1-CD-Album Digipak (6-plated) with 24-page booklet, 36 tracks. Playing time approx. 86 mns.
The most comprehensive single-disc collection available of Smiley Lewis rocking 1950s output for Imperial.
Features the brilliant Studio Band at Cosimo Matassa's New Orleans studio: saxists Lee Allen and Herbert Hardesty, drummer Earl Palmer, pianists Edward Frank and Huey Smith, and trumpeter/producer Dave Bartholomew among them. Contains both scorching versions of Shame, Shame, Shame, many equally fabulous rockers, like Bumpity Bump and Smiley Lewis' classic originals I Hear You Knocking and
One Night, covered by Gale Storm and Elvis Presley respectively. Boasting a booming vocal delivery, Smiley Lewis was one of the seminal performers on the 1950s New Orleans R&B scene. The charts didn't reflect just how spectacular Smiley Lewis' 1950s output for Imperial Records was.
Under the savvy aegis of producer/songwriter Dave Bartholomew and featuring the Crescent City's top studio sidemen, Smiley Lewis made some of the most blistering rockers of his era. Yet only a handful of them were national hits; his classic original I Hear You Knocking was victimized by a puerile Gale Storm cover that killed his pop crossover potential, and Elvis Presley latched onto One Night, cleaned it up, and sold a lot more copies than Smiley Lewis ever did. Why She's Got Me Hook, Line And Sinker, Bumpity Bump, Rootin' And Tootin', and Shame, Shame, Shame weren't hits during rock 'n' roll's primordial age we'll never know.
Bear Family's jam-packed single-disc collection of Smiley Lewis greatest rockers showcases his huge, wall-shaking voice (reminiscent of Big Joe Turner's on the bluesier early stuff) on a non-stop barrage of rockers ranging from 1950 to 1958. Dave Bartholomew was Smiley Lewis best source for material, writing most of his most memorable releases, thoughSmiley Lewis penned a few of his own early on.
Even Little Richard would be envious of some of these houserockers, with tenor saxman Lee Allen wailing and drummer Earl Palmer stoking the romping rhythm like a locomotive. This is the most comprehensive single-disc Smiley Lewis collection on the market!