Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues: The Best of the Blues

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - William Pearl
There’s a quote you might be hearing a great deal in this “Year of the Blues” (2003). “The blues are the roots,” said the legendary songwriter Willie Dixon. “Everything else is the fruits.” Proving Dixon’s point -- once again -- is this compact collection, which brings together some of the classic blues artists with their rock 'n' rolling progeny. And even a handful of finely chosen selections from the early blues figures is enough to point out how the blues form became the model for later R&B and pop music. The open emotionality of such giants as Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, and Bessie Smith can also be clearly heard in blues-loving rockers like Janis Joplin, ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - William Pearl
There’s a quote you might be hearing a great deal in this “Year of the Blues” (2003). “The blues are the roots,” said the legendary songwriter Willie Dixon. “Everything else is the fruits.” Proving Dixon’s point -- once again -- is this compact collection, which brings together some of the classic blues artists with their rock 'n' rolling progeny. And even a handful of finely chosen selections from the early blues figures is enough to point out how the blues form became the model for later R&B and pop music. The open emotionality of such giants as Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, and Bessie Smith can also be clearly heard in blues-loving rockers like Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and Bonnie Raitt. A slew of recent artists that reflect a strong blues influence -- Keb’ Mo’, Cassandra Wilson, and Susan Tedeschi among them -- make telling appearances as well. Although it just whets the appetite for more blues and blues-rock, you can’t go wrong with killer cuts including “The Thrill Is Gone,” “Red House,” “(I’m Your) Hoochie Coochie Man,” and “I’d Rather Go Blind” -- each a high point of American vernacular music.
All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
A massive media campaign comprising seven documentary films broadcast on public television and released as a DVD box set, plus accompanying soundtrack albums, a 13-part radio series, a companion book, 12 individual artist compilations, and a five-CD box set, The Blues, executive produced by filmmaker Martin Scorsese, threatened to be even more all-pervasive than Ken Burns' Jazz project, after which it was clearly patterned. And you might say it all boiled down to this single-disc distillation, which draws upon the vaults of major labels Universal and Sony. Even if all of that other material didn't make it clear, the absurdity of reducing the blues to a one-hour, 17-track album would be obvious anyway. But the way one judges this disc may depend upon whether it is trying to be "the best of the blues" or "the best of 'The Blues.'" It hasn't much hope of being the former, but as a one-CD sampler of the five-CD set, it does just fine. At the very least, it contains many indisputably classic blues performances by some of the indisputably major blues artists. Purists may object reasonably that it covers a very wide range, from the rural blues of Robert Johnson to the Southern rock of the Allman Brothers Band and the -- what can one call it? -- designer blues of Keb' Mo'. But that is in keeping with the series of films on which the five-CD set and this highlights disc are based. If the album doesn't really work as a collection, despite the individual talents and performances included, that may suggest that "the blues" has long-since become an umbrella term covering many different musical styles, not all of which work well together. And that only demonstrates its pervasive influence.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/26/2003
  • Label: Utv Records
  • UPC: 602498603741
  • Catalog Number: 000070402
  • Sales rank: 73,001

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Cross Road Blues - Robert Johnson (2:39)
  2. 2 Muddy Water (A Mississippi Moan) (3:08)
  3. 3 Devil Got My Woman (3:00)
  4. 4 Evil (Is Going On) - Howlin' Wolf (2:53)
  5. 5 (I'm Your) Hoochie Coochie Man (2:50)
  6. 6 Boom Boom (2:32)
  7. 7 Death Letter Blues - Son House (4:21)
  8. 8 Hard Times (No One Knows Better Than I) - Ray Charles (2:54)
  9. 9 I'd Rather Go Blind (2:35)
  10. 10 The Thrill Is Gone (5:25)
  11. 11 All Your Love - John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers (3:34)
