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BLUES & GOSPEL

Chris Thomas King -> The Kings Of Rhythm

 
CHRIS THOMAS KING
FREDDY KING
JIMMY KING

SAUNDERS KING
THE KINGS OF RHYTHM

 

CHRIS THOMAS KING 21 Century Blues 2107 The Roots - The Soul Of Chris Thomas King CD $13.98
All acoustic album with 19 tracks from this talented performer is half original songs (John Law Burned Down The Liquor Store/ Watermelon Man/ Sinking Feeling/ Martha's Blues, etc) and half covers of classic blues and gospel from the 20s and 30s (Hard Time Killing Floor/ Come On In My Kitchen/ If I Had Possession Over Judgment Day/ Canned Heat Blues/ Midnight Special, etc.

 
CHRIS THOMAS KING Arhoolie 9020 It's A Cold Ass World CD $9.98
10 tracks, 42 mins, recommended
Now that King is a fledgling movie star, starring as Tommy Johnson in "Oh Brother Where Art Thou?" & recording a CD of the legendary bluesman's material, it's time to discover his earlier material. The son of baton Rouge legend Tabby Thomas, Chris Strachowitz put out his 1st LP on Arhoolie, as "Chris Thomas The Beginning." This is a straight re-issue of that '86 LP, with the young guitarist claiming love of the music of his father as well as The Sugar Hill Gang! This is a wonderful set of small group blues, with the singer/guitarist just joined by bass & his brother Tammy Thomas on drums. There's some fine stuff on this debut, with no Sugar Hill in evidence he'd experiment with rap in the future, though there does seem to be some Hendrix influence. Tunes include The Blues Is Back/ Going Home To Louisiana/ South Side Shuffle/ Cocaine (Snow White) (GM)

 
FREDDY KING Ace CDCHD 454 Blues Guitar Hero: The Influential Early Sessions CD $18.98
24 tracks, 69 min., recommended
The appropriate subtitle here is "the influential early sessions.' Recorded between 1961 and 1964 these Federal Records numbers set Freddy King apart as both a major blues guitar player and singer. Among the instrumental and vocal highlights here are his biggest hit, Hide Away/ San-Ho-Zay/ Christmas Tears/ Have You Ever Loved a Woman/ Sen-Sa-Shun/ Takin' Care of Business/ Just Pickin', and She Put the Whammy on Me. Though there's no shortage of Freddy King reissues and most of the tracks here are available on several other reissues, this one by Ace is a particularly appealing one. Its sound quality is excellent; its cover art is first class, and its notes, by Dave Williams, are appropriately appreciative. (DH)
FREDDIE KING: Christmas Tears/ Come On/ Have You Ever Loved A Woman/ Hideaway/ I Love The Woman/ I'm On My Way To Atlanta/ I'm Tore Down/ If You Believe (In What You Do)/ In The Open/ It's Too Bad Things Are Going So Tough/ Just Pickin'/ Lonesome Whistle Blues/ San-Ho-Zay/ See See Baby/ Sen-Sa-Shun/ She Put The Whammy On Me/ Side Tracked/ Sittin' On The Boat Dock/ Takin' Care Of Business/ The Stumble/ The Welfare (Turns Its Back On You)/ What About Love/ You Know That You Love Me (But You Never Tell Me So)/ You've Got To Love Her With A Feeling

 
FREDDY KING Ace CDCHD 861 Blues Guitar Hero, Vol. 2 CD $18.98
FREDDY KING: Bossa Nova Blues/ Double Eyed Wammy/ Full Time Love/ Girl from Kookamunga/ Heads Up/ High Rise/ I Love You More Everyday/ Look, Ma I'm Cryin'/ Meet Me at the Station/ Now I've Got a Woman/ Onion Rings/ Out Front/ Over Drive/ Remington Ride/ She's the One/ Some Other Day, Some Other Time/ Someday After Awhile (You'll Be Sorry)/ Teardrops on Your Letter/ Use What You've Got/ Walk Down That Aisle (Honey Chile)/ Wash Out/ You Can't Hide/ You Mean Mean Woman (How Can Your Love Be True)/ You've Got Me Licked

 
FREDDY KING BGO BGOCD 593 Larger Than Life CD $17.98
1975 recording which, despite being one of Freddy's last and most commercial efforts, does contain some scorching live versions of The Things I Used To Do, Woke Up This Morning and Have You Ever Loved A Woman. 9 tunes in all, mostly live. (MB)

