[20 July 2009]
For every Carl Perkins, Johnny Burnette, not to mention Elvis Presley, there were any number of country boys with a rockin’ rhythm looking to cut a record and get on the radio—even if that meant huddling over a mic in a cramped basement, or above a small town drug store. This latest release, fourth in an ongoing series dedicated to seeking out little-known recordings from the ‘20s to the ‘60s, from Belgian radio DJ and musicologist Walter De Paduwa aka Dr. Boogie, focuses on these mostly obscure rockabilly rebels of the late ‘50s and digs up 26 Deranged and Smokin’ Cool Cats with outstanding results. Mainly, these wild and wanton songs deal with such poignant teen issues of the day as fast cars, cornfed girls and doing the stroll at the local hop, while boogie woogie piano, bleating sax and amped-up, twanging guitar bounce off the studio walls. Particular highlights are Curly Coldiron’s “Rockin’ Spot”, Danny Verne’s “Red Hot Car”, Charles Page’s “Baby You’ve Been to School” and “Little Bitty Boy” by T.K. Hullin. As John Friis backed by the Valiants sings on a wicked version of Ronnie Self’s ‘58 hit “Bop-A-Lena”—“Oop, Scoob-a-doop-a-lena go cats, go!” Damn right.