Written by John Mayall
Recorded July 12, 1969 – Fillmore East
Album title – THE TURNING POINT
John Mayall – vocals, harmonica, slide guitar, telecaster 6 string guitar, tambourine, mouth percussion
Jon Mark – acoustic finger-style guitar
Steve Thompson – bass guitar
Johnny Almond – tenor and alto saxophones, flutes, mouth percussion
For those that have never heard of mouth percussion? You can see from the instruments played by these four musicians a drum does not exist on this or any song from The Turning Point. Yet in the songs you can hear what sounds like a drum beat, that my friends is mouth percussion. And shows you a completely different side of music that you may have never encountered. It is a rarity and it is an ultimate display of talent on the artists using this technique as opposed to just adding a drummer.
John Mayall along with these other three musicians showed in so many ways how instrumental one can create music. 7 songs off this album were exquisitely done all in this manner. Thing is they only had 4 weeks experience jamming with each other before they played this Fillmore Gig.
In the albums liner notes it stated it was an experiment and I’d say the experiment worked ten·fold.
This was an awesome mix of blues blended with jazz. Johnny Almond’s sax took you on a ride like a dream, it was magical. And this whole album was just too damn good not to share with you. So sit back for the journey.
Ironically it was the 7th track Mayall was infamous for, yet it was the previous 6 that I identified with in mood and particular taste. Just laid back.
At the start in late 1963 it was Mayall’s creation of the Bluesbreakers and over the next 5 years Lord the musicians that got their start with him. Eric Clapton, Peter Green, John McVie, Mick Taylor just more of the notable players that exploded into stars with their various groups. But there were countless others.
And after this 69′ San Fran gig with the same lineup they recorded one more album, “Empty Rooms” featuring another bassist from Canned Heat, Larry Taylor for a duet on a particular song.
In reality John Mayall musical career started in 1956 and hasn’t stopped. As a Musician, Songwriter and Producer he has been Britain’s finest gift and contribution to the Blues this world has ever known.
He is 77 years old and hopefully will be with us for another 77. I know one thing his music is timeless and will go on teaching future generations of blues players to come.
A legendary man with blues born into his soul and a legacy for us to enjoy until the end of time.