The Best Of Lightning Hopkins
(Arhoolie Records CD 499)
by Dick Houff
Review date: March 2002
1999 KBA Award Winner|
Achievement for Blues on the Internet
Presented by the Blues Foundation
If you couldn't think of a better way of being introduced to the work of Sam "Lightning" Hopkins-go the Arhoolie route-you'll never be disappointed. I had the opportunity to see Hopkins play on several occasions, however, the thrill of meeting and talking to the man was more than I hoped for! I had been arguing with several people in the blues biz on Hopkins style and brought it to Sam's attention (delicately, I might add!). The argument from the opposition was that all of his songs sounded alike even when he changed tempo. My argument was (after talking at length with Sam) that his songs were improvs each and every time he approached the song in question-keep the people interested-add something new. He also told me; when he recorded, he preferred the "Take #1" attitude. "If you can't get it the first time-to hell with it!" As a performer, I borrowed heavily from Sam's wisdom and have steady work when I want it. Some of my favorite songs are on this collection, including, Grosebeck Blues (originally recorded on the Gold Star Recordings), and Mojo Hand.
I highly recommend this collection.
Track List: Whiskey Blues / Come On Baby / Grosebeck Blues / Mojo Hand / Going Home Blues / Jesus Will You Come Here / Tim Moore's Farm / Have You Ever Loved A Woman / Big Mama Jump / Mr. Crow & Bill Quinn / Unsuccessful Blues / Bald Headed Woman / Zolo Go (read the liner notes on the songs history-I'll leave you in suspense!) / Please Settle In Vietnam / Short Haired Woman / The Dice Game / and Once Was A Gambler.
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