I heard Irma Thomas today on XM’s Bluesville belting a far from current version of “Hip Shakin’ Mama.” A glorious early fall afternoon, the sun blazed down on the “blues schooner” through puffy cotton balls against a deep azure sky. The only thing missing was volume. Once I had turned it up, I knew I had to post it as a concert clip tonight.
Upon returning home, the only version I saw was live but music only. I prefer Irma with horns, and I’ve always loved this arrangement. A Grammy-award winning soul sensation known as the Soul Queen of New Orleans, Irma is a Nawlins staple. Plying her trade with everybody who’s anybody in the genre and region, through decades of venues from honky honks to music palaces, Thomas can belt it but never lost a certain sweetness.
Since I like to feature live clips, I looked for and found a couple others that I hope you’ll enjoy. And no one’s better at getting a party started, even after all his rich and blessed years, than the King of Blues, Mr. B.B himself. Here he is at home in his club with Irma doing the humorous “You Can Have My Husband”
And since I like her with horns, an older arrangement of the same tune that shows why…
Finally, her interpretation of soul icon Otis Redding’s “I’ve Been Lovin’ You Too Long”
Hope you have a great week-end!