Blues Bytes


July 2008

an associate

Fomot RaSun
Three Days Walkin'

Fomat RaSun

Chicago blues fans might have missed Three Days Walkin’ the first time out. Released in mid-2000 on the Analogue Productions Originals (APO) label, the disc is as close to the Chicago sound of the ’50s and ’60s as you’ve heard in a long time. It remains the first and only release by harmonica player Eomot RaSun. Born Ezra Lee Blakely, Jr. in Clarksdale, MS in 1945, RaSun has been a journeyman player on the Chicago scene for a number of years. He legally changed his name in the early ’70s after he began studying African history.

RaSun was brought to the attention of APO by guitarist Jimmy D. Lane. Lane had already brought a number of musicians to record on the label, such as Hubert Sumlin, Honeyboy Edwards, and Jimmie Lee Robinson, who mostly were associates of his father, Jimmy Rogers. Lane also brought RaSun, another associate (and godfather to one of Rogers’ sons) who had never been able to catch a break, to the attention of the label. The disc was recorded live in the studio with RaSun on vocal and harp, along with an All-Star line-up including Lane on guitar, Robert Stroger on bass, and Sam Lay on drums.

Like most Chicago harmonica players, RaSun studied at the school of Little Walter Jacobs. His harp playing and vocals are reminiscent of the Chicago legend and he performs fine versions of two of Jacobs’ tunes here (“Last Night” and “Blues With A Feeling”). His own compositions (several written with Lane) are also strong and sound like they could have been released during the heyday of Chess and VeeJay. Highlights among the originals include the lively “Goin’ To Chicago,” opening the disc, followed by the rollicking “Walkin’ These Blues Away” and “So Tired,” which features some inspired guitar by Lane.

The band plays it just like the old records, very solid ensemble playing with none of the flash and dash that sometimes gets in the way on modern blues recordings. Lane in particular does an excellent job, and the rhythm section of Stroger and Lay couldn’t get any tighter. Like all of APO’s recordings, the sound is first-rate.

Unfortunately, RaSun has not recorded since this session, but if this is all he ever releases, he done well enough. Three Days Walkin’ is a great set of old-time Chicago blues that’s worth seeking out.

--- Graham Clarke


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