Photo by Geoffrey George

Southside Slim at A Day of Music-Fullerton

"There was plenty of this happening at the Fullerton Museum Plaza. I caught the searing guitar acrobatics of Southside Slim, who gets his Stratocaster as hot as I have ever heard single coil pickups sound.
Adam Lovinus, OC Weekly


Southside Slim & Paul McCartney: Early Days


See Southside Slim with Paul McCartney in the Behind-The-Scenes Jam From McCartney's 'Early Days' Video Shoot

In one of his biggest accomplishments of the year, Southside Slim auditioned for, and was hired to jam with Sir Paul McCartney for his Early Days music video, off of the latest album entitled 'New'. Watch the music video, as well as the behind-the-scenes jam with Paul McCartney by clicking here.


New Release News:

Shine Through ItLife Under Pressure
Life Under Pressure evolved from jamming in the studio while the tape was rolling.

 

Shine Through ItSouth Side All Stars
Slim brought over sixteen blues legends into the studio and recorded each one performing an original take on a blues classic.


Hot Love Documentary

Hot Love On Me So Strong THE BLUES OF SOUTH L.A.

"Hot Love On Me So Strong THE BLUES OF SOUTH L.A.", a documentary by Kari Fretham, is coming on June 7th, 2014! For more information, check out Kari Fretham's Hot Love Documentary page.


Sweetback Blues

Sweetback bluesBy: Kari Fretham

Buy it Now on Lulu.com


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Life Under Pressure (2009)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Life Under Pressure
 Fast Women, Fast Cars
 Hound Dog

Not Currently Available for Online Purchase

In August of 2006, having six hours of studio time long left over from a previous recording session, I decided to go into the studio with fellow musicians from Los Angeles' South Side to have a jam session from four in the afternoon until ten at night. The cats I asked to join me were LeRoy Martinez, John, and Tokyo Mississippi. Nothing was planned. No songs in mind. We just came to play. I created a juke joint party atmosphere in the studio. I told Glen, the engineer, "Just let it roll, for better or for worse." I wanted to see what such an innovative vibe might produce. My goal was to try to create a blues album close to my heart without any preconceived notions or the constraints of an orchestrated session. No one had a set list. I simply called off a shuffle, be it fast or slow, or I showed the bass player, "For this one, do this, man."

Once the groove was laid down, I fed off the emotional tenor of the life situations of what we were all going through: Leroy's support for his ailing wife, Hiro fighting deportation back to Japan, John dealing with his medical situation, and me losing my family. So it's only fitting that I call this CD, Life Under Pressure. After hours of painstaking review of what we did, including me listening for the first time to what I created that night, I selected the songs that would be best for this project. With only a couple of exceptions, most of the songs on this CD were improvised during that original jam session. I made whatever edits were necessary, put the songs on discs, and gave them to Willie McNeil, Lester Lands, Rick Jones, and Norman Weatherly to study for a February, 2007 recording session to finalize work on this release. So like I told Glen, "Let it roll, for better or for worse."

-South Side Slim, March 2009

 

South Side All Stars Doing Barnyard Hits (2008)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Cold, Cold Feeling
 29 Ways to My Baby's Door
 My Woman's Gone

Not Currently Available for Online Purchase

South Side All-Stars brings together many legends of the Los Angeles blues community. These individuals represent the last vestige, in my opinion, of the black blues society in South Central. Since I became homeless in 1992, living at my dad's trucking yard in the heart of the south side, I had no knowledge of the people that I have come to know, love, appreciate and work with over the last sixteen years. All of their talents impress me and inspired me to learn more about the blues and to commit to carry on their legacy.

I've had the idea for years to do an album to let people know about this talent. So I sought out all of these associations. Because I knew them all, I realized I faced an enormous hill to climb. Even though they were associating in the community, each had his own ego and a great deal of personal pride. I felt that unless someone persisted, they would never be all brought together for the purpose of documenting our history. That someone was me. They all did it because I knew each one personally. I guess I earned enough respect from each over the years that they were willing to come into the studio together and do this. So putting some of my ego aside, I thought it was more than worth the price considering the immense talent that is brought together on one CD.

Each of the fifteen musicians did one song backed up by Joe Kincaid and the Soul Brothers, well known for over twenty five years and familiar with all the players. Each performer has a distinct history of blues under his belt. The CD was recorded at Pacific Studios in Los Angeles earlier this year. After completing the process and listening to the final mix, at a party in South Central, I convinced Deacon Jones (former keyboard player for John Lee Hooker and Freddie King) to come aboard and provide the keyboard for Hideaway, made famous by King. This project is an immense history of the South Central blues community. So from the bottom of my heart and with great appreciation to all involved, I bring to you The South Side All Stars.

-South Side Slim, December 31, 2008

The artists on the CD consist of: Blues Boy Jamie Powell, Sonny Green, Bobby Warren, Ray Bailey, Little Lee, Ray Brooks, Ser Stan, Tutty Gasten, Lester Lands, Oklahoma Ollie, Dr. Hank, Hollis Gillmore, Deacon Jones, AJ, Eddie Harris, Smokey Wilson and Joe Kincaid and the Soul Brothers band, consisting of Norman Weatherly (keyboardist for Rolls Royce), Roger P. on drums, and Rick Jones on bass and Joe Kincaid on rhythm guitar. Strings on all tracks by South Side Slim AKA Henry Harris.

