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Glenn Suchan


From:
Austin, Texas
Post Posted 20 Mar 2017 8:53 am     Reply with quote

In another thread it was announced that the blues harp great James Cotton has recently died. I'd posted on that thread and mentioned other great Chicago harp players. Among them was the late Jeff Carp. Jeff Carp wasn't as widely known as James Cotton or Little Walter Jacobs, but he truly was their peer. Jeff was the harp player in the band for Chicago blues drummer, Sam Lay. At one point Earl Hooker hired him away from Sam Lay.

Here is a track from a session Jeff did for the Hookers, John Lee and Earl:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgfx_getxoI

The last major session Jeff did was on the Howlin' Wolf "London Session" album on the Chess label. Here's "Poor Boy" from that session with Eric Clapton on guitar and Jeff on blues harp:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MfLRjwQF-4

As the story goes, not too long afterward, Jeff and his girlfriend celebrated Jeff's good fortune of being hired for the "London Session" album by going on a luxury cruise to Panama. On New Year's Eve, while on the cruise and amid the on-board partying passengers, one passenger went crazy and started stabbing people. In fright, Jeff jumped overboard (he couldn't swim) and never was found. Sad

Keep on pickin'!
Glenn
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 20 Mar 2017 9:31 am     Reply with quote

Strange accident. Wasn't Little Walter killed with a gunshot?
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Glenn Suchan


From:
Austin, Texas
Post Posted 20 Mar 2017 10:06 am     Reply with quote

Joachim Kettner wrote:
Strange accident. Wasn't Little Walter killed with a gunshot?


No, Joachim, not with a gun shot. He died at home from internal injuries, several hours after a barroom fight.

Of the most widely known Chicago blues harpists, the deaths are as follows:

Sonny Boy Williamson I died from a fatal injury sustained during a robbery.

Sonny Boy Williamson II died from a heart attack.

"One-Arm", Big John Wrencher died from a heart attack while sitting in a barber chair.

Big Walter Horton died of a heart attack.

George "Harmonica" Smith died of a heart attack.

"Shakey" Jake Harris died from declining health.

Although he's known more for his voice, Howlin' Wolf's harp playing was noteworthy (he was taught by Sonny Boy Williamson II). Anyway, Howlin' Wolf died from failing health.

It seems, playing blues harp is a fatal profession. Oh Well

Keep on pickin'!
Glenn
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Glenn Suchan


From:
Austin, Texas
Post Posted 20 Mar 2017 10:17 am     Reply with quote

One more Youtube with Jeff Carp on blues harp while in Sam Lay's band:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkuBtGwdv-A

Keep on pickin'!
Glenn
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 20 Mar 2017 10:29 am     Reply with quote

We all die, even if we don't play Bluesharp, Glenn. But caused by violent attacks is even more sad.
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