Archive for the red devils Category

Photographer Bert Lek’s classic pictures of Lester Butler and Paul Size at Moulin 1993

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , on October 21, 2021 by J.J.

The Red Devils’ incendiary performance at the 1993 Moulin Blues Festival in Ospel in the Netherlands continues to surprise, more than 28 years later.

Photographer Bert Lek recently allowed NoFightin.com to share his photographs of Lester Butler and Paul Size onstage from that festival. Dedicated fans will recognize some of these photos from publication in Block magazine, or as the inspiration for stunning artwork by Theo Reijnders.

We just think they’re cool. (Learn more about Bert’s fascinating life and career in this 2014 story)

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Welcome to nofightin.com

Posted in 13, lester butler, red devils with tags , , , , , , on October 13, 2021 by J.J.
kingking_vinyl

For those coming to this site for the first time, welcome to nofightin.com.

We have been here since 2009, cataloging the short but stellar career of The Red Devils and Lester Butler.

Wander around and find rare music, videos and reviews, and meet other fans — and some of the musicians who made the records we love so much.

To get you started, here are some of the most popular and essential posts and pages on nofightin.com:

  • Reunion tour: All of our exclusive coverage of The Red Devils’ 2017 reunion tour of Europe with ZZ Top.
  • Watch: The Red Devils live at the King King club, the way they were meant to be seen and heard.
  • Lyrics: Everything on “King King,” most of “13,” live stuff and more.
  • 2 Meter Sessies: In lieu of a second Red Devils record, this live radio set from 1993 can fill the void.
  • “Lester’s Legendary Last Gig”: Full coverage of the DVD release of 13’s classic 1998 Moulin Blues performance.
  • “Lousiana Blues”: The story behind one of the most rare songs in the Devils’ discography, released on a promo tape before “King King” came out in ’92.
  • “Blues in the Morning”: Hear The Red Devils rock KCRW in 1992, including their rare take on “Shake ‘Em On Down.”
  • VPRO: Famous & rare Lester Butler TV appearance, blowing a little acoustic harp, talking Little Walter and jamming with G. Love.
  • Inside King King: Pictures from what is believed to be The Red Devils’ last King King gig.
  • MTV Europe: The band shuffles through a pair of tunes on the music video channel.

Finally, ruminations on the band we love: Memories of hearing the record for the first time in 1992, a more recent take on just what makes “King King” so special and asking that musical question: Can a record change your life?

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Keys to the Kingdom: Solving musical mysteries from ‘King King’

Posted in red devils, related music with tags , , , , , , , , on October 9, 2021 by automatic32

The standing joke about blues music is that to play it you only have to learn three chords and be able to play in a corresponding number of keys. At your average blues jam on a random night in Anywhere, USA, one would expect to run into a whole boatload of songs in E, A and G with few tunes straying from this trio. On the cuts that made “King King” The Red Devils certainly leaned on some from that lot, but the variations are quite interesting.

King King

As follows in order of appearance (all songs listed are in the keys of the stringed instruments; all harmonica keys should be assumed to be in “second position” or “cross harp” unless otherwise noted):

  1. Automatic — E
  2. Goin’ to the Church — E
  3. She’s Dangerous — E
  4. I Wish You Would — A
  5. Cross Your Heart — B-flat, harmonica in key of B-flat/first position
  6. Taildragger — E
  7. Devil Woman — D
  8. No Fightin’ — B
  9. Mr. Highway Man — E
  10. I’m Ready — E
  11. Quarter to Twelve — E
  12. Cut That Out — B
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The Red Devils take over MTV Europe in 1993

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2021 by J.J.

In its 1993 year-end music video countdown, MTV celebrated classic clips from Aerosmith, Janet Jackson, Naughty By Nature, Spin Doctors and Dr. Dre (no relation).

Where would The Red Devils have ranked?

Though the band did not make any kind of official music video, that we know of, they were invited to the MTV Europe “Most Wanted” programme, hosted by Ray Cokes. In the comments, Frank Verstappe says Cokes confirmed the performance at Stonebridge Park Warehouse, London, on April 11, 1993. This would have been just days from The Red Devils’ jam with Mick Jagger in London (and note Lester Butler’s chipped front tooth, as seen on the Pinkpop video).

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Red Devils show ’em in Missouri in 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on September 11, 2021 by J.J.

The Red Devils played several shows in Missouri in 1992, including two at The Regency Showcase in Springfield, Mo.

Their first date was Aug. 22, 1992, according to an “Early Warning” brief in the Aug. 13, 1992, Springfield News-Leader.

The band’s next show at the Regency would be just a month and a half later, according to the Oct. 8, 1992, News-Leader (“Red Devils unabashed about ‘raw’ blues”). This time they would get the local newspaper interview treatment (Lester Butler drew the short straw) for this Oct. 8 date on their club tour.

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Red Devils play essential set on ‘2 Meter Sessies’ (1993)

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2021 by J.J.

In lieu of a legit Red Devils sophomore album, fans should look to live performances such as 1993’s outstanding “2 Meter Sessies” recording to fill the void.

The 2 Meter Sessies is a Dutch radio series, a live-in-the-studio “unplugged” session. Performers over the years include Radiohead, Foo Fighters, Cranberries, Blind Melon, J.J. Cale, Jackson Browne and many others. Of course, the Devils didn’t unplug at all, giving one of their essential performances — all caught on tape. (Read more about the Sessies on nl.wikipedia.org.)

The Devils’ performance was recorded May 3, 1993, at Bullet Sound Studios in the Netherlands, just two days after their infamous Moulin Blues Festival appearance. This time, the band sounds rested and ready; it’s just as compelling a performance as Moulin, but without the debauchery. It sounds like a hardworking blues band on top of their game.


The set is typical of the band’s show during this period, a solid mix of “King King” favorites and other choice picks. Several of the songs were earmarked as possibilities for the band’s full-length follow-up to “King King.”

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Listen: Red Devils climb ‘Mountain Stage’ for live radio show (1992)

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on July 11, 2021 by J.J.

Note: This story was originally published Oct. 18, 2015.

At the height of their powers, The Red Devils were heard live on the popular “Mountain Stage” radio program on Oct. 4, 1992, along with Leo Kottke, John Cale and Juliana Hatfield.

The recording captures the Devils between their opening stint on tour for Los Lobos and their first U.S. headlining club tour dates. In fact, it would be just about a week later that we would see the Devils at the old Jake’s nightclub in Bloomington, Ind.

Like so many other radio programs, “Mountain Stage” is often bootlegged and passed around, and The Red Devils’ set is no exception. The bootleg itself is short, with just four tunes and radio chatter. But, it is crystal-clear audio and a nice touchstone for the band during this time.

All four songs are available here on No Fightin’, including two courtesy of Dominik Ablamowicz on YouTube.

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Incident in Room 410: How The Red Devils were banned from Days Inn, 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on July 5, 2021 by J.J.

“The Red Devils lived up to their name.”

That was the opening line of a review, of sorts, of The Red Devils’ stop in Chicago in 1992.

Certainly, the crowd at Buddy Guy’s Legends club on Sept. 27, 1992, appreciated the band more than Tom Nelligan did at the Days Inn Near North hotel.

The band’s stay at the Days Inn ended in destruction Sept. 28, according to a fax Nelligan sent to the band’s travel agency.

The problems started with a late check-out request, which caused late housekeeping service, which meant the damage was not discovered until the next day, when the band was safely back out on the road.

“In room 410 they broke an armchair that was part of a set of two armchairs and a round oak table, they broke a wall mirror in a oak frame, which they hid behind the dresser and they tore the drapes on the windows,” Nelligan wrote. “The housekeeper said that she can repair the drapes so we won’t charge them for the drapes.”

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10 years of Red Devils & Lester Butler gig posters

Posted in 13, lester butler, red devils with tags , , , on June 26, 2021 by J.J.

We’ve collected a lot of great posters, fliers and handbills for various Red Devils-related gigs over the years. Now we’ll start to put them all in one place.

Check out the new posters gallery on nofightin.com, with images from 1988 through 1998 (all of the pictures are not up yet).

Here’s a new image to kick things off from The Red Devils’ Nov. 15, 1993, gig at De Effenaar in Eindhoven, Netherlands:

For most of us in the early ’90s, the fliers and ticket stubs and promo pictures and newspaper clips were the only way to go beyond the “King King” record itself (remember, this was before the internet we all know and love). Most of these images came online only after The Red Devils and 13 were finished.

Get more history by checking out the timeline section on No Fightin’. (Thank you to Frank Verstappe, Vince Jordan, Paul Brown, Feelgood and others for their contributions.)

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1993 tour contracts show work behind Holland tour

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 2, 2021 by J.J.

Note: This post was first published on Feb. 20, 2017, and updated May 2, 2021.

As the reunited Red Devils prepare to return to Europe for the first time in almost 25 years, a series of contracts, riders and correspondence show just how much work it took to get the band on the road in 1993.

The documents are primarily between concert promoters and booking agents for the band’s 14-date Nov. 14-29, 1993, tour of Holland (some details redacted by nofightin.com):

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1. This document, from Sept. 10, 1993, details a proposed itinerary for the band for two weeks in Holland. Of interest are protential gigs that didn’t seem to materialize, such as on Nov. 16, 19 and 24.

2. The band’s tour rider, dated Oct. 9, 1993, breaks down what The Red Devils needed to stay on the road. Soundcheck, security, billing requirements and backline (the kind of gear the venues or promoters would provide for the band) were all outlined. If you wanted to know what amps the band was using, this document lays it out.

Most folks will be interested in the last page: What the band required in their dressing rooms. Nothing fancy — beer, soda, water, sandwiches. And a bottle of Jack and two packs of Winston 100s.

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