists Allen Toussaint and Paul Gayton crop up on these sessions; when Henry traveled to Memphis for a session, he was backed by the all-star band of Bill Justis (guitar), Boots Randolph (sax), and Floyd Cramer (piano). A bit more eccentric and unpredictable than Fats Domino, not as contemporary or inventive as, say, Lee Dorsey, Henry's vocals were consistently warm and humorous, his recordings always polished. That said, the hits remain the standouts on this collection. The rest is pleasant and fun, but don't vary much from the prototype or cause exceptional interest. A couple tracks worth noting are "I Love You, Yes I Do," an R&B ballad subsequently covered by several acts during the '60s, and the 1964 single "Long Lost and Worried," written by a young Dr. John. The informative booklet includes a neat photo of Clarence with the Beatles, ironic considering that the British Invasion made types like Clarence an anachronism.
Only know one song, but...
The only song I know off this album is the title track, "Ain't Got No Home", but I think a lot of other people probably know it too. It's played in the movie "The Lost Boys" when Corey Haim is taking a bath, and outside the bathroom, his brother is turning into a vampire. I've always wanted to hear the whole song, and find out who the artist was, and now I have!! Enjoy!
Eleven Original Hits!
This is the best CD available on Clarence "Frogman" Henry. My only quibble: we're given seven filler cuts while almost as many minor hits were left out, including "I'm a Country Boy", "I Found a Home", "Little Suzy", "Why Can't You", "Dream Myself a Sweetheart", and "The Jealous Kind". And that doesn't include the minor hits for other labels. Finally, I won't even mention the inclusion here of the narrow-stereo version of "But I Do" when the wide-stereo version is easily available....! For now, this collection is the CD of choice!
It's also in "Casino"
Born: March 19, 1937 in Algiers, LA
Years Active: '50s, '60s