John Mayall ‎– Blues Roots

Decca ‎– ROOTS 8
Vinyl, LP, Compilation, Stereo, Mono

Tracklist Hide Credits

A1 Crocodile Walk
Producer – Tony ClarkeWritten-By – John Mayall
A2 Lonely Years
Written-By – John Mayall
A3 All Your Love (I Miss Loving)
Written-By – Rush*
A4 Key To Love
Written-By – John Mayall
A5 A Hard Road
Written-By – John Mayall
A6 Another Kinda Love
Written-By – John Mayall
B1 Sitting In The Rain 2:55
B2 Sonny Boy Blow 3:46
B3 The Death Of J.B Lenoir 4:02
B4 I'm A Stranger
Written-By – John Mayall
B5 Ready To Ride
Written-By – John Mayall

Companies, etc.



Sleeve printed in England by Clout & Baker Ltd.

Track A1: First released on "John Mayall plays John Mayall" album March 1965 / Mono Recordings / ℗ 1965
Track A2: First released on "Raw Blues" album January 1967 / Mono Recordings / ℗ 1967
Tracks A3 & A4: First released on "Blues Breakers" album December 1969 / ℗ 1966
Tracks A5 & A6: First released on "A Hard Road" album February 1967 / ℗ 1967
Track B1: First released as an "A" side January 1967 / ℗ 1967
Track B2: First released on "The Blues Alone" album November 1967 / ℗ 1967
Track B3: First released on "Crusade" album September 1967 / ℗ 1967
Track B4: First released on "Bare Wires" album June 1968 / ℗ 1968
Track B5: First released on "Blues from Laurel Canyon" album June 1968 / ℗ 1968

Texte on back cover:

John Mayall
If we travel back in time some fifteen years, we may well discover that era marked as the "Birth of British Blues".
Such names as Cyril Davies, Alexis Korner, Graham Bond, Ronnie Jones, Herbie Goines, Chris Farlowe, and, of course, John Mayall spring to mind. (My apologies to those others omitted from this listing, due more to lack of space than any other reason). This particular volume in the Decca "Roots" series is an attempt to encapsulate, in just eleven tracks, the varied musical facets of John Mayall, Blues writer and performer, during those four short years that he recorded at West Hampstead before making Los Angeles his working and living base. Perhaps the "Complete and Potted History of a Blue Star"? Well, hardly. But let's hope that it goes down as a brave attempt at the same!
John Mayall's first album recording was done at a "Live" session at West Hampstead's "Klook's Kleek" club and from this set I have chosen "Crocodile Walk". (This title was subsequently re-recorded and issued as a single). This was Mayall's first fully professional outfit and featured Roger Dean, guitar; John McVie, bass; and Hughie Flint, drums. Perhaps this performance best epitomises Mayall's consistent drive on live appearances a consistency that one could safely say has followed him throughout his long career - he always gives of his best. "Lonely Years", a duet between John and Eric Clapton, was recorded after Mayall's only session for Immediate and prior to his re-signing with Decca. Along with the instrumental "Bernard Jenkins", this title was cut for my own Purdah label, the forerunner of Blue Horizon Records. If you didn't know better you might think you were standing on Chicago's Maxwell Street!
"All Your Love (I Miss Loving)" to give it its correct title - an Otis Rush original and Mayall's own "Key to Love" are taken from the highly successful "Bluesbreakers" album - once again featuring the magic of the one-time Yardbirds' guitarist, Eric Clapton. Selecting items from that package really caused me a headache or two. (For those listeners who enjoy this album they might to themselves a favour and pick up the "Bluesbreakers" set, for it truly is a landmark in rock music, and still one of the best examples of British Blues on record).
From the "Hard Road" album which features the collective talents of Peter Green, John McVie and Aynsley Dunbar, I have chosen the solid, bluesy title track and the unusual "Another Kinda Love", which has the addition of horn players John Almond, Alan Skidmore and Ray Warleigh. Many is the time that I have caught myself regretting that there were so few chances to record this particular aggregation. Only the "Hard Road" set and the single "Sitting in the Rain" (also included here) stand to attest to the power of this unit and in particular, the force of guitarist Green. Of Course, on the other hand, there is a considerable amount of fine recorded work from Fleetwood Mac, the band formed by Peter after his departure from the Bluebreakers.
John Peel in his sleeve note for the "Blues Alone" album issued on Ace of Clubs, says of "Sonny Boy Blow"..."A tribute to the late Sonny Boy Williamson - not a sad, gloomy tribute but a rollicking, cantering thing, filled with unrestrained outbursts on the harmonica and some rolling boogie woogie from John's famous 'jangle' piano". What more can I say...
On the other hand John's tribute to Chicago's J.B. Lenoir titled "The Death of J.B. Lenoir" could perhaps be termed as being somewhat sad and gloomy. But for those who are at all familiar with Lenoir's work, they will notice a striking similarity between Mayall's tribute and much of the American's own recorded output, the use of baritone sax in particular. For me, this is one of John's most meaning performances and certainly one of the most "down home" in content.
The album "Bare Wires" featured John's largest line-up of sidemen - Mick Taylor, Tony Reeves, Jon Hiseman, Chris Mercer, Dick Heckstall-Smith, and Henry Lowther with tenor player Mercer taking the honours on "I'm a stranger". "Bare Wires" was the biggest departure from tradition for John and as I recall was met with mixed feelings from the press and his legion of fans alike. Some of the criticisms or observations made may well have found their mark for the subsequent sessions featured John with a trio once again - Mick Taylor, Stephen Thompson and Colin Allen. From "Blues from Laurel Canyon", the site of his current home, comes the tough "Ready to Ride" really back to the roots. Perhaps Billy Preston was near the truth when he asked "Will It Go Round in Circles?" - And now, ten years on, John Mayall is probably on his third go round - More power to you!
- Mike Vernon

© 1978, The Decca Record Compagny Limited, London

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Matrix / Runout (A side): Z-ARL - 15904.P-2C 2D
  • Matrix / Runout (B Side): ZAL - 15905.P-1C 1

Other Versions (5 of 7) View All

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
9-LP-003, 9-47003 John Mayall The Very Best Of John Mayall (Historia De La Musica Rock 5)(LP, Comp) Decca, Decca 9-LP-003, 9-47003 Spain 1982 Sell This Version
ROOTSI 8 John Mayall Blues Roots(LP, Comp, Mono) Decca ROOTSI 8 Italy 1978 Sell This Version
8 - MC 003, 8 - 47003 John Mayall Historia De La Musica Rock (Cass, Comp) Decca, Decca 8 - MC 003, 8 - 47003 Spain Unknown Sell This Version
9-LP-003, 9-47003 John Mayall John Mayall(LP, Comp, RE) Decca, Decca 9-LP-003, 9-47003 Spain 1981 Sell This Version
8 - MC 003, 8 - 47003 John Mayall The Very Best Of John Mayall(Cass, Comp) Decca, Decca 8 - MC 003, 8 - 47003 Spain 1981 Sell This Version