Hoochie Coochie Man - The Transcription!!!
What is Little Walter playing on this song anyway? Well, here you have it, Joe's transcription of the released version of Hoochie Coochie Man.
This tune was recorded during an amazing period for Walter - he was on fire and the recordings show it! The released take shows rock solid first position playing, super accurate bends and timing and a long repository of the very best first position blues licks out there! Study and learn from this song, especially if your first position playing is weak.
Unlike what you might expect from Jimmy Reed style first position, Walter never blows above hole six on this tune. He milks the bends on holes 2 and 3 with beautiful control. And don't miss the power of simply hitting that riff rhythmically with the band. If you can't play this lick when it's called out, best to step down gracefully from the bandstand as it is crucial to the blues language on this song.
Historical Note: Joe's research shows that Mad Love was recorded in September of 1953 while Hoochie Coochie Man was recorded in January of 1954.
Hoochie Coochie Defined!!!
According to wikipedia:
The hoochie coochie was a sexually provocative belly dance that originated at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition in 1876. It became wildly popular during and after the Chicago World's Fair in 1893. Described by the New York Journal in 1893 as "Neither dancing of the head nor the feet", it was a belly dance performed by women of, or presented as having an, Eastern European gypsy heritage, often as part of travelling sideshows.
Since the dance was performed by women, a "hoochie coochie man" either watched them or ran the show.
- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew