Help support Dialtone's 26th release: Birdlegg
Dialtone is seeking your assistance to complete the latest album featuring Birdlegg. The backing band includes some of the finest musicians around: Omar Dykes, Johnny Bradley, Jason Moeller, Nick Connolly, Kaz Kazanoff, and Mike Keller.
The recording is set to take place August 7th in Austin, TX. We typically spend one day in the studio recording and aim for an old school sound. Our recordings will take you back to the old Sarge or Duke records sound. If you aren't already a fan of Dialtone, please check out the rest of our catalog and hear some samples on our website www.dialtonerecords.com.
We put just the minimum to get help to complete the project, but our goal is to go over and get at least a total of $5000 so we can press vinyl and have funding for ads and promo.
We thank you for your time and greatly appreciate your support!
While practically every other blues harmonica player of his generation fell under the spell of Little Walter, Birdlegg is, and always was, different. Instead, he was captivated by the generation before Jacobs—the one which inspired the virtuoso to completely redefine postwar blues harmonica in the early 1950s. Harking back to a style reminiscent of two of the greatest early postwar and country blues harmonica players, Sonny Boy Williamson (Rice Miller) and Sonny Terry, Birdlegg’s expressive, full-tilt playing and singing also brings a fresh and distinctive approach to traditional, gut-bucket blues—something which has become all too rare these days. Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in 1947, Eugene “Birdlegg” Pittman grew up listening to his Georgia-born grandfather, who was a professional touring musician himself, play country and Delta blues on his National steel guitar. While in his early twenties Birdlegg started picking up the harmonica, learning every Sonny Terry lick he could wrap his ears around. After a brief stint in college and a few restless years hitchhiking across the country looking for answers that he couldn’t find in school, he bought himself a one-way bus ticket and hopped a Greyhound to California determined to make it as a musician, landing in Oakland in the mid-1970s. Once there he dove head first into the thriving Bay Area blues scene, sitting in at every jam session he could find and honing his chops at such notorious local blues joints as the Eli Mile High Club, the Shalimar Club and the Fifth Amendment. A natural performer with boundless energy and enthusiasm, Birdlegg quickly befriended and began performing with some of the best bluesmen in the area like Sonny Rhodes, Massala Talbert, Haskell “Cool Papa” Saddler and Mississippi Johnny Waters. After several years of gigging as a sideman throughout the Bay Area and encouraged by some of his mentors to branch out on his own, he formed his own group, Birdlegg and the Tight Fit Blues Band, in 1980. The band’s lineup would change from time to time but regularly included Texas-born bass player and singer Country Pete McGill and even once featured legendary Chess session guitarist Luther Tucker. Birdlegg slowly started making a name for himself around Oakland with his high-octane performances, appearing regularly in area clubs and at festivals throughout the Bay Area. His popularity also eventually led to several tours in Europe. As self-confident and assured as ever, his band became one of the hottest around the area for many years and he realized his dream of making a living playing music. As he liked to tell people, “I don’t do floors, windows or shoes—I play the Oakland blues!” He made his first record in 1990 which was issued on 45 RPM on his own Tight Fit label, and then followed with a short-run cassette before releasing Meet Me On the Corner in 1998. But the excesses of a musician’s life eventually began taking its toll and after 35 years of ups and downs on the Oakland blues scene, Birdlegg decided to make a major move and start over in Austin, Texas, where he reunited with his ex-wife who he hadn’t seen in decades. His transition was seamless and he started gigging regularly around Austin in a matter of weeks, quickly becoming one of the most exciting and active bluesmen on the scene in recent memory. The claim “hardest working man in show business” has become somewhat overwrought since its originator passed away on Christmas Day several years ago. But if anyone in the blues business today is truly qualified to live up to the high standards set by the master of funk James Brown himself, it certainly is Birdlegg. From the moment he hits the stage to the very last song of the night which characteristically ends with Birdlegg soaked to the bone with sweat and five pounds lighter than when he started, the energy level doesn’t let up for a second.
Risks and challenges
This isn't our first rodeo. We are an established record company that has been around for 15 years. We have 25 releases in the catalog, and Eddie Stout has been producing records for 25 years. If the project is funded, everything will proceed as planned and the release date for the record is set for October.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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