Braddock, J. Leland
Band members Related acts
- J. Leland
Braddock - vocals, guitar, harmonica
- none known
Rating: ** (2 stars)
Title: Evil Is On My Mind
Company: Live Bears!
Country/State: Ripley, Mississippi
Grade (cover/record): VG/VG
Comments: still in shrink wrap (opened)
GEMM catalog ID: 4508
Geez, where do you even begin with an oddity like this one ... J. Leland Braddock''s "Evil Is On My Mind" occasionally shows up on dealer lists as a rare psych effort. The rare part is probably true since less than 500 copies were reportedly pressed. In contrast, the psych label is pretty far off target and anyone buying it with that in mind is likely to be disappointed.
Braddock's a complete unknown to me and there's virtually no trace of the guy online. Judging by the album's liner notes, Leland's a fairly strange character. Apparently from Ripley, Mississippi, his format is fairly straightforward blues. Backing himself on acoustic guitar and harmonica, nothing here is particularly original, though to my ears he occasionally bares a resemblance to a bluesy (if bizarre) cross between Joe South, Leon Redbone and some 80 year old blues guy ('The New Willie Brown' and 'Diamond Ring'). Another big drawback is the fact that much of the material has the same kind of sound. A guy strumming an acoustic guitar and playing harmonica has certain aural limitations and those are clear on Braddock's set of acoustic, mid-tempo numbers. It's simply hard to tell where something like 'Hometown Blues' ends and 'Lucy's Debut' starts. Bottom line is this one didn't do much for me, but might find some interest in 'real people' devotees. (Not a big deal, but there's also a disconnect between the LP an the liner notes. Sides 1 and 2 are reverse between the liner notes and the actual playing sequence. Side 1 on the liner notes is actually side 2 and vice versa.) While this isn't a rousing endorsement, I bet this guy would be a blast to hear live ...
"Evil Is On My Mind" track listing:
1.) Hometown Blues (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:37
2.) Lucy's Debut (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:05
3.) The New Willie Brown (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:54
4.) Diamond Ring (J. Leland Braddock) - 4:03
5.) Tishomingo Girl (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:05
6.) The Benton County Gal Blues (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:28
1.) Goin' Straight To a Devil's Hell Blues (J. Leland Braddock) - 6:50
2.) Leech Desperation (J. Leland Braddock) - 3:45
3.) Tishomingo and the Fire Rose (J. Leland Braddock) - 5:25
4.) Further Down Than Down Below (J. Leland Braddock) - 4:52
In the interest of providing some additional information on Braddock, I'll add some comments one of Braddock's college frat brothers/roommates was kind enough to send me:
Braddock still lives in Ripley, Mississippi doing solo jobs, recording, and playing with his side band Elmer and the Russians. He has long been an inspiration to many younger bands including Blue Mountain (which spawned Wilco's John Stirrat) and Healthy White Baby's Laurie Stirrat. Don't discredit this guy's talent based on this one album, which I actually believe is very good. Most of us that own the LP have no problem understanding the message. Braddock was my college frat brother and roommate along with another friend of ours and brother who received very bad reviews on his first album of about 500 pressings which he sold out of his trunk as well... Glen Ballard. Good website and good effort. Keep it going.
Johnny Hayles, Oxford, Mississippi (January 2005)
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