"He was my greatest inpiration for real blues" - Stevie Ray Vaughan
"Strong, Bad to the Bone" - George Thorogood
on his feet, light on his hands.
The man moves to his own rythym and it's always a groove...
I got the awards... He got the fans.
His one handed style I couldn't touch." - Albert Collins
"...this six string ace is able to equal his fellow Texas country man Lightnin' Hopkins with his easy going poetry." Louis Skorecki/LIBERATION
"...pleasing audiences with his inventiveness, clever songwriting, great arrangements and sheer originality." Richard Skelly/Allmusic
U.P. Wilson was born Huary Perry Wilson on September the 4th 1934 in Catto Parish Louisiana (near Shreveport), he was raised in a small farm where he soon learned to play on his grandmother’s guitar who was a gospel singer. By the mid-fifties, he moved to West Dallas, Texas, where he met local stars Zuzu Bollin, Cat Man Fleming, Frankie Lee Sims, Mercy Baby and Nappy “Chin” Evans who encouraged him and poked his vocations. He started playing in the clubs of the Southside and Westside of the city like the Clark’s place where he shared the bill with Frankie Lee Sims.
By the end of the 50’s, U.P. settled in Forthworth where he formed the Boogie Chilluns with drummer-singer Robert Ealey, together they set on fire every club of the area. At the same period, U.P. met a young promising guitarist: Cornell Dupree who used to prefer hanging out with the bluesman better than with his teachers. They played together before Cornell joined King Curtis in New York and became a famous renowned studio musician.
From the end of the 60’s untill the 80’s, U.P. stopped playing professionally but didn’t quit music, during that period, he pursued songwriting, and kept on jammin’ in clubs. He’s been seen with Freddie King or at an unforgettable guitar battle with Albert Collins at the Arcadia theatre in Dallas. The Vaughn Brothers kept on urging him to get back on the professional circuit. The legend started to grow around the one that Stevie Ray Vaughn been describing as his greatest inspiration for real blues.
In the 80’s, his meeting with Eddie Stout is a turning point, he records “Mean Old World” and “On My Way” (Now on Fedora) and starts to tour internationally. In 1989, he records “Wild Texas Guitar” then the live album “Texas Blues Party” out on Wolf in 1995. After those recordings, JSP records gave him a deal, five albums followed: “Boogie Boy! The Texas Tornado Returns!” in 1994. “This is U.P. Wilson” in 1995, “Whirlwind” in 1996, “Good, Bad, Blues” in 1998, and “Booting” in 1999.
U.P. Wilson is a unique style showman with a magnetic personality, his ever charming flashy guitar style always pleases the audience. Every show is the opportunity for this youthful sexagenarian to have a good time and to give his best to the audience, fascinating with sincerity, extravagant and stripped, subtle and rough, full of laughers and tears… Blues…
Copyright Didier Taberlet