Archive for king king

“King King” 24/7

Posted in red devils with tags , , on May 28, 2015 by J.J.

Since 1992, I have kept a copy of “King King” somewhere near me at all times.

IMG_0453For a long while, I had several burned CDs of “King King” that were left in various cars and desks in my life.

If I bought a spare copy of the record, I might buy two, to give it away as a gift or for “just in case” — before digital downloads, I was sure the disc would go out of print and I would never be able to get it again!

Now, I can call up the rarest Red Devils or coolest bootlegs with just a couple of swipes on my iPhone.IMG_0454IMG_0862

From satellite radio and Spotify to a cassette found on eBay to the fantastic limited edition 20th anniversary 180 gram red vinyl edition, “King King” is a must-have never more than a few feet away.IMG_9970

How do you listen to “King King”? What format is preferred? Where is your prime listening space? Let us know in the comments.

Keys, Songs and Questions from “King King”

Posted in red devils, related music with tags , , , , on July 23, 2014 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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Welcome to nofightin.com

Posted in 13, lester butler, red devils with tags , , , , , on March 12, 2014 by J.J.

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

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, a pair of ruminations on the band we love: Memories of hearing the record for the first time in 1992, and a more recent take on just what makes “King King” so special.

Thanks to Paul Rees for the mention in Classic Rock Magazine.

Red Devils coming to Classic Rock magazine

Posted in red devils with tags , , , on January 5, 2014 by J.J.

More than 21 years after “King King,” The Red Devils are ready for international exposure again.

UK journalist Paul Rees has taken on the Devils for an article for an upcoming edition of Classic Rock magazine.

The story comes on the heels of a feature in the November 2013 Classic Rock on unreleased albums. Rees wrote an item on the Mick Jagger blues album. No new ground was broken, but it serves as a prelude to a larger feature on the Devils.
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‘King King’: There’s only one

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on January 2, 2014 by J.J.

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I’ve been thinking a lot about “King King” the last few weeks, what makes it special in a way other albums — of any genre — rarely are.

The success of The Red Devils and the “King King” album come down to three things, very simple but so elusive.

It’s those five guys (plus one on the record), playing those 12 songs in that club with that producer.

kingking_vinylThat’s it.

There is no substitute. There is no sequel. All the magic is captured on that disc, starting with the blurry cover with the hipsters outside, to the steam and smoke on that piece of plastic in the player.

At this point, “King King” is old enough to buy a drink, but still sounds as fresh and powerful as it did 21 years ago. And it would have played 21 years earlier, too, in 1971, a muscular rival for the broader explorations of Butterfield and Canned Heat.

It’s easy on paper to peg The Red Devils as a harmonica band. But in reality, it’s a rhythm band. Built on Bill “Buster” Bateman’s impeccable timing and dynamics. Jonny Ray Bartel’s thick bass swagger, so evident on the groovier cuts like “I Wish You Would” and “Devil Woman.” Dave Lee Bartel’s essential rhythm, so unselfish, so signature (listen to recordings of the band with other rhythm guitarists … just not the same).
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1992: Red Devils find the Size that fits

Posted in paul size, red devils with tags , , , , , on February 24, 2013 by J.J.

Very nice article from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on the early days of Paul Size in the band.

RED DEVILS FIND THE SIZE THAT FITS
by Dave Ferman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Sept. 11, 1992

Texas-born blues guitarist Paul Size readily will admit that he’s been real lucky so far in his musical career.

Born in Dallas and raised in Denton, Size, 21 just weeks ago, was happy playing blues and R&B in Denton bars backing legendary singer Pops Carter; he was playing the music he loved with good buddy Jon Moeller (now guitarist for Texas Heat) and just having fun.

Then a friend told him the Red Devils — Los Angeles’ hottest blues band — was looking for a new guitarist. Size packed, journeyed to California, auditioned, got the gig, and less than a year later the Devils (having gained a rep as the favorite El Lay band of Mick Jagger, the Black Crowes, Bruce Willis and other slumming celebs) have a CD, “King King,” out on Def American, have cut 13 tracks with Jagger and spent the summer touring with the Allman Brothers, Little Feat, Bob Dylan and Los Lobos.

“Yeah, I was walking into something pretty big without knowing it,” says Size by phone from South Carolina on the eve of the band’s final date with the Allmans (the Red Devils headline Dallas’ Trees on Thursday). “We just kind of clicked together — the band needed a guitar player and they decided to keep me.”
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1998 Bolwerk, Sneek: Butler plays blues the way it should be

Posted in red devils with tags , , , on October 28, 2012 by J.J.

From our friend Feelgood comes this story about 13’s Jan. 30, 1998, gig at Bolwerk, videos of which are available on YouTube. Nothing groundbreaking here, but a fine read nonetheless. More accurate translations are appreciated.

LESTER BUTLER PLAYS BLUES THE WAY IT SHOULD BE
by Jacob Haagsma, Leeuwarder Courant
Jan. 20, 1998

SNEEK — From Pinkpop to a club room for a few hundred people. Lester Butler is not the first to reverse this road test. Ever since his previous band Red Devils, loudly applauded and enjoined by such greats as Mick Jagger and Rick Rubin. But now this singer-harmonica player is again on his own.

Though that’s not entirely true, because he is supported by a first-rate, bright-playing band. Main playmaker in 13 is guitarist Alex Schultz, with an intensely vicious attitude but at the same time never losing sight of the swing. As befits actually.

Because yes, 13 plays the blues like it actually hears, but as that too little hear. By going to the harrowing intensity that the original black practitioners laid decades ago, at least, these pale boys from Los Angeles are close. And with the raw energy of today, as if they traveled on skateboards to Sneek have rather than in a narrow coach.

Including the brisk rhythm section, with loosely pounding, thundering drums and functional, ie no note-counting, bass. Live the songs are less pointed than the extremely elementary produced, self-titled debut CD. Butler and Schultz let themselves often go into long solos, but they seem to charge less to run than show muscle to pure fun.
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