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Man & the Blues [VINYL] Import

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After decades of paying dues, Buddy Guy has emerged as the most heralded bluesman of his generation, a hugely influential guitarist and passionate, dynamic live performer. But Buddy started as a sideman, and toiled in the Chicago clubs for a decade before beginning his march to worldwide fame.

Buddy began as a sideman in Baton Rouge, playing primarily with the late Raful Neal (father of ... Read more in Amazon's Buddy Guy Store

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Product details

  • Vinyl
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Import
  • ASIN: B003BKZXQ2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,330,617 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JA Cooper on 11 Oct 2005
Format: Audio CD
Blues fans know all about Buddy Guy's talent but they also know about the inconsistency of his albums. Rest assured that buying this one will not be a let down. From the first note to the last this album is a treasure filled with some of the most sublime guitar playing that you'll ever hear, of any genre.
Personal highlights are One Room Country Shack, A Man And The Blues, Mary Had A Little Lamb and the song that got me hooked on Buddy in the first place(he played it live as guest at a Clapton gig), Money (That's What I Want).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ben VINE VOICE on 18 April 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
When buying a Buddy Guy record it seems easy to be quickly drowned in the abundance of compliation albums that seem to float around for him. So it's easy to miss that Buddy did have some cracking albums in him - and "A Man and the Blues" is definitely one of them.

Atmosphere is key on this album. A mellow, late night jazz club feel prevails here. Sure, it's blues music, but the arrangements and playing by his band are subtle and intricate. There is not much blues rock bluster here. Buddy responds with some playing that is fierce one minute and delicate the next. Much the same could be said for his singing. He certainly knows how to pile it on thick in one bar and then reign it all back in the next.

It's a cracking selection of tunes (I'm sure Stevie Ray Vaughan was of that view, as he took "Mary Had A Little Lamb" from this record). So if you're looking for a clever, colourful and stylish blues album I would recommend you start here.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By FastHand on 5 May 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this album as Walter Trout recommended it as one of his favorite albums and I was'nt disappointed. I can see how Eric Clapton was influenced by Buddy and to some extent has a similar style. The guitar playing is very subtle and most of the tracks are long slow soulful blues with some great piano playing by Otis Spann. It was released in 1968 and probably influenced most of the great British guitar players of the time E.C. jeff Beck, Peter Green, John Mayall, Jimmy Page etc.
It's a wonderful piece of nostalgia but above all it's a great blues album by one of the great guitar blues players.
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By J. HOLMES on 5 Feb 2009
Format: Audio CD
This is my favourite Buddy Guy album, and very different from what he has served up for the last couple of decades. A beautifully laid-back performance, supported by a top-notch band featuring the incomparable Otis Spann on piano. Buddy's playing is so subtle on this; it's a shame he tends to ham it up a bit these days, with impressions of SRV and EC.
If you've not heard this side of Buddy before, I can thoroughly recommend it (and his other Vanguard albums). You won't be disappointed!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 25 reviews
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
A Man and the Blues... In Full 7 April 2002
By Roger Alburn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This album does a bunch of things. It is perhaps the seminal work of what musicologists call "second-generation Chicago blues." This is the blues form which remains the template for most popular blues produced today. In these performances, Mr. Guy alloys soul and rock figures with the Chicago blues vernacular. As a result, his album released blues to a truly pan-racial and cross-generational following. Most had never witnessed real blues music before. Mr. Guy's fret-board work illustrates the liquid tone possible from that pre-eminent electric guitar, the Fender Stratocaster. His technique transducts the passions of his elders uncorrupted. We hear them today from the hands of hundreds of young guitarists. This is the record that certified Buddy Guy's career. He is arguably the most original blues performer alive.
For some listeners this album has been something of a millstone around Mr. Guy's neck. His successive albums never reached the elegance of this one. Need they? Today, thirty-five years afterwards, blues production values have evolved. Mr. Guy's blues are evolving too. His 2001 release "Sweet Tea" blends the sensibilities of rap and alternative with the newly fashionable product called "electric Delta." "Sweet Tea" hasn't the irreducible beauty of "A Man and the Blues." Yet it does show Buddy Guy's intensity as synthesist and artist little diminished.
Some would eject Bach or Mozart into space for other civilizations to evaluate us with. I'd send "A Man and the Blues."
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
probably Guy's best solo effort 13 Jan 2006
By The Delite Rancher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I was shocked to find that Buddy Guy's "A Man and the Blues," only had a handful of reviews. This is an essential recording that should be in any Blues collection. First, the guitar work is powerful. Guy's Fender Strat plays clean, thin and nimble lead work. Second, the vocals are compelling. Buddy Guy's voice was strongest during his early career. Here, his voice is high pitched, clean and full of soul. Third, the song choice is tops. There are no weak songs on "A Man and the Blues." 'One Room Country Shack' could be a definitive statement of what the Blues is all about. Many of the fast blues tunes like 'I Can't Quit The Blues' 'Money' and 'Mary Had A Little Lamb' are three minute parties. The brass brings so much to the danceable feel-good grooves. The disc has a beautiful retelling of the standard 'Sweet Little Angel.' The only drawback to this 1967 recording is the length -it's too short. It all comes down to guitar work, vocals and song choice. For these three reasons, Buddy Guy's first was probably his best solo effort and it should be in your Blues collection.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
defines electric blues 27 Jun 2005
By N. Chandran - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
this album is very very very special. you can feel that magic throughout the album.

