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|20th Century Masters: The Best Of Etta James (Millennium Collection)
Lowest new price: $3.36
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Brand: Universal Distribution
Hear the reigning queen of cool jazz croon her way through 11 of her best tunes on this greatest hits collection.
Few vocalists can muster the power and sass of Etta James when she's rocking the mike on classic R&B tunes like "Tell Mama" or "Something's Got a Hold on Me." But James also had a way with a ballad, and her sensitive readings of songs such as "At Last" and "All I Could Do Was Cry" made her a fan favorite in the early '60s. Had she not been sidelined for a while by an addiction to heroin, today we might think of James, not Aretha, as the Queen of Soul. Because this set offers only 11 cuts, it's generally inferior to Her Best: The Chess 50th Anniversary Collection, which boasts 20 tunes. Still, it's a satisfying intro to the delightful "Miss Peaches" nonetheless. --Daniel Durchholz
|Her Best - The Chess 50th Anniversary Collection
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Her Best - The Chess 50th Anniversary Collection by Etta James
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Whether she sings string-laden pop ballads, lively soul, or gritty electric blues, James's high-powered, enormously expressive voice displays a knack for passionate blues inflections. Emotionally charged ballads including "At Last" and "All I Could Do is Cry" find James blasting through the orchestra with unearthly wails and moans. "If I Can't Have You," a duet with Harvey Fuqua, drops the orchestra in favor of horn-driven R&B and "Something's Got a Hold On Me" is a gospel-flavored romp reminiscent of Ray Charles. A live version of Jimmy Reed's "Baby, What You Want Me to Do" shows her raunchiest Chicago-blues style, and "In the Basement," with Sugar Pie DeSanto, is a funky workout. Also here are three classics from her soul-drenched 1967 Muscle Shoals sessions. --Marc Greilsamer
Lowest new price: $4.09
NEW Combo BLUWAVS CD and FLAC FILE
Lowest new price: $5.82
Lowest used price: $4.39
Brand: Muddy Waters
Muddy returned to his acoustic roots on this 1964 LP, expanded with five bonus tracks from Muddy's next two Chess sessions!
Muddy Waters started out playing acoustic blues in the Delta, and it shows on this return to his roots, designed to appeal to the mid-1960s surge of interest in folk music. The back of the CD includes a photo of Waters with bassist and songwriter Willie Dixon, as well as a very young Buddy Guy, gathered around a single microphone. This particular CD reissue includes five bonus tracks, among which are "The Same Thing" and "Short Dress Woman," which take advantage of the longer CD running time. All of the other reasons to hear this one remain--Waters's strong, confident voice, the relaxed smoothness of the material, and the surprisingly clean recording, made even cleaner by the digital remastering. --Genevieve Williams
Lowest new price: $4.26
Lowest used price: $0.75
Brand: Word Entertainment
On 'Illuminations,' Groban worked with veteran producer Rick Rubin, known for his critically acclaimed work with Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Johnny Cash, and Dixie Chicks among many others. Groban co-wrote the majority of the songs, including 'Hidden Away,' which he wrote with Dan Wilson - former leader of the band Semisonic and co-writer of several cuts on the Dixie Chicks' 'Not Ready to Make Nice.' 'Hidden Away' was recorded live with Groban singing and playing piano, Matt Sweeney and Smokey Hormel on acoustic guitars, and veteran R&B icon Spooner Oldham on organ, with a striking orchestral arrangement by David Campbell added later. The opening piano chords and the unfolding melody evoke a timeless Americana, a thread from Stephen Foster through Aaron Copland through Paul Simon and Randy Newman, as Groban makes a heartfelt plea not to hide true love or one's true self.
'Illuminations' finds both Groban and Rubin stepping out of each one's respective zone and creating an entirely new zone. The bracing result fulfills Rubin's vision of a 'fine art' Groban record, marrying the warmth of the sweeping American roots of Groban's writing and the grandeur of classical settings by matching the live, one-take performances by Groban and the intimate, core acoustic band with colorful orchestral arrangements by David Campbell and James Newton Howard.
- GROBAN JOSH ILLUMINATIONS
|The Gospel Of Blues
Lowest new price: $10.74
Lowest used price: $3.96
|Best Of Chess: Original Versions Of Songs in Cadillac Records
Lowest new price: $3.97
Lowest used price: $2.80
The 2008 movie Cadillac Records is the story of Chess Records. The Best of Chess is the original versions of the songs used in the Cadillac Records movie starring Beyonce, Mos Def, Solange, Jeffrey Wright, Raphael Saadiq and others. Cadillac Records chronicles the history of Chess Records, the pre-eminent blues label of the 1950s and 1960s co-founded by Leonard Chess and his brother Phil. Featured songs in Cadillac Records by Etta James (played by Beyonce Knowles), Muddy Waters (Jeffrey Wright), Little Walter (Columbus Short), Willie Dixon (Cedric the Entertainer), Chuck Berry (Mos Def), Howlin' Wolf (Eamonn Walker) and more.
|Songs That Got Us Through WWII, Vol. 2
Lowest new price: $47.97
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Lowest new price: $10.66
Lowest used price: $7.93
No Description Available.
Genre: Blues Music
Media Format: Compact Disk
Release Date: 22-JAN-2002
Koko Taylor's something of a deluxe edition herself. With a Cadillac of a voice that rumbles the earth and rattles the glassware, she reigns as the undisputed empress of the blues. Deluxe Edition, a retrospective of her 15 years with Alligator Records, may not include such classics as "I Got What It Takes" and the Willie Dixon-penned "Twenty-Nine Ways," but it does have "I'm a Woman," Taylor's answer to Muddy Waters, just to kick things off. Other highlights include "Born Under a Bad Sign"--a duet with Buddy Guy, of course. Much of Taylor's work in the 1970s included such duets, and here can also be found Carey Bell (on "Mother Nature"), Pinetop Perkins (on "Hey Bartender"), and B.B. King (on "Blues Hotel"). Everything on Deluxe Edition brims with Taylor's trademark attitude, the sass and toughness for which she's well known. Yet Taylor is capable of astonishing tenderness as well, as is borne out by "I'd Rather Go Blind" and "Time Will Tell." Though this collection boasts only one obligatory previously unreleased track, it's a doozy: "Man Size Job," simply put, kicks ass. Looks like Taylor's reign is in no danger whatsoever. --Genevieve Williams
|Billie Holiday's Greatest Hits (Decca)
Lowest new price: $3.67
Lowest used price: $1.41
There's no such thing as a genuine Billie Holiday greatest-hits collection--her career was split among too many labels for that--but this single-disc distillation of the Complete Decca Recordings 2 CD set (recorded between 1944 and 1950) is pretty solid. Holiday's in fine vocal form (though her accompaniment is undistinguished easy-listening stuff; the choir on "God Bless the Child" is a bit frustrating), and the songs are arranged to work as an album rather than chronologically. She transcends the ideas of torch songs, of blues, of ballad singing--her version of "Lover Man" exemplifies erotic despair, tormented and aroused at once--and even the lesser-known tracks here are pleasant surprises, like a Leonard Bernstein song. --Douglas Wolk
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