Archive for red devils

Can a record change your life?

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , on August 13, 2017 by J.J.

“Can you believe we are really here?”

That was our theme throughout our European adventure.

“Can you believe we are in this hotel room with Paul Size?” “Can you believe we are watching ZZ Top in this tennis area?” “Can you believe we are in the middle-of-nowhere, England?” “Can you believe we are in the Borderline?”

Can you believe The Red Devils are back?

There was a moment, watching The Red Devils from the side of the stage in Dublin’s 3Arena, performing to thousands of music fans, that it really hit home: I have been listening to this band for 25 years.

Would “young J.J.,” at 20 years old on July 28, 1992, hearing The Red Devils for the first time, immediately buying the disc, and putting it on heavy rotation all that summer, really believe he would be here in Ireland with the band? And 25 years to the day, no less — 28 Jul 2017.

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Souvenirs, the week after

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , on August 6, 2017 by J.J.

We are still unpacking suitcases (and our brains, a little bit) a week after seeing The Red Devils for the first time in 25 years.

Here are some of the scraps and souvenirs we brought back.

Lester’s legacy

Posted in lester butler with tags , on July 29, 2017 by J.J.

The Red Devils’ story is tangled and troubled, to say the least. That the band has been able to take their show on the road this summer is satisfying for the musicians and fans alike.

One Devil is not so lucky.

Lester Butler was many things — artist, friend, brother — but he also could be complex and frustrating, especially to bandmates.


A few years ago, the guitarist Alex Schultz, who played with Butler in the short-lived 13, told us that his experience with Lester was different than it was for the Devils just a few years earlier. Schultz described Lester in his 13 years as clear-eyed, focused and creative.

It was 20 years ago this month that I last saw Butler at two shows with 13, and my experience was as Schultz described. I spoke with Lester then, and he seemed humbled that his music meant so much to me and my friends. He was gracious and funny and quite different than in my first encounter with him in 1992.
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Red Devils & ZZ Top fans: Welcome to nofightin.com

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , on July 9, 2017 by J.J.

For ZZ Top fans and those just discovering The Red Devils for the first time, we’re glad you could make it to nofightin.com. What took you so long?

We’ve been here since 2009, cataloging the music and stories of The Red Devils and the late, great Lester Butler.

Wander around and find rare music, videos and reviews from the Devils’ heyday, and meet other fans — and some of the musicians who made the records we love so much. Later this month, we will be in Europe for several Red Devils shows, so watch for nofightin.com exclusives.
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Start here with some of the most popular and essential posts and pages on nofightin.com:

Reunion tour: Keep up with the 2017 reunion tour here.

Lyrics: You will want to start a band. Learn the lyrics to “Automatic,” “She’s Dangerous,” “Devil Woman” and 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.
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Eyewitness: Blue Shadows “deadly serious” at the King King

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on May 14, 2017 by J.J.


Some of the best stories about The Red Devils come from the people who watched it all go down.

One such eyewitness is Kevin Shattuck, who has been recounting his favorite shows, and the stories behind them, on his Facebook page. Not only that but he is assembling amazing collages that render his musical memories in iconography.

He recently did a piece on the Blue Shadows — the precursor to the blues Red Devils — from the summer of ’88 at the King King. That is Genesis 1 in The Red Devils’ nearly 30-year story.

Kevin’s recollections are published with permission below, but it is definitely worth checking out his Facebook page for stories about The Blasters, X, the Jesus and Mary Chain, the Gun Club, Panther Burns and on and on …

In the Summer of ’88, a Chinese restaurant on the corner of 6th & La Brea named “King King” decided to stay open late & book rockabilly & blues acts. I was working at the Beverly Center & the club was on my way home, so I started to drop in fairly often. It didn’t take very long before an astonishingly great punk/blues band named the “Blue Shadows” settled into that space on a Monday nite residency. It included ex-”Blasters” Gene Taylor on keyboards & Bill Bateman on drums, “Radio Ranch Straight Shooter” Greg “Smokey” Hormel (or on occasion) Dave Alvin playing lead guitar & the Bartel brothers Dave Lee & Jonny Ray on rhythm guitar & bass. The front man was a young harmonica player named Lester Butler. He was a pretty good singer, but was a flat out beast on the harp & had a true bluesman’s weathered, world weary demeanor.
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Red Devils summer calendar filling up

Posted in red devils with tags , , on April 23, 2017 by J.J.


Here are all the dates we have — so far — for The Red Devils June and July across Europe.

Solo shows, festivals and an opening stint on ZZ Top’s summer tour mean there are plenty of chances to see the gang in a variety of venues.

JUNE 2: Fluor in Amersfoort, The Netherlands

JUNE 3: Muziekcentrum De Bosuil, Weert, The Netherlands

JUNE 4: Ribs & Blues festival, Raalte, The Netherlands

JULY 7: The Red Devils + The Goon Mat & Lord Benardo, Le Gueulard Plus, Lorraine, France

JULY 13: Musiktheater Piano, Dortmund, Germany

More dates are expected to be added, so watch those off-days between ZZ gigs:

“Dangerous” at the King King 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , on January 29, 2017 by J.J.

Another live video from the King King club on Nov. 30, 1992 … “She’s Dangerous”

Red Devils climb ‘Mountain Stage’ 1992

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on October 18, 2015 by J.J.

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.

Thanks to YouTuber Dominik Ablamowicz, the oft-bootlegged radio program is a little more available.

Ablamowicz uploaded two songs, “Have a Good Time” and “Shake Your Hips,” from that session.

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Red Devils at Red Rocks, 93/94

Posted in red devils with tags , , , , , , on April 6, 2014 by J.J.

The Red Devils performed two times at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, the famous Colorado open-air venue built into a rock formation. Most famous (for guys my age, at least) for an iconic performance by U2 for 1983’s “Under a Blood Red Sky,” Red Rocks hosts concerts regularly.

From the now-defunct Rocky Mountain News in Denver:

“The Blues on the Rocks series on Sept. 5 has a full circle of blues: Legends B.B. King, Koko Taylor and Buddy Guy will mix it up with young guitar slinger Eric Johnson and newcomers, the Red Devils (a band that is a favorite of Mick Jagger).” (April 16, 1993)

“Blues on the Rocks at Red Rocks (Sept. 21): B.B. King, Dr. John, Little Feat, the All-Star Tribute to Muddy Waters and the Red Devils heat up the rocks starting at 6 p.m. Tickets are $22.50 at TicketMaster, Sound Warehouse and other locations.” (May 22, 1994)

Notable is that, if the timeline holds up, the Sept. 5, 1993, date was one day before the band recorded its session with Johnny Cash and for its second album.

1995: Inside Lester Butler’s ‘lost year’

Posted in lester butler with tags , , , on March 23, 2014 by J.J.

In the wake of the Classic Rock article, there seems to be more talk and memories about The Red Devils than there has been in years. Much of it is happening on Facebook, and nofightin.com has seen a surge in visitors.lester_moulin_promo

One story that has come back around is by Rob Neighbors, called “My Time with Blues Legend, Lester Butler.” It was posted last week on the Delta Groove website, but was first posted on Neighbors’ site, Hollywood or Die, in October 2011.

The account fills in the day-to-day about what could be thought of as Butler’s “lost year,” 1995 — lost at least in terms of national prominence. It was clearly after the heyday of The Red Devils, and before the formation of 13 and his renaissance in Europe. Time when he was playing pickup gigs and local shows.

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