having played as a guitarist for many blues stalwarts including muddy waters, this was buddy guy's first outing as a band leader. and what an album it is!

the fretwork is not the screaming blues of say, stevie ray. rather it is the controlled fury, delicate and subtle but always straining at the leash, of a master guitarist who knew how to maximize the potential of the "bell tone" of a fender stratocaster. almost every song on this album is a killer - but "one room country shack" is in its own class - the quintessential blues number which has seldom been surpassed in its genre.

if you like the electric guitar or the blues - get this album!

also check out the other killer albums of buddy - stone crazy (where buddy totally cuts loose with a gibson es-335) and hoodoo man blues (his best collaboration with junior wells).

btw the amazon reviewer is not right in saying that buddy uses a 57 strat - it is rather a 58 strat - because it was only in 1958 that fender came out with a three tone sunburst which buddy's strat obviously is.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Great blues album 30 Mar 2001
By ty7777 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is a great album but short. About 38 minutes long. Don't let the release time fool you either. It was made in the mid to late 60's as far as I know and you can tell by the sound quality. It is clear sounding but some of the louder songs sound very compact. This album contributes 4 slow blues tunes. Five of Nine tracks are Guy originals. I have to say that the track called Just Playing My Axe is not as good as I expected and though I can't place it, it sounds exactly like some rock song I have heard. Anyway there is one other guitarist on here named Wayne Bennet but he is only a rythm guitarist and due to the slow blues songs he doesn't seem to show up much. Whether this is a plus or minus for you there are horns but they aren't usually much more than background through out the album. Buddy also covers Jules Taub, Berry Gordy, and the great B.B. King. Sweet little Angel is one of the best Buddy tracks that I've heard. Buddy is very restrained and much more polished on this album than on many others. He doesn't really go ''out there'' Like he normally does but his tasteful leads and solos are still terrific. It's part of the greatness of this album. By the way- the legendary Otis spann plays piano on this album and that is a major contribution, and he compliments Buddy Guy very well. The old tune known as Mary Had a Little Lamb is a Stevie Ray Vaughan favorite and is a light hearted song that shows Buddy being his playful self. One Room Country Shack is a blues classic as well as A Man And The Blues and this is pretty near a perfect recording for it's time period and style. If you like Buddy Guy or if you want a toned down example of this great guitar player and vocalist to fit your tastes, than this is perfect. If you want a harcore version like the one that influenced Stevie Ray Vaughan and Eric Clapton so much- than get Stone Crazy-which is an example of that Buddy Guy style.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Authentic blues that's as subtle as jazz 4 Nov 2013
By Jesse Kornbluth - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Eric Clapton called him the "greatest blues guitarist ever."

On his first trip to England, Rod Stewart volunteered to be his valet.

Jimi Hendrix said of him, "Heaven is lying at his feet while listening to him play guitar."

