Music is nature's language. What it is telling you is to shut up for once and listen.

 

This article is actually about one song. Not that screaming jay Hawkins didn’t have more than one song, of course he did, but they were just songs. This one? A monument.

 

 

You cant sell news stories that have data and cautious predictions. Where is the panic? Where is the impending doom? C'mon people , give me something to work with here…

    Opinions / Science / Theory of Relative Ignorance  
 

..and as I was a yuppy marketing and advertising executive for the better part
of a decade, I am not really impressed with stories of selling your soul to the devil...

    Art & Culture / Music / Blues / Robert Johnson  
   

Screaming Jay Hawkins - Spellbound

This article is actually about one song. Not that screaming jay Hawkins didn’t have more than one song, of course he did, but they were just songs. This one? A monument. A mountain of blues towering over the clouds. A mountain every blues singer has to climb in their road to respectability. A baptism of fire.

And it is the best song for singer and guitar combo, so the result is always a double whammy of talent, taking it to a double coach ride , each couple in its own direction.

Nina Simon, Koko Taylor, Mica Paris and David Gilmour, Joss Stone and Jeff Beck, just to name a few…
I put a spell on you is such a strong song, such a powerful trip that it  can be played over and over and over again, without ever becoming a cliché , without losing its edge. And if THAT is not magic, I don’t know what is.

 
I came into this world black, naked and ugly. And no matter how much I accumulate here, it's a short journey. I will go out of this world black, naked and ugly. So I enjoy life.
 
 

Screaming jay Hawkins had a theatrical flair to his concerts which is entertaining at best but damaging to the music most times, and this is the only thing that prevents him from sitting comfortably in the pantheon of blues, at least in my book.

It is not that he is not there. Goddamn he is. But…
One of things I do admire about his career, and that might be thanks to the fact he was what I might call a second generation bluesman, is that fact he played with some of my favorite bands, opening for the clash, the rolling stones, nick cave and many more.

 
 

I put a spell on you
because you're mine!

 

And if that is not enough? He covered my favorite tom waits song – heart attack and vine. Not that he managed to even get close to waits in any way, but boy does that needs guts….more power to you mister screaming.

He WAS a peculiar fella, this screaming jay. He actually did a full album inspired by the 'x-files', which is brilliant. (not the album, the idea. The album is mediocre at best, but who cares)

 
 

You know what? After writing 'I put a spell on you'? screaming jay Hawkins could have made an album based on sesame street and I would still let him in the blues hall of fame.  The wrinkle he made with this one amazing song on the space time continuum really does overshadow anything else. Anything.

Indeed, he put a spell on us all.

 

I put a spell on you http://youtu.be/PwXai-sgM-s
I put a spell on you (Nina Simon) http://youtu.be/DrdiXiPkVWY
I put a spell on you (joss stone , Jeff beck) http://youtu.be/zbLqGlxJsIw
I put a spell on you (mica Paris ,David Gilmour ) http://youtu.be/cd87jZagR7Y
I am the cool http://youtu.be/-gWQQHHEz04