Earwig Music Company
  • The Jelly Roll Kings - Jelly Roll King
  • Big Jack Johnson - The Oil Man
  • Grady Champion - Wine and Women
  • Jutta & the Hi-Dukes - Ushti, Ushti Baba
  • H-Bomb Ferguson - Shake Your Apple Tree
  • Jimmy Dawkins - Kant Sheck Dees Bluze
  • John Primer - Cairo
  • Johnny Yard Dog Jones - You Can't Call The Blues
  • Johnny Drummer - Rockin' In The Juke Joint
  • Dennis Binder - Love Call
  • Honeyboy Edwards - Apron Strings
  • Liz Mandeville - Scratch The Kitty
  • Travis Haddix - Backward Baby
  • Scott Ellison - Steamin'
  • Les Copeland - Distant Train
  • Andy Cohen - Cairo Blues
  • Chris James & Patrick Rynn - Life Couldn't Be Sweeter
  • Rob Stone - You're No Good For Me
  • Tim Woods - Deep Ellum Blues
  • Sunnyland Slim - Be Careful How You Vote
  • Frank Frost - Gonna Put Her Down
  • Honeyboy Edwards - Every Now And Then
  • Louisiana Red - Back Door Friend
  • Homesick James - What Done Got Into That Woman
  • The Jelly Roll Kings - Jelly Roll King
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (02:21) [5.37 MB]
  • Big Jack Johnson - The Oil Man
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:55) [8.95 MB]
  • Grady Champion - Wine and Women
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (05:48) [13.26 MB]
  • Jutta & the Hi-Dukes - Ushti, Ushti Baba
    Genre: Ethnic
    MP3 (03:22) [7.69 MB]
  • H-Bomb Ferguson - Shake Your Apple Tree
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:04) [9.3 MB]
  • Jimmy Dawkins - Kant Sheck Dees Bluze
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (09:11) [21.01 MB]
  • John Primer - Cairo
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (05:28) [12.51 MB]
  • Johnny Yard Dog Jones - You Can't Call The Blues
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:54) [11.2 MB]
  • Johnny Drummer - Rockin' In The Juke Joint
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:50) [8.78 MB]
  • Dennis Binder - Love Call
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (02:48) [6.42 MB]
  • Honeyboy Edwards - Apron Strings
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (02:47) [6.38 MB]
  • Liz Mandeville - Scratch The Kitty
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:17) [7.51 MB]
  • Travis Haddix - Backward Baby
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (05:12) [11.9 MB]
  • Scott Ellison - Steamin'
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:29) [7.98 MB]
  • Les Copeland - Distant Train
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:06) [9.38 MB]
  • Andy Cohen - Cairo Blues
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (02:47) [6.38 MB]
  • Chris James & Patrick Rynn - Life Couldn't Be Sweeter
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:15) [9.71 MB]
  • Rob Stone - You're No Good For Me
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:02) [9.25 MB]
  • Tim Woods - Deep Ellum Blues
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:30) [8 MB]
  • Sunnyland Slim - Be Careful How You Vote
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:36) [8.23 MB]
  • Frank Frost - Gonna Put Her Down
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (03:13) [7.35 MB]
  • Honeyboy Edwards - Every Now And Then
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:11) [9.57 MB]
  • Louisiana Red - Back Door Friend
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (04:57) [11.33 MB]
  • Homesick James - What Done Got Into That Woman
    Genre: Blues
    MP3 (05:06) [11.67 MB]
Biography
For more information, contact
Michael Frank, CEO
mfrank@earwigmusic.com
office 773-262-0278
Click here to go to Earwig Music Company

Earwig Music Company, Inc. was founded in October 1978 in Chicago by Michael Frank as a record label and artist management company. The label grew out of a musical and personal friendship between the label founder and David Honeyboy Edwards, whom Michael had met in the fall of 1972 at a club in Chicago. Michael started playing harmonica with Honeyboy in 1973 across the US and internationally. Their last gigs were in Clarksdale Mississippi in April 2011.Honeyboy died in August 2011, at which point Michael doubled down on producing more Earwig releases.

The label’s mission was and is to make and release new and reissue recordings by African American blues and jazz musicians and artists working in the African American oral tradition, to facilitate career opportunities for the musicians, while whenever possible recording material not previously recorded by the artists, and to introduce blues fans to a wider range of blues artists than they would otherwise hear, by taking them to clubs in the African American community and by producing special shows.

Over the years the label has broadened its ethnic and stylistic reach to include independent artists of any ethnicity who write and perform their own material rooted in African American and folk tradition.

Artists currently on the active Earwig roster for recording and touring are Andy Cohen, Johnny Drummer, Rusty Ends and Elly Wininger.

The label has released thirty-eight blues albums of which five are reissue of the artists’ self-produced and distributed albums, and four were produced by outside producers. Michael Frank, label CEO, produced thirty of these, as well as three other sessions not released. He also produced the last recordings of Louis Myers, Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis, and Willie Johnson – fabled guitarist from the early Howlin’ Wolf Band.

The label has released eight albums by nationally renowned folk storytellers Jackie Torrence, Alice McGill, Bobby Norfolk and Laura Simms. These folk tellers’ Earwig recordings won American Library Association, Parents Choice, and NAIRD Awards, two jazz albums by Pittsburgh’s Carl Arter (piano) and Tiny Irvin (female vocalist), one Southern Black gospel album by the Gospel Trumpets of North Carolina and one world music (Euro-roots dance) album by Jutta and the Hi-Dukes.

Bestselling blues records on the label are by The Jelly Roll Kings, Honeyboy Edwards, Big Jack Johnson, Jimmy Dawkins, and Liz Mandville Greeson. Jackie Torrence’s and Laura Simms storytelling recordings have also done particularly well.

The label released Big Jack Johnson’s first recordings as a leader, and also introduced Cincinatti’s H-Bomb Ferguson and Detroit’s Johnny “Yard Dog” Jones to the national blues scene. Johnny won a Handy Award – Best New Artist – for his Earwig cd Ain’t Gonna Worry. He also won the Living Blues Critics Poll in the category Best New Artist – Contemporary, for the album. The label also arranged gigs for Louisiana Red’s long anticipated triumphant return from Germany to US touring in 1999 upon the heels of his Handy nominated Earwig cd Millennium Blues.

Michael Frank managed the career of David Honeyboy Edwards for thirty-three years, including getting Honeyboy’s oral history/autobiography published. The book won both a Handy Award and a Keeping the Blues Alive award,and is widely recognized as one of the most important books on blues ever written. Mr. Edwards was a recipient of the 2002 National Endowment for the Arts – Heritage Fellowship Award, as well as a Grammy Award Winner for Traditional Blues and another for Lifetime Achievement.

Download Music from Earwig Artists

Albert Bashor Cotton Field Of Dreams Click Here

Andy Cohen Built Right On The Ground Click Here

Andy Cohen Road Be Kind Click Here

Andy Cohen Tryin' To Get Home Click Here

Andy Cohen Small But Mighty: Songs For Growing People Click Here

Aron Burton Past, Present & Future Click Here

Aron Burton Live In Chicago Click Here

Big Jack Johnson The Oil Man Click Here

Big Jack Johnson Daddy, When Is Mama Comin Home? Click Here

Big Jack Johnson Big Jack Johnson Live Click Here

Big Leon Brooks Let's Go To Town Click Here


BOX SET in 8 sections
Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD1-A Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD1-B
Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD2-A Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD2-B Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD3-A Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD3-B Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD4-A Click Here

Cadillac Baby's Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection - CD4-B
Click Here

Carl Arter Song From Far Away Click Here

Chris James and Patrick Rynn Gonna Boogie Anyway Click Here

Dan Doiron Livin' Centre Stage Click Here

David ‘Honeyboy’ Edwards Roamin’ and Ramblin’ Click Here

David Honeyboy Edwards The World Don’t Owe Me Nothing Click Here

Dennis Binder Hole In That Jug Click Here

Elly Wininger The Blues Never End Click Here

Click Here

Frank Frost Midnight Prowler Click Here

Grady Champion Back In Mississippi: Live At The 930 Blues Café Click Here

Guitar Mikey Out Of The Box Click Here

H-Bomb Ferguson Wiggin’ Out Click Here

Homesick James Goin' Back In The Times Click Here

Jim Brewer Tough Luck Click Here

Jimmy Dawkins Kant Sheck Dees Bluze Click Here

John Primer Stuff You Got To Watch Click Here

Johnny Drummer It's So Nice Click Here

Johnny Drummer Unleaded Blues Click Here

Johnny Drummer Rockin’ In The Juke Joint Click Here

Johnny Drummer Bad Attitude Click Here

Johnny Drummer,Shirley Johnson, Mary Lane, Liz Mandeville Angels Sing The Blues Click Here

Johnny 'Yard Dog' Jones Ain't Gonna Worry Click Here

Jutta & The Hi-Dukes On The World Beat Click Here

Les Copeland Don’t Let The Devil In Click Here

Les Copeland To Be In Your Company Click Here

Les Copeland One More Foot In The Quicksand Click Here

Lester Davenport When The Blues Hit You Click Here

Lil' Ed and Dave Weld Keep On Walkin' Click Here

Lil' Ed and Willie Kent Who's Been Talking Click Here

Little Brother Montgomery At Home Click Here

Little Willie Anderson Swinging The Blues Click Here

Liz Mandeville Red Top Click Here

Liz Mandville Greeson Look At Me Click Here

Liz Mandville Greeson Ready To Cheat Click Here

Liz Mandville Greeson Back In Love Again Click Here

Louis Myers Tell My Story Movin' Click Here

Louisiana Red Sittin' Here Wonderin' Click Here

Louisiana Red Millennium Blues Click Here

Louisiana Red Driftin' Click Here

Lovie Lee Good Candy Click Here

Rob Stone Back Around Here Click Here

Rusty Ends Rusty Ends Blues Band Click Here

Click Here

Scott Ellison Ice Storm Click Here

Sunnyland Slim Be Careful How You Vote Click Here

Sunnyland Slim She Got A Thing Goin' On Click Here

Sunnyland Slim, David 'Honeyboy' Edwards, Floyd Jones Walter Horton, Kansas City Red Old Friends Click Here

The Jelly Roll Kings Rockin' The Juke Joint Down Click Here

Tim Woods The Blues Sessions Click Here

Tiny Irvin You Don't Know What Love Is Click Here

Tommy McCoy Late In The Lonely Night Click Here

Tommy McCoy 25 Year Retrospect Click Here

Travis Haddix Daylight At Midnight Click Here

COMPILATIONS

Earwig 16th Anniversary Sampler
Click Here

Earwig Music 20th Anniversary Collection - Disc 1
Click Here

Earwig Music 20th Anniversary Collection - Disc 2
Click Here


Earwig Music Company, Inc. was founded in October 1978 in Chicago by Michael Frank as a record label and artist management company. The label grew out of Michael’s love of the blues and his desire to help blues musicians further their careers. Michael took the leap from being a superfan to a label owner gradually, after meeting blues guitarists Honeyboy Edwards and Jim Brewer in the fall of 1972 at a blues club in Chicago. Michael started playing harmonica with Honeyboy in 1973, and helping him and Jim get gigs. Michael became the manager of both musicians, on a handshake agreement and continued in that capacity until the end of Honeyboy’s and Jim’s careers.

In the mid-1970s Michael also formed the Honeyboy Edwards Blues Band, which lasted through 1987, to get club and festival gigs. Michael and Honeyboy continued to tour worldwide until Honeyboy’s death in 2011 at the age of 96. During the 39 years of their relationship, Michael guided Honeyboy’s career, culminating in Honeyboy receiving numerous awards and honors, including the National Endowment For the Arts Heritage Fellowship Award, a Grammy Award for Traditional Blues Album, and a Grammy Award for Lifetime Achievement. Michael was also a co-author of Honeyboy’s oral history The World Don’t Owe Me Nothing, a classic of Blues literature. For his efforts, Michael was honored by the Blues Foundation with a Keeping The Blues Alive Award (KBA) in Artist Management.