  12. 12 One Good Man (4:10)
  13. 13 Red House (3:51)
  14. 14 One Way Out - The Allman Brothers Band (4:59)
  15. 15 Pride and Joy - Stevie Ray Vaughan (3:40)
  16. 16 Am I Wrong (2:19)
  17. 17 Just Won't Burn (4:44)
  18. 18 Voodoo Music - Los Lobos (3:22)
  19. 19 Vietnam Blues (4:32)
  20. 20 Round and Round (3:40)
  21. 21 I Pity the Fool - Shemekia Copeland (5:01)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Robert Cray Guitar, Vocals
John Lee Hooker Guitar, Vocals
Etta James Vocals
Skip James Guitar, Vocals
Little Walter Harmonica
Bessie Smith Vocals
Hubert Sumlin Guitar
Gregg Allman Electric Piano, Vocals
Dickey Betts Guitar
Ray Charles Piano, Vocals
Dr. John Piano
Janis Joplin Vocals
John Mayall Organ, Vocals
Ivan Neville Organ
Bonnie Raitt Guitar, Vocals
Buster Bailey Clarinet
Cassandra Wilson Vocals
Luis Gasca Trumpet
Don Wilkerson Tenor Saxophone
Noel Redding Bass
Jody Williams Guitar
Al Wilson Harmonica
John McVie Bass
Coleman Hawkins Clarinet
Calvin "Fuzz" Jones Bass
Duane Allman Slide Guitar
Maury Baker Drums
Carl Banks Organ
Fred Below Drums
Steve Berlin Baritone Saxophone, Group Member
Victor Bisetti Percussion
Joe Bridgewater Trumpet
Howlin' Wolf Harmonica, Vocals
Brad Campbell Bass
Lonnie Castille Drums
Ben Cauley Trumpet
Charles Chalmers Saxophone
Eric Clapton Guitar
Terry Clements Tenor Saxophone
Charlie Dixon Banjo
Ricky Fataar Drums
Fletcher Henderson Piano
Hughie Flint Drums
Cornelius "Snookey" Flowers Baritone Saxophone
Jack Hale Trombone
Jimmy Harrison Trombone
Jeff Haynes Percussion
Jimi Hendrix Guitar, Vocals
David Hidalgo Guitar, Vocals
David Hood Bass
Jim Horn Baritone Saxophone
Son House Guitar, Vocals
James "Hutch" Hutchinson Bass, Vocals
Gerald Jemmott Bass
Jaimoe Johnson Drums
Jimmy Johnson Guitar
Robert Johnson Guitar, Vocals
Richard Kermode Organ
B.B. King Guitar, Vocals
Danny Kortchmar Guitar
Chris Layton Drums, Group Member
Andrew Love Tenor Saxophone
Herb Lovelle Drums
Albert Lowe Guitar
Conrad Lozano Bass
Hugh McCracken Guitar
Gene Miller Trumpet
Mitch Mitchell Drums
Muddy Waters Guitar, Vocals
David "Fathead" Newman Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Floyd Newman Saxophone
Berry Oakley Bass
Earl Phillips Drums
Jimmy Rogers Guitar
Cesar Rosas Guitar
Johnny Lee Schell Guitar, Vocals
Tommy Shannon Bass, Group Member
Roosevelt Sheffield Bass
Joe "Fox" Smith Cornet
Otis Spann Piano
Pete Thomas Percussion, Drums
Butch Trucks Drums
Aaron Varnell Saxophone
Stevie Ray Vaughan Guitar, Vocals, Group Member
Riley Webb Trumpet
Willie Weeks Bass
Tom West Organ
Keb' Mo' Guitar, Vocals
Kevin Breit Guitar
Tom Hambridge Drums
Roger Dawkins Drums
Dewey Oldham Organ, Piano
Willie Dixon Band Bass
Louie Pérez Guitar
Susan Tedeschi Guitar, Vocals
Shemekia Copeland Vocals
Sam Andrews Guitar
Jim Lamond Bass
Steve Jordan Drums
Cougar Estrada Percussion
Jeff Scott Young Keyboards, Hammond Organ, Vocals
Paul "Harry" Harris Keyboards
Marvin Sewall Guitar
William Peebles Drums
Technical Credits
Willie Dixon Composer
John Lee Hooker Composer
Skip James Composer
J.B. Lenoir Composer
Ray Charles Composer
Janis Joplin Composer
Bonnie Raitt Producer
John Hammond Sr. Producer
Roy Hawkins Composer
Mike Vernon Producer
Chas Chandler Producer
Peter DeRose Composer
Tom Dowd Producer
Frank Driggs Producer
Ulrich Felsburg Executive Producer
Bill Foster Composer
Rick Hall Producer
Jimi Hendrix Composer
Son House Composer
Elmore James Composer
Robert Johnson Composer
Don Law Producer
Deadric Malone Composer
Andy McKaie Producer
Gabriel Mekler Producer
Kevin Moore Composer
John Porter Producer
Otis Rush Composer
Marshall Sehorn Composer
Bill Szymczyk Producer
Pat Thrall Engineer
Jo Trent Composer
Stevie Ray Vaughan Composer
Bert de Coteaux Horn Arrangements, String Arrangements
Steve Durkee Engineer
Mark A. Humphrey Liner Notes
Tom Hambridge Producer
Vartan Art Direction
Harry Richman Composer
Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble Producer
Christopher Austopchuk Art Direction
Howard Fritzson Art Direction
Gavin Lurssen Mastering
Martin Scorsese Liner Notes, Executive Producer
Susan Tedeschi Composer
Margaret Bodde Video Producer
Rick Darnell Composer
Steve Jordan Producer
Max Feldman Engineer
Pat Lawrence Executive Producer
Public Domain Composer
Adam Owett Art Direction
Richard Hutton Video Producer
Ellen Nygaard Icon
Ellington Jordan Composer
Jody Patton Executive Producer
Jeff Jones Executive Producer
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