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Acoustic Blues


Suitcase Lowest new price: $4.80
Lowest used price: $2.03
Brand: Sony Music Cmg
Model: 2195780

Suitcase is the highly anticipated new studio album from three time Grammy award winning artist Keb' Mo. Produced by Keb' Mo and long time collaborator John Porter (B.B. King, Los Lonely Boys, Santana), Suitcase is Keb's first album of original music since 2004's Grammy winning release, Keep It Simple. Keb' Mo will be touring all summer and performing songs off of Suitcase on a nationwide tour with Bonnie Raitt.

The simple blues-informed pop charms of L.A. songwriter Kevin Moore remain unchanged on his eighth album. All twelve of these songs about romance and its triumphs and failures go down easy, thanks to his unhurried and unmannered singing, and arrangements that run slow and spare. That openness allows Moore's slide playing, perfected on the porch of Mississippi delta bluesman Eugene Powell, to add subtle, pretty decoration to tunes like "Your Love" and "Eileen." He's got a sympathetic cohort in John Porter, who also produced Moore's debut album and is especially adept at capturing the sounds of the acoustic instruments that dominate this disc. After pursuing all the twists and turns of love and its baggage on Suitcase, Moore ends the CD with "Life Is Beautiful," an ode to the pure and basic joys of life as a couple, reflected in a blithely primal trio accompaniment of crisp acoustic guitar, mandolin, and drums. --Ted Drozdowski

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The Complete Studio Recordings Mississippi John Hurt

The Complete Studio Recordings Mississippi John Hurt Lowest new price: $19.56
Lowest used price: $11.25
Brand: CD
Model: 1978417

Vanguard captured the beauty and soul of this Delta bluesman to great effect on The Immortal Mississippi John Hurt, Today! and his last studio recording, Last Sessions . Those three LPs are all here, featuring Moaning the Blues; Poor Boy, Long Ways from Home; I'm Satisfied; Keep On Knocking; All Night Long , and more, with detailed notes.

Gentle, graceful, subtle, sweet--these aren't descriptions generally applied to the blues, but they offer a sense of Mississippi John Hurt's uniqueness and enduring legacy. Rediscovered during the 1960s folk boom after last recording in the late 1920s, Hurt cut the three albums compiled here when he was in his early 70s. His conversational phrasing sounds as natural as breathing, while his ragtime-tinged fingerpicking on acoustic guitar reveals more complexity the closer you listen. Beyond blues classics like "Candy Man" (the sly sensualist wasn't referring to lollipops), Hurt's range encompasses everything from folkish narratives ("Talking Casey," "Spike Driver Blues") to Southern spirituals ("Nearer My God to Thee," "Farther Along"). Though Hurt died in 1966, shortly after the last of these sessions, the music still sounds so fresh, you can almost hear the twinkle in his eye. --Don McLeese

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The Best Of Mississippi John Hurt

The Best Of Mississippi John Hurt Lowest new price: $6.00
Lowest used price: $4.99
Brand: CD
Model: 1978443


This inappropriately titled album is actually a concert recording from a performance at Oberlin College in 1965. Regardless, Hurt's rich, gentle voice and relaxed, flowing guitar lines could soothe the stormiest Monday. Among the hymns and traditional songs heard here are "I Shall Not Be Moved," "Nearer My God to Thee," "Since I've Laid This Burden Down," and "You Are My Sunshine." Complementing those are Hurt folk/blues staples, notably "Monday Morning Blues," "Coffee Blues," and "C.C. Rider." The blues patriarch's warmth and geniality come through here with such emotional intimacy that you can't help being deeply moved. --Genevieve Williams

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Eric Clapton - Unplugged

Eric Clapton - Unplugged Lowest new price: $27.98
Lowest used price: $8.05
List price: $16.98
Brand: WEA DES Moines Video
Model: REP 38311

Eric Clapton performs a live acoustic set for the MTV unplugged series which features a slow version of 'Layla'.

This laid-back, live, intimate session featuring Eric Clapton's bluesy guitar playing is quite enjoyable--if a bit limited in scope. With little lighting and frills and a small group backing him up, Clapton picks up his acoustic guitar and leads the listener down memory lane. Clapton is clearly on his best behavior as he engages in minimal small talk with his audience and lets the music speak for itself. The erstwhile Yardbird and former member of Cream and Blind Faith riffs through some dozen-plus songs including "Before You Accuse Me," "Tears in Heaven," "Walkin' Blues," "Alberta," "San Francisco Bay Blues" (in which Clapton thankfully cuts loose a bit), and his great hits "Layla" (written for his ex-wife, Patti Boyd Harrison) and "Old Love," a standard that garnered big applause. But the simple set and sparse stage can barely contain the energy that fills the arena when Clapton launches into "Rollin' and Tumblin'," a raucous, rousing bit of blues that Clapton is certainly still up for. This video is primarily for Clapton's most ardent fans, providing some heartfelt, soulful instrumental prowess in addition to an aging British rocker singing the blues as well as a white guy can. --Paula Nechak


  • Eric Clapton-Unplugged was recorded at Bray Studios in London and features Clapton on acoustic guitar performing fourteen songs including "Signe," "Before You Accuse Me," "Hey Hey," "Tears in Heaven," Lonely Stranger," "Nobody Knows You When Youre Down & Out," "Layla," "Running on Faith," "Walkin Blues," "Alberta," "San Francisco Bay Blues," "Malted Milk," "Old Love" and "Rollin &Tumblin."Video Fo

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Loaded Lowest new price: $8.98
Lowest used price: $5.99
Brand: Wood Brothers, The
Model: 3847671

Following up to their critically-praised debut Ways Not to Lose, The Wood Brothers (vocalist/guitarist Oliver and bassist Chris) are back with their rootsy blend of Americana, Blues, and Folk on Loaded. Again enlisting longtime friend and artistic collaborator John Medeski as producer (who gets behind the keys on a few tracks as well), The Wood Brothers create an expansive exploration of their music, eschewing the more spare, acoustic, in-studio setting of their debut album for a more collaborative approach with other musicians and friends, resulting in a fleshed-out, multi-layered band effort. Blue Note. 2008.

