Guitarist Franck "Paris Slim" Goldwasser is no stranger to those who've been paying attention to the West Coast blues scene over the last two decades. Born in Paris, France in 1960, his initial blues inspiration came from Hound Dog Taylor's "Natural Boogie" LP. After working his first professional gig at age 21 supporting Sonny Rhodes, Rhodes invited him to move to the San Francisco Bay Area. With the commitment of a true believer, Franck packed his bags and moved to the Bay Area within a year.
Goldwasser was immediately hired by Troyce Key (who gave him the stage name of Paris Slim) to play in the house band at Key's legendary Eli's Mile High Club in Oakland. He eventually assumed leadership of the group while Key took a professional hiatus, and became deeply immersed in the area's still-vibrant blues scene. He racked up three years touring with Jimmy McCracklin, as well as positive reviews for appearances at most of the prominent local venues with a distinguished roster of blues talent, including Lowell Fulson, Percy Mayfield and Charlie Musselwhite.
Four years after his first single was issued in 1984 on San Francisco's Backtrack label, Goldwasser's CD debut, "Blues for Esther," appeared, a strong outing which received a nomination from the prestigious Blues Music Awards (formerly the W.C. Handy Awards). Its follow-up, "Bleedin’ Heart," was co-produced with Joe Louis Walker, who guested along with Sonny Rhodes. An ongoing list of other sessions and frequent European touring (most prolifically as part of the Fedora Records house band behind Clay Hammond, Jimmy Dawkins, Homesick James and others) followed.
Relocating to Southern California in 1998, Goldwasser became a fixture on the vibrant Los Angeles blues scene, and continued to absorb new influences and hone his art. An association with Delta Groove founder, Randy Chortkoff, eventually led to a West Coast tour with Chicago blues legend Jody Williams, as well as an ongoing role as a member of the critically-acclaimed and award-winning band, the Mannish Boys.
“Bluju,” produced by Chortkoff, has won praise in Europe as one of the most progressive blues releases in years. Goldwasser taps into a deep wellspring of influences, from blues and soul, to world music, to rock and beyond, while at the same time remaining deeply rooted in the blues tradition. Originally licensed in 2003 to the German-based label, Crosscut Records, “Bluju” gets an expanded release for its U.S. debut on Delta Groove with the inclusion of two bonus tracks featuring wild renditions of the Hound Dog Taylor songs, “She’s Gone” and “55th Street Boogie,” which brings Franck Goldwasser full circle, back to his roots and the music that initially inspired him in his youth.