Wednesday, April 1, 2015


The first LP I ever bought was Cosmo's Factory, by Creedence Clearwater Revival, purchased with lawn mowing money. I was twelve years old, and it was a big deal. It would be months before I bought a second album. So I did what kids do. I devoured it. All of it. I could recite the liner notes, what little there were. Even the song writing credits were studied. What's this? Elias McDaniel? Who's that? Though I didn't know what they were called, it was the first time I became cognizant of cover versions. There were four songs written by someone other than J.C. Fogerty, whom, aided by my young super sleuth skills, I deducted to be the guy in the band, John Fogerty. The covers were well chosen, "Before You Accuse Me", "Ooby Dooby", "My Baby Left Me" and "I Heard It Through the Grapevine". Of the four, Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup's original version of "My Baby Left Me" was one that eluded me the longest, as in decades. He also wrote "That's All Right, Mama", one of Elvis's earliest recordings, Sun era. 

Crudup would go in and out of the music business from the forties through the sixties, depending on how badly he was getting screwed. In the off years he supplanted periodic club gigs with work as a laborer, and later dabbled in bootlegging. But he never really got his due. Here's just a taste. Go buy a record.

Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - Rock Me Mama mp3 at (?)
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - That's All Right Mama mp3
at (?)
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - My Baby Left Me (streaming) at YouTube
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - So Glad You're Mine
(streaming) at YouTube
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - So Glad You're Mine
at YouTube 1974
Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup
at Wikipedia


S R Management said...

good post, this is the kind of post that makes surfing the web fun, and while I'm a bit older, I also had that first album. It was Uncle Meat by the Mothers of Invention. After than, the Beatles weren't quite as interesting as they used to be.

Tom G. said...

Ha! Let's make sure I got this right, you're first album was Uncle Meat? I would imagine that NOTHING was quite as interesting after that! Thanks for the nice comment SR Management, whoever you are.

I know that you've commented in the past, and as the inept blowhard who does this blog, I gotta tell you, hearing from visitors is the one thing that keeps me from thinking I'm just pissing into the wind. Cheers, Tom

espen E. said...

Funny… You know, growing up, I remember pulling out «Cosmo’s Factory» from my parents’ record shelf. As my father was mostly into jazz, it was one of the albums that stood out among the predominant Basie and Ellington stuff… I’m guessing my mother was to blame for this particular addition, 'cause I know for sure that the Janis Joplin album, «Pearl» – of similar status – was hers.

Now by the time I had developed the urge to consciously (as in; "with intent to listen to") browse through their collection of music, it must have been mid-seventies-plus, and CCR wasn’t getting any air time at our house as far as I can recollect. Song credits? Crudup? I wasn’t quite there yet, but those freaky lookin’ slackers on the cover was as good a reason as any to give it a spin, which I did, and – Before You Accuse Me – that rule about the turntable being "off-limits till you're old enough" doesn’t really count when you’re home alone. Hey, what's "old enough", anyway?.. or "too old", for that matter?

Keep On Chooglin’ Tom.