It was announced today that legendary guitarist Mickey Baker has died. He was busy r&b and jazz session guitarist in New York in 1950s and wrote a jazz guitar instruction book series that influenced a generation or two of players. He is most famous, though, as half of Mickey and Sylvia. Their 1956 hit Love is Strange is truly a classic. Baker's guitar playing is among the best rock/r&b playing ever. Turns out though that much of is borrowed from Jody Williams playing on Billy Stewart's tune "Billie's Blues" on Chess. Chess even sued over the matter, but Williams apparently got no compensation. Another Williams piece ("Lucky Lou") was borrowed by Otis Rush for "All Your Love."
This YouTube Of "Love Is Strange" has some very nice vintage photos. Enjoy.
David Walters has announced the completion of a major milestone for the Left Opposition Digitization Project for the Marxist Internet Archive: the complete run of Labor Action, the newspaper of the Workers Party (U.S.) and Independent Socialist League from 1940 through the Autum of 1958.
Writers for this paper included, among others, Max Shachtman, James T. Farrell, C.L.R. James, Raya Dunayevskaya, Hal Draper, and Irving Howe. The 19 years of Labor Action represents approx. 1,000 issues published, over half of which are full broadsheet in size. Presented in beautifylly digitaly optimized PDFs, the work was a joint project between the Riazanov Library Project and the Holt Labor Libary. Walters says: "We encourage the free and widespread distribution of this historic archive".
Click here to visit the archive.