CD The Essential Bessie Smith (CD 393863),
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The Essential Bessie Smith

  • 0. DISC 1:
    1. Aggravatin' Papa
    2. Baby Won't You Please Come Home
    3. 'Tain't Nobody's Bizness If I Do
    4. Jail-House Blues
    5. Graveyard Dream Blues
    6. Ticket Agent, Ease Your Window Down
    7. Boweavil Blues
    8. Weeping Willow Blues
    9. Dying Gambler's Blues
    10. St. Louis Blues
    11. You've Been a Good Ole Wagon
    12. Cake Walkin' Babies (From Home)
    13. Careless Love Blues
    14. I Ain't Goin' to Play Second Fiddle
    15. At the Christmas Ball
    16. Jazzbo Brown from Memphis Town
    17. Backwater Blues
    18. After You've Gone
    0. DISC 2:
    1. Alexander's Ragtime Band
    2. There'll Be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight
    3. Trombone Cholly
    4. Send Me to the 'Lectric Chair
    5. Good Man Is Hard to Find, A
    6. Dyin' by the Hour
    7. Me and My Gin
    8. Kitchen Man
    9. Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out
    10. On Revival Day (A Rhythmic Spiritual)
    11. Moan, You Moaners
    12. Black Mountain Blues
    13. Shipwreck Blues
    14. Need a Little Sugar in My Bowl
    15. Do Your Duty
    16. Gimme a Pigfoot (And a Bottle of Beer)
    17. Take Me for a Buggy Ride
    18. Down in the Dumps
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 64922

  • Credits
    ProducerLawrence Cohn; Lawrence Cohn (Compilation)

    Personnel: Bessie Smith (vocals); Lincoln M. Conaway, Eddie Lang, Bobby Johnson (guitar); Buddy Christian, Charlie Dixon (banjo); Robert Robbins (violin); Coleman Hawkins (clarinet, tenor saxophone); Ernest Elliot, Buster Bailey, Benny Goodman (clarinet); Garvin Bushell (alto saxophone); Chu Berry,
    Greely Walton (tenor saxophone); Frank Newton (trumpet); Joe Smith, Louis Armstrong, Tommy Ladnier, Ed Allen, Louis Metcalfe (cornet); Charlie Green,
    Jimmy Harrison, Joe Williams, Jack Teagarden (trombone); Bob Escudero, June Cole, Cyrus St. Clair (tuba); Fred Longshaw (piano, reed organ); Clarence Williams, Irving Johns, Fletcher Henderson, Jimmy Jones, James P. Johnson, Porter Grainger, Steve Stevens, Buck Washington (piano); Billy Taylor (acoustic bass); Floyd Casey (drums); The Bessemer Singers (background vocals).
    Includes liner notes by Chris Albertson.
    Digitally remastered by David Mitson.
    This is part of Columbia/Legacy's Roots 'N Blues Series.
    Personnel: Bessie Smith (vocals); The Bessemer Singers (vocals); Bobby Johnson, Jr., Eddie Lang, Lincoln M. Conaway (guitar); Buddy Christian , Charlie Dixon (banjo); Robert Robbins (violin); Coleman Hawkins (clarinet, tenor saxophone); Ernest Elliott, Benny Goodman, Buster Bailey (clarinet); Garvin Bushell (alto saxophone); Chu Berry, Greely Walton (tenor saxophone); Frankie Newton (trumpet); Louisa Metcalfe, Ed Allen, Joe Smith , Joe "Fox" Smith , Louis Armstrong, Tommy Ladnier (cornet); Jack Teagarden, Jimmy Harrison, Charlie Green (trombone); June Cole Orchestra, Cyrus St. Clair, June Cole, Bob Escudero (tuba); Fred Longshaw (piano, reed organ); Clarence Williams, Fletcher Henderson, Irving Johns, James P. Johnson, Jimmy Jones , Steve Stevens , Porter Grainger, Buck Washington (piano); Floyd Casey (drums).
    Liner Note Author: Chris Albertson.
    Recording information: New York, NY (04/11/1923-11/24/1933).
    Photographers: Chris Albertson; Frank Driggs.
    For comprehensive coverage of the work of this blues legend and innovator, interested listeners should turn to Columbia/Legacy's five volumes of THE COMPLETE RECORDINGS. However, if nine discs seem somewhat overwhelming to the newcomer, there is no better place to begin than this 2-disc Roots n' Blues set. The digital remastering of these classic 1920s sides has resulted in mind-bogglingly clean sound documents, re-casting Smith's achievements in a beautifully bright light.
    Smith's contributions to the development of blues and jazz vocals cannot be overestimated and, even today, there have been few female vocalists in the history of the genre to match her emotional intensity and sheer vocal power. This spectacular 36-track collection features many of Smith's biggest hits, including "Nobody Knows You When You're Down And Out," "Need A Little Sugar In My Bowl," "Alexander's Ragtime Band," and "'Taint Nobody's Bizness If I Do" (two decades before Billie Holiday's version). Smith wrote the book on blues/jazz vocals, outshining not only the singers from her era but most since. This set is crucial for even the most casual blues and jazz fans.

  • Critic Reviews
    Vibe (12/99, p.158) - Included in Vibe's 100 Essential Albums of the 20th Century
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