The Mush Mind Blues

by Rainer and Das Combo

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Rainer and Das Combo – The Mush Mind Blues

Recorded in record time September 28, 1983 by Randy McReynolds.

Das Combo is: Nick Augustine on Precision Bass, John Lowry on Drums, Rainer Ptacek on Supro Slide Guitar & Voice Box. Andy plays drums on “That’s How Things.”

Thanks Goes to: David, John, Nick, Andy & Randy. Hey Howe, Hey Patti, Hey Gabe. Thanks God, Marina. Thanks Dad for the inspiration. Thanks Mom for the love and Rivers of Tears.

All songs except where noted are by Rainer Ptacek, Mushed Music BMI

1. The Mush Mind Blues
2. O My Worried Spirits
3. Deadly Sins
4. Away – (Robert Frost / Rainer Ptacek)
5. Where’s That At
6. That’s How Things Get Done
7. Drop Down / Mellow Down - (“Sleepy” John Estes / Willie Dixon)

Restored and Mastered from the original 2 track master tapes by Jim Blackwood at AZPM Mastering. Cover drawing by Howe Gelb, tweaked and formatted by Colin La Russa.


released May 25, 2013

From Rolling Stone Magazine, issue # 421, May 10, 1984:

Rainer and Das Combo – The Mush Mind Blues

*** (Three Stars)

Here’s a snappy little outfit that some enterprising record company should pick up and produce. Despite the Germanic moniker, Rainer and Das Combo are a tight Tucson-based trio fronted by songwriter and slide-guitarist Rainer Ptacek, whose singing suggests a cross between golden-age Bob Dylan and Jonathan Richman with a deep case of the blues. Ptacek, (an East German refugee who settled with his family in Chicago as a child – thus the blues connection – and later moved to Arizona) is a slashing, articulate stylist on his vintage Supro fiberglass instrument, and a funny – often touching – lyricist to boot. He wishes all his clothes were monogramed, so “I’d be sure of just who I am.” With crackling rhythms provided by bassist Nick Augustine and drummer John Lowry, he romps through a set of charming originals (“Fear, I’m afraid to talk about it”) and hot-rodded covers that range from “Sleepy” John Estes to Robert Frost. Quite delightfully rough but well worth hearing. – Kurt Loder

At the invitation of Billy Gibbons, Rainer met Kurt Loder backstage at a ZZ Top concert in Tucson. During the encounter Rainer handed Kurt a copy of the tape… a few months later the review appeared. Only 100 copies of the cassette were ever made.

It is worth noting that “The Mush Mind Blues” was the first (and possibly only) independently released cassette tape ever to be reviewed in the pages of Rolling Stone.



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