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Bayou Maharajah

Now that Bayou Maharajah has had an airing at the ultimately inconsequential bricks and mortar “vanity marketing” film festivals (good for the CV but not for the bank account) and other miscellaneous one-off showings, the broader populace can now view this documentary via the usual streaming outlets. It’s such a shame that they all have the…

Why Does James Booker Matter?

Died on this day — without doubt one of the greats. No one has ever played the piano like Booker. In an email referring to the new deluxe Classified record, Harry Connick Jr. put it like this: “This CD is yet another example of the powerful genius of a unique and complex mind. I hear joy…

James Booker: Gonzo Live

This is a rerelease and though not of the calibre of the Classified rerelease it is a worthy supplement to the latter. Indeed a “must have” for a Booker fan — no throw aways or filler here.  Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius of James Bookerbluesboogie woogieClassical musicJames BookerJazzmusicnew orleanspiano

Cocaine boogie: James Booker, the tragic piano genius of New Orleans

Not that one really needs any confirmation, but listening to this rerelease, the genius is palpable. Maestro producer Scott Billington‘s liner notes are fascinating. Here’s hoping that more releases are in the offing — there is precious little available even at the Louisiana Music Factory. Also, check out this Guardian piece plugging the recent documentary. Bayou Maharajah: The…