Born: Mobile, AL

Blues Guitar Clarence Gatemouth Brown

Source: Alabama Music Hall of Fame

Luther Wamble is a blues guitar player from Mobile. He has played with such musicians as Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, B.B. King, and Greg Allman.


Bluesman 'Blue Lou' Wamble ready for his closeup by Lawrence Specker December 17, 2009 at 4:14 PM

Good Moon plans to record a live DVD Friday at The Shed in Mobile.

Normally, when I witness a really good guitarist, it makes me daydream about going home and picking up my own guitar, wiping off the dust, and practicing.

When I saw Luther Wamble playing Sunday at the Blues Tavern, it made me want to go home, pick up my guitar, and apologize.

“I’m sorry, baby,” was what I figured I should say. “You should have been with somebody like him all along. I won’t hold you back any longer.”

Wamble’s name will be familiar to many: He’s been a part of the Mobile music scene for decades — aside from gigs that took him out on the road, like his 11-year stint in Gatemouth Brown’s band.

He’s well known for his affinity for the blues and blues-based rock. But even an old blues dog can learn new tricks.

“We’re doing a live performance DVD,” Wamble said of his latest venture. “Blue Lou is getting into technology.”

The recording session will take place Friday at The Shed BBQ & Blues Joint at 5753 Old Shell Road in Mobile. The show starts at 7 p.m., with no cover charge.

Wamble will be leading his Good Moon trio, featuring Butch Johnson of Gautier on bass and Allen Keenum of Escatawpa on drums. It’s a band Wamble never really expected to happen: he was “just about retired” when he bumped into Johnson a couple of years ago at the original Shed restaurant in Ocean Springs. They clicked, and after a while, found their third man in Keenum.

One striking feature of the band is that after a lifetime spent as a sideman, occasionally singing harmony, Wamble has taken on lead vocal duties. That means he’s putting his own delivery on original tunes he’s written over the years — and to supporters such as David Moody, that’s a big part of the attraction.

“That makes it about as authentic as anything I’ve seen in a long time,” Moody said. “That’s what got me excited about it.”

Wamble’s excited too. “I have enthusiasm like I was 16 or 17 again,” he said. “It’s helped my music grow.”

The trio’s chemistry was much in evidence at The Blues Tavern, where they’ll play again at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, according to The band segued from song to song, rarely pausing between numbers. Originals were mixed with covers that ranged from “Caldonia” to “Red House” to John Lee Hooker’s “Dimples” to a delicate instrumental rendition of the Delfonics’ “La-La (Means I Love You).”

“It’s always an adventure with Luther,” said Johnson. “You never know what’s next. You’ve got to have a good ear.”

Wamble doesn’t flaunt his speed like a young hotshot but he’s got quicksilver fingers and a confident command of his instrument’s full tonal range. Watching him is a master class in how to articulate notes, rather than merely playing them. It takes some skill, for example, to emulate Jimi Hendrix’s Stratocaster style on a Les Paul with no whammy bar.

You can bet it’ll all be on display Friday. Wamble has extended an open invitation to all blues fans and friends of the band. “Come be in our movie,” he said. Source:

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iTunes Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown

Amazon: Clarence Gatemouth Brown Essential Recordings: Flippin Out and Clarence Gatemouth Brown Timeless and Clarence Gatemouth Brown Okie Dokie Stomp and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown Man and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown Real Life

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