 

Trouble on the South Side (2007)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Blue Rain
 
 

Buy now from City Hall Records.

South Side Slim just can't lay low. In Trouble on the South Side, his fifth CD in six years, "the formidable guitar modernist" (Living Blues, October, 2003) masterfully and emotionally pours out extraordinary, modern, and cutting edge blues.

Numerous interviews attest to his strong-minded viewpoint that blues is an unpredictable event. Bubbling from hidden crevices of injustice and protest, passion and lust, hardship and depression. Simply imitating and rehashing a historical body of work reduces those hard won endeavors to a precious canon and an easy commodity.

For Slim, honoring the old blues fathers and mothers is to do what they did, to communicate fresh emotion while playing and singing your heart out. And that's just what Slim does. But don't think for a half-beat that originality and feeling imply a lack of musical prowess; in fact, it's the authority of Slim's skills that allows him to express himself so effectively.

 

Live at the Alley, Santa Cruz, California (2004)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 South Side Groove
 Younger Days
 Tore Down

Not Currently Available for Online Purchase

 

Raising Hell (2001)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Blues for Sure
 Young Man
 Raisin' Hell

Buy now from City Hall Records.

South Side glares at you from the cover of the album like he means business and the opening track, Blues For Sure, confirms this. Vibrant and vigorous, it covers the youth in his voice and highlights the talent in one of the currently least known of the current crop of young guitar whiz kids. Roadblock is a funky blues that has a real attitude with shades of Prince and James Brown. This is followed up with more funky blues in the shape of 8 O'clock In The Morning. This has an eerie guitar feeling and will leave you asking the question, can South Side only play at top speed? Young Man is a more traditional, jazzy blues and the introduction of saxophone is welcome. South Side shows two sides of himself on the sophisticated blues of Comin' To Your House and the strong and moody blues of Almost Daylight.

Raisin' Hell is, as the title suggests, a rocking blues that allows Slim to let loose on guitar and boy, does he do just that. There's a return to the funky blues style for Another Lonely Night and this just serves to confirm how strong a guitar player he is. He can do the traditional as well and You Never Can Tell is about as traditional as he gets. No matter what style he is playing there is no doubting his credentials as a top class guitarist. He sticks with the traditional style for Kitchen Floor and serves up what is probably the track of the album. He could be a big name if he produced more of this quality. There's a big finish to the album with two more strong tracks, the fast paced jazzy blues of Big Money and I Wish I Was Blind, a Chicago blues. The latter is the better and suits his voice very well a classy finish to a very good album.

 

Five Steps (2000)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Junkyard Dog
 Can't Stop My Drinking
 5-Steps

Buy now from City Hall Records.

On Five Steps, Henry Harris (aka. South Side Slim)'s first full solo CD he lets his amazing talent shine through. South Side Slim is a young blues performer with wonderful songwriting, singing and playing ability. Slim takes you through many styles of blues on this disc and all of them are a delight. The opener "Just A Thing" is a scorching minor key blues with some amazing guitar from Slim that let's you know he is not the ordinary blues player.

On "Junkyard Dog" Slim takes the tempo down a little bit without any difference and sounds just as good. "Woman is My Weakness" is a great shuffle blues with great playing from the band, especially Deacon Jones on Keyboard and Slim on guitar. Next up is "I Was Hooked" another shuffle that keeps everything nice and smooth. The next song, "Can't Stop My Drinking" shows Slim's talent outside of straight blues with some straight forward rocking guitar. The next song of notice is track 7 "Five Steps" which is a very good slow blues that shows off both Slim's singing and guitar playing. The next song "Let Me Down Easy" is the furthest away from the blues moving into classic R&B style that sounds like it could have come from the golden age of rhythm and blues.

The next two songs are "It Was You" and "Roadhouse Blues", the former a slow simmering blues, while the latter has more of a swing feel to it. "Going Fishing" is another rockin' blues tune with some very amusing lyrics with double entendre. "That's All I Need," a cover of Magic Sam is done very straight and well with Slim adding his unique voice to a great song. The last two songs end the CD very nicely with "Messed Up," a very fast blues song and the CD ends with a beautiful slow shuffle blues. This is one of the best debut CD's and Slim is one person to look forward to hearing more from. If you are a fan of many styles buy this disc you won't be dissapointed, it will blow you away.

 

More Blues from the South Side (2000)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 My Woman is Gone
 Talk to Me
 I Know What You've Been Thinking

Buy now from City Hall Records.

32/20 Featuring South Side Slim (1999)

South Side Slim

Listen Now:

 Black Jack Whiskey
 South Side Slim
 Back Stabbing Woman

Not Currently Available for Online Purchase

 

ReviewsRead Slim's Reviews

Hailed "the formidable guitar modernist" by Living Blues magazine, Slim has recently toured in Italy, Britain, and Germany. He has won many fans from around the world; click on the photo above to see what others are saying about South Side Slim's musical talents.

 

SlimographySlimography

Henry Harris grew up in Oakland in the 70's and early 80's listening to a wide range of innumerable musicians, including Hendrix, Muddy Waters, Van Halen, and the Isley Brothers. He spent his mid-20's hanging out in Hollywood. During his Hollywood years he fortuitously met up with the great LA blues guitarist Ray Bailey.

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The Blues is all about the story behind the music and the sensory journey one travels as a result of those stories. Check out the Photo Page to see more photos of South Side Slim and experience the blues journey for yourself in pictures.

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