[20 October 2011]
Hoodoo Man Blues is the archetypal Chicago blues album; the standard to which all other Chicago blues albums are compared. Recorded back in 1965, the record had high ambitions as the creators laid down songs meant to be played in order rather than as a collection of blues singles. Junior Wells wails on harmonica and sings like he means every dark and dirty lyric he sings. Buddy Guy’s guitar playing eloquently emotes the feeling behind the words as he riffs and ornaments Wells’ phasing. Jack Myers on bass and Billy Warren on drums lay down a foundation so solid that Wells and Guy just know their playing will always have a base from which to soar. The album has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and was chosen by Living Blues as one of its top ten Desert Island discs. This newly remastered edition contains the original 12 tracks, three alternate versions, and four never-before-released sides from the original session. It also contains the original liner notes and a 16-page booklet with eight previously unissued photos and more. Blues albums don’t get any better than this. A true classic!