New Lightnin' Hopkins: Live from the Ashgrove...Plus! View larger

Lightnin' Hopkins: Live from the Ashgrove...Plus!

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The legendary blues guitarist, Lightnin' Hopkins, performed at Los Angeles' famed Ash Grove venue on many occasions over the club's decade-and-a-half existence. Ten of the songs on this set are compiled from two separate performances at the club, and none of the performances on the album have previously been available commercially.

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Track List:

Couldn't Be Satisfied (Live November 29, 1970)

  1. Intro Questionnaire Blues (Live November 29, 1970)
  2. Questionnaire Blues (Live November 29, 1970)
  3. Intro Ain't It Crazy (Live November 29, 1970)
  4. Ain't It Crazy (Live November 29, 1970)
  5. Intro Don't The Moon Look Pretty (Live November 29, 1970)
  6. Don't The Moon Look Pretty (Live November 29, 1970)
  7. Intro Black and Evil (Live November 29, 1970)
  8. Black and Evil (Live November 29, 1970)
  9. Lightnin's Boogie (Live November 29, 1970)
  10. Intro What'd I Say (Live November 29, 1970)
  11. What'd I Say (Live November 29, 1970)
  12. Intro How Long Have It Been Since You Been Home? (Live November 29, 1970)
  13. How Long Have It Been Since You Been Home? (Live November 29, 1970)
  14. Black Cadillac (Live September 22, 1965)
  15. Coffee House Blues (Live September 22, 1965)
  16. Hi-Heel Sneakers (Live From In Your Ear August 18, 1971)
  17. Lightnin' Can Do It (Live From In Your Ear August 18, 1971)
  18. You’re Gonna Miss Me When I’m Gone (Live From In Your Ear August 18, 1971)
  19. Hardly Trying (Live From In Your Ear August 18, 1971)


Samuel John Hopkins was born in 1912 to a poor sharecropping family in Centerville, Texas. He immersed himself in the blues at an early age, having met Blind Lemon Jefferson at a church picnic not long after having struck out on his own. In 1946, Hopkins was "discovered" by Aladdin Records' talent scout Lola Anne Cullum, who convinced him to travel to Los Angeles from Houston. There, he cut sides both as a solo artist and as part of a duo with pianist Wilson Smith. It was during his stint at Aladdin that he acquired his nickname, while his partner was dubbed "Thunder." Shortly thereafter, Hopkins returned to Houston, his home base for the balance of his life. He was a world-class song improviser and performer, but it was as a guitarist that Hopkins had the most impact. Jimmie Vaughan once said that without Hopkins, there would be no Jimi Hendrix, and in fact Hendrix's record collection boasted more Hopkins LPs than any artist other than Bob Dylan. A 2010 Rolling Stone survey of the hundred best and most influential guitarists in rock history placed Hopkins at 71, right between Joni Mitchell and Eddie Van Halen.

The legendary blues guitarist performed at Los Angeles' famed Ash Grove venue on many occasions over the club's decade-and-a-half existence. Ten of the songs on this set are compiled from two separate performances at the club, and none of the performances on the album have previously been available commercially. Tracks 1-14 consists of acoustic tracks with song introductions from a set recorded on November 29, 1970. Tracks 15-16 are acoustic performances from September 22, 1965. The disc is rounded out with four electric tracks with his band from Palo Alto's In Your Ear club recorded on August 18, 1971. While most of the tunes are originals, the set lists include some distinctive cover versions of the R&B classics "What I'd Say" and "Hi-Heel Sneakers," along with some folk/gospel nuggets, "Don't The Moon Look Pretty" and "How Long Has It Been.