The Healer (album)

The Healer is a blues album by John Lee Hooker, released in 1989 by Chameleon Music Group Chameleon. The album features collaborations with Bonnie Raitt, Charlie Musselwhite, Los Lobos and Carlos Santana, among others.

The Healer
JohnLeeHooker TheHealer1.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 1989 (1989-09)
RecordedRussian Hill Recording Studios, San Francisco
ProducerRoy Rogers
John Lee Hooker chronology
The Healer
Boom Boom
Professional ratings
Review scores
Rolling Stone[2]
The Village VoiceB+[3]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[4]
The Penguin Guide to Blues Recordings[5]


The Healer peaked at number 62 on the Billboard 200 and "I'm in the Mood" won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Performance. Produced by Roy Rogers of the Delta Rhythm Kings,[2] and executive produced by Mike Kappus[6] (who conceived the idea for the project), and Stephen Powers, founder and President of Chameleon Records. Powers and Kappus knew each other from the music business in Wisconsin — Rosebud Agency was originally based in Milwaukee, and Powers' label, Mountain Railroad Records, was headquartered in Madison. Chameleon had recently acquired Vee-Jay Records and reissued Hooker's numerous albums for Vee-Jay, plus a "Best of" compilation of Hooker's early entitled "The Hook."

The video for "The Healer" featuring Carlos Santana and John Lee Hooker was filmed in the Chameleon warehouse in Hawthorne, CA amidst stacks of Hooker's old vinyl LPs, and live on stage at "The Palace," a Hollwood nightclub across from Capitol Records on Vine St.

John Lee Hooker was 73 years of age when the album was released. It was his first Grammy win. The album had such success that it "permitted John Lee Hooker to live out the end of his life in comfort".[7] Powers recounts with joy sending a large royalty check to Hooker, and the deep gratitude he felt for the opportunity to help him to finally achieve the recognition he deserved.

It was voted number 424 in the third edition of Colin Larkin's All Time Top 1000 Albums (2000).[8]

Track listingEdit

All tracks are written by John Lee Hooker, except where noted.

No.TitleWriter(s)Guest musician(s)Length
1."The Healer"Hooker, Roy Rogers, Carlos Santana, Chester D. ThompsonCarlos Santana5:36
2."I'm in the Mood"Hooker, Bernard BesmanBonnie Raitt4:30
3."Baby Lee"Hooker, James BrackenRobert Cray3:43
4."Cuttin' Out" Canned Heat4:35
5."Think Twice Before You Go" Los Lobos2:58
6."Sally Mae"Hooker, BrackenGeorge Thorogood3:15
7."That's Alright" Charlie Musselwhite4:23
8."Rockin' Chair"  4:09
9."My Dream"  4:02
10."No Substitute"  4:07
Total length:41:18



  1. ^ Owens, Thom. The Healer at AllMusic
  2. ^ a b "John Lee Hooker: The Healer : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. 23 November 2007. Archived from the original on 23 November 2007. Retrieved 24 January 2018.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  3. ^ Christgau, Robert (October 31, 1989). "Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. New York. Retrieved September 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin (2007). Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0857125958.
  5. ^ Russell, Tony; Smith, Chris (2006). The Penguin Guide to Blues Recordings. Penguin. p. 274. ISBN 978-0-140-51384-4.
  6. ^ "Mike Kappus :The Rosebud Agency" (PDF). Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  7. ^ According to Walter de Paduwa speaking (in French at minute 14'45") on the Dr Boogie Radio Show, January 31, 2014.
  8. ^ Colin Larkin, ed. (2006). All Time Top 1000 Albums (3rd ed.). Virgin Books. p. 156. ISBN 0-7535-0493-6.

External linksEdit