Dr. House?

edited September 2011 in Blues
amazon link

I had seen this was coming out but poohed-poohed it without the slightest interest in checking it out. I mean, really - Dr. House singing and playing old southern blues?

Then I saw his interview on TV this weekend which made me think I should check this out. It at least got me interested enough to listen to the samples. Well, maybe I short-changed him. Anybody have this? Whadayathink?


  • Read numerous BAAAAD reviews on Facebook today. I haven't listened to the samples, so have no personal opinion.
  • LOL, I thought the first few seasons of House were fantastic and watched them all. I gave up somewhere in the middle of season 6.
    Just previewed the title track - heavy on the organ & piano, seemed he was going for a Joe Cocker vibe. Nope. Not interested in hearing any more.
  • edited September 2011
    Many people don't remember this, but nearly every episode of A Bit of Fry and Laurie had him doing a musical number of some kind or another, including parodies of country singers, Bob Dylan, drugged-out hippies, The Chipmunks, and at least once, a Mississippi blues singer. Of course, they were always strictly for laughs.

    This one is probably the funniest...
  • Oh, I had no idea he used to do comedy. So is that new album supposed to be comedy? LOL, that explains the Joe Cocker vibe!
  • In the UK comedy is what he is known for more than anything else. I read a review of his album a few weeks ago which was OK, but my reaction was not to follow it up, especially as it is not on emu here, as I think of him as a comedian. We don't get House, at least not on the major channels. His former partner, Stephen Fry is far better known - he has gone into acting and a lot more too - he is now what is called a 'National Treasure'!
  • edited September 2011
    Dr. House? I think you mean Bertram Wooster.
  • Mrs Nereffid bought it a few months ago, and we both like it. I am not in any way qualified to judge blues albums.
  • Thanks everybody for the feedback. I haven't heard a single track in its entirety, but just from listening to the samples I thought it was potentially interesting. Admittedly, Laurie's voice is nothing to brag about. But I detect something infectious in the music itself (at least for me) from the soundclips. I heard a little bit of "St. James Infirmary" on tv with Laurie singing and playing the piano and I liked it well enough. An Amazon reviewer said there's a 3-minute piano intro to the tune, which made me think it might build up quite nice by the time it's all done.

    Interesting that people in the US generally know him as a serious actor, and people in Britain generally know him as a comedian, and both are surprised to learn of the other! Either way, he is known for acting, not singing. And based on pure talent, he probably shouldn't give up his day job to pursue a musical career. But the guy evidently loves blues and wanted to have some fun with it. Can't fault him for that. I might give the album a try.
  • If you are going to make an amateur New Orleans blues record, you may as well have arrangements by Allen Toussaint. Like a guy at the bar who joins the band and doesn't sound half bad.
  • edited October 2011
    I have to say I'm more than a little surprised?/appalled to find this record as of today the #1 jazz and #2 blues download at eMu. I noticed he was going to be on some show on PBS either tonight or tomorrow, titled something-or-other New Orleans, so I guess I'll have to watch and see what this is about, and if it's anything other than a case of name recognition combined with otherwise near total ignorance of blues and jazz in the eMu customer base at large.
    It's tonight at 9 Eastern on Great Performances - Let Them Talk - A Celebration Of New Orleans Blues, including the bona fide guest stars. Dammit, if I only had a Popeye's in my neighborhood.
  • Must be pledge drive time. Undoubtedly they will have a crack NOLA band behind (unfortunately) him. PBS link, kind of an interesting setlist.
  • edited October 2011
    Ah, St. James Infirmary - a song very dear to me. If you ever get the chance there's an amazing Betty Boop cartoon where she's on a raft going down this subterranean river to that tune, I believe it was Cab Calloway singing, and it may have been the, ah, times, but it was a severely mind altering experience. I used to also refer to it as the most depressing blues tune I knew, but then I found Life Is Hard (And Then You Die) by Johnny Winter.
  • Oh, yes, that's it. I had totally forgotten that it was in "Snow White". I too often forget about YouTube for that matter.
  • kezkez
    edited October 2011
    Ah, St. James Infirmary - a song very dear to me.

    @BigD-Bluez - Me, too. Having the song planted in my head just now, I felt the need to play Van Morrison's version on his "What's Wrong With This Picture?" CD, which is one of my FAVORITE versions. Hear it here.

    Also, thanks for the heads up on the PBS program tonight. I'm going to try to tune in. Hope he performs St. James in full. I'm also curious to hear what he does with Stephen Foster's Swanee River. There was a good writeup about tonight's program. Notice how many favorable comments have been posted there (?) - good chance to find what all the hoop-la is about.

    I watched the Betty Boop Youtube clip (thanks, Mommio). Nice!
  • Just noticed you can download track 10 from the album free on the PBS site here. I wish they had offered St. James Infirmary or Swanee River for free download instead, but at least it gives you a little bit of feel for the album in general.
  • Segue: I saw Allen Toussaint live the other night and he played a gorgeous (instrumental) St James Infirmary. Sigh, bliss.
  • Holy smokes...Checking after Nank's post, I see that Allen is touring down under with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. Not too envious...! But only since I saw him playing the "Bright Mississippi" with Nicholas Payton and Don Byron earlier this year. ;) He's out there this fall, so go see him if he comes to your town!
  • kezkez
    edited October 2011
    OK - just got through watching the PBS show. I liked it a lot - no, I loved it. Granted, Laurie's no singer - but that didn't detract from the music's attraction for me. I thought the arrangements were excellent. You could tell he truly loves this music. I thought he came across as very sincere and just overall enjoying himself tremendously with some truly excellent musicians. He's not a bad piano player, either. Toussaint, Jones and Thomas were, needless to say, great. I thoroughly enjoyed the program.
  • I can honestly only speak to the first 30 or so minutes of the show, at which point long day + favorite armchair + television + large purring cat = zzzZZZZZ! Thought the program was nicely done, but for me all I have to say is "Don't quit your day job". This has become an album I see no need for.
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