She'll Grow Back: Stagger Lee Saturdays - Professor Longhair

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Stagger Lee Saturdays - Professor Longhair

Professor Longhair (Official Wiki fansite AMG) was born Henry Roeland Byrd in Louisiana in 1918, and started performing in New Orleans in the 1940's. and became a jazz/rock and roll pianist, kind of like Fats Domino but not as popular. He couldn't seem to find a hit anywhere, and so ended up sweeping floors in a record store to feed his gambling habit. (Who's best to sing about Stag? Murderers, gamblers, and pimps, in my book.) Nonetheless, a lot of his songs served as templates for Dr. John and other N'awlins performers.

In the early 70s, as we've seen so many times before, 'Fess was rediscovered by a new generation of jazz and blues fans, and suddenly his career restarted itself. This is from a 1974 album (incidentally, recorded the same year as Fats' live version linked up there) which also includes his rerecordings of some of his greatest songs, "Tipitina" and "Mardi Gras in New Orleans," along with his covers of "Rockin' Pneumonia" and Hank Williams' "Jambalaya."

1 comment:

CD said...

Hey, "Stagolee Shot Billy" came from Amazon last night. While i bought it for my brother's birthday (yes, you've hooked him, too), i plan on snagging it back at some point to read myself.

Good looking out and thanks for the suggestion.