CD The Best of Mississippi Fred McDowell (CD 687254),
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The Best of Mississippi Fred McDowell

  • 1. Write Me a Few of Your Lines
    2. Do My Baby Ever Think of Me
    3. Levee Camp Blues
    4. When the Saints Go Marching In
    5. My Bottleneck (Story)
    6. Fred's Worried Life Blues
    7. Kokomo Blues
    8. Meet Me Down in Froggy Bottom
    9. Good Morning Little Schoolgirl
    10. Keep Your Lamp Trimmed and Burning
    11. Shake 'Em on Down
    12. Going Away, Won't Be Gone Long
    13. I Wish I Was in Heaven Sittin' Down
    14. Fred's Rambling Blues
    15. I Looked at the Sun
    16. You Gotta Move
    17. My Baby
    18. Intro/Shake 'Em On Down / Louise
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 501

  • Credits
    ProducerChris Strachwitz
    EngineerChris Strachwitz

    Personnel: Fred McDowell (vocals, guitar); Mike Russo (guitar); Johnny Woods (harmonica); John Khan (bass); Bob Jones (drums); Annie Mae McDowell (background vocals).
    Recorded in Como, Mississippi, Berkeley, California and Memphis, Tennessee between 1964 and 1969. Includes liner notes by Chris Strachwitz.
    Mississippi Fred McDowell lays down Delta blues as though time pretty much stood still. Discovered by Alan Lomax in the late '50s, his career as an authentic bluesman took off in the '60s, thanks to Arhoolie. The Best of Mississippi Fred McDowell showcases the singer's gritty vocals and slide guitar on some of his best '60s work. The power of "Fred's Worried Life Blues" and "Write Me a Few of Your Lines" resonates deep in the bones, while forceful versions of "Good Morning Little School Girl" and "You Gotta Move" strip away a hundred rip-offs. These cuts also feature McDowell's instrument of choice, the acoustic guitar. While resistant to new currents, he nonetheless plugged in on occasion. Earth-shaking electric cuts like "Levee Camp Blues" and "Meet Me Down in Froggy Bottom" rumble and hum. Even with a band, though, McDowell reminds one more of Lightnin' Hopkins than Muddy Waters. He remains rooted in the Delta. When he delivers a bit of blues, like "My Baby," he reaches deep and finds something elemental. McDowell opens two live cuts by saying "I don't play no rock & roll stuff," and then offers fine takes on "Shake 'Em on Down" and "Louise." The Best of Mississippi Fred McDowell serves up a taste of the Delta, honest and true, and impresses as a fine introduction to a great bluesman. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.

  • Critic Reviews
    Mojo (Publisher) (3/02, p.109) - "...His music has undimmed vitality. It sparkles like non-stop champagne..."
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