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Bonnie Raitt (1971 LP)


Bonnie Raitt
Bonnie Raitt

Warner Bros. Records
WS 1953

Original 1971 album liner notes

This music was made at an empty summer camp on Enchanted Island, about 30 miles west of Minneapolis on Lake Minnetonka.  In between ping pong and fishing, we recorded in a wood-frame garage with Dave and Sylvia working the equipment from a loft above us.  We recorded live on four tracks because we wanted a more spontaneous and natural feeling in the music – a feeling often sacrificed when the musicians know they can overdub their part on a separate track until it’s perfect.  It also reflects the difference between music made among friends living together in the country and the kind squeezed out trying to beat city traffic and studio clocks.
As to who we are: there’s Willie and the Bumblebees, who keep themselves and their reputation alive playing every weekend in a Minneapolis bar.  Freebo is from Philadelphia and played with Edison Electric before traveling with me.  I’m from Cambridge, as is Peter Bell, a fine singer and songwriter as well as guitarist (nice hambones too).
The two special additions were Junior Wells and A.C. Reed, who drove up from Chicago to see if I was really going to do this after all, and maybe slip in a little fishing on the side.  Junior’s versatility and class never cease to amaze me.  A.C., who sings even better than his brother, Jimmy, plays with Junior and Buddy Guy and has gone nameless on so many Chicago sessions it’s about time he stepped out for the credit he’s due.
The actual recording was handled by Dave and Sylvia Ray – the same Dave Ray of the Koerner Ray and Glover records I grew up on.  They recently started their own studio where people like the Bumblebees, John Koerner, Peter Bell and Dave will also be recording with this kind of live approach in mind.
My special thanks go to Joyce and my brother, Steve, who somehow held this conglomeration together and always made us smile
– Bonnie Raitt



Bonnie Raitt: vocals, acoustic and slide guitar
Junior Wells: harp
A.C. Reed: tenor sax solo
Willie Murphy: piano
Freebo: fretless bass
Peter Bell: electric guitar
Douglas “Toad” Spurgeon: trombone
The Bumblebees

Russell Hagen: electric guitar
Steven Bradley: drums
Voyle Harris: trumpet
Maurice Jacox: baritone sax, flute*
Eugene Hoffman: tenor sax
John Beach: piano


Side One
(Stephen Stills)
Bonnie, A.C., Peter, Freebo, Steve, Eugene (cowbell), Willie
Background vocals: Bonnie, Peter, Paul Pena (bass), Reeve Little

Mighty Tight Woman  4:19
(Sippie Wallace, arr. John Beach)
Bonnie, John, Freebo, Steve, Junior
Thank You  2:48
(Bonnie Raitt)
Bonnie (piano), Willie (guitar), Freebo, Steve, Maurice*, Voyle
Finest Lovin’ Man  4:41
(Bonnie Raitt)
Bonnie, Junior, Russell, Willie, Freebo, Steve, A.C., Voyle, Eugene, Maurice
Any Day Woman  2:19
(Paul Seibel)
Bonnie, Willie (vocal), Freebo, Steve

Side Two
Big Road 
(Tommy Johnson, arr. Bonnie Raitt)
Bonnie, Peter (acoustic), Junior, Freebo (tuba), Toad, Steve, Willie
Walking Blues  3:35
(Robert Johnson, arr. Bonnie Raitt)
Bonnie, Junior, Peter (hambone)
Danger Heartbreak Dead Ahead  2:50
(Ivy Hunter-Clarence Paul-William Stevenson)
Bonnie (electric slide), Willie, Russell, Freebo, Steve, A.C., Eugene, Voyle, Maurice
Background vocals: Bonnie, Peter, Chris Rhodes

Since I Fell For You  3:03
(Bud Johnson)
Bonnie, Willie, Freebo, Steve, Eugene, Voyle, Maurice, Russell, A.C. (sax solo)
I Ain’t Blue  3:35
(John Koerner)
Bonnie, Freebo, Maurice*
Percussion and background vocals: Peter (shingle), Willie (shuttlecock in cup), Steve Raitt (stick on plastic pitcher)

Women Be Wise  4:13
(Sippie Wallace, additional lyrics by John Beach)
Bonnie, John, Voyle (naked), Freebo, Steve

Engineers: Dave and Sylvia Ray
Remix Engineer: Kendall Pacios
Recorded at Sweet Jane, Ltd. Studios, Minneapolis, August, 1971
Personal Management: Dick Waterman, Avalon Productions
Dedicated to Barnaby Ray

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© 1971 Warner Bros. Records Inc. (P) 1971 Warner Bros. Records Inc.
Warner Bros. Records Inc., a Subsidiary & Licensee of Warner Bros. Inc., 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, Calif. 91505. 44 East 50th Street, New York, New York 10022. Made in U.S.A.
WS 1953
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