Paul Butterfield


I figure I might as well get the ball rolling… I’m new to Harmonica & I’ve just discovered Paul Butterfield - anyone got any Butterfirld recommendations?


Try “The Butterfield Bluesband LIVE”, at the Troubadour in LA. Most famous title is probably “Everything gonna be alright”, played on a harp in C key.


Paul Butterfield is for shure one of my biggest influences…like Swieland says his album Live is really one of the best…he had a style of his own and introduced many people to this instrument,as he played in famous festivals as Woodstock…at the beggining he was playing Chicago blues standards but when he formed the band Better Days he started exploring soul,funk,and other colours of american music,and for me there is when he was at his best,also a great singer!!!i could be talking days about him,butthe best is that your hear his music!!!


Thanks for your responses guys - great suggestions! I’ve been learning harmonica for 8 months and have tried to soak up as much blues as possible so cannot understand how I missed Butterfield until 2 days ago??? I can’t stop listening to him - his voice is great and the way he plays is unlike anything else I’ve heard - amazing.


great that you like him!!!besides his albums you can hear him in the legendary Fathers & Sons with MuddyWaters and many other top bluesman


Butter in my opinion was very accomplished at mostly sticking to the blues scale. Joe Filisko


Hi guys!

I´m a big fan of Butterfield and guess what I see the moment I register to this community?
Did you know that there´s a documentary released in 2017 called “Horn From The Heart: The Paul Butterfield Story”???

We have the honour in the Swedish “HarpMeet” event (11th of November) to screen this film for the first time outside US!

Check out this!
Horn From The Heart

//Markus Korhonen
Founder HarpMeet


Butterfield’s first album on Elektra, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band (1966), was one of the first blues harmonica records I listened intensively to when learning to play and it stands up very well today. It was revolutionary at the time because the band featured black Chicago musicians Sam Lay (drums) and Jerome Arnold (bass), previously from Howling Wolf’s band, alongside white kids (and later blues legends) Mike Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop (guitar). This was recorded and released before racial segregation in the USA was abolished, so it was a significant political statement as well as the first genuine Chicago blues record by a white singer and harp player. Not to be missed :smile:


Lots of great suggestions here. I’ll be looking for that documentary and how good is it to see Joe Filisko joining in!


I’d be interested to hear you expand on that - is it a compliment or do you think he was restricted by the blues scale?
It’s interesting to get a professionals perspective on what makes player great (or not) as the case may be…


Compliment YES! Restricted YES! The great sounding blues stuff in my opinion is not available everywhere on the harp. What is cool is that he figured out where the range is that sounds best and stuck to it. Very much like Sonny Boy no. 1 but with more clean single notes. JF


Thanks Joe, really interesting!