The musician that these giants raved about --- and women adored --- is less famous than he ought to be. But how, with such praise, can that be? Second-rate talents with decent marketing and a bit of luck are famous, at least for a while --- if Buddy Guy is among the greats, why don't we know him, why can't we name any of his hits?

In part, because Buddy Guy is the king of Chicago blues, a genre at once rough and tender, down-home and ultra-knowing, and, at its core, black as the skin of the darkest field hand in Mississippi --- and thus not of interest to the mass audience until some skinny white guy is stroking that Fender six-string Stratocaster.

And, in part, because Guy and his producers botched his career. He came to Chicago from Louisiana: "I was so far out in the country, man. We didn't have running water, no electric lights, no radio, and I didn't know nothing about no electric guitar. We used to get the catalogs, like from Sears, and that's how our mother would order our clothes. Didn't have no stores there to buy clothes from."

He started playing professionally in Baton Rouge, won a contest, headed north. In the early 1960s, when some of the best Chicago blues records were made, he was a session guitarist; anything fancy he played was mixed down.

By the mid-l960s, Buddy Guy was Jimi Hendrix before there was a Hendrix; he would pick the guitar with his teeth and play it over his head. (One night Hendrix came, stood in the front row and taped Guy's performance so he could go to school on it.)

At the same time, Buddy Guy was Clapton before there was a Clapton. In fact, the young British bluesman got the idea for Cream as a power trio from Buddy Guy. And as for Cream's music, well.... "You know that Cream tune, `Strange Brew'?" Guy has recalled. "Eric and I were having a drink one day, and I said, `Man, that Strange Brew... you just cracked me up with that note.' And he said `You should...'cause it's your licks.'"

By the time anyone in Chicago understood or appreciated what Buddy Guy was playing, others had patented that sound. He made a few authentic Chicago records, then languished without a record contract for a decade. By the time of his third or fourth rediscovery, he was old enough to be a grandfather --- and by then, he had moved beyond pure blues to a kind of showmanship that upstaged the music.

But there was a window --- a few years in the mid-l960s --- when Buddy Guy had it all: a powerful set of songs, masterful compatriots, a willing record label. You can hear him in those glory days as the wingman for Junior Wells in that harmonica player's electrifying and flawless Hoodoo Man Blues. (For contractual reasons, he's billed on early editions of that record as "Friendly Chap.") And then, in 1968, he made a debut record that is nothing less than a primer of Chicago blues.

On "A Man and the Blues," the music has been mixed so Buddy Guy is front and center, and he is never less than dazzling. He plays a single note and lets it hang until it drops out of hearing range. Or he'll rain notes down like bullets, a staccato assault on your ears. But he never plays anything just for show --- everything is in the service of the song. And he's backed by great musicians, especially Fred Below on drums and Otis Spann on piano. Here's a challenge: On slower songs, tune everyone else out and listen to what Spann and Below are playing. It may be blues, but it's as least as subtle as jazz.

There are fast songs that get toes tapping and the heart pumping, especially the Motown hit "Money (That's What I Want)" and "Mary Had a Little Lamb." But it's the slow stuff that takes your breath away. "What can a man do/when the blues keep following him around?" he asks. "So many ways you can get the blues," he moans. He's sitting "a million miles from nowhere" in a shack by the cotton fields. But he's a man. And so he looks for a man's solution: "I'm gonna find me some kind of good woman/Even if she's dumb, deaf, crippled or blind."

It's lonely, lonely stuff --- it's the very definition of the blues. "Give me a little piano now, Spann," he cries, and in comes a glissando as delicate as Chopin and twice as heartbreaking. Makes you want to reach for a cigarette and a whiskey, even if you don't smoke or drink.

Don't feel sorry for Buddy Guy --- over the years, he's sold millions of records, won Grammys, achieved the status of a legend. One of the last, in fact; pushing 70, he's the sole survivor of the Chicago greats. No, the sorrow is for us; "A Man and the Blues" should have spawned a half dozen albums that would have given us a catalogue as rich as that of John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters.

Before he left home, Buddy Guy's father told him, "Son, don't be the best in town. Just be the best until the best come around." But no one I can think of has ever come around with anything better than "A Man and the Blues."
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