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The Rolling Stones, Muddy Waters and Little Walter – Record Reviews

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MUDDY WATERS & ROLLING STONES CHECKERBOARD LOUNGE

muddywaters-rollingstones-checkerboardlounge

180g 2LP/DVD COLORED VINYL
Restored From Original Footage
Mastered From Original Source by Bob Clearmountain
First Official Release of Rare Live 1981 Performance at the Checkerboard Lounge in Chicago
Selections:
LP1 – Side A:
1. Sweet Little Angel
2. Flip Flop and Fly
3. Introduction (Instrumental)
4. You Don’t Have To Go
5. Country Boy
LP1 – Side B:
1. Baby Please Don’t Go
2. Hoochie Coochie Man
3. Long Distance Call
LP2 – Side C:
1. Mannish Boy
2. Got My Mojo Workin’
3. Next Time You See Me
LP2 – Side D:
1. One Eyed Woman
2. Baby Please Don’t Go (Instrumental)
3. Clouds In My Heart
4. Champagne and Reefer
DVD
1. Sweet Little Angel
2. Flip Flop and Fly
3. Muddy Waters Introduction
4. You Don’t Have To Go
5. Country Boy
6. Baby Please Don’t Go
7. Hoochie Coochie Man
8. Long Distance Call
9. Mannish Boy
10. Got My Mojo Working
11. Next Time You See Me
12. One Eyed Woman
13. Baby Please Don’t Go (instrumental)
14. Blow Wind Blow
15. Champagne & Reefer

On November 22, 1981, the Rolling Stones were making one of their mammoth tours when they had a night off in Chicago and went to see Muddy Waters performing at the Checkerboard Lounge. Mick Jagger, Ron Wood, Keith Richards, and Ian Stewart wound up jamming with Muddy and his band that night. Lucky for us it was all caught on tape and camera. The only question I have is how on earth did it take 21 years for us to get an official release of this incredible live performance; it has been only available as a bootleg all these years.

One word sums up this LP and DVD package, fun! A lot of times when you get fancy packaging, colored vinyl and freebies like the DVD, that’s all you get. Not this time; you get loads of great music, a really fun DVD, and the neat packaging.

Yes, the LP sounds as it is probably cut from a digital transfer, but by the time Bob Clearmountain finished editing and mixing, it is very alive sounding, transparent, but full-bodied. It even does a fair job of capturing the air and a spacious club sound. It’s easy to hear the background instrumentation and the intermittent audience and club noise. The drums and bass are very real sounding and the voices are very natural. Muddy Water’s breathy voice sound clear and has real immediacy.

THE ROLLING STONES SOME GIRLS LIVE IN TEXAS

THE-ROLLING-STONES-SOME-GIRLS-LIVE-IN-TEXAS

180g 2LP/DVD Colored Vinyl
Red & Yellow Colored Vinyl
DVD Region Code: 1, NTSC
Gatefold jacket
Audio mixed by Bob Clearmountain from original multi-track tapes
Mastered at Metropolis Mastering
Pressed at Rainbo Records
Carefully restored from original 16mm film
Selections:
LP1 – Side A:
1. Let It Rock
2. All Down The Line
3. Honky Tonk Women
4. Star Star
5. When the Whip Comes Down
LP1 – Side B:
6. Beast of Burden
7. Miss You
8. Imagination
9. Shattered
LP2 – Side C:
10. Respectable
11. Far Away Eyes
12. Love In Vain
13. Tumbling Dice
LP2 – Side D:
14. Happy
15. Sweet Little Sixteen
16. Brown Sugar
17. Jumpin’ Jack Flash
DVD:
1. Let It Rock
2. All Down the Line
3. Honky Tonk Women
4. Star Star
5. When the Whip Comes Down
6. Beast of Burden
7. Miss You
8. Imagination
9. Shattered
10. Respectable
11. Far Away Eyes
12. Love In Vain
13. Tumbling Dice
14. Happy
15. Sweet Little Sixteen
16. Brown Sugar
17. Jumpin’ Jack Flash

 

Bonus Material:
Mick Jagger 2011 interview (15 minutes)
Saturday Night Live (October 7, 1978 – 21 minutes)
1. Tomorrow (with Dan Aykroyd & Mick Jagger)
2. Beast of Burden
3. Respectable
4. Shattered
ABC News 20/20 interviews with The Stones (aired June 20, 1978 – 5 minutes)

Well, while we’re talking about the Rolling Stones and fun, let’s move on to another big surprise for me. This LP and DVD are packed full of great fun and great music that also sound wonderful. It’s a recording of a live concert performed and recorded during a show at the Will Rogers Auditorium in Fort Worth, Texas, July 18, 1978 while they were touring in the promotion of their Some Girls album.

