Various Artists - Blues Masters, Vol. 12: Memphis Blues

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Various Artists
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Memphis Blues documents the rough and tumble growth of a genre called the blues on a street called Beale in the late '20s and into the early '50s. There are selections from two of the best early jug bands -- the Memphis Jug Band and Cannon's Jug Stompers -- along with cuts from familiar figures like Memphis Minnie and Fury Lewis. Following "Highway No. 61 Blues" by Jack Kelly & His South Memphis Jug Band, the collection takes a quantum leap to the late '40s and early '50s, jumping from prewar acoustic to postwar electric blues. B.B. King weighs in with "When Your Baby Packs Up and Goes" while Howlin' Wolf offers "Moanin' at Midnight." There's a particularly energetic take on "Cotton Crop Blues" by James Cotton, with some of the most down-and-dirty guitar (by Pat Hare) one would be likely to hear in 1954, and a really screeching version of "Bear Cat" -- an answer to Big Mama Thornton's "Hound Dog" -- by Rufus Thomas Jr. The names of the record labels, including Chess and Sun, show what an important role these independents played in the development of modern blues and, subsequently, rock & roll. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.

1) Mr. Crump Don't Like It - The Beale Street Sheiks (02:41)
2) Memphis Jug Blues - Memphis Jug Band (03:30)
3) Viola Lee Blues - Cannon's Jug Stompers (03:10)
4) Jim Jackson's Kansas City Blues, Pt. 1 - Jim Jackson (03:14)
5) Kassie Jones, Pt. 2 - Furry Lewis (03:02)
6) Bumble Bee - Kansas Joe & Memphis Minnie (02:47)
7) Milk Cow Blues - Sleepy John Estes (03:01)
8) Highway No. 61 Blues - Jack Kelly (02:48)
9) We All Gotta Go Sometime - Joe Hill Louis (02:41)
10) When Your Baby Packs Up and Goes - B.B. King (02:28)
11) Try Me One More Time - Willie Nix (02:40)
12) Jumpin' Blues - Big Walter Horton (02:16)
13) Moanin' at Midnight - Howlin' Wolf (02:55)
14) Cotton Crop Blues - James Cotton (02:58)
15) Feelin' Good - Little Junior's Blue Flames (02:59)
16) Bear Cat - Rufus Thomas (02:51)
17) Booted - Rosco Gordon (03:04)
18) Lovin' Blues - Beale Streeters / Bobby "Blue" Bland (03:15)

Blues Masters, Vol. 12: Memphis Blues
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Explicit Lyrics
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Blues Masters, Vol. 12: Memphis Blues | Various Artists