In 1981, CrossCut Records was founded by owner Detlev Hoegen. A blues enthusiast himself, his goal was to promote the blues in Europe.
The mail order department started in July of the same year.
Papa George Lightfoot's “Natchez Trace” album, produced by Steve LaVere and originally released on the 'Vault' label in the U.S.A. would soon become the first in a series of re-releases on the newly established CrossCut Records label.
The following years saw re-appearances of hard-to-find collector's items, such as Eddie Boyd's European 'Decca' album featuring Peter Green and Tony McPhee.
A two album set presenting Otis Spann's first solo recordings (including a bunch of previously unheard performances), and Lonnie Brooks' aka “Guitar Junior“s first album for 'Capitol', “Broke An' Hungry”, followed the next year.
In 1984, CrossCut Records was the first record label that released a set of previously unissued live radio recordings by the late great Freddie King. It must be pointed-out that “Rockin' The Blues – Live” was released by special agreement with the Estate – unlike similiar live LPs that wanted to catch-up on the success. “Rockin' The Blues – Live”, released in October 1984, won a 'W.C. Handy' award in the category “Best contemporary blues album of the year”.
An album with the International Blues Duo (“Detroit” Gary Wiggins – tenor sax; Chris Rannenberg – piano) marked the beginning of CCR Productions. In 1985 CrossCut Records recorded Charlie Musselwhite in Germany, and leased Robert Cray's second 'Hightone' release.
Famous east coast barroom band, The Nighthawks, recorded a live album for CrossCut in 1986. The record, featuring Jimmy Thackery on guitar and Mark Wenner on harmonica, is out on 'Rounder' in the U.S.A., and currently out of print in Europe.
Since those early days, CrossCut has continued to record the finest American and European blues and roots music artists.
(will be continued …)