 
FREDDY KING Capitol 27245 Best Of The Shelter Years CD $11.98
FREDDY KING: Ain't No Big Deal On You/ Big Legged Woman/ Boogie Man/ Five Long Years/ Going Down/ Guitar Boogie/ Help Me Through The Day/ I'd Rather Be Blind/ I'm Ready/ Living On The Highway/ Lowdown In Lodi/ Me And My Guitar/ Palace Of The King/ Please Send Me Someone To Love/ Reconsider Baby/ Same Old Blues/ Walking By Myself/ Woman Across The River

 
FREDDY KING Collectables 2824 The Very Best Of Freddy King, Volume 1 CD $15.98
25 tracks, 70 mins, essential
At last we have the complete Federal/ King recordings of this modern blues giant in chronological order on three CDs. Along with the other Kings, B.B. and Albert, Freddy was one of the most influential guitarists in modern blues and was a master of the blues guitar instrumental. Though he was later to develop a high energy rock flavored style these earlier sides feature a more lyrical, melodic approach showing his debt to down home Chicago guitarists like Jimmy Rogers and Eddie Taylor. He was also a brilliant singer with a powerful and expressive style. His Federal and King sessions recorded between 1960 and 1966 were usually produced and arranged by the brilliant Sonny Thompson who also provided stellar piano work and co-wrote many of the songs and tunes. Other sidemen on these sessions included guitarist Fred Jordan, sax men Gene Redd and Clifford Scott and others. This first volume features recordings from 1960 and '61 and includes his most successful recordings including the classic instrumental Hide Away, the great mid-tempo blues Lonesome Whistle Blues, the hard driving I'm Tore Down, the Christmas blues Christmas Tears as well as lots of great non-hits like Have You Ever Loved A Woman/ It's Too Bad (Things Are Going So Tough)/ Sen-Sa-Shun/ Takin' Care Of Business and more. Sound quality is excellent and there are brief notes by Victor Pearlin. (FS)
FREDDY KING: Christmas Tears/ Have You Ever Loved A Woman/ Heads Up/ Hide Away/ I Hear Jingle Bells/ I Love That Woman/ I'm Tore Down/ If You Believe (in What You Do)/ In The Open/ It's Too Bad (things Are Going So Tough)/ Just Pickin'/ Let Me Be (stay Away From Me)/ Lonesome Whistle Blues/ Onion Rings/ Out Front/ San-ho-zay/ See See Baby/ Sen-sa-shun/ Side Tracked/ Takin' Care Of Business/ The Stumble/ Wash Out/ You Know That You Love Me/ You Mean Mean Woman (how Can Your Love Be True)/ You've Got To Love Her With A Feeling

 
FREDDY KING Collectables 2825 The Very Best Of Freddy King, Volume 2 CD $15.98
25 tracks, 80 mins, highly recommended
Though Freddy didn't have any hits after 1961 he continued to turn out superb recordings though there was the occasional attempt at more "commercial" material (Do The President Twist, the pop R&B ballad You Walked In, etc) though his Bossa Nova Watusi Twist is much better than you might expect from the material. Nearly all these sides are from 1962 and among the highlights are some stunning instrumentals - High Rise and Texas Oil are what great blues guitar playing is all about. Among the vocal highlights are two great slow blues She Put The Whammy On Me and (The Welfare) Turns Its Back On You and the rocking Come On. Sound is a bit muffled on some cuts and Freddy's voice seems to occasionally be buried in the mix but, otherwise, the sound is excellent. (FS)
FREDDY KING: (let Your Love) Watch Over Me/ (the Welfare) Turns Its Back On You/ Bossa Nova Blues/ Come On/ Do The President Twist/ Driving Sideways/ High Rise/ I'm On My Way To Atlanta/ Is My Baby Mad With Me/ It Hurts To Be In Love/ It's Easy Child/ Look Ma I'm Crying/ Over Drive/ She Put The Whammy On Me/ Sittin' On The Boatdock/ Someday After A While (you'll Be Sorry)/ Swooshy/ Texas Oil/ The Bossa Nova Watusi Twist/ Walk Down That Aisle (honey Chile)/ What About Love/ You Can't Hide/ You Walked In/ You're Barkin' Up The Wrong Tree/ Your Love Keeps A-working On Me

