Ralph “Soul” Jackson on the up, played Ponderosa

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Ralph “Soul” Jackson hit up the Ponderosa Stomp, a New Orleans-based festival that “pays tribute to the unsung heroes of rock 'n roll. Appropriately, Roky Erickson headlined the sixth annual festival, playing with the Explosives, the backing band he played with in the 1980s.

Ralph “Soul” Jackson was a crate digger's delight after his 1977 45 “Set Me Free” failed to sell, thanks largely to shady distribution deals. Now reissued under the Rabbit Factory label, Jackson has another hack at the credit he deserves.

The lineup offered up some important clues as to what it takes to become an unsung hero of rock'n roll and soul. It's good to insert an ambiguously important quotable between your first and last name (i.e., “Mr Big Stuff”), or to introduce yourself with lots of details, like ” Duo of Hill Country Guitarist” or “Chitlin Circuit Showman”. It also helps to be Roky Erickson.

Psychedelic legend Roky Erickson and The Explosives, master arranger Wardell Quezergue and the New Orleans Rhythm & Blues Revue featuring New Orleans soul legend Tony Owens, Jean “Mr Big Stuff” Knight, and the architect of New Orleans RnB Dave Bartholomew; R&B soprano Little Jimmy Scott, Deke Dickerson and the Eccofonics, Psych Funk Brother Dennis Coffey, soul songwriter supreme Dan Penn, rockabilly wildman Dale Hawkins, Texas Tornado co-founder Augie Meyers, Herbert Hardesty, Gulf Coast guitar empress Barbara Lynn, Excello harp master Lazy Lester, Lafayette Soul Show Houseband Little Buck and the Top Cats w/ Stanley “Buckwheat Zydeco” Dural on Hammond B-3, keyboardist extraordinaire Willie Tee, President of soul Rockie Charles, hillbilly bopper Jay Chevalier, tough Texas shouter Roy Head, rockabilly wailer Joe Clay, Mardi Gras king Al “Carnival Time” Johnson, Blues Piano Master Henry Gray, Detroit Bluesman Eddie “The Hawg” Kirkland, Duo of Hill Country Guitarist Kenny Brown and Chitlin Circuit Showman Bobby Rush, Muscle Shoals Veteran Ralph “Soul” Jackson, “Guitar Lignting” Lee, Rockabilly Drummer Matt “I'm Movin On” Lucas, the King of New Orleans' Gut Bucket Blues Little Freddie King, Blue Eyed Soul Sensation Skip “Hoochie Coochie Man” Easterling, Ernie “DapWalk” Vincent, and David “Funky Soul” Batiste