March 1997

Luther Allison
Love Me Mama
Delmark Records
Bukka White
Big Daddy
Biograph Records
Leadbelly and Blind Willie McTell
Masters of the Country Blues
Biograph Records
Paul Butterfield Blues Band
East-West Live

MO' FROM THE ARCHIVES: Luther Allison, Love Me Mama (Delmark DE-625; 60:44)-this 1969 recording was the Chicago bluesman's first as a leader, documenting his raw and wild West Side sound. Unparalleled passion in his vocals, tough licks and earthy vibes.Bukka White, Big Daddy (Biograph BCD 145; 43:08)-barrelchested vocals and brutally forceful playing on a National Steel guitar by the Delta blues legend, recorded in West Memphis, Arkansas in 1973, just four years before his death; Leadbelly, Blind Willie McTell, Masters of the Country Blues (Biograph BCD 144; 58:05)-Huddie Ledbetter belts with gospel-holler intensity on eight tracks recorded in 1935, including "Death Letter Blues" and "T.B. Woman Blues" while Blind Willie demonstrates a more mellifluous vocal style along with an astounding command of the guitar on 13 recordings from 1940. The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, East-West Live (Winner 447; 56:47)-sprawling, psychedelic modal-blues jams from 1966-67 captured live (in substandard audio quality) at nightclubs in Chicago, Hollywood and Huntington Beach, featuring much extended (if rambling) guitar work by Michael Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop.

Originally published in March 1997
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