 
FREDDY KING Collectables 2826 The Very Best Of Freddy King, Volume 3 CD $15.98
27 tracks, 79 mins, highly recommended
This disc features the rest of Freddy's Federal and King sides recorded between 1962 and 1966. It starts with three rather bland pop R&B sides with Freddy's guitar nowhere in earshot. Things then pick up with the first of 11 instrumentals on this set - the silly titled but excellent Surf Monkey. Other fine instros featured on this disc include Low Tide, Freddy's bluesy version of the western swing tune Remington Ride, the superb Man Hole, the after hours sounding Sad Nite Owl and others. There's also lots of fine blues vocals including the mid-tempo Meet Me At The Station, a fine cover of Hank Ballard's beautiful Teardrops On Your Letter and from his last King session the hot Double-Eyed Whammy. Freddy's Federal & King recordings helped write the book on modern blues guitar and now your chance to study these sacred texts in their entirety. (FS)
FREDDY KING: (i'd Love To) Make Love To You/ Cloud Sailin'/ Double-eyed Wammy/ Fish Fare/ Freddy's Midnite Dream/ Full Time Love/ Funny Bone/ Girl From Kookamunga/ I Love You More Everyday/ If You Have It/ King-a-ling/ Low Tide/ Man Hole/ Meet Me At The Station/ Monkey Donkey/ Nickel Plated/ Now I've Got A Woman/ One Hundred Years/ Remington Ride/ She's That Kind/ She's The One/ Some Other Day Some Other Time/ Surf Monkey/ Teardrops On Your Letter/ The Sad Nite Owl/ Use What You've Got/ You've Got Me Licked

 
FREDDY KING EMI 53866B Getting Ready... CD $11.98
Reissue of 1970 session (recorded at the Chess studio in Chicago!) with Same Old Blues/Dust My Broom/Going Down/Tore Down and two unreleased cuts - Gimme Some Lovin'/Send Me Someone To Love. 12 in all.

 
FREDDY KING EMI 53867B Texas Cannonball CD $11.98
Reissue of the 1972 Texas Cannonball LP, plus 3 cuts from the same session, and 4 odds and ends from 1970/'71. Freddie was a powerful bluesman right up until his death in 1976, but to be honest, his creative juices had pretty much run dry by the 70's. Relying on blues and pop standards updated by producer/ keyboardist Leon Russell's blues-rock production, King still managed to sing and play with total conviction. Even the top 40 hit Ain't No Sunshine gets a truly soulful treatment, along with potent airings of The Sky Is Crying/ Reconsider Baby/ The Same Thing and remakes of Freddie's own Tore Down/ Love Her With A Feeling. (MB)

 
FREDDY KING Hip-O 520 909 Ultimate Collection CD $14.98
18 track retrospective of Freddie's too brief career featuring recordings made between 1960 and 1975 for Federal, Cotillion, Shelter and RSO. Great music though half a dozen tracks duplicate the still available "Best Of" collection on Rhino - anyone would think that there isn't enough really good material by Freddie to warrant a completely different collection. Shame on you Hip-O!

 
FREDDY KING King 773 Let's Hide Away And Dance Away With Freddy King CD $9.98
Repro of great all-instrumental album - 11 tracks in all
FREDDY KING: Butterscotch/ Heads Up/ Hide Away/ In The Open/ Just Pickin'/ Out Front/ San-Ho-Zay/ Sen-Sa-Shun/ Side Tracked/ Swooshy/ The Stumble/ Wash Out

 
FREDDY KING Modern Blues Recordings MBCD 722 Freddy King Sings CD $15.98
This is a reissue of Freddy's first album featuring Freddy's intense vocals and plangent guitar on 12 great songs including such classics as Have You Ever Loved A Woman/ You've Got To Love Her With A Feeling/ I'm Tore Down/ I Love The Woman and others. He is accompanied by a solid rhythm section with producer Sonny Thompson on piano plus, on some cuts, some effective horns. For this release Modern Blues Recordings have digitally remastered the original two track mono tapes and produced a true stereo master. The album features original cover and back liner plus an insert with extensive notes, discographical information, etc. (FS)

 
FREDDY KING Wolf 120.800 Let The Good Times Roll CD $15.98

 
FREDDY KING/ LULU REED/ SONNY THOMPSON King 777 Boy-Girl-Boy CD $9.98
Fine collection featuring 4 sides from 1962 Freddy King dueting with tough singer Lulu Reed, the remaining 8 tracks are by Lulu from 1955, '56 and '61. All the tracks feature excellent accompaniments by band led by King house band leader Sonny Thompson. Excellent collection. (FS)

