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Somebody Loan Me a Dime [Vinyl]

5.0 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Vinyl (October 17, 1990)
  • Label: Alligator Records
  • ASIN: B00008EN5B
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,095,223 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
Fenton Robinson was one of the most promising blues artists of the 70's. With a beautiful voice and guitar style he had it all to hit it big. But despite releasing several very fine albums his career never took off, mainly because his style did not appeal to the mass blues fan base who wanted it all to sound like SRV or Johnny Winter. Though he was based in Chicago, his style was jazzier and owed more to T-Bone Walker than Muddy Waters, making even more distinct. After releasing a pair of disappointing albums for 77 Records he went to Alligator Records to record this, his finest album and one of the best blues albums of the 70's. He co-produced with Bruce Igauler and they got the perfect sound and feel for what was needed for a Fenton Robinson. The backing band is terrific, which includes Mighty Joe Young, who contributes very fine and unobtrusive rhythm guitar. The song's are varied, including several terrific slow blues ("Somebody Loan Me A Dime", "Directly From My Heart To You") to more up-tempo numbers ("The Getaway", "You Don't Know What Love Is"). There are a few well chosen covers as well, including his friend Larry Davis's "Texas Flood" and the classic "Going To Chicago". Throughout Fenton's smooth guitar playing and rich vocals are out front, definitely making him the star of the album.

This is an essential blues album, though it has not garnered the attention it deserves despite being as good as it is. Fenton died in 1997, and so this album is the best way to remember this truly great and under-recognized blues master.
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Format: Audio CD
Although I had heard of Fenton Robinson, I was not familiar with his music. Somebody Loan Me a Dime was indeed a great "find." People, listen, this is the real deal. This is classic Chicago blues. The vocals are amazing, the guitar playing is laid back and beautiful and the backing band is first rate. This is what blues should be and what it isn't, anymore. There is a great mix of minor key tunes, shuffles and swing and Fenton pullls off these different styles with class. He somehow perfected a sweet-gruffness to his singing - it is hard to describe, but it is very effective. He can, vocally, hold a note/line a long time and it sounds great. His guitar playing is a model of what should be done by a professional musician. It is understated, jazzy and very bluesy. There is no distortion, reverb or overdrive - just straight ahead playing. I've read a lot about how Buddy Guy can't get on mainstream radio, and that is very true. Guy's solution is to play a lot of rock and roll and with a lot of noise. Listen, Guy is entitled. But blues music, of any kind, will never get much mainstream radio support. It makes more

sense to stick to what is true to the art form. If there are any kids reading this, who are interested in playing electric blues, Buy this CD. Not to copy it, per se, but to see how it is done. All the Robillard's amd Earl's will never match this for originality and powerful vocals.
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By David L. on October 13, 1998
Format: Audio CD
Fenton left us late last year - he will be sorely missed. Brilliant in his own right, masterful in both recordings and live venues (Fenton rarely performed live). This album is simply phenomenal. Want to feel the blues? Down to the deepest depths of your soul? Get this CD! A must have for any appreciator of music - blues or otherwise.
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Format: Audio CD
While Chicago has an impeccable list of blues giants, not many of those lists include Mississippi born, Fenton Robinson. On "Somebody Loan Me a Dime" Fenton blends incredibly tasteful guitar work, soulful vocals and a silky smooth funk groove, into a perfect blues experience. A mandatory addition to any blues catalog.
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Format: Audio CD
Fenton Robinson was a bluesman with country grit and city sophistication at the same time. This is the album on which it all came together.

As I write this review, all the Customer Reviews are five star. I completely agree.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
When I think of Alligator Records, I typically associate that label with fairly modern, often times "slick" recordings featuring modern production approaches to modern blues artists. Much of the time, their approach to production is well suited to the artists they record. In this case, the recording from the early seventies is a no frills, roll tape and let's just get this band recorded approach. The end result is pure Chicago blues. The combination of Fenton's vocal approach, his playing, the rhythm section (especially the sound of the bass guitar) and horns all sound like they were straight out of a Saturday night gig at Kingston Mines on Lincoln Avenue. Once I purchased this recording, I listened to Fenton's other listed recordings on Amazon - comparatively speaking, none has the charm and authenticity of Somebody Loan Me a Dime. This record is a gem -a little known blues classic. It's highly representative of a period in Chicago music that unfortunately has long passed.
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Format: Audio CD
I never heard of this guy, but after listening to this CD for a day, I ordered all of his others. Good stuff for sure.
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