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Some Like It Raw


DEL 3007

© & (p) 1993 Deluge Records, Inc.

Some Like It Raw is the second, high-octane, Eddie Kirkland release on Deluge Records and marks the first live record of his long and illustrious career.

Joined by a young troupe known as The Energy Band, Kirkland charges through 58 minutes of music that is best characterized in the liner notes as "a collision of sixty years of American music."

Music reviewers, dj's and fans have been calling for a live record of Eddie Kirkland for years. Now they have it -- the heaviest dose of Kirkland yet --
Some Like It Raw!

Produced by Randy Labbe
Executive Producer: Steve Bloch

The Songs

  1. Don't Fool With That Bag
  2. Everyday I Have The Blues
  3. Woke Up This Morning
  4. Lonely Street
  5. Walkin' (On My Way To Miami)
  6. Squeeze Me
  7. Got My Mojo Working
  8. Grease Your Monkey
  9. In Love With You
  10. Love Don't Love Nobody
All songs written and arranged by Eddie Kirkland (Marvidic Music:BMI) except: 2, Peter Chat man (Arc Music:BMI); 3, B.B. King/J.Taub (Sounds of Lucille/Power Force:BMI); and 7, Foster (Dare Music:BMI).

The Players

* - Billy Boardman takes the second solo on track 2 and the first solo on track 8.


Recorded Live at The Yale Hotel, Vancouver, Canada, September 23-25, 1993.
Recorded and Mixed by Michael Shaw, Vancouver
Edits and Mastered by John Etnier at Studio Dual, Cape Elizabeth, ME
Photograhy by James O'Connell, Winnipeg
Photo of Yale Hotel by John Leighton, Vancouver
Design by Patrick Duffy, Toronto
Special Thanks: Bob Kempf, Joe Brien, Scott Perrow, Marcel Paradis, Suzanne Paradis, The Marvidic Gang, Chris McDermott, David Nelson and Tut Underwood.

Reviews and Comments

Eddie Kirkland - Some Like It Raw

Yes, indeed, some like it raw, and for them Eddie Kirkland is the reigning king of the blues. Kirkland plays guitar and harmonica and sings like there's no tomorrow. His live shows are legendary, the turbaned Kirkland stalking through the audience blowing over-the-top harp lines and singing gruff, gospel-flavored vocals, then picking up one of his weirdly shaped guitars to play fierce, screaming lead. Kirkland has all the fire, passion and soul that is missing from most contemporary blues bands around.

However, for those who want to hear the man at top form, Some Like It Raw is the best news since his still unmatched '50s Prestige session. It catches Kirkland live with his Energy Band, a trio of young white guys who have been with him for years and combine impeccable musicianship with fire to spare. There are rough spots, like the off-key vocals on "Squeeze Me," but laying clean is not what makes Kirkland great. His forte is soul and imagination, and this album has plenty of both. His guitar lines on the blues rumba "Lonely Street" are startling, jagged improvisations that keep the listener on tenterhooks as he backs himself into melodic corners, then heads in new directions that are utterly unexpected and completely appropriate.

Kirkland even finds new things to do with chestnuts like "Everyday I Have The Blues" and "Got My Mojo Working," the latter a rough, breakneck shuffle. If the album has one major problem, it is that the pace never lets up. Kirkland is a deep, powerful singer of the slow song, and a few ballads would have helped to break up the set. Still, that is a minor criticism. This is a burning album that should be listened to loud, with dancing shoes on.

Sing Out! (Vol.39 #2)

Jimmie Vaughn cuts a post T-Bird Fairlane, Eddie Kirkland sweats, Hop Wilson pedals home

It's more than 50 years since Eddie Kirkland ran away from home to join the circus, where he danced, goofed and played the harmonica. He still blows harp and travels relentlessly, but today Kirkland's known as "the Energy Man," a high-voltage, blue collar blues man whose shows send crowds back to the steel-and-auto-workers bars of Chicago and Detroit in the '50s and '60s. He's caught his sweat-and grind style on the live Some Like It Raw (Deluge) rippin' it up on tunes like "Grease Your Monkey" and "Don't Fool With That Bag," a slide'slinging anti-dope wail. Paced at full tilt, Raw outdoes any of Kirkland's uneven studio albums.

Pulse (May '95)

Eddie Kirkland - Live! Some Like It Raw
By: David Whiteis

Don't Fool With That Bag/Everyday I Have The Blues/Woke Up This Morning/Lonely Street/Walkin' (On My Way To Miami)/Squeeze Me/Got My Mojo Working/Grease Your Monkey/ In Love With You/ Love Don't Love Nobody

One of the more embarrassing moments of my journalistic career occurred when I touted an upcoming Eddie Kirkland show in Chicago and described the non-stop, high-energy performances for which he's known. The night of the gig he showed up, sat down, and played moody Chicago-style blues all night! From the sound of this disc, I would of been redeemed if he had done a show like the one captured here.

This is Kirkland in all his "raw" glory, but the great thing about it is the bluesy spirit shines through everything. As exultant as the party gets, these guys never get so carried away that they don't let the music speak for itself.

The opening number, a rather forced anti drug rap song grafted onto a blues arrangement, is nonetheless attractive in a grungy sort of way, and from there it's straight uphill. "Everyday I Have The Blues" is melded gloriously to the "Shake Your Moneymaker" riff, with Kirkland alternating between straight ahead leads and upwardly descending, edge-of -dissonsnce bends. His rhythm work when second guitarist Billy Boardman takes over is outrageous: he slams down his clanging, metallic chords on the upbeat, far from the song's shuffle groove.

Especially pleasing is Kirkland's harp work, which he should showcase more often. Technically he won't make the ghost of the Sonny Boys or the Walters lose any of their well earned rest, but Kirkland's harmonica playing is a roughshod good time and sometimes attains a wide-mouthed raucousness reminiscent of James Cotton. On Mojo, admittedly an overripe chestnut, his voice sounds a bit like Cotton's used to. Grease Your Monkey features that voice at its most lung-pumping: the song is primarily a one-chord workout that I'd be tempted to call soul-blues, except there's a metal glint to everything here that's far from what most of us would consider "soul" these days.

Some of the more clueless "party 'til you puke" bands out there should study this disc and learn what real roadhouse boogie is about. This is far from the roosty stuff that a lot of us still dream about hearing from a veteran like Kirkland, but that's more our problem than his-he's changed with the times, he and his audience obviously have a hell of a lot of fun, and this album shows that he has plenty left to say musically.

Living Blues (May-June '94)

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