The Chess Boxby Muddy Waters
The Chess Box does not contain all the great music Muddy Waters made. His talent and legacy are too large to be captured in a mere three discs, even one that spans from 1947 to 1972. This means, of course, that his legendary plantation recordings with Alan Lomax are not here, nor is his dynamic late-'70s comeback, Hard Again./i>/a>/i>
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The Chess Box based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
These three discs contain the some of the greatest music of the 20th century. So, based on that alone, this is essential listening. HOWEVER, the Chess Box is poorly compiled in some spots, especially in regard to "Hoochie Coochie Man", which is not only Muddy's greatest song, but probably the greatest song that Electric Blues has ever produced (which is saying A LOT!). The compilers decided to not use the original version of "Hoochie", instead we get a flacid, almost unlistenable alternate. Plus, several of Muddy's greatest songs for Chess are, for whatever reason, missing in action. So, to get the full story on Muddy's Chess recordings, a true music fan should first get "His Best, 1947-1955" and "His Best, 1956-1972". These two discs contain Muddy's most seminal Chess recordings (including the un-equaled original recording of "Hoochie Coochie Man"), but they also have better sound. DO NOT get "The Anthology", since it has the same alt-take of "Hoochie" as the Chess Box. After getting the previously mentioned two discs, you should proceed on to The Chess Box, then to The Complete Plantation Recordings, then to Hard Again. If, after all that, you still want more Muddy, then get the Rollin' Stone: 1947-1952 (it has, literally, every song he recorded during those years) and The Anthology (it's expensive, but it has a few songs you can't get anywhere else). So, the point is this: Muddy Waters is way, way too big a musical legend to be contained in three discs. Get this, but you'll want more, more, more.