Screamin' Jay Hawkins was a true wild man, even by first-generation rock & roll standards. A veritable musical witch doctor, he combined swampy blues, R&B punch, and rockabilly carousing, adding in his own fascination with voodoo, magic, and loopy exotica to create a stew all of his own. He was the originator of outrageous onstage theatrics, often rising out of a coffin onstage. A talent as mercurial as Jay's is never meant for constancy, but he inspired generations of rock & roll weirdos and appeared in Jim Jarmusch's 1989 film MYSTERY TRAIN before checking out of the mortal plane in 2000.
DISC 1 for Cow Fingers & Mosquito Pie (CD) Album
By Screamin' Jay Hawkins (Artist)
Screamin' Jay Hawkins is best known for leaping out of a coffin to begin his '50s stage show and for "I Put a Spell on You," an R&B plaint transformed into an excessive masterwork by (it's said) a case of wine that appeared at the session. This definitive collection of Hawkins's work for the OKeh label includes the unedited version of "Spell" along with other one-of-a-kind effusions such as "Little Demon," "Yellow Coat," and his attacks on the likes of "You Made Me Love You," "Temptation," and "Take Me Back to My Boots and Saddle." Truly an artist who stands for something. --Rickey Wright
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