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on 22 March 2006
I originally bought this album (in English, LP) when I was at university in 1969. It still inspires me today and I still aspire to play more of the songs on it. From the simple instrumental Judy to the more difficult blues instrumental Plainsong this was the defining album that made Renbourn a cult figure among acoustic guitarists. You will never hear a better version of Candyman - this contains the definitive haunting version that makes all others seem pale imitations.
The blues breaks that he puts into every song are just incredible, even now after 35 years of playing fingerstyle guitar I cannot get anywhere near them. I would love to be able to play them such is the level of sheer virtuosity and inspiration. I just wish someone would 'tab' them.
There are even a couple of duets with contemporary Bert Jansch - 'blue bones', a great song about hitching on the N7 in France (National Seven) and to end a great and haunting song "blues run the game" that you will hum for days.
He doesnt play the same material any more - i went to see him in Chester - it was an excellent evening but he has moved on in style leaving a great legacy in acoustic blues fingerstyle guitar that in my educated view stands among the best ever recorded.
I was absolutely stunned to see that nobody had reviewed this great album and just had to rectify that..
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on 18 April 2012
I must have known the playing of John Renbourne for well over 40 years, but it is easy to forget just how brilliant he was and is. This CD is a great reminder and would be a brilliant purchase for anyone wishing to hear for the first time just how good a musician he is, or old hacks like me who just want to sit back and wallow in sheer enjoyment: highly recommended.
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I first discovered the album John Renbourn around 1982 via a vinyl original copy at the local Library. I swiftly copied it to home tape and played it often until the tape broke a few years later. It had been recorded in 1965 and released in 1966 and was already a classic folk album by the time of my first listen. In later years I did get copies of other albums by John Renbourn on CD but I did not get a copy of this CD until 2011, some ten years after its release. However I have to say that this CD version of this debut album by John, with its folk/blues acoustic guitar sound is excellent in every way.
It is a regular favourite to play and I love it.
The sound is much better than the original vinyl copy and tape I had years ago and the bonus tracks are actually welcome and fit easily with the main album. The art work and CD design is great too with its semi replica of the back sleeve cover and good booklet with pictures and interesting notes.

As to the album itself the music is great. There are traditional tunes arranged by Renbourn such as John Henry, Candy Man and Winter is gone. There is a poem by Elizabethan poet John Donne set to music with fingerpicking style accompaniment. And a lot of instrumentals such as Down by the barge, plainsong, Blue Bones, Train tune and the wildest pig in captivity.
John renbourn would go on to record a wide variety of albums with various music influences but this first album is a treat with its folk/blues acoustic feel to it. It is very different from albums such as A maid in bedlam but it is a wonderful acoustic album that shows what a talented guitar player Renbourn was. If you like early Donovan or Bert Jansch you will like this album.
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This is the first solo album from John Renbourn, first released way back in 1965. I started out as a teenager as a devotee of American Blues, but for a while now I have been exploring the folk music of Britain, from the modern Celtic work of John McCusker, the very contemporary and experimental LAU and also older recordings such as the work of Fairport Convention and Pentangle. As a result of that I have been working my way with great enjoyment through the back catalogues of Bert Jansch and John Renbourn. Having listened to Maid In Bedlam, Sir John Alot, The Hermit, Black Balloon, etc, etc, I thought I had an idea of what to expect from a Renbourn album, but when I came to this, and the similar Another Monday, I was surprised and delighted to hear a very different sound to the stately and elegant baroque early music I had been expecting. Lo and behold, this was very reminiscent of the American Blues I started by