This album is considered by many Stone fans to be one of their very best. The tour followed immediately on the release of the Some Girls album and by the time the band arrived in Texas in mid-July the album was the number one LP in America. I was working on my maters at the time living in Fort Worth. I worked at the local Ramada Inn as the night clerk and while I couldn’t afford to go to the concert I remember well how packed the motel was with people going to the concert. The concert was fairly basics with the band and their music featured center stage, and not a concert that depended on elaborate staging and antics.

This live recording delivers the raw, energetic sound of the Stones and a crowd of fans who are clearly loving the show. Many of the tracks from Some Girls are included in the live set with a sprinkling of Stones classics from earlier albums. Originally shot on 16mm film, the footage has been carefully restored and the sound remixed and remastered by Bob Clearmountain from the original multitrack tapes. So we are treated to a great recoding of the Rolling Stones at the peak of their form.

LITTLE WALTER – CONFESSION’ THE BLUES

LITTLE-WALTER-CONFESSION-THE-BLUES

Limited edition,180-gram vinyl reissue of the classic Chess Records LP
Selections:
1. It Ain’t Right
2. Rocker
3. I Got To Find My Baby
4. Lights Out
5. One More Chance With You
6. Crazy Legs
7. Temperature
8. I Got To Go
9. Crazy Mixed Up World
10. Quarter To Twelve
11. Confessin’ The Blues
12. The Toddle
13. Up The Line
14. Rock Bottom
15. Mean Old Frisco

Little Walter was amazing, he could make his harp sound like a tenor sax, also he was a singer, composer, bandleader and harmonica virtuoso. Little Walter was at the forefront of developing and defining the sound that is now known as Chicago blues harp. Little Walter was the one single finest blues artist to have been produced by the post-war Chicago blues movement. He was as a member of, and a vital contributor to the Muddy Waters band that Walter was given full rein to stretch his wings, and it is a tribute to Muddy’s foresight and generosity of spirit that he recognized Walter’s great talent early on and allowed him every opportunity and encouragement to develop it. Muddy’s band was always a great incubator of blues talent and Walter’s is easily the brightest jewel in the crown.
Walter recorded in all about 100 titles for the Chess label, of which slightly more than half were issued on records as singles. This LP is made up of songs cut between 1953 and 1959; none of which had ever appeared on LP before the original 1974 release of this collection. It features Walter in his prime, playing alongside Robert Lockwood, Jr. and Louis Myers or Luther Tucker on guitar, and Muddy Waters present on the track “Rock Bottom”, mostly with Willie Dixon on bass, and Fred Below on the drums, with Lafayette Leake or Otis Spann on piano.

Little Willie’s harp work is first rate and will more than likely surprise you at how powerful the harmonica can be both emotionally and musically. I really enjoyed this album.

JACKIE MCLEAN 4, 5 AND 6 200g LP (MONO)

JACKIE-MCLEAN-4-5-AND-6-200g-LP

200 gram mono LP
Mastered by Kevin Gray & Cut from the Original Mono Master Tapes!
Pressed at Quality Record Pressings & Plated by Gary Salstrom!
Plated by Gary Salstrom
Mastered by Kevin Gray
Musicians:
– Jackie McLean, alto sax
– Mal Waldron, piano
– Doug Watkins, bass
– Art Taylor, drumsDonald Byrd, trumpet (3,4,6)
– Hank Mobley, tenor sax (4)
Selections:
Side One:
1. Sentimental Journey
2. Why Was I Born?
3. When I Fall In Love
Side Two:
4. Contour
5. Abstraction
6. Confirmation

McLean’s 4, 5 and 6 is a great picture of the musician that most jazz lovers have grown to love over the years. His alto sax is played with power and beauty and he has surrounded himself on this album by the finest of jazz players.

On this LP we find Jackie in the standards department interpreting “Sentimental Journey”, “Why Was I Born?” and “When I Fall In Love”. Mal Waldron contributes solos on all three and Doug Watkins travels a solo road on the “Journey”.

Then the LP shifts to a set of original numbers. The addition of Donald Byrd makes the group a quintet. He and Jackie teamed up and it is magic on this LP. Both originals in this segment of the session are by pianists. The somber beauty of “Abstraction” was created by Mal Waldron and the pulsating “Contour” was molded by Kenny Drew.

Hank Mobley, another ex-Messenger brings the group to sextet size in the original and Charlie Parker’s classic, “Confirmation”. The LP sounds first rate and the music is simply as good as it gets.

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