LIL' ED AND
J.B. Hutto, came to Chicago from Georgia in 1949 and in the 1960s he picked up the slide
guitar torch from Elmore James (as had Hound Dog Taylor). He worked frequently in a power trio of guitar, bass and drums (though perhaps just as commonly with another guitarist, often Lee Jackson). Delmark released three albums by blues shouter and slide shredding guitarist Hutto: Stompin’ at Mother Blues, Hawk Squat, and Slidewinder. It was Hawk Squat on which Bob Koester captured the lightning in a bottle performance that best revealed the urgency, aggression, and controlled mayhem of Hutto’s live south side shows.
Lil’ Ed Williams was born right here in Chicago on April 8, 1955. Ever since he left his job at the car wash to play the blues, he has kept alive the raucous, joyful, urban slide guitar tradition of his legendary uncle, J.B. Hutto. He has recorded eleven CDs to date and has been playing professionally now for more than forty years—taken altogether, a blood vessel-popping career of innumerable high-in- tensity performances and recordings that far eclipses his uncle’s musical run in duration as well as in recorded output. As legions of loyal “Ed Heads” (including former Late Night host,Conan O’Brien) will attest, this band does not know the concept of “phoning it in.”
Chicago guitarist Dave Weld became acquainted with slide guitar player J.B. Hutto while writing a feature on him for Living Blues magazine in the mid-’70s. Hutto gave him some lessons and encouragement and introduced him to his nephew, Ed Williams. Weld found a role as a second guitarist to Ed in a music partnership that continued off and on for about twenty years and produced a half dozen albums for Alligator and Ear- wig. Weld has been touring and recording as a bandleader of his own unit for several years now.
On special occasions (like this one) Weld and Williams have reunited to revisit their early obsession with the loud and raw, electric neo-primitive J.B. Hutto style of blues that they
refer to as ‘houserockin’ music.