Boppin’ The Blues (C Perkins) – Blackfeather 1972
The prog rockers from 1971, Blackfeather, had moved on from their haunting, ethereal 1971 hit Seasons of Change, and were now boogieing and bopping in an ever-changing lineup of players with lead vocalist Neale Johns the constant presence over time. When they recorded Boppin’ the Blues, Johns was supported by Warren Ward (bass), Paul Wylde (keyboards), Billy Taylor (lead guitar) and Gil Matthews (drums).
The song is credited to early rocker Carl Perkins and no doubt he did write a song with the same title in 1956, however the Blackfeather song, is both lyrically and melodically, quite different, and an original composition in its own right, so why Perkins was credited on this record is curious.
The song is based on a simple 12-bar beat driven along by the pounding boogie-woogie piano of Wylde, the driving vocals of Neale Johns and the chugging guitar of Billy Taylor, which all combined to produce a memorable slice of boogie rock and a #1 hit for Blackfeather ” hot and cold shivers up and down my spine/ The blues lose that hold on your mind…”
One more verse would have made it very nearly perfect, it was the sixth biggest-selling record of the year, in 1972.
With apologies to Carl Perkins and Blackfeather I humbly offer a third verse for further consideration:
“Me and my baby headed for the bay/We kept a ‘boppin’ all along the way/ I floored the gas and she snuggled up close/My hopes were high, she was really the most/ We hit the beach and she gave me some clues/ My head was spinnin’ I was dazed and confused, and we were, bop, bop, bopping the blues…