SMOKE WAGON BLUES BAND & ALBERT JOHNSON

Smoke Wagon Blues Band, a veteran Canadian blues band has a new album entitled “The Ballad of Albert Johnson,” and as the author of Lee Marvin Point Blank, I had to find out more about them. According to a quote from the band’s harmonica-playing lead singer, Corey Lueck:
“When I was a kid I saw the American movie about it (“Death Hunt”) with Charles Bronson and Lee Marvin. I thought it was a cool story and then when I found out it was a Canadian story, I read up on it even more. We wrote the song and then we ended up naming the whole album after it.” 
 The quote came from an online article I came across in which the the band’s 25 year history and influences are recounted in a lively piece that can be read here. Personally, I love the look and the sound of these guys and the band name is terrific. I highly recommend viewing the animated video made to accompany the song as it’s a pretty imaginative retelling of the story Marvin as Edgar Millen and Bronson as Johnson enacted. 

Lee Marvin as Edgar Millen in DEATH HUNT.

One of the rare times Lee Marvin played a real-life character on film was RCMP’s Edgar Millen in DEATH HUNT.

I had a little trouble understanding all the lyrics but after multiple viewings of the video I got into it and liked it a lot. If I could describe it in one word that word be one often used to described Marvin and Bronson themselves: KICK-ASS!
Who knew Canada had such a rocking blues/jazz scene going on? I certainly didn’t! 


That said, I wish the talented gentlemen of Smoke Wagon Blues Band all the luck in the world on the upcoming award show to take place on February 22nd. 


In the mean time, feel free check out the computer generated video they made for the album’s title track as animated by Patrick Politowski. I think it’s a hoot!
Enjoy!
-Dwayne Epstein


 

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