The Best Of The Vee-Jay Years

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
A Jimmy Reed compilation titled The Best of the Vee-Jay Years is synonymous with a collection that assembles the very best of Jimmy Reed, since it was on Vee-Jay that the bluesman was in his artistic and commercial prime. Certainly this 18-song compilation isn't the first time this material has been, more or less, assembled into one place. The track listing, in fact, is very similar to Rhino's 17-song 2000 anthology Blues Masters: The Very Best of Jimmy Reed. This 2007 release is about equally fine a single-disc Reed retrospective, with most of these 1953-1963 sides having made the R&B and occasionally pop charts, including such classics as "Ain't That Lovin' You...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
A Jimmy Reed compilation titled The Best of the Vee-Jay Years is synonymous with a collection that assembles the very best of Jimmy Reed, since it was on Vee-Jay that the bluesman was in his artistic and commercial prime. Certainly this 18-song compilation isn't the first time this material has been, more or less, assembled into one place. The track listing, in fact, is very similar to Rhino's 17-song 2000 anthology Blues Masters: The Very Best of Jimmy Reed. This 2007 release is about equally fine a single-disc Reed retrospective, with most of these 1953-1963 sides having made the R&B and occasionally pop charts, including such classics as "Ain't That Lovin' You Baby," "Baby What You Want Me to Do," "Honest I Do," "Big Boss Man," "Bright Lights Big City," and "Shame Shame Shame." For those who think best-ofs should have an artist's most popular sides, this might in fact have the edge on the Rhino set, as it includes three Top Ten R&B hits "Can't Stand to See You Go," "Honey, Where You Going?," and "I'm Gonna Get My Baby" missing from the Rhino comp. More important than the chart statistics, though, is the music, and this is a fine summation of career highlights from a singer whose solid midtempo grooves, good-natured singing and harmonica work, and abundance of instantly memorable songs made him one of the top 1950s-1960s electric Chicago blues stars. Just as vitally, it also made him one of the artists most crucial to bridging blues with R&B and rock & roll, and most influential on '60s rock bands such as the Rolling Stones who covered one of the hits on this CD, "Honest I Do". The annotation is a little less comprehensive than the Rhino disc, but Billy Vera's liner notes and the track listings are satisfactorily detailed.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/25/2007
  • Label: Shout Factory
  • UPC: 826663106381
  • Catalog Number: 31063

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Jimmy Reed Primary Artist
Technical Credits
Jimmy Reed Composer
Calvin Carter Composer
Billy Vera Liner Notes
Ewart Abner Composer
Luther Dixon Composer
Emily Johnson Artwork
Jeff Palo Producer
Randy Perry Remastering
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