Noel Harrison (1958)

The San Francisco Bay Blues EP 

The oldest recording made by Noel Harrison, this four track EP was released by EMI in 1958, eight years before Noel would release his first studio album and two years before the live record At the Blue Angel came out.

The EP was released the same year Noel made his first appearance on the BBC's Tonight programme, when he was just 24-years-old.

The title track is a song Noel picked up from Ramblin' Jack Elliott, while the others are popular American songs of the time.

All four tracks are a good representation of Noel's early work and fit together better than either of his 1960 live albums. Aside from the title track, the stand-out is probably Evil Man Blues.
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
Track List

San Francisco Bay Blues

Evil Man Blues (listen)

 
 

Wanderin'
 
Frankie and Johnnie


Sleeve Notes

Noel Harrison with accompaniment directed by Geoff Love.

HERE, for a rapidly growing following is the first EP by one of Britain’s most youthful and sophisticated entertainers. Often to be seen on leading television programmes, charming the viewers with his delightful blend of songs from many countries, Noel Harrison is rapidly gaining a reputation which must lead him to a position of considerable stature in the world of popular entertainment.

As most people are aware, Noel is the son of actor Rex Harrison. Now, when a man is the son of a famous father, it is often difficult for him to establish himself as an individual performer and yet, entirely on his own merit, that is what Noel has succeeded in doing.

A young artist who has gained a following in Europe as well as in Britain, Noel Harrison’s repertoire permits him to entertain a wide variety of people. Here, he has chosen four of his more popular American songs.

Wanderin’, poignant and easy paced, and Evil Man Blues, a driving number, are both Josh White favourites to which Noel Harrison does full justice. Frankie and Johnnie has for many years, been one of the best loved American ballads; many people will remember the popular Jimmie Rodgers recording. Finally - San Francisco Bay Blues. This song, which was first performed regularly in this country by Jack Elliott, is an original by Jesse Fuller, one of the finest living negro blues singers.

All in all, you will surely agree that this EP by Noel Harrison is first-class entertainment of the kind that can only be provided by a first-class artist.


Watch

Watch Noel sing a version of San Francisco Bay Blues live in 2008 and discuss meeting Ramblin Jack Elliott.