Tuesday, November 10, 2015


Man, oh man, I don't know if you've heard yet, but Allen Toussaint passed away today while on tour in Spain. He was a songwriter, performer, producer, label owner, studio owner, mentor and unofficial ambassador of New Orleans, the city he helped put on the musical map. To say he did it all is an understatement. He was about as big of a part of the classic New Orleans R & B sound as anyone could be.

His songs were recorded by fellow New Orleans icons Lee Dorsey, Benny Spellman, the Meters, Ernie K-Doe, Aaron Neville, Art Neville and Irma Thomas, among many others. That's just one city. Outside of New Orleans, the Doors. Q65, Al Hirt, the Yardbirds, the Rolling Stones, the O'Jays, Alex Chilton, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Elvis Costello, Patti LaBelle, Dr. John, Joe Cocker, Glen Campbell, the Band, Devo, Etta James, Ramsey Lewis, the Leaves, Ringo Starr, the Kingsmen, Bo Diddley, the Paul Butterfield Band, the Who, the Nomads, and about eight paragraphs of other names.

Excellent BBC documentary

It is a sad day. Make no mistake, this is big. His influence is so vast that it's hard to name an living musician that comes close. If you're unfamiliar with his work, do a little digging. Over a half century of work is out there, and hardly a stinker in the bunch. This is just a random sampling, a very small, very random sampling.

Al Tousan - Moo Moo mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban Early, under psuedonym
Al Tousan - Cow Cow Blues mp3
at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban Early, under psuedonym

As writer:
Lee Dorsey - Working In a Coal Mine mp3
at Internet Archive
Benny Spellman - Fortune Teller mp3
at Northern Soul Music
Lee Dorsey - Yes We Can Can mp3
at Fish Heads

Warren Lee - Star Revue mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
Raymond Lewis - Miss Sticks mp3 at Juke Box Mafia (Co-writer)
Yardbirds - A Certain Girl mp3 at Boogaloo Time
Aaron Neville - Let's Live mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
Pointer Sisters - Yes We Can Can mp3 at Le Mellotron 
As Producer/label owner:
Prime Mates - Hot Tamales (Pt 1) mp3 at Super Sonido
Prime Mates - Hot Tamales (Pt 2) mp3 at Super Sonido
Allen Toussaint at Wikipedia
Allen Toussaint - Interview at Red Bull Academy
Allen Toussaint - Video interview at NAMM

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