Although Mississippi Fred McDowell was born in 1904, his recording debut didn't happen until 1959,
when he was well into his 50's, but following that late entrance, he did record a good number of times
until his death in 1972. Equipped with an incredibly soulful voice and a ringing slide guitar attack, most
of McDowell's catalog is riveting, and although this recent entry from HighTone is only a bit longer than
a half-hour, what's here will serve as a great introduction to those unfamiliar with his work. Recorded
between 1963 and 1968, it's a stripped-down affair with McDowell's guitar well to the fore while his
strong vocals ride over the top, and his wife, Annie Mae McDowell, takes the lead for a stirring Goin'
Over The Hill. Hunter's Chapel Singers of Como, MS, appear on Just A Little More Faith, You
Got To Move, and Keep Your Lamp Trimmed And Burning, all three exceptional and deeply
moving. Fred himself delivers a good cross-section of traditional fare and gritty blues with Waitin'
For My Baby, Diving Duck Blues, My Baby Don't Treat Me Like Human Kind, Jim Steam Killed Lula,
Pea Vine Special, Down On Dankin's Farm, and Going Down South, Carry My Whip. The
short, three-paragraph introduction by Bonnie Raitt on the back cover should help boost sales to those
delighting in her work, and she continues, some thirty years on, explaining this artist's importance to
her and others. Superb sound throughout. www.hightone.com for more info.
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