McKinley Morganfield became the legendary Muddy Waters while going on to become the all-declarative 'father of Chicago blues'. Dating to 1969 sessions with Chess Records' producer Marshall Chess and bonus tracks from a live Chicago concert of the same year, this platter has twenty prime-Muddy cuts to jump up and down over. This is the height of Muddy's fame and game, he has by this time perfected his ensemble sound that redefined Chicago electric blues. This release's golden classic stature is only further enhanced by the superb musical teams that Muddy fields for the affairs.
Muddy's vocals and guitar are here bridged by Michael Bloomfield on the guitar, Paul Butterfield on the harmonica, Otis Spann on the piano, Donald Dunn on the bass, and the 'Shuffle Master' Sam Lay on the drumkit. Guests include: Buddy Miles who plays drums on one tune; and Phil Upchurch handles the bass on a slab too. Harpist Jeff Carp also blows a tune and Paul Asbell kicks in the rhythm guitar on three tracks.
From his own hand Muddy plays "All Aboard", "Mean Disposition", "You Can't Love What You Never Had", "Walking Through The Park", "Standin' Around Cryin'", "Country Boy", and live versions of "Long Distance Call" and "Baby Please Don't Go". Chilling guitar action, romping rhythms, and explosive piano combine with Muddy's smooth vocal deliveries and Butterfield's honking harmonica to make this arresting session work and live material. Willie Dixon's "I'm Ready", "Oh Yeah", and "Love The Life I Live", Mel London's "Sugar Sweet", Eddie Boyd's "Twenty Four Hours", Bernard Roth's "Forty Days And Forty Nights", and Bill Broonzy's "I Feel So Good" comprise the remaining material.
This hot 1969 lineup is enough reason to buy this remastered edition. Astoundingly fluent from start to finish, Muddy keeps the troops at their paces, with power blues the obvious result. Hear the very definition of Chicago electric blues on this plate! This reissue closes out twenty house-raising slices with Waters' two-part theme "Got My Mojo Workin'" finishing out the sets. You can stir it up and stir it up, but this is as Muddy as it gets, the blues general leading his troops into illustrious musical battle. It never sounded sweeter!
MCA Records; 2220 Colorado Ave.; Santa Monica, CA 90404: or, www.umusic.com
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