I expected this double CD to attempt yet another potted history of the blues as the story of the music's evolution is told in detail in the book "Bill Wymans Blues Odyssey" but instead it creates an atmosphere of its own. Here you will find the roots of the blues, sung and played by men and women who helped to shape and develop a music that reflected the poverty, hardships and injustice of the people yet is now so universally celebrated. Sit quietly and listen to the CD in a darkened room and imagine the smoke-filled atmosphere of a Delta juke joint as each artist brings their own interpretation to "singing the blues".
The CD has less direct connection with Bill Wyman than the book, although he is credited with making the selection of artists and songs but there are no examples of him or The Stones or, indeed, any of the other 60's or 70's white blues bands who copied the black Americans they heard on radio and on record. This may be disappointing to some rock-blues fans but the real blues enthusiast will find everything you would want on this double CD from the barrel-house piano of Speckled Red to the slide guitar of Elmore James, from Bessie Smith to BB King this is a great album. And for those who think that the blues is slow, melancholy music you're very wrong; people used to play and listen to the blues to purge themselves of troubles. Most of this is foot-tapping lively stuff and if you can keep still enough to read at the same time Bill's book is the obvious companion.