Show biz freak Tiny Tim made a career of resurrecting '20s songs and interpreting them in his own unique style. Like a joke that was all punch line and no set up you'd think Tiny Tim would be alone. Wrong.
Formed in LA in '66 around Bob "The Bear" Hite (harmonica/vocals) and Al "Blind Owl" Wilson (guitar/harmonica/vocals), Canned Heat took its name from a 1928 Tommy Johnson song. That wasn't the end of the Roaring '20s connection.
Their two best-known songs were also from that era. "On The Road Again" was originally recorded by the Memphis Jug Band while "Going Up The Country" was a reworking of a Henry Thomas number about traveling South. The band's other major influence was the boogie style of John Lee Hooker. The combination proved effective, in the short term. Soon, they didn't have anywhere to go.
Wilson fatally OD'd in '70 after battling depression. Hite suffered a fatal heart attack in '81 between Canned Heat sets at a North Hollywood club.
1967 Canned Heat
1968 Boogie With Canned Heat
1968 Living The Blues
1970 Future Blues
1971 Hooker 'n Heat
1971 Historical Figures And Ancient Heads
1973 The New Age 1973
1973 One More River To Cross
1974 Memphis Heat
1974 Gate's On The Heat
1978 Human Condition
1981 Kings Of The Boogie (Dog House Blues)
1986 Infinite Boogie
1987 Boogie Up The Country
1994 Internal Combustion
1996 The Heat Brothers '84 (recorded 1984)
1996 Canned Heat Blues Band
1996 SuperGig Summer Festival
1997 The Ties That Bind (recorded 1975)
1998 House Of Blue Lights
1999 Boogie 2000
2000 The Boogie House Tapes
2003 Friends In The Can
2003 The USA Sessions
2004 The Boogie House Tapes Volume 2
2007 Under The Dutch Skies
2007 Christmas Album
2008 Boogie House Tapes Volume 3
Canned Heat is first, last and always a Blues Boogie Band. That's it. Between 1967 and 1972 they released several albums. Their most memorable songs (Going Up The Country," "On The Road Again" and "Let's Work Together") are spread throughout this period. In between there are great performances, inconsistent ones or re-interpreted Blues numbers that have been worked to death. "Best of Canned Heat" is a good way to pick up the essential songs, but the two CD set "Uncanned! The Best of Canned Heat" is another option.