Birthday Suit

Track Listings and credits
click here for lyrics. Click on a title below for a bit of background on the song

She Can't Not Be Satisfied (4:09)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Magic Dave Therault - harp

Got My Ax To Grind (4:13)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums

The Blues Is Brewing (4:37)
L. Alter, E. DeLange - Alter Louis Music (ASCAP)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Benny Yee - keys
Magic Dave Therault - harp

How Blue Can You Get? (8:12)
J. Feather - Modern Age Music (B.M.I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Andy Martin - tenor
Scott Martin - trombone
Stan Martin - trumpet

Smokin' Drinkin' Woman (3:55)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Magic Dave Therault - harp

Birthday Suit (8:47)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Benny Yee - keys

Off The Edge Of The Earth (3:49)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Benny Yee - keys
Andy Martin - tenor
Scott Martin - trombone
Stan Martin - trumpet

I Got A Rap Sheet On You (4:42)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Magic Dave Therault - Harp
Benny Yee - keys

Tumblin' Tumbleweed (6:05)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar
Rick Reed - bass
Hank Deluxe - drums
Magic Dave Therault - harp

Little Queen Of Hearts (4:04)
L.A. Jones - Barking Blues Music (B. M. I.)
L. A. Jones - vocal , guitar

 

Recorded at Front Page Studios, Glendale CA on September 12th, 13th and 14th 2000

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Thanks for listening and thanks for loving the Blues!

The Blues Is Brewin'

How Blue Can You Get?

Tumblin' Tumbleweed

Little Queen Of Hearts


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Reviews

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L.A. Jones and the Blues Messengers
Birthday Suit
self produced
If you've ever seen Otis Rush (even on a bad night) you already know what a gloriously confusing experience it can be. Trying to figure out those licks upside down and backward can leave us righties pretty bewildered. And never mind the vibrato - even Duke admits he can't get a handle on it.

Not only does L.A. Jones have Otis' approach, flipped over though it may, he has the vibrato bases covered to the "T"! Or more specifically to the "O"...

We who are cursed with the traditional approach are at a distinct disadvantage here. If you think about it, L.A. and Otis, when they go bendin' the steel are pulling in toward the source of strength in their hands where "we' have to be content with pushing out. There's no way for those of the northpaw persuasion to duplicate that vibrato without leaning back on that bar a wee bit. So you work with what you've got and L.A. has the tools.

Beyond the Otis and Albert thing, there is of course B.B., T-Bone, the Luthers, and a touch of the Tiny (Grimes) all thrown on for plenty of good measures (not to mention reprises).

L.A. is working with a full ensemble on this 10 cut release. While his vocals don't quite maintain the edge that last year's live effort presented, that's all the more reason to catch him in person.

Perhaps with the better distribution that Birthday Suit will surely receive, it just might turn up at your local blues central. Remember to take a mirror next time one of these lefties comes to your town, sit with your back to them, and hold that sucker up and maybe, just maybe, you may get the gist of where all that pull is coming from.
David Hussong, Vintage Guitar Magazine

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L.A. Jones and the Blues Messengers
Birthday Suit
Barking Blues Music

His fiery guitar sizzles through this set of originals, plus two classic tunes. It's the traditional spirit of The Blues Messengers that makes their latest album stand out. "How Blue Can You Get" oozes that feeling you want when you put on the blues. With horns and rhythm L.A. Jones sings the tale of woe convincingly and drives the message home with his blazing axe. "Got My Ax to Grind" turns up the heat with a rock 'n' roll attitude, while several numbers loll in deep-fried Mississippi Delta heaven. When Jones interprets a lyric, it's with powerful punctuation from his guitar.

With Magic Dave Therault filling in on harp, upright bassist Rick Reed, pianist Benny Yee and drummer Hank Deluxe providing a solid foundation, and the talented Martin brothers, Andy, Scott and Stan adding horn arrangements, Jones has the cast he needs for lighting it up. His guitar reveals an expressive side on "Birthday Suit," an original whose lyrics contain remarkable double-entendre sidebars. The combination of Jones' fresh story, his vocal-like guitar phrasing, and Yee's moody organ solo makes this title track memorable. It's the kind of mood you carry around with you all day long.
--- Jim Santella, Southland Blues, May 2002

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Another SoCal, L.A. Jones & The Blues Messengers, mix the laid-back L.A.blues echoes with spicier Chicago flavors and come up with the fresh Birthday Suit (self-release). Guitarist Jones is backed by a top-flight band and complemented with warm, clean production. The eight-minute title track is a pleasantly dirty crawler, while the ghosts of T-Bone Walker and Elmore James hover over movers "She Can't Be Satisfied" and "Got My Ax To Grind" respectively. Jones' guitar tone is always beautiful, like the woody hollow pluck on "Smokin' Drinkin' Woman"

