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Gustav Yegorov
Gustav Yegorov

Jimmy Reed - Blues Masters: The Very Best Of Jimmy Reed (2000) UPD


Over the years, many, many Jimmy Reed compilations have been released, including many repackagings of his classic Vee-Jay material. Sometimes, the compilations have been excellent -- the 1993 disc Speak the Lyrics to Me, Mama Reed is a prime example -- other times they've been shabby, and since many of them have featured the same basic songs, it's hard for novices to discern which are worthwhile and which aren't. Fortunately, Rhino's 2000 release The Very Best of Jimmy Reed provides first-timers with an ideal introductory package, while satisfying longtime fans by serving 17 of his very best sides for Vee-Jay. All of the classic songs are here -- "Ain't That Lovin' You Baby," "You've Got Me Dizzy," "Honest I Do," "Take Out Some Insurance," "Going to New York," "Baby What You Want Me to Do," "Big Boss Man," and "Bright Lights Big City" -- along with such stellar, lesser-known items as his first Vee-Jay single "High and Lonesome," "Oh John," the eerie violin-laced "Odds and Ends," and its boogie-minded flip-side "Ends and Odds." It's a well-rounded, compelling collection that proves Reed's music is always satisfying, even if it's all variations on a basic, three-chord boogie. Or, as Reed expert Cub Koda states in the liner notes, it's "nothin' fancy, but it sure hits the spot every single time." The Very Best of Jimmy Reed proves his statement true with 17 timeless tracks. This is an essential cornerstone of any blues collection.




Jimmy Reed - Blues Masters: The Very Best of Jimmy Reed (2000)


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Everything I create will always be blues-based because it is my foundation, my rock, my savior, my everything. Chicago Blues in particular. Growing up in a musical household every day we were listening to the best Chicago blues music you could hear on earth from artists like Muddy, Howlin Wolf, Little Walter, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, Etta James, Jimmy Reed (whom my dad played rhythm guitar for), of course, my dad Lonnie, Magic Sam, Buddy & Junior, and being raised around Luther & Bernard, KoKo. But then also growing up in an urban neighborhood we were also exposed to mainstream radio which played everything from James Brown, Rick James, George Clinton, Earth, Wind and Fire, Prince, Michael Jackson Sugar Hill Gang, Grandmaster Flash, and the Furious Five. The rock stations would play Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac, Led Zeppelin, to Elvis.


MCA, 1965. Live at the Regal is one of the best live blues albums of all time, and it showcases B.B. King's spectacular guitar work, piercing voice, and talent for working a live theater audience. The gems found in this treasure chest include "Every Day I Have the Blues," "Sweet Little Angel," "How Blue Can You Get," "Worry, Worry," and "You Upset Me Baby." If you ever forget that the blues is best served up as a live listening experience, go back to this album and to King as he tears up the joint.


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