Blues compilations are often bad ideas. Many are simply collections of session leftovers or are recordings from unknown musicians who were unknown for a reason. But the redundantly titled "American Blues Vol. 1" (is there really any other kind?) is a sublime exception. Culled from Stan Lewis' family of labels, the album is a sterling collection of gritty postwar blues, performed by some of music's legends.
Buddy Guy's falsetto and broken-glass guitar runs give an edge to "The Way You've Been Treating Me" while Texas boogie master Lightnin' Hopkins' nicotine baritone wakes up "Breakfast Time." B.B. King and Jimmy Reed offer up excellent standards, while Lowell Fulson, Jimmy Reed and T. Bone Walker wrap their R&B in some silky swing. Sonny Boy Williamson's sly reading of "Steady Rollin' Man" is the only nod to acoustic blues in this excellent collection.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.