---Blues Review - October/November 2002
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U.S.A. - L.A. JONES & The BLUES MESSENGERS: "Birthday Suit"
Barking Blues Music Label (For promotional use (from the upcoming DVD). 10 Tracks. Playing time: 51.26
Having never heard of L.A. Jones & nor have any of my friends, I was wondering what to expect with this CD. I played it through just to get the feel (as you do) and to my surprise, it was (sorry IS) fantastic. The west coast/swing style of this brilliant guitarist
(who oozed "Albert King") got the full treatment on my audio system. The band is L.A. Jones on guitar & vocals, Hank DeLuxe on drums & Rick Reed on bass. They get help from Magic Dave Therault on harp for 4 tracks, Benny Yee on keys for 4 tracks & the Martin Bros. (Stan & Scott) on horn section for 2 tracks. What a great sound the band has. On second playing of this album I noticed the lyrics… well … humorous and dare I say it a little naughty on the title track "Birthday suit". I would like to share them with you, but you'll just have to get a copy of your own to find out. I like what they've done, to play their style of blues superbly and bought some of the lyrics into the C22nd. I've had great fun listening to this CD, but L.A. Jones & co. are serious bluesmen, controlled and confident. I've just noticed that L.A. Jones is left-handed (not that I care), but can (according to the notes) play right-handed as well. He uses many different tunings
on as many different guitars (both left & right-handed). L.A. Jones' ability to effortlessly
switch between left & right handed guitars and play either, with equal facility and at the same time produces totally different and totally incredible sounds and styles. "This is something that NOBODY, but nobody else in the business does…" L.A. Jones wrote 8 out of the 10 tracks, like "She can't not be satisfied", "Got my ax to grind", "Smokin' drinkin' woman", "Birthday suit", "Off the edge of the earth", "I got a rap sheet on you", "Tumblin' tumbleweed", "Little Queen of hearts". The other two, to help make up this quality CD are "The blues is brewing" by L. Alter/E. Delange & "How blue can you get" by J. Feather. L.A. Jones helped produce this excellent CD. I lent this CD to my friend to see if he knows L.A. Jones, his music or anything about him… he said the same as me "I know nothing … but the CD is brilliant and can I borrow it again and this
time for more than a couple of hours…?" The CD goes on again and up goes the volume (sod the neighbours). This is one of the best CD's I've heard in a while,
musically, excellent & great soulful vocals, and a superb album. Normally, I like to see a band & take home (or buy) a CD as a reminder of a good time I've had. I suppose it's like going on holiday and taking photos. But this is different I've heard a great CD and now I want to see this great band. I want to know when L.A. Jones is coming to England and whether he's playing at a venue near me, because if he is, I'll be first in the queue. I would love to see this band live after listening to the CD. I'm not gizmo'd up, but you can get more info on www.lajones.com….
Tony 'H' Stickland. - Blues Matters, England
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When first getting L.A's new cd "Birthday Suit" checked the cover and thought, "Yeah, a Flyin' V for Blues, I don't think so." I know it's been used by a few players over the years, so I shut up, put it in the player, sat back and "Whooo", what a ride! This boy plays like a man possessed. Track 1 starts with some great "jump", then track 2, yep! It got me right from the first bar "Got My Ax To Grind", Elmore's back in town, there's somethin' about these 12 bar shuffles, you don't want 'em to stop. Unfortunately, it did. Then I was treated to some Mambo feel, a nice "Quicky", more great "Shuffles, and a brilliant acoustic track, "Little Queen Of Hearts". This track stands up with some of the best "Home Grown" Blues that I've ever heard. A couple of "Cool Slow Tracks" in the mix, and what more could this little "Aussie Jock" ask for, recommend it? My Bloody Oath Mate! If you ain't got the blues, YOU gotta get this album. You'll have theBlues But Good.
Bluest Regards, "TECKA". Terry Iredale/Tecka's Tracks. HOTFM.106.7FM,and across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.hotfm.org.au
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CD Review
L. A. Jones and the Blues Messengers
Birthday Suit
(Barkin' Blues Music - 2001)
by Dave "Doc" Piltz
Review date: May 2003

"Keeping the Blues Alive Award"
Achievement for Blues on the Internet
Presented by The Blues Foundation


Guitarist L. A. Jones and his band The Blues Messengers are consummate road warriors, performing over 200 shows a year. Now California-based, the band originally hailed from Austin, Texas, the famed hotbed of Texas blues and lightning fast guitarists. Because of the critical acclaim received by the left-handed guitarist, L. A. Jones, the band has been able to back such blues notables as Otis Rush, Joe Houston, Pinetop Perkins and Eddie Kirkland in between their own busy schedule. As a guitarist, L. A. Jones has built a reputation as an extremely talented guitarist and band leader, who brings showmanship to his performances, along with his exceptional musical talent. Among his most unique talents however, is the fact that Jones is equally adept at playing his guitar either left OR right-handed, making him truly unique in his profession.
The latest release by L. A. Jones and the Blues Messengers is called Birthday Suit. With eight of the ten songs on this studio recording written and performed by L.A. Jones, listeners can get the full picture of Jones' talents as a singer, songwriter and a guitarist, backed by his talented band including Rick Reed (bass), Hank Deluxe (drums), Benny Yee (keyboards), "Magic" Dave Therault (harp, Andy Martin (tenor sax), Stan Martin (trumpet) and Scott Martin (trombone). The music on Birthday Suit offers a nice blending of Chicago and Texas blues with a Memphis-flavor thrown into the mix with the inclusion of the full horn section.

