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Alligator Records 40th Anniversary Collection

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
Starting with its 20th anniversary in 1991, every five years brings another double Alligator collection, and 2011 was no exception. While the 35th edition --released in 2006 -- logically featured 35 songs, the compilers couldn't quite squeeze 40 onto this 40th anniversary disc, even though owner Bruce Iglauer does admit to fading a few endings off prematurely in order to maximize the list, which hits 38 selections. The trick with these albums is to both pay tribute to the label's storied past while including enough recent acts to connect the dots between the house-rocking music Iglauer built his company on, and the more modern yet still roots-based sounds he's released ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
Starting with its 20th anniversary in 1991, every five years brings another double Alligator collection, and 2011 was no exception. While the 35th edition --released in 2006 -- logically featured 35 songs, the compilers couldn't quite squeeze 40 onto this 40th anniversary disc, even though owner Bruce Iglauer does admit to fading a few endings off prematurely in order to maximize the list, which hits 38 selections. The trick with these albums is to both pay tribute to the label's storied past while including enough recent acts to connect the dots between the house-rocking music Iglauer built his company on, and the more modern yet still roots-based sounds he's released during the last five years. He does an excellent job here, mixing not just old and new, but male and female musicians who have recorded for Alligator over the decades. Of course, no Alligator historical collection is going to exclude Hound Dog Taylor, Iglauer's first signing who remains the raucous, soulful blues-rocking standard who helped forge the label's musical direction. Newer artists such as JJ Grey & Mofro, Eric Lindell, Anders Osborne, and Janiva Magness share space with Johnny Winter, Son Seals, Koko Taylor, Albert Collins, Lonnie Brooks, Eddy "The Chief" Clearwater, and lots more. A 30-page book includes obscure information and anecdotes about each, providing a first-hand look at what attracted Iglauer to the artists. Even with 35 acts, dozens are left out, and they are listed individually at the end of the extensive and often fascinating notes. There are some predominantly acoustic performances from Mavis Staples, Saffire -- The Uppity Blues Women, Buddy Guy & Junior Wells, and Corey Harris, but the majority of the selections run to the high-energy, very plugged-in Chicago and Texas blues that Iglauer plainly loves. Between musicians such as Luther Allison, Roy Buchanan, Son Seals, and Koko Taylor, all of whom have created arguably their finest work while signed to Alligator and that's saying plenty, there is an embarrassment of riches to choose from. While some of these names have also appeared on previous anniversary editions, no songs are repeated from those albums. Clearly, the intention of this and the previous sets is as loss leaders to sell more individual Alligator discs, but they play as perfectly enjoyable mash-ups of roots music, and a historical music lesson that anyone with an affinity for the genre will appreciate.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/22/2011
  • Label: Alligator Records
  • UPC: 014551252627
  • Catalog Number: 51252
  • Sales rank: 18,866

