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4.7 out of 5 stars28
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 6 July 2008
The music on this compilation is magnificent, I didn't give it 5 stars only because it lacks the listing of musicians on each track (some of which are true blues legends themselves).
In this period he recorded with Otis Spann, Willie Dixon, Muddy Waters and others, so it would be nice to have the correct info on that.

Otherwise, this is classical stuff; both vocally and instrumentally...

BTW, if my ears don't decieve me, the performer of "Like Wolf" (track 18) is Howlin' Wolf , although the authorship of the song is attributed to Williamson.
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on 22 March 2004
If you've never heard Sonny Boy Williamson before I recommend this album. If your particularly interested in blues harmonica there aren't many better than Sonny Boy Williamson and you could do a lot worse than have this in your collection.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 28 August 2015
'Down And Out Blues' by Sonny Boy Williamson II aka 'Rice' Miller(1912?- 65) on the distinctive red and yellow PYE R & B label was one of the first blues LPs I bought in the early 1960s.
This CD includes 8 tracks from that album plus a further 12 recorded for CHESS during the 1950s and early '60s.
These 20 vibrant blues tunes feature Sonny Boy's thrilling and expressive harmonica playing and imaginative lyrics along with stellar sidemen such as Muddy Waters, Jimmy Rogers, Robert Jr. Lockwood, Luther Tucker, Willie Dixon, Otis Spann, Lafayette Leake, Buddy Guy, Matt Murphy & Fred Below.
Highlights include 'Help Me', 'Your Funeral And My Trial', 'Fattening Frogs For Snakes' and 'Like Wolf' - Sonny Boy's impressive impersonation of Howlin' Wolf.
Sonny Boy Williamson II had a huge influence on many British blues/rock musicians in the 1960s and this well re-mastered CD is a superb introduction to his work.
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on 16 April 2010
This is good music. We are not all the same, thank goodness. I personally don't like jazz. And I have tried to like it over and over, I just don't get it. But blues I love it and here is some of the best. There are plenty more out there but this one rates among the top.
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on 6 October 2011
If you are a harmonica player you simply must know songs from this album. All songs from this album are great, Sonny Boy was a genius and you can hear it in every track. Wonderful harp and generally great piece of blues music
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on 10 January 2011
It is everything I expected it to be. If you love the Blues, Blues Harp and haunting Hammond Organ / piano in the background then this is for you.

Absolutely fantastic.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 15 October 2014
When I started to learn blues harmonica in the 1960s Sonny Boy Williamson (II) was a frequent visitor to Britain and one of my early inspirations. Later, critics favoured the original Sonny Boy Williamson and also Little Walter but for me this Sonny Boy Williamson (Alec Miller) has a very original, individual harmonica sound and was also a really good songwriter. This very reasonably-priced CD features many of his best songs "Help me", "Don't start me talking", "Nine below zero" and "One way out" and although there are a few of my favourite songs of his that don't feature it would be churlish to be picky about the selection which offers a great introduction to this truly first division blues musician.
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on 10 March 2014
Glad I bought this CD and a very great artist. I have downloaded it onto my ipod. Well worth purchasing.
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on 22 February 2015
One of the best Blues/rock artists ever. You want to see the roots of blues, this guy does it well. One of my best albums in my collection. Can't get enough of it. As Cash said something or alike, "when you get the blues, get a rhythm". This album gives you the rhythm all right.
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on 7 October 2013
I first listened to this great musician as a schoolboy 50 years ago. I still come back to him sometimes. He is something of a professor of original blues to me (with Muddy and Leadbelly and other 50-60's guys). He's harmonica playing is of course a trade mark
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