Unlike his multi-colored sobriquet, (given by prolific southern Louisiana manufacturer J.D. Miller), harpist Sluggish Lester swears he hardly ever was everything that lethargic. But he rarely was in a lot of a rush either, even though relentless speed of his Excello Information swamp blues classics “I’m a Fan Not really a Fighter” and “I Listen to You Knockin'” might contradict that declaration, too. While we were young beyond Baton Rouge, Leslie Johnson was inspired by Jimmy Reed and Small Walter. But his entree into playing skillfully arrived quite unintentionally: while traveling on the bus sometime in the middle-’50s, he fulfilled guitarist Lightnin’ Slim, who was simply looking fruitlessly for an AWOL harpist. The two’s designs meshed seamlessly, and Lester became Slim’s harpist of preference. In 1956, Lester stepped out entrance at Miller’s Crowley, Louisiana studios for the very first time. During a protracted stint at Excello that extended into 1965, he waxed such gems as “Glucose Coated Appreciate,” “IF YOU BELIEVE I’ve Shed You,” and “A SIMILAR THING Could Happen for you.” Lester demonstrated important as an imaginative sideman for Miller, making use of from cardboard containers and claves to whacking on papers to be able to locate the right percussive audio for the producer’s result. Lester quit playing for nearly 2 decades (and didn’t especially miss it, either), settling in Pontiac MI in 1975. But Fred Reif (Lester’s supervisor, reserving agent, and rub panel player) persuaded the harpist a return to actions was to be able, inaugurating a comeback that included a good 1988 recording for Alligator, Harp & Spirit. His swamp blues audio continued to be as atmospheric (and, dare one state, enthusiastic) as ever on following produces including 1998’s AROUND You and 2001’s Blues Prevent Knockin’, offering Jimmie Vaughan.
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