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 I’m a Woman - Koko Taylor (4:35)
  2. 2 I Ain’t Drunk - Albert Collins (4:07)
  3. 3 Strange Feeling - Michael Burks (4:30)
  4. 4 Backup Plan - Tommy Castro (4:33)
  5. 5 Icicles In My Meatloaf - Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials (5:01)
  6. 6 We the People - Guitar Shorty (4:21)
  7. 7 U B U - Rick Estrin and the Nightcats (4:01)
  8. 8 The Party’s Still Going On - Marcia Ball (3:26)
  9. 9 That’s a Pretty Good Love - Roomful of Blues (2:56)
  10. 10 Have Blues, Will Travel - Bnois King (4:07)
  11. 11 Going Home (Where Women Got Meat On Their Bones) - Son Seals (3:44)
  12. 12 Give Me My Coat and Shoes - Junior Wells (3:51)
  13. 13 Slipped, Tripped and Fell In Love - Janiva Magness (3:42)
  14. 14 Mojo Boogie - Johnny Winter (4:54)
  15. 15 Last Dirty Deal - Coco Montoya (3:54)
  16. 16 Fish Ain’t Bitin’ - Corey Harris (3:30)
  17. 17 All the King’s Horses - Luther Allison (5:38)
  18. 18 Echoes of My Sins - Anders Osborne (4:35)
  19. 19 Double Whammy - Stevie Ray Vaughan (3:35)
Disc 2
  1. 1 T-Bone Shuffle - Johnny Copeland (4:56)
  2. 2 Don’t Take Advantage of Me - Lonnie Brooks (4:05)
  3. 3 A Good Leavin’ Alone - Eddy Clearwater (4:09)
  4. 4 Sitting At Home Alone - Hound Dog Taylor & the Houserockers (5:23)
  5. 5 Roll Your Moneymaker - Little Smokey Smothers (4:05)
  6. 6 With the Quickness - James Cotton (2:34)
  7. 7 It’s My Own Tears - Shemekia Copeland (6:06)
  8. 8 Red Beans - Professor Longhair (4:12)
  9. 9 Where Hwy 61 Runs - Charlie Musselwhite (4:00)
  10. 10 You Can’t Judge a Book By the Cover - Roy Buchanan (3:23)
  11. 11 Step Into the Light - Mavis Staples (4:22)
  12. 12 Speak No Evil - Tinsley Ellis (4:01)
  13. 13 It’s a Drag - Eric Lindell (3:21)
  14. 14 Going Down To the River - Saffire -- The Uppity Blues Women (3:14)
  15. 15 Feed My Soul - The Holmes Brothers (4:49)
  16. 16 Two-Fisted Mama - Katie Webster (3:07)
  17. 17 Daddy Pinocchio - William Clarke (3:43)
  18. 18 When the Levee Breaks - Buckwheat Zydeco (5:17)
  19. 19 The Sun Is Shining Down - JJ Grey & Mofro (4:32)
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Album Credits

