Weiss, Chuck E. : Old Souls & Wolf Tickets

Occasionally amusing blues pastiche with celeb mates...

White Stripes‘ fans who’re thinking of “getting into” the blues – a bit like

buying a ball of string and, next, taking up bondage – would be well advised to

check out ‘Old Souls & Wolf Tickets’. As a sort of shock therapy.

A “legendary” LA hipster and mate-of-Tom-Waits, who opened The Viper Rooms with

Johnny Depp, Weiss trades in a mixture of blues, boogie-woogie, swamp jazz,

silly voices and wordplay that will, frankly, do your head in.

Not so much bad, as inexplicable, ‘Old Souls…’ features the sort of boozy,

bluesy riffing and bizarre non-sequiturs – [I]”my baby’s got no clothes/ ‘cos she’s

cooking chicken soup”[/I] – that have middle-class men in their 50’s rolling around

on the floor, screaming: “Genius!”. But leave the rest of the known world going:


But, if there’s a blues lesson to be learned from Chuck E. Weiss it’s that most of

the great blues records were recorded on wax cylinders in 1922 by dirt-poor guitarists

who’d recently sold their souls to the devil. Not LA showmen peddling slick,

silly electric blues to A-list crowds.

Tony Naylor