It is 4:44 a.m in the morning, and I have just downloaded the new Mudcat CD, “Hotstuff.” The first song hits me in the face like a wet kiss from a slightly drunk lover; I mean I have lived this song, standing in front of Mudcat, and his band, night after weekend night at The Northside Tavern in Atlanta, Ga. It is as if I can see Mudcat a smiling, and a singing right here from my desk. That is how real the cd is, how great a job it has done of capturing the legendary bluesman live.
I met Danny Dudek around 1985 in a place called Kool Korner in Midtown, Atlanta, Georgia. Dok Lazlo had called, and asked me if I wanted to meet Angela Bowie. With no money in my coat, I headed over to the restaurant, where Ms. Bowie cooked breakfast for Dok, and I. It was kind of a surreal experience, but another neat thing that I got out of it was that I got to meet the dishwasher, a friendly, smiling fellow who seemed to be very happy to be alive, even though he was washing dishes. This fellow was Danny Dudek, aka Mudcat.
Mudcat has never let me down, and he has, from what I have heard, never let anyone around him down. On stage, and off, you can depend on Danny Dudek. On stage, or seated on the floor of a place without a stage, Mudcat can be counted on to give an energetic, thorougly entertaining performance.
Mudcat puts his heart and soul into each, and every, song that he sings, whether he is playing to a packed house, or is just singing to a few folks in the room, before the place gets packed. Offstage, though the man has achieved an international reputation, Mudcat is down to earth; no attitude, no bullshit; he is still the happy go lucky, wide-smiling guy that I met at Kool Korner so many years ago, when fame was just a glint in his eye.
Mudcat dropped out of The National Shakespeare Conservatory giving up an ambition to be an actor for a dream of being a musician, and he started playing on the streets of New York City. One day, as he was playing his guitar, and singing, for a group of people, one of New York’s finest came up and told him to, “Put that guitar down.”
Mudcat put the guitar down, but kept on singing to the people.
After he arrived in Atlanta, Mudcat continued to singing on the sidewalk to the people. He was joined for a number of years by by Evan Lee Frayer, and David “Snave” Evans. The trio was a regular fixture on the streets of Atlanta.
“We would quit a job to play on the streets at certain events,” relates Mudcat, pointing to The Piedmont Park Arts Festival as being one of those events.
The trio would make tapes, and put them out in front of themselves with a sign that said, “Free with a five dollar donation.” The rule at The Festival was that street performers could not sell anything.
Each of these men has continued on musically, Mudcat with his band, and often playing solo, Snave with his band Snave and The Grass, and Evan with his band. Out of their one musical union, three great bands have emerged.
Because it says it as well as I could I am going to let you read part of the recent Mudcat email, that those who sign up to be on his list receive:
Saturday, January 29th we release the newest Mudcat CD HotStuff, a collection of fifteen songs culled from the Mudcat catalog recorded between 1994 and 2009. HotStuff is named after my organic XXX hot sauce/marinade, and the recordings and flavors are equally adept at setting your senses ablaze!
To celebrate this release, Mudcat and band, including chanteuse Lori Beth Edgeman and longtime Mudcat/B.B. King trombonist Joe Burton, will be performing tunes from the CD, as well as other old favorites and new material, one night only at Northside Tavern, 1058 Howell Mill Rd, Atlanta, GA. Music begins at 10PM; $10 cover; 21 and over. Club info: http://www.northsidetavern.com/
This is a night that you do not want to miss. The songs on the “HotStuff,” cd are amazing, capturing the essence of Mudcat. The night will be amazing because Mudcat, and his band are amazing.
Ringo Starr once sang, “You got to pay your dues, if you want to sing the blues,” and Mudcat has payed his dues, and you can reap the benefits of such by being in the audience, this Saturday, and by buying a “HotStuff,” cd and some hotsauce/maranade made by Mudcat.
There is a Revolution happening in music, and Mudcat is leading the charge.
Check out Mudcat’s website:http://www.mudcatblues.com/
And join him on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mudcat/52250770635
Please help us keep the lights on, and food
in the refrigerator, at The Daily K, with a donation
of $10, $20, $35 or whatever you can afford.
Donate here now http://www.mikelk.com/
All donations of $10 or more will receive
an E-Copy of one of Mikel K’s memoirs.
You can buy a K book at http://stores.lulu.com/mikelkpoet