Technical Credits
Lonnie Brooks Producer
James Cotton Producer
Tinsley Ellis Producer
Smokin' Joe Kubek Producer
Lonnie Mack Producer
Charlie Musselwhite Composer
Johnny Otis Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Saffire -- The Uppity Blues Women Producer
Son Seals Producer
Katie Webster Producer
Elvin Bishop Producer
Roy Buchanan Producer
Paul Barrére Producer
Bonnie Hayes Engineer, Mastering
Mississippi Fred McDowell Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Mark Bingham Engineer, Mastering
John Hahn Producer
David Axelbaum Engineer, Mastering
Blaise Barton Engineer, Mastering
Steve Berlin Producer
Stu Black Engineer, Mastering
Jim DeVito Engineer, Mastering
Rick Estrin Producer
David Farrell Engineer, Mastering
Sam Fishkin Engineer, Mastering
Jim Gaines Producer
Larry Goetz Engineer, Mastering
John Hampton Engineer, Mastering
Ice Cube Slim Producer
Bruce Iglauer Producer, Liner Notes
Vasti Jackson Producer
Allison Kaslow Producer
Andy Kaslow Producer
Gene Lawson Engineer, Mastering
Richard McLeese Producer
Lillian Shedd McMurry Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Dave McNair Mastering
Rodney Mills Mastering
Toby Mountain Mastering
Richard Mullen Engineer, Mastering
Justin Niebank Engineer, Mastering
Jay Newland Engineer, Mastering
Glenn Nishida Engineer, Mastering
Derek O'Brien Producer
Wesley Race Producer
Warren Riker Engineer, Mastering
Jay Shilliday Engineer, Mastering
Dick Shurman Producer
Alan Silverman Mastering
Bob Skye Engineer, Mastering
Mavis Staples Producer
Chris Strachwitz Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Stuart Sullivan Engineer, Mastering
Didier Tricard Producer
Jim Tullio Producer, Engineer, Mastering
Chris Vachon Producer
Stevie Ray Vaughan Producer
Shelly Yakus Engineer, Mastering
Joan Osborne Producer
Jimmy Vivino Producer
Bob Koester Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Corey Harris Producer
Anders Osborne Producer
Ronnie Baker Brooks Producer
Jeff Covert Engineer, Mastering
Ricky Barnes Engineer, Mastering
Tom Coyne Mastering
Pepper Keenan Producer
Brian Jensen Mastering
Dan Prothero Producer, Engineer, Mastering
Dan Stout Mastering
Ari Rios Engineer, Mastering
Sterling Winfield Engineer, Mastering
Dag Haeggqvist Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
Michael Trossman Logo
Janiva Magness Producer
Stanton Moore Producer
Neil Citron Engineer, Mastering
Dave Darling Producer
Ben Mumphrey Engineer, Mastering
Chris Goldsmith Composer, Producer
Jeff Hillman Mastering
Roman Klun Engineer, Mastering
Brian Brinkerhoff Producer
Scott Brenton Engineer, Mastering
Wyzard Producer
Kid Andersen Producer, Engineer, Mastering
Roger Cole Engineer, Mastering
Drew Vonderhaar Engineer, Mastering
Eric Lindell Producer
Collin Jordan Mastering
Clearwater Composer
Musselwhite Composer
Ryan Lipman Engineer, Mastering
Mendelsohn Composer
Crutcher Composer
Jackie Hairston Producer
Stevie Mendell Engineer, Mastering
liggins Composer
Richard Whittington Engineer, Mastering
McDaniel Composer
Freddy Breitberg Engineer, Mastering
Solberg Composer
Mike Iacopelli Engineer, Mastering
Sam Siefiert Engineer, Mastering
Jim Haines Engineer, Mastering
Jerry Hoyson Engineer, Mastering
Tony Terrebone Engineer, Mastering
Seymour Grenspan Teacher/Educator, Inspiration
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 7, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    40 Years Of Lively Blues (And Proud Of It)

    While many record labels began to stop recording blues artists as the 1970's progressed, Alligator Records has been making them steadily over the years. Formed in 1971, the Chicago-based label was personally funded by Bruce Iglauer who produced Hound Dog Taylor & The House Rockers. It has since become the home of Koko Taylor, Albert Collins, Son Seals, Marcia Ball, Charles Musselwaite and many others. While their 20th and 25th anniversary compilations were less than spectacular, their 40th anniversary collection is truly just that. The reason for that is because Alligator's roster has gotten better in the last decade alone. Another reason is that these recordings are not overproduced and have a clear, audacious sound with very few overdubs, giving these recordings are truly live sound. Among the up and coming artists are Tommy Castro ("Backup Plan"), Shemekia Copeland ("It's My Own Tears") and Coco Montoya ("Last Dirty Deal"). Meanwhile, it has also been the repository of past greats who still had a few more good recordings in them, such as Johnny Winter, Mavis Staples, James Cotton and Professor Longhair. The collection begins with Koko Taylor (who recorded with the label for 25 years) doing her smoldering take on Muddy Waters' "Mannish Boy" and turns it into "I'm A Woman". There are also updated versions of classic blues such as Roomful of Blues take on "That's A Pretty Good Love". Buckwheat Zydeco appears here as well with a little bit of cajun music on "When The Levee Breaks" (not to be confused with Led Zepellin's song of the same name). However, the truly remarkable songs here are the ones by the unknowns. These include Guitar Shorty's triumphantly defiant "We The People" and Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials' grossly hilarious "Icicles In My Meatloaf". My personal favorite is a faster, louder and arguably better rendition of Lonnie Mack's "Wham!" done by Lonnie himself and guest Stevie Ray Vaughan. Alligator has often prided itself on "Original Houserocking Music". The 40th anniversary collection proves that and demands that you turn the volume all the way up.

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