A 60s set from Memphis bluesman BB King – but one put together with a very distinct Chicago touch as well! The set's produced by Johnny Pate, and recorded live with a vibe that's similar to King's classic recording at The Regal – but it's almost got even more of a soulful punch, thanks to backing from a cool small combo that includes Bobby Forte on tenor, Kenneth Sands on trumpet, Duke Jethro on Hammond, and Louis Satterfield on bass! BB's vocals are great – in his best early form – and the tunes are bluesy, but also smoke with a nice degree of soul – and almost some jazzy touches at times from the tenor and organ. Titles include "Don't Answer The Door", "Blind Love", "Tired Of Your Jive", "Night Life", "Buzz Me", and "Waitin On You". CD
BB King not just live, but well-recorded in the studio too – in this classic ABC set that showcases both sides of his talents! Side one is the live set – and it's arguably better than any of the previous other concert recordings he did for the label – with a tighter, moodier feel that's almost more small club – with backing from a combo that features Charlie Boles on Hammond, Patrick Williams on trumpet, and Lee Gatling on tenor. Live titles include "Just A Little Love", "Sweet Little Angel", "Don't Answer The Door", and "Please Accept My Love". Side two is studio material, with some mighty sweet arrangements by Johnny Pate that almost bring a bit of funk into the mix at times – particularly on the drums which really groove things along! Herbe Lovelle handles the drum kit, and overall things are leaner than any previous Pate work with King – nice and raw, on cuts that include "I Want You So Bad", "Friends", "Get Off My Back Woman", and "Why I Sing The Blues". CD
BB King live at the Cook County Jail in Chicago – and given the amount of great live shows going on in the institution during the early 70s, the jail must have been one hell of a place to be incarcerated! This classic features BB King entertaining the prisoners with a wickedly sharp blues set – done, like most prison live shows, with an edge that's often missing from more conventional concerts – plenty gritty, both on the vocals and guitar, with a sound the Chicago audience must have loved! Titles include "How Blue Can You Get", "Worry Worry", "Sweet Sixteen", "The Thrill Is Gone", "Please Accept My Love", and "Every Day I Have The Blues". CD
Sonny Boy Williamson —
Bummer Road ... CD MCA/Castle Communicatons (Australia), 1957/1958/1960. Used ...
Temporarily Out Of Stock
No bummer here, as the set's a really great one – filled with late 50s Chess Records sides by Sonny Boy Williamson – a number of which are previously unissued! The package does a great job of reviving this material for a newly-informed blues audience of the modern age – giving liner notes, recording details, and more – in addition to pulling together sides that hadn't appeared on album before. Titles include "Little Village" – which is 12 minutes long, and interestingly marked as "not suitable for airplay" – plus "She Got Next To Me", "Santa Claus", "Unseen Eye", "I Can't Do Without You", "Temperature 110", and "This Old Life". CD
A famous date that showcases the Chess Records influence on the sound of the Brit rock scene – one that has a number of key players "giving back" to the label, and working on a special date with Howlin Wolf! Wolf's rough vocals are in the lead on all tracks, and he also plays a bit of harmonica and guitar as well – and other artists include Steve Winwood on piano and organ, Eric Clapton on guitar, Bill Wyman on bass, and Charlie Watts on drums – all players who are respectful of the original bluesy sound of Chess, and who clearly dig the opportunity to show off their chops in the setting. Titles include "I Ain't Superstitious", "Poor Boy", "Do The Do", "Red Rooster", "Built For Comfort", "What A Woman", "Highway 49", "Who's Been Talking", and "Rocking Daddy". CD
One of the most tightly-produced of BB King's albums for MCA, but a set that's still filled with undeniable charm – and which really shows King more than able to step up to some well-deserved superstardom! There's a bit of an LA finish to the backings, but things are never too smooth – and BB's vocals and guitar both really shine in this setting – with inflections and edges that are just wonderful throughout! The balance is great – that rare ability that MCA had to serve up such records at the time – and titles include "A World Full Of Strangers", "Midnight Believer", "Never Make A Move Too Soon", "Hold On", "I Just Can't Leave Your Love Alone", and "When It All Comes Down". LP, Vinyl record album
A classic Chicago crossover of blues and soul – a wonderful album from Little Milton, and one that's cut with some of the same sophisticated overtones as work by Bobby "Blue" Bland at the time! The backings here are superb – arranged by Phil Wright and James Carter with a fair bit of larger, jazzier horns – which stand in nice contrast to Milton's rougher-edged vocals – all in a blend that's completely sublime! The rhythms echo a fair bit of the Chicago soul modes of the time – nicely stepping along with a really slinky groove – and titles include some great originals, like "Ain't No Big Deal On You", "Life Is Like That", "Can't Hold Back The Tears", and "We're Gonna Make It". LP, Vinyl record album
(80s MCA pressing.)
Sonny Boy Williamson —
One Way Out ... LP Chess, Late 50s/Early 60s. Very Good+ ...
A great little collection of work that Sonny Boy Williamson recorded for Chess in the 50s and early 60s – presented here as one of the well-done archival packages that Chess was doing in the early 70s, as interest in their classics was coming back again. Most of the numbers here feature Williamson on vocals and harmonica, working with likely Chess associates who include Otis Spann and Lafayette Leake on piano, Muddy Waters and Robert Lockwood on guitars, and Willie Dixon on bass – and the set features the tracks "Born Blind", "I Wonder Why", "This Is My Apartment", "Cool Disposition", "I Know What Love Is All About", "Too Close Together", "Keep It To Yourself", and "Don't Lose Your Eye". LP, Vinyl record album