SUNDAY CLASSIC GTC VIDEO: LEO BUD WELCH Don’t Let the Devil Ride
Leo Bud Welch – The Angels in Heaven Done Signed My Name is available on Apple Music.
by Walter Price
Every once in a while, I get a bit ashamed at my loss of time getting to know an artist before their life comes to an end. One such artist is bluesman Leo “Bud W§elch (1932-2017). Having just spent the last week digging into his stellar posthumous album, “The Angels in Heaven Done Signed My Name”, I’ve not only fallen in love, but I’ve also gained some appreciation that I found my way into his world. With that well-traveled voice and guitar work of a God, this album should elevate this little-known name into the higher echelons where all the greats hold court.
For just a taste of what to expect from this album, check out the single, “Don’t Let the Devil Ride”. A song credited to the Reverend Oris Mays, you’ve probably heard an iteration or two at some point from any one of the legendary names that have interpreted this staple over the years. You may remember that Bishop Dready Manning, Aaron Neville, and Lucinda Williams have all added their touches.
The accompanying video can be watched below and the film’s director, Wolfgang Pfoser-Almer, shares some insight, “We shot the footage of ‘Don’t Let the Devil Ride’ at Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival in New Orleans 2014. It was the third stop of a little tour Leo did. The next day, he’d play in his church in Sabougla in the morning and another show in the evening, so all together five shows in four days in three states, just the usual regimen for an 80-year-old man like him.
“It was his first show in New Orleans, and [manager] Vencie Vernado was really eager to get everything right and he did. Leo was the sensation of the festival, people couldn’t believe what they saw, they were all cheering and dancing. I remember one guy constantly shaking his head in disbelief, smiling, and sending photos of Leo to all his friends over his phone.
“People were so enthusiastic about him, the autograph session after the show took hours. Leo loved meeting people so much; he took his time with everybody, posing for a photo, chatting a little. That’s just who he was. He never took his audience for granted. He was thankful for each and every person listening, and he genuinely wanted to get to know them all … He really is greatly missed!”
‘The Angels in Heaven Done Signed My Name’, produced by Dan Auerbach for his Easy Eye Sound label, is available on all platforms.
LEO “BUD” WELCH
Produced by Dan Auerbach
Director, Wolfgang Pfoser-Almer
“Leo Bud Welch, the deceased delta bluesman, spent his life honing his musical craft. The Mississippi native and 30-year lumberjack performed as a gospel singer in his small hometown for years before he made his first record when he was in his seventies. The influence of the region he called home, his years of musicianship, and his well-lived life blended together to create music that is as unique as he is. Produced by Dan Auerbach at Easy Eye Sound studios in Nashville, TN with performances by Richard Swift.” – bio