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Blues Is King


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Biography

Blues legend B.B. King has been spending time this year thinking about "The B.B. King That Was." There is his bricks, mortar and memory project down in a Mississippi blues crossroads, his very own B.B. King Museum, which acknowledges his past. And then, his new Geffen Records CD One Kind Favor which puts the blues maestro in competition, not with other players, but. himself. ... Read more in Amazon's B.B. King Store

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Blues Is King + Live At The Regal
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Product details

  • Audio CD (28 July 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Traffic Entertainment Group
  • ASIN: B00KFRY1O4
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 63,689 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Waitin' On You
2. Gambler's Blues
3. Tired Of Your Jive
4. NIght Life
5. Buzz Me
6. Don't Answer The Door
7. Blind Love
8. I Know What You're Puttin' Down
9. Baby Get Lost
10. Gonna Keep On Loving You

Product Description

By the second half of the 1960s, blues hero B.B. King (Born Riley B. King) had refined and tightened his criss-crossing guitar and singing style into a powerful sonic force of blues music, and his peak years of mainstream success hadn't even reached him yet. The Mississippi-born performer had developed a potent reputation as a showman both for his own technical prowess, and his charisma and ability to command and captivate an audience. 1967's live album Blues Is King puts this live performance dexterity on full display, in the very city of electric blues'' inception. Originally recorded in a Chicago club one November night in 1966, King and a group of session heavyweights unleash a set of standards and originals upon an eager audience. B.B. King is flanked by several revered blues sidemen including Sonny Freeman on drums, Kenneth Sands on trumpet, and Louis Satterfield on bass, to name just a few. In the end, the star of Blues Is King is King himself, frequently bantering with the club audience, and spinning musical stories of heartache and rage with his impassioned vocal roar, and precision blues guitar zeal. An unequivocal must-have for any blues fanatic, and a perfect audio depiction of King''s invigorating live act.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By "tnp@mim.dk" on 20 Dec 2005
Format: Audio CD
This album recorded towards the end of 1966 in a Chicago club stands out as the best B.B. King live album - together with the more well known Live At Regal recorded two years before also in Chicago. B.B. King plays some of his strongest guitar in his long and illustrious carreer on numbers such as Gambler's Blues and Night Life. His singing is outstanding too, with a deepness and a maturity not found in his early years, and without the horseness that can be heard on some of his later work. The backing group is small but tight with long time B.B. King drummer Sonny Freeman, Duke Jethro on the organ, Kenneth Sands on trumpet and Bobby Forte on tenorsax, a bass was later overdubbed. The playlist consisted of less well known songs. Some where originally done in the late forties and early fifties by artists like Louis Jordan (Buzz Me) and Dinah Washington (Baby Get Lost & Gambler's Blues), other numbers were current B.B. King recordings such as Don't Answer The Door, Tired Of Your Jive, and Waiting On You. Night Life was written by Willie Nelson and B.B. King's version was as far as I know the first blues/soul/R&B version. Blind Love was a little known B.B. recording from the fifties. But whatever the source of the songs B.B. King integrate them and create a strong and coherent performance.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By G. E. Harrison TOP 500 REVIEWER on 29 Jun 2008
Format: Audio CD
When I first heard B.B.King's "Live at the Regal" I'm afraid I was disappointed - I already had a copy of "Blues is King" which I thought was a much better live record (and I still do). OK the sound wasn't brilliant on the original vinyl release and is no better on this CD but the performance is wonderful and the audience also play their part in urging him on, you can almost smell the sweat and smoke in the club. (I have a real picture in my mind of the club and find it hard to believe I wasn't there sat in the audience when it was recorded!) There are some great songs- Willie Nelson's "Nightlife", "Tired of your jive", "Buzz me" and the way "Gambler's blues" builds is fantastic. The band is great and I really enjoy all the show business patter ("We're going to do our very best to please you, and if you like the blues I think we can...") - a real difference to how British bands of the time interacted with their audience (or didn't!)

There are other live B.B.King albums but for me this will always be the best.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By peter-c on 3 Jun 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is usually considered to be one of B.B. King's two best albums - the other being Live at the Regal. It's filled with power and atmosphere. I first bought it on vinyl in the 1960s when it came out and just bought it on CD to put on my iPod. I just love it and have spent hours trying to learn the riffs.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. HOLMES on 4 Feb 2009
Format: Audio CD
I can only agree with the other 2 reviews, since I also believe this is BBs best live album. Terrific band, great audience, and a master craftsman at work in BB, who writes the blues guitar book virtually single-handed with his playing on this album.
I thoroughly recommend it to anyone interested in blues, r&b (the proper stuff, I mean!), or just listening to wonderful guitar playing. I've owned the album or cd for more than 40 years, and it never fails to blow me away!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 12 reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
the best, just the best 7 Sep 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
B.B. King has produced some wonderful live recordings; no surprise from an artist who performs as much as he does. His "Live at the Regal" is usually cited as the greatest, but in my opinion "Blues is King" is better and more exciting (although "Live at the Regal" is also a great recording). The performances here are blazing, and the guitar sound is achingly beautiful. I bought my first copy sometime in the late 1960s, one of the first blues albums I ever purchased. After thirty years, I still get a chill when B.B. says "we're going to do our best to try and move you tonight...if you like the blues, I think we can." Oh yeah, he can.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Hello MCA: Remastered Deluxe Edition needed here!!! 20 Nov 2007
By Wah Wah - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I LOVE/HATE this CD!!!

I LOVE the songlist, Duke Jethro's B-3, Bobby Forte's sax, and B.B's overall performance, which makes this perhaps his best live CD. That's saying a lot considering the other live examples from his prime...Live At Cook County Jail, Live In Japan, Live At The Regal...all of which have been remastered.

I HATE the sound of this CD. As others have so rightly pointed out, the hollow, shrill sound of this makes it hard to put up with. It's just that the performance is quite simply B.B.'s best live CD.

Is anybody at MCA Records listening? What we need here at a minimum is a lovingly made remaster. An Expanded Deluxe Edition Remaster would be a dream come true, giving this release the revered treatment it deserves!!
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
It'll make your speakers sweat 1 Sep 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I discovered this one about the time it came out on vinyl and bought it without really knowing the strength and passion it represents. I've always preferred it to his other live recordings including 'Live at the Regal'. There's something special about BB with a live audience. It'll make your speakers sweat.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
BB at his very best! 11 Feb 2005
By Denis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I have heard lots and lots of BB's stuff, both live and on cd's. Everyone who's in any way familiar with BB's work knows what a great live performer he is. But this disc takes the cake, in my opinion. BB works especially hard on this one, both in terms of vocals and guitar work. This disc shows what a truly wonderful guitar player he really is (which I think he is often too humble to fully showcase) and what a talented jazz/blues singer he is. On Track 4 when he's just getting started, he says "we're gonna do our best to try to move you tonight... and if you like the blues, i think we can" and then he starts this intense drive with his guitar and immediately his audiene is wild and hooked. My favorite track is Track 6, called Nightlife. I felt that his guitar work and vocals were especially passionate and heart-felt. "Listen to the blues, people!", he shouts, as he launches Lucille (his guitar) into this absolute mad frenzy for about 20 seconds - one of the most intense guitar drives I've heard him play, and I think he stunned the audience so much that they went absolutely quiet there for a little while. I just wished it was more than 20 seconds because he's such a fine player. What I also enjoyed very much on this album was how he varied the sound of his guitar. Track 12 is the manifestation of that. Excellent guitar work on 12 also, but still not quite the passion of track 6, in my opinion. The groove of track 12 is excellent, though, as well as some of the best vocals I've heard from him - also a different sound for his voice that I haven't heard him use before. Get this album. If you like the blues, you better believe it's gonna move you.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Best B.B. performance , but WORST SOUND. Shame on you Universal! 3 Feb 2008
By Highway 61 Revisited - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Some 20 years after this was sloppily mastered for CD, we are still without a proper sonic upgrade with additional material recorded at the show/s.

Universal should go back to the original 3 or 4 track remote tapes and remix them and include previously unissued material.

The performance is wonderful, but the frequent drop outs, poorly executed tape edits and extremely thin, shrill mastering on the current edition is truly depressing.

Why is B.B. King's greatest live performance completely ignored by Universal and left in this terrible state?
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