Blues News

Wild Child Butler – Playing the Blues

Wild Child Butler

Wild Child Butler – True to his name, he earned his nickname at an early age. Despite all the shenanigans he pulled as a kid, he manages to learn to play the harp at 12. Furthermore, in the 50s, Butler is gigging professionally as a bandleader. While his career didn’t take off at first, that all changes when heads to Chi-town in 1966.

It’s where he gets a recording contract Shreveport, LA-based Jewel Records. Other notable musicians on this label includes bassist Willie Dixon and guitarist Jimmy Dawkins. He’s doing ok but doesn’t receive the notoriety he deserves. While his album releases didn’t burn up the charts, his live performances and personality garners him faithful followers.

Wild Child Butler Playing Live

With the video above, Wild Child Butler is performing “Lickin’ Gravy” circa mid-1980s.  Backing him up is Lead guitar Stu Heydon, Joey Reaume on drums, Tom Maguigan on bass, and Richard White 2nd guitar. It’s a fantastic video that showcases Butler’s love for the blues!

Finding His Way To Canada

Around 1981, Butler moves up north to Ontario, Canada, and continues his career. A decade later, he cuts the first of two albums for British producer Mike Vernon. “These Mean Old Blues” is an engaging set of original material cut in London. “Stranger”, the fruits of another English session, emerges in 1994.

Although George “Wild Child” Butler is perhaps not as famous as many of his contemporaries, his life and work is as much a testament to the continuing power of blues traditions as any of his more well-known counterparts.

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Video Credits: Paul Langan / Image is a video screenshot.

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