 
JIMMY KING Bullseye Blues 9582 Soldier For The Blues CD $15.98

 
LITTLE JIMMY KING Bullseye Blues 9509 And The Memphis Soul Survivors CD $15.98
Other Kings (B.B. and Albert), speak highly of this young guitarist, born as Manuel Gales and renamed after Jimi Hendrix and Albert King. His music is highly derivative, with riffs from mentor Albert (not surprising since he toured with him for four years), blasts of Stevie Ray Vaughan and Hendrix, and a shot of Sly Stone on Sex Machine. He's a fair singer and a strong player, but I'm left somewhat dissatisfied. However, some strengths are found in Jimmy McCracklin's Same Lovin' which features nice session licks from Andrew Love, Archie Turner and Teenie Hodges, and there's great guitar throughout Albert King's Wild Woman. (TR)

 
LITTLE JIMMY KING Bullseye Blues 9537 Something Inside Of Me CD $15.98
11 tracks, 47 mins, good
Left-handed Memphis guitarist, Little Jimmy King (nee Manuel Gates) who was employed by Albert King as his second guitarist plays mainly straight ahead urban blues. Bullseye Blues describes him as "the future of blues-rock guitar" but that's overstating it. He's a good interpreter of the blues with an eye winking occasionally towards the pizzaz of rock. Mostly new material together with fine covers of the title track (an Elmore James classic) and Albert King's Can't You See What You're Doing To Me. General drawbacks include the hollow snare drum of Tommy Shannon (Double Trouble) and the self-indulgent, distorted late-60s fare of Resolution #1. (
TR)
LITTLE JIMMY KING: Baby, Baby/ Blues Been Good to Me/ Can't You See What You're Doin' To Me/ Resolution #1/ Shouldn't Have Left Me/ Something Inside of Me/ Strange Brew/ Under Pressure/ Unlovable/ Upside Down & Backwards/ Win, Lose or Draw

 
SAUNDERS KING Ace CDCHD 865 Cool Blues, Jumps & Shuffles CD $18.98
25 tracks, 73 tracks, highly recommended
25 tracks recorded between 1942 and 1954 by this fine and influential West Coast singer and guitarist for Rhythm, Modern, RPM and Flair. It includes his biggest hit, the soulful two part S.K. Blues, recorded in 1942 and covered by a number of artists. Other popular titles featured here include What's The Story, Morning Glory/ Empty Bedroom Blues and Stay Gone Blues. There are other fine tracks here including some unissued songs, alternate takes and sides that made their first appearance on a long unavailable Ace LP. In addition to slow blues and jumping jazzy up-tempo numbers Saunders tried his hand at several pop ballads like Summertime and Danny Boy which are pretty forgettable. 16 page booklet has extensive notes by Opal Louis Nations plus rare photos, label shots, ads and a complete discography. (FS)

   
THE KINGS OF RHYTHM Varese 66232 The Sun Sessions CD $16.98
20 tracks, 55 mins, highly recommended
Hot blues from the vaults of Sun courtesy of Ike Turner and his Kings Of Rhythm. The material comes from a variety of different sessions at the Sun studios in Memphis between 1951 and 1954 and from a 1958 session in St. Louis. A good deal of the material was not originally issued but it's all top quality featuring tough vocals by Tommy Hodge, Billy "The Kid" Emerson, Bonnie Turner, Johnny O'Neal and Ike himself - there are also two superb instrumentals from sax man Raymond Hill. Instrumental work is exceptional throughout including hot guitar from Ike. Excellent sound and informative notes from Bill Dahl. (FS)
BILLY "THE KID" EMERSON: Hey Little Girl/ I'm Not Going Home/ If Loving Is Believing/ No Teasing Around/ The Woodchuck/ When My Baby Quit Me #1/ When My Baby Quit Me #2/ RAYMOND HILL: Bourbon Street Jump/ The Snuggle/ Way Down in the Congo/ TOMMY HODGE: Get It Over Baby/ How Long Will It Last/ I'm Gonna Forget About You Baby (Matchbox)/ Why Should I Keep Trying/ You Can't Be the One for Me/ JOHNNY O'NEAL: Dead Letter Blues/ Ugly Woman/ BONNIE TURNER: Love Is a Gamble/ Old Brother Jack/ IKE TURNER: I'm Lonesome Baby

 

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