OK, I’m no religious person at all.
I’m not sure if God exists or not and in general my whole attitude on this ancient debate it’s a bit anarchic or at least skeptic.
Anyway, I always liked the gospels. I never got deep into this genre, so I’m a little bit scared to touch my hands into and tell something on subjects that surely don’t know well. As it always happens with Jim Marshall (or The Hound for those in the ploy) when he put on on something, I’m takin’ lessons and holding notes. As far now for gospels, I finally found a place to start my journey cravenly and slowly. Jim's post on gospel and guitar evangelists still remains my favorite and you know what I mean when I use the word “favorite” on a Hound’s piece, right? You should check it swiftly (here)!
So, I got a question. Could it ever be a gospel song (or album) in a state of devilry ablaze?
Fuck YES! If we are talking 'bout the case of Reverend Charlie Jackson, well - something’s “wrong” going on here obviously. This is the “punk rock” of the gospels. He had a filthy strong voice, just like if Bunker Hill was a preacher (hmmm, as a matter of fact I think I read somewhere that Bunker Hill did sang the gospels actually) and he played the guitar just like Skip James or Willie Dixon. No shit! The man created mayhem with these two weapons and definitely no spiritual music! At first, Booker label got him on and released through it 6 or 7 singles. For some reason unknown to me at this moment and in a pure D.I.Y. manner, got formed his own label - named what else, Jackson, and continued to cut sides there. Most of 'em given to the pilgrims of his church and I'm quite sure all these now are collector's items. Don't bother try find them. Crypt and Casequarter gathered most of 'em if not all (don't know yet - sorry for the misunderstandings here, this piece written without my LP copy on my hands) and released 'em on LP and CD in correspondence.
I ripped this two Booker singles from a CD-R that's written and send it to me from an unknown friend in Germany (thanks a million!) and as you might guess, instantly i did two things. First to order an LP copy and 2nd, to write this piece. Hear for your self and judge, but personally i don't believe that exists a "gospel" record or artist more fuzzed out and primitive than this or better these!
PS1: For more Reverend Charlie Jackson and a different "Wrapped Up in Jesus" version, later recuted on his own Jackson label, go to excellent Kogar's Jungle Juice blog and read/hear this.
PS2: The Black Crowes on their last album, covered "God's Got It" with decency. Extra kudos for this, even though i already dug them.
PS3: Did they ever heard some of these records if not all, The White Stripes or the Black Keys? I hope not, cause if they did, they already know that never gonna get a sound like this, not even in a hundred years!