Jones' guitar work has been compared to a number of blues guitar giants including Buddy Guy, Otis Rush and the late, great Albert King. As a matter of fact, Jones sounds like each one of these venerable gentlemen, depending on the song. The single note bends of Albert show up on "The Blues Is Brewing," with evidence of the burning slow blues of Otis Rush revealing itself on "How Blue Can You Get?". Buddy Guy's influence comes to the forefront on "Off The Edge Of The Earth." Just for good measure, check out the slide guitar on "Tumblin Tumbleweed" for some VERY Muddy Waters-like slide guitar. Muddy's influence also is apparent on the finale of the CD "Queen of Hearts," a down and dirty acoustic blues tune.

Jones' vocals, particularly on the original material, blend well with the music and in many cases features some hookish lyrics that take on both seriou s, as well as humorous sides as is apparent on songs like the title track "Birthday Suit," as well as "I Got A Rap Sheet On You Baby" and "Smokin' Drinkin' Woman."

To see why L. A. Jones and the Blues Messengers have received such critical acclaim, check out their latest CD, Birthday Suit. To learn more about the band or to pick up any of their other CDs (they have six), visit the L. A. Jones and the Blues Messengers website at www.lajones.com.

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L.A. Jones and the Blues Messengers - Birthday Suit (Barking Blues Music)

W.C. Handy nominated, left-handed guitarist and his band are caught here on their 2001 release, Birthday Suit. It opens with She Can't Not Be Satisfied, which is a solid opener and whets the appetite for the guitar playing on the rest of the album. The only slight criticism is that the quick beat is sometimes too quick for the vocal. Got My Ax To Grind is a rocking blues with screaming guitar and begins a run of Albert Collins themes that pervade the album. The rhythmic The Blues Is Brewing moves along well and leads into the classic How Blue Can You Get?. This song, made famous by B.B. King is rarely covered - there are not enough brave players about willing to take it on! Jones shows his bravery here and he pulls it off magnificently. Although he lacks B.B.'s vocal power he does turn in an exquisite display of guitar work.

Smokin' Drinkin' Woman is R&B (and I mean real R&B) played the way it should be and features some intricate guitar playing. Harmonica backing from Magic Dave Therault is a delight. The title track is 8:42 of slow blues and it's great to hear that good old blues innuendo is still alive and kicking. Listen out for the classic line 'It's my birthday today, can I put my candle in your cake', but don't let the lyrics hide the fact that this is a very good blues with scorching guitar, excellent organ from Benny Yee and able backing from the top rhythm section Rick Reed and Hank Deluxe on bass and drums respectively.

Off The Edge Of The Earth is a swinging blues and features a great horn section with Jones on top form with more Albert Collins licks. This is a highlight as it builds to a frenzy by the end. Sophisticated organ work is the order of the day on I Got A Rap Sheet On You Baby and this track shows that Jones is not afraid to push the envelope with his guitar style even if he doesn't always pull it off. Tumblin' Tumbleweed is in the Chicago blues style and it arrives a la Hoochie Coochie Man. It is very good but not as powerful as the song that it is trying to imitate. The album closes with the low-key acoustic Little Queen Of Hearts. This is delivered in the style of Robert Johnson and LA does what Eric Clapton didn't do on his recent Johnson tribute, he sticks to guitar and vocal.

All in all this is a very good album, played by excellent musicians and I've just added another favourite left-hander to my list.

David Blue

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"Birthday Suit" then, L.ittle A.lbert's predecessor, let's us hear many different sounds. It begins immediately with beautiful West Coast Swing, "She Can't Not Be Satisfied", in the style of Hollywood Fats. Elmore James meets Otis Rush in "Got My Axe To Grind". Also excellent is "The Blues is is Brewing" with partly slower passages, then again explosive guitar outbursts, all quite delightful! "Birthday Suit" is pure T-Bone Walker, a little bit "Stormy Monday Blues" with naughty "x-rated vocals". In "Tumblin 'Tumbleweed " we hear a stiff Muddy Waters-slide, L. A Jones is a guitarist phenomenon. He plays has play perfectly right-handed, and is as comfortable left-handed and right-handed and sometimes changes in the middle of a song from right to left guitars. According to connoisseurs, he is the only one in the world that does this. From it goes L. A. with 'n acoustic "Robert Johnson" inspired number of own make "Little Queen Or Hearts". This is a very versatile CD with lots of variety with blues in all styles, in a very convincing manner by a guitarist/singer, is long overdue for better recognition

From: Freddy Celis / ROOTSTIME.be