After encouragement from Bob Koester, the owner of Delmark Records and the Jazz Record Mart, Michael started the Earwig Music label in 1978, by recording the Mississippi Delta trio of Frank Frost, Sam Carr and Big Jack Johnson, known as the Jelly Roll Kings. Their Earwig recording Rockin’ the Juke Joint Down has been acknowledged as the quintessential electric juke joint band album. The label was off to an auspicious start, as the album garnered lots of favorable reviews and revitalized the group’s career, by taking them on their first of many festival trips to Europe, the weekend of their Earwig LP release in 1979.

The label then went on to record those artists closest to home—Honeyboy Edwards and his contemporaries, on a classic Chicago blues album Old Friends, and Jim Brewer’s Tough Luck, a masterful study in acoustic Mississippi blues guitar. The label is known for its many outstanding historical recordings by noteworthy elder musicians from Chicago and Mississippi, such as the Jelly Roll Kings, Sunnyland Slim, Homesick James, Little Brother Montgomery, Honeyboy Edwards, Louisiana Red, Dennis Binder and others, and for bringing new talent to the international scene, including Johnny Drummer, Liz Mandeville, Rob Stone, Chris James and Patrick Rynn, Travis Haddix and others. Through it all, the label has focused on strong songwriting as a requirement to be released on Earwig.

The label’s mission from the beginning has been to make and release new and reissue recordings by African American blues and jazz musicians and artists working in the African American and folk musical traditions, to facilitate career opportunities for the musicians, while whenever possible recording material not previously recorded by the artists. Also part of Earwig Music’s mission is to introduce blues fans to a wider range of blues artists than they would otherwise hear, by taking them to clubs in the African American community and by producing special shows.

Over the years the label has broadened its ethnic and stylistic reach to include independent artists of any ethnicity who write and perform their own material rooted in African American and folk traditions. The label has also continued its mission to help bolster the careers of musicians and other types of artists, through assistance in production, promotion, marketing and distribution.

The label has released sixty-five blues albums, 3 jazz albums, 1 world music album, 1 gospel album, 9 folk tales/spoken word albums. Some are reissues of the artists’ self-produced and self-distributed albums. A few are productions by outside producers. Michael Frank, label CEO, produced the majority of Earwig releases, as well as other sessions not released. He also produced the last recordings of Louis Myers, Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis, and Willie Johnson —fabled guitarist from the early Howlin’ Wolf Band.

The label has released nine albums by nationally renowned folk storytellers Jackie Torrence, Alice McGill, Bobby Norfolk and Laura Simms. These folk tellers’ Earwig recordings won American Library Association, Parents’ Choice, and NAIRD Awards. Earwig also released two jazz albums by Pittsburgh’s Carl Arter (piano) and Tiny Irvin (female vocalist), and one traditional Southern Black gospel album by the Gospel Trumpets of North Carolina. In 2011 Earwig released its first world music album, On the World Beat, by Chicago area band Jutta & the Hi-Dukes.

Since the death of Honeyboy Edwards in August 2011, the label has focused on artist development, by releasing new albums by artists such as Rusty Ends and Elly Wininger, who have been performing for many years regionally but are unknown to the general populace. The label also plans to issue some historically important archived recordings not previously available.

For example, the 2019 box set Cadillac Baby Presents to Bea & Baby Records Definitive Collection was a labor of love taking over 30 years from the time of the final recording session - the 2 hip hop tracks co-produced in 1989 by Michael Frank and Cadillac Baby. The 4 CD set has 101 tracks, so it was divided up on AirPlay Direct into 2 sections per physical cd, 8 sections total. For a pdf copy of the accompanying book, contact Michael Frank at Earwig Music Company by email.

In 2023 Earwig will be releasing archival recordings by Jim Brewer, Homesick James, Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis and Willie Johnson, as well as a new album by Lady J Huston.

Stay tuned! Check back often.


13
  • Members:
    Honeyboy Edwards, Sunnyland Slim, Big Jack Johnson, Louisiana Red, Liz Mandeville
  • Sounds Like:
    The finest in traditional acoustic, electric, soul, and contemporary Blues
  • Influences:
    Delmark, Arhoolie, Yazoo, Malaco, Chess/Checker
  • AirPlay Direct Member Since:
    11/11/11
  • Profile Last Updated:
    10/31/22 14:19:13

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