magic slim  the teardrops   I’M GONNA PLAY THE BLUES


Magic Slim and The Teardrops with Hannes Folterbauer

When we released the “Pure Magic” CD in 2014 I thought that it would be the final Magic Slim CD on Wolf Records, so I selected the best live recordings we still had in our vaults for release on this CD, mostly recordings we made during tours in Austria between 1992 and 1995. After 1995 John Primer left Magic Slim’s band, the Teardrops, and Slim subsequently worked with other guitarists including Jake Dawson and Michael Dotson. His brother Nick Holt remained in the band as bass player and opening singer. However, Nick had to stop playing in the mid-2000’s because of health problems and sadly died from brain cancer in June 2009. Therefore Slim needed to assemble a brand new band, which created a new Teardrops sound: There was Jon McDonald on guitar, Andrew Howard on bass and Brian “BJ” Jones on drums. With this new band Slim recorded several CDs for Blind Pig, the last was “Bad Boy”, named after a song written by Eddie Taylor. Magic Slim continued to tour the U.S., Brazil and Europe, and received a number of awards – in 2013 he was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in Memphis! In 2010 the manager of the Vienna Blues Spring festival asked me to help bring Slim to Vienna for two concerts. With the great help of Marty Salzman and Didier Tricard this really happened! It was a great surprise that the new band got such a great sound of its own, still powerful like the band with John Primer and Nick Holt, the original Teardrops. And Slim himself, although he already had health problems, was so powerful on vocals and guitar, just like in his younger days!

The Teardrops 2010

Wolf Records is therefore proud to present Magic Slim and his final Teardrops lineup on this new CD, recorded live in Vienna in 2010. In autumn of 2012 I wanted to meet Slim at his concert in Idar-Oberstein in Germany, but the concert was cancelled because Slim had to be hospitalized in Paris. He passed away soon after, but Magic Slim will never be dead, because he lives on in his great music!

Jon McDonald was born Feb. 23, 1953 in Chicago. His parents were from Louisiana and Arkansas. In his youth his family moved to the Northside Projects. He met a lot of musicians there, for example Jerry Butler and Curtis Mayfield. In the sixties he worked in a music store and learned a lot of folk and blues music. Not far away was the Maxwell Street market where he listened to the Siegel-Schwall Band and other live acts. He became fascinated by the sound of live Chicago blues. His family later moved to the far south suburbs, during this time he often went north to different blues clubs like B.L.U.E.S. or Kingston Mines and learned more about the music. Jon played with Magic Slim for 13 years, recorded 6 albums and toured the whole world with him. Jon told me that Slim was so great because he could play one note – and that was the point: In that one note, he could really express everything. Now, at the age of 66, Jon has recorded and played with a lot of the best bluesmen and women – an unshakable and unforgettable experience!

Check Out the whole story about Magic Slim And Wolf Records here