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Blues Guitar Killers
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  • Personnel: Eddy Clearwater, Eddie Taylor Jr., Freddie King, Jimmy Rogers , John Primer, Johnny B. Moore, Lurrie Bell, Magic Slim, Otis Rush, Phil Guy, U.P. Wilson (vocals, guitar); Jimmy Johnson , Willie J. Davis, Michael Coleman , Floyd Bonner, Tutu Jones (guitar); Billy Branch (harp); Big Walter Horton (harmonica); Abb Locke, Red Holloway (saxophone); Lewis Stephens, Kenny Barker, Lafayette Leake, Allen Batts (piano); Alvin Hemphill (organ); Jerry Porter, Calep Emphrey, Jody Young, Donald Coleman, Tyrone Starks, Al Duncan , Mike Kennedy , Ray Allison, Casey Jones (drums).
  • Recording information: Chicago, IL (??/??/1956-05/18/2000); Dallas, TX (??/??/1956-05/18/2000); Evanston, IL (??/??/1956-05/18/2000); France (??/??/1956-05/18/2000); Vienna, Austria (??/??/1956-05/18/2000).
  • This set from Austria's Wolf Records brings together several old veterans of Chicago blues guitar with some of the younger Windy City guitar slingers to make an intriguing sampler of the city's various blues styles. What is immediately clear is how urgent and immediate older players like Otis Rush (his 1956 version of the brilliantly mordant "I Can't Quit You Baby" is here), Freddie King ("Stormy Monday Blues" from 1974), and Hubert Sumlin (a gritty acoustic take on "I've Been Gone") sound, while the younger players like Vance Kelly, Michael Coleman, and Eddie Taylor, Jr. -- for all their obvious talent -- seem to be doing flashy rehashes of what the older generation already produced some 40 years ago. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, since it preserves the classic feel of electric Chicago blues, but it is a little worrisome, since even a slow-to-change genre like the blues still needs to put on some fresh new clothes every once in a while. ~ Steve Leggett
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