Located in the northwest corner of Louisiana, Shreveport has had a thriving music scene for many decades. From such blues icons as Jesse Thomas and Oscar "Buddy" Woods (of the two of them, only Thomas would make records after World War II) — to such legendary rockers as Dale Hawkins, whose big hit "Susie Q" was cut "after hours" at local radio station KWKH, Shreveport has a lot about which it can be rightfully proud. On this episode of Blues Unlimited, we focus on two of the movers and shakers in the music business in Shreveport — Mira Smith, who started up a handful of labels, including Ram, Clif, and Jo (among others) and Stan Lewis, who operated Shreveport's all-important record distributorship for many years, and finally (at the encouragement of Leonard Chess) got into the record business himself. Also on the program, some very fine country blues that were captured during the height of the post-war era, courtesy of labels like Gotham, JOB (another home-grown Shreveport label), Pacemaker (owned by country music star Webb Pierce), Imperial, and Specialty -- from an all night recording session in March 1952 that was organized by Stan Lewis for Specialty's owner Art Rupe — that give us a spectacular cross-section of the down home blues talent that was on hand in Shreveport in the early 1950s. Don't miss this special tribute to the Blues, R&B, and Country Blues from Shreveport, on this episode of Blues Unlimited.
Pictured: Map of Shreveport, c. 1920.
To hear this episode in its original full-fidelity high quality audio, it may be downloaded from Bandcamp at: http://tinyurl.com/y8st2epl
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