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The Best of the Kent Singles 1958-1971
Format: Audio CDChange
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 17 February 2005
There is always going to be a dispute about what period or label was B.B's best.Well for me this is THE album that is B.B at the top of his form.The voice is ,bluesy and soulful.His guitar licks are the trademark King but played with an extraordinary clarity and the back up bands are tight and sympathetic,especially those with Lloyd Glenn's rolling piano riffs.Other names in the pack include Maxwell Davis arrangements and Pluma Davis trombone,as well as many of his touring band.Inevitably there are a few second rate cuts here,like some of the string backed ballads but more than compensated by ''Walkin Dr Bill'' ''Rock me Baby'',a rollicking ''Eyesight to the Blind'' and a humorous sly sexy ''Beautician Blues''
The final track cut in '71 is an amazingly dark and brooding song called ''Evil Child'' all minor key melancholy and blues strings like a precursor arrangement for ''The Thrill is Gone''
This is a ''must have'' for any blues afficionado.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
On the Ace Records website is a story centering around a jukebox in a Soul Food restaurant in Detroit in the early 1970's. The artist with the most 45's in the box was BB King, and most of those were his Kent cuts. That was enough of a recommendation to make me buy this CD. These recordings cover a range of styles from straight rocking R&B, slow blues and string laden ballads. Fans of the tougher Chess/Chicago sound might find some selections ('Peace Of Mind') to 'pop', and to my ears a little bland, but if you have a broad taste for the blues you won't fail to enjoy this comp. The usual high Ace standards are here: excellent sound quality and sleeve notes, plenty of nice label scans in the booklet to enjoy. It includes the full 6min 10 part 1 & 2 mix of 'Sweet Sixteen', the rocking 'Beautician Blues' but all the tracks are winners. A good intro to BB's varied styles.
*Its worth pointing out that these tracks were recorded up to 1962 then released during the next 10 years, after BB had left to go to ABC.
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