Archive for johnny moeller

Paul Size fuels solo debut with unearthed blues and old friends

Posted in paul size with tags , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2021 by J.J.
Paul Size performs with The Red Devils at the Borderline in London in 2017. Photo © Tina Hanagan

If you are getting ready to pick the songs to record for your first solo album, where do you start?

If you’re Paul Size, you go to YouTube.

“I went on YouTube and punched in ‘rare blues,’ you know, ’cause I didn’t want to do all the songs that everybody’s done,” Size told No Fightin’ during an April 3 phone interview. “Like the T-Bird’s first record, nobody had heard of those songs, but they were covers. So I kinda tried to do that. … Just kind of get some obscure songs that no one’s ever heard that I dug and that’s kind of, that was the start, you know?”

So thank the Algo-rhythm Gods of the Internet for their contribution to Size’s new album, “Can’t Lose Playing The Blues,” and its stellar lineup of songs by B.B. King, Earl Hooker, Elmore James, Hound Dog Taylor, Frankie Lee Sims and more.

Known for his fiery Chicago blues playing with The Red Devils, “Can’t Lose” presents a different Size. He doesn’t sing, plays a lot of rhythm guitar and works sympathetically with the other musicians for a true band sound. That’s not the usual “solo” album recipe, but that probably makes it the most “Paul Size” record it can be.

“I wanted to make it a good listening record too, not just a big guitar hero record,” he said. “And Jeff really wanted to show off my rhythm playing. He goes, ‘you’re a great rhythm player. Let’s show that off.’ … So I went with the flow.”

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Return of the funky Texans

Posted in paul size with tags , , , , on May 8, 2015 by J.J.

Johnny Moeller: Guitar (mainly R. channel)

Paul Size: Guitar (mainly L. channel)

After he decamped from The Red Devils after a three-year stint, Paul Size found himself back in Texas making a small homeboy record.

Far away from the edgy, Hollywood rock-star vibe, with Size as the gunslinger for hire, 1996’s “Return of the Funky Worm” couldn’t have been any further from the Devils.

Return of the Funky WormThe focus here was on Texas blues and funk-fueled workouts with longtime running buddies. There is a comfort level on this disc, issued by Dallas Blues Society Records, that only comes from familiarity.

The record was co-billed “Moeller and Size,” with other Texas players such as Johnny’s brother Jay Moeller on drums, erstwhile Red Devils tour guitarist Mike Flanigin on all kinds of keyboards and vocals, Bret Coats on bass, Rhett Frazier on vocals and Texas mainstay Brian “Hash Brown” Calway on harp.

It’s hard to imagine what a relief it might have been for Size, coming from cross-country tours, European festivals and Planet Hollywood openings, to find himself as the foil on such tunes as the grooving Richard Berry-penned opener “Sweet Sugar You,” or old-school R&B dynamite of “Watch My 32.”
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Rowdy morning on KCRW + 1 new song, 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2010 by J.J.

A great “new” tape has surfaced of The Red Devils performing live in the studio on San Diego radio station KCRW’s long-running program “Morning Becomes Eclectic,” showcasing a new tune, different arrangements, and an interview with the band.

Jon Miller up in Seattle dug the tape out of storage, and sent a copy along to nofightin.com, and it’s a good one. Though the recording is incomplete — picking up toward the end of a searing version of “I Was Wrong” — it is impressive for what’s there, including a rowdy trio shuffle new to nofightin.com.

LISTEN: The rare “Blues in the Morning” shuffle with Lester Butler, Mike Flanigin and Bill Bateman [MP3] [Updated March 4, 2016, to reflect correct personnel]

The airdate, as marked on the original cassette dubbed live from the radio, is dated 12/7/92, though host Chris Douridas mentions that the Devils’ segment was taped the previous Friday. The timeline is corroborated by the Dec. 7 Los Angeles Times review of a Friday evening gig in L.A.

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