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LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THE BLUES - DETROIT (3CD set)

Fantastic Voyage (FVTD070)

Calvin Frazier, Walter Mitchell, Robert Richard, Detroit Count, Sylvester Cotton, John Lee Hooker, Eddie Burns, Eddie Kirkland, Baby Boy Warren, LC Green, Playboy Fuller, One String Sam, Johnny Howard, TJ Fowler and many more..

Fantastic Voyage has already put out sets on Memphis, New York, Chicago and Atlanta but now it's time to focus on Detroit; the city that was home to hustling entrepreneurs like Bernard Bessman, Joe Von Battle and Idessa Malone who ran labels such as Fortune, JVB and Battle.

In this set, you get John Lee Hooker's I'm In The Mood but this is the only big hit - most of the music here being the lesser known output from Detroit's finest. JLH headlines but he's closely followed by his old buddies Eddie Kirkland and Eddie Burns and then there's Baby Boy Warren whose recordings made him a legend amongst hard-core collectors.

LC Green and John Brim provide some strong city blues while the R&B side of the genre is represented by Paul Williams, TJ Fowler and Wild Bill Moore.

Pre-war blues pianist Big Maceo, still on the scene in 1951, made a new version of Worried Life Blues and Calvin Frazier, who recorded for the Library of Congress in 1938, is here 20 years on, rockin' out in fine electrified R&B style!  

A few before-they-were-famous stars are hidden in the mix too so you get Lavern Baker appearing as Little Miss Sharecropper on I Want To Rock, Jackie Wilson performing as Sonny Wilson on The Rainy Day Blues and Louisiana Red, under the pseudonym Playboy Fuller, cranking out the tough Sugar Cane Highway.

This Detroit collection is full of strong and varied stuff and is just as essential as the others in this great little series. Highly recommended!

 

Review Date: October 2010

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