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The Complete Aladdin Recordings

The Complete Aladdin Recordings Lowest new price: $9.27
Lowest used price: $3.69
Brand: CD
Model: 2018372

Lightnin' Hopkins - Complete Aladdin Recordings - Double Cd

Forty-three tracks of the seminal bluesman's recordings for Aladdin in the 1940s, The Complete Aladdin Recordings is a must-hear. Performing alone with his guitar or with sparse accompaniment--usually pianist Wilson "Thunder" Smith--Lightnin' dishes out the best of Texas country-blues. Starting off with "Katie May," Hopkins's first recording for Aladdin, the two-CD set winds its way through the guitarist's years with the label, showcasing what he was up to before his decline in popularity and eventual revival with the folk boom of the 1960s. Those expecting the almost-rock & roll of the latter period won't here any of that here, but they will hear its germination in such rollicking tunes as "Big Mama Jump" and "Let Me Play with Your Poodle." Definitely required, not only to hear the best of early Lightnin', but to hear the best of Texas country-blues. --Genevieve Williams

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Christmas Party With Eddie G.

Christmas Party With Eddie G. Lowest new price: $11.98
Lowest used price: $11.00

Christmas Party With Eddie G. by Various

When sold by, this product will be manufactured on demand using CD-R recordable media.'s standard return policy will apply.

Eddie G. ("no relation to Kenny," as his liner notes emphasize) is a Hollywood comedy writer who gained some notoriety for his annual made-for-friends Christmas tapes. In 1990, Columbia released one of his tapes on CD, and it remains among the finest Christmas compilations on the market. Highlights include such delights as Detroit Junior's rockin' "Christmas Day," the Skeletons' innovative blend of "Do You Hear What I Hear" with the Kinks' "You Really Got Me" (taking up where the Ventures left off on their Christmas LP), and terrific contributions from Foghat (yes, Foghat!), Louis Prima, and George Jones & Tammy Wynette, who are oh-so-fine on "Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus." Devotees still long for volume two. --Bill Holdship

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The Complete Plantation Recordings

The Complete Plantation Recordings Lowest new price: $5.11
Lowest used price: $3.55
Model: 2017017

Recorded on Stovall Plantation in Clarksdale, MS by Alan Lomax in 1941 and 1942, these 18 tracks represent the first recordings of a sharecropper named McKinley Morganfield a.k.a. Muddy Waters. And, yeah, there's an unreleased track, and four interviews, but really, for something this historic the less said the better. Just listen.

This is a treasure trove--for the Muddy Waters fan, for the blues historian, for the country-blues enthusiast. Alan Lomax, searching for Robert Johnson (recently deceased), came through and recorded a young McKinley Morganfield. The rest is history. Early versions of future classics can be found on these field recordings from 1941-42, and the guitar and voice that would have unimaginable influence on blues and rock & roll. There's no Chicago yet in these often-scratchy recordings, but if you listen, you can hear where it came from. --Genevieve Williams

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Hair in My Eyes Like a Highland Steer

Hair in My Eyes Like a Highland Steer Lowest new price: $5.99
Lowest used price: $4.95
Model: corblund4

This is Corb Lund's fourth CD and was produced by Harry Stinson (Dead Reckoners, Steve Earle, Lyle Lovett) and recorded at Treasure Isle Recorders in Nashville. It runs the gamut of roots music forms and flavours, from western swing to Waylon-esque country rock to ragtime to acoustic blues. The lyrical content of his new work continues to reflect Lund's unique life experience, blending a Western upbringing with a decade on the indie rock scene. The album includes guest vocal performances by Western icon Ian Tyson and living folk legend Ramblin' Jack Elliott. 2005.

Corb Lund and his crackerjack band, the Hurtin' Albertans, lassoed a pen full of awards in the recent Canadian Country Music Awards (and the Western Canadian Music Awards), and for anyone just coming to Lund's brand of ranchin' and ropin' tunes, this album (ironically recorded in Nashville) serves as a fine introduction. The baby-faced Canuck blends a prairie upbringing with 10 years as an indie rocker in his last group, the Smalls, and throws in a smattering of acoustic blues, folk, rockabilly, ragtime, and country-rock to balance his traditional cowpoke leanings. While his subject matter generally hangs around the chutes and the plains, or follows the white line down the highway, Lund is so lyrically and rhythmically inventive that special guests Ian Tyson, Ramblin' Jack Elliott, and Riders in the Sky's Ranger Doug and Too Slim probably begged to ride herd. Put your boots up, pull out a can of chew, and get acquainted with the brightest new star under the western moon. --Alanna Nash

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The Legend Of Blind Joe Death

The Legend Of Blind Joe Death Lowest new price: $7.79
Lowest used price: $7.75
Model: 1987226

Here it is at last, the privately pressed album (in both its second mono and third stereo versions) that launched one of the most extraordinary careers in American roots music. Legend has it that only 95 copies of the original were made, yet it made Fahey's reputation worldwide. Includes Transcendental Waterfall (long version); On Doing an Evil Deed Blues , and more. One of a kind.

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