Sunday, December 4, 2011

ALEX SNOOK JONES - For My Worst (Blue Boy, circa 1965)

Alex “Snook” Jones apparently spent more time playing piano around Shreveport than hanging out in studios cutting records. Nevertheless, he did leave a small legacy of recordings.

Around 1965, Jones recorded a 45 issued on Blue Boy Records. The credits state that he composed both songs while Harding Guyon Demarais (aka Dee Marais) handled the publishing. No other records have surfaced on this label, so perhaps it was a vanity project financed by Jones. The guitar playing reminds me of Shreveporter Jesse Thomas, though I’ve yet to uncover evidence supporting his involvement.

Blue Boy Records 1001 (circa 1965)
Alex Snook Jones
TM 1316 For My Worst (Alex Jones) (Heads Up Music BMI)
TM 1317 Mean Old Greyhound (Alex Jones) (Heads Up Music BMI)

While Jones received top billing on the Blue Boy record, he had previously surfaced in 1959 as an accompanist to singer Johnny Gosey on his 45 released on Wilson Evans's label, MOA (Music of America).

Around 1964, British architect and blues historian, Paul Oliver visited Shreveport in search of guitarist Oscar Woods. Oliver struck out—Woods had died in 1955. He learned this information from Alex Jones, who told Oliver that he served as a pallbearer at Woods’s funeral. Now we’ve made it to 2011, and I’m not sure if Jones is still alive. I just ran across a death record for a person with his name that passed away in Shreveport in 1988. If Jones is gone, I wonder if any local musicians served as his pallbearers.

In closing, a few additional pieces of “Snook” memorabilia have surfaced over the years…a business card, a photograph, and programs.

Alex (Snook) Jones And His Shreveport Night Hawks business card, undated.

Alex "Snook" Jones photograph, undated.

Delane Anderson, "Moonlighting 'Til Midnight," Centenary Conglomerate
(Shreveport, LA), September 20, 1973.  Thanks to Taylor Caffery.

Thirty minutes of Alex Jones.
Shreveport's "First Annual Blues Fest" lineup at Veterans Park.
("The First Annual Blues Fest." Program, 1979.)

Snook Jones...opening entertainment for Jesse Thomas, John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, etc.
Shreveport's "Blues Fest" lineup at Hirsch Coliseum, 1981.
("Blues Fest Schedule." 1981.)