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Founder of the Delta Blues


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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9b7fb318) out of 5 stars 18 reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b7f7e58) out of 5 stars Excellent collection of one of greatest of all bluesmen 21 Sept. 2001
By R. Weinstock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Charlie Patton was of the first generation of blues artists and exerted a profound influence on the development of what we call the Mississippi Delta Blues. This Yazoo collection brings together what are genrally regarded to be his greatest recordings. Sound quality varies and Yazoo admittedly did not eliminate some of the clicks and pops in the original because it would muffle the music. This is as good a single disc colelction of Patton's music as one can get, although there are other single-disc collections that look quite good available from other labels.
Bear in mind that the British Catfish label has collected all of Patton's recordings on a budget priced three-disc set. As I write this (9/21/01), Revenant is about to release a seven-disc box that contains not only all of Patton's recordings but every other recording that was made at the recording sessions that Patton participated so this will include pioneering recordings by Willie Brown, Son House, Lousie Johnson and others. One disc will contain recordings by persons influenced by Patton and one will contain interveiws with Patton's associates about Patton. Also included will be a reproduction of the late John Fahey's long out-of-print Patton biography. This box set is likely to be the definitive Patton release.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b7f7ec4) out of 5 stars Essential roots music and best sound quality 8 Sept. 2000
By Bigthumb - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Charley Patton is to Mississippi what Blind Lemon Jefferson is to Texas: its most important black rural artist of before WW2. If you have a taste for this sort of thing, it doesn't get better than this. A blazing performer whose singing and guitar work can still overwhelm you, seven decades later. But it's completely inaccurate to slam the disc's sound qualtity and accuse the label of "laziness." To the contrary, Yazoo Records has always had the very best in 78-reissue sound, disc after disc. Its engineers, far from being lazy, have always taken scrupulous care and a ridiculous amount of time in achieving their sonic results. The fact is that the old Paramount78s from which most of these tracks were taken were worn almost beyond recognition, from cheap manufacture and overplaying with heavy tonearms. Yazoo's audio philosophy is that you can't eliminate all the noise without eliminating the high frequencies that make the music live. If you can't take the noise, that's up to you; but the typical Yazoo CD will come closer than any other label's to the sound you'd get if you played these 78s on an antique gramophone: an entirely different, and genuine, sound experience. In the present case, this disc is a complete digital remastering, going back to the original source 78s, of a landmark Yazoo 2-LP set from about 30 years ago (and an earlier CD issue of same). This is no. 10 in Yazoo's "2000 series" of all- digital 78 reissues, and the only place you'll find Patton sounding this good is on its compantion, Yazoo 2001. Get ready to tap, no, make that stomp, your foot to one of the great American dance musicians.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b7f74d4) out of 5 stars The Source! 9 Feb. 2002
By Peter Acebal - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Firstly,this bickering about 'laziness' is a bit neurotic,-as the other insightful reviewer pointed out these are Paramount 78s and no cheaper quality discs were ever manufactured and if they have survived at all their fragility rivals an old Renaissance painting SO take it easy with the conscientous engineers at Yazoo because these digital transfers are the very best that can be head with the notoriously cheapo Paramounts!
Musically this CD is a revelation AND an excellently balanced view of Patton as a performer,...not just red-hot Delta blues but also minstrel Rags and field hollers AND his eloquent percussive guitar work needs no qualifying introduction.
If the surface hiss trobules you then all I can suggest is that you take up the guitar learn these tunes then make your very own CD,...BUT you won't get anywhere tho' Patton Was (and always will be) One-of-a-kind!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b7f5aec) out of 5 stars what he said 4 Dec. 2000
By BookrT - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I just want to echo the previous comment on the recording quality. The problem is obviously not "laziness" -- the recordings were made in the late 20's at the very beginning of recorded music. It's a miracle that this music has been preserved at all. If you feel like you have to, go ahead and turn on your "Dolby" switch, but I'll listen to it as it is on the original masters.
Patton is an absolute giant, and his voice will come through loud and clear to any true fan of American folk music, regardless of any so-called "noise."
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b7f5c48) out of 5 stars The best of best pre-war blues recording artist 16 Sept. 2004
By K. Wood - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
If you are looking to begin a pre-war blues collection, this should be one of the first cd's (if not the first) you should buy. There are many other great pre-war blues artists, but Charlie Patton is one notch above them all. "Founder of the Delta Blues" collects all of Patton's best recordings, and unlike many of his contempories who created new songs by simply changing the lyrics of a recycled melody, most of Patton's work was varied, giving the listener something new to hear on each track.

Patton was a fantastic slide guitar player, showcasing these skills in Mississippi Boll Weavil Blues, Spoonful Blues, and I't Won't Be Long. You'll hear him slapping the guitar body on "Down the Dirt Road Blues" to create his own percussion section. He teams up with Willie Brown on second guitar (the Willie Brown of Eric Clapton and Robert Johnson's Crossroads Blues) and old time fiddle player Son Sims on a number of tracks as well. The music is as honest and as raw as it gets, providing a good feel for the music scene in rural black America before the Great Depression.

As a singer, Patton's gravelly and often uncomprehensive voice may scare some first time listeners away. Stick with it, though. Listen to him 4 or 5 times; you'll get past the scratches/pops of the lousy original 78's and learn to love the music. If I was stranded on a desert island and could choose only 5 pre-war blues cd's to take along, I think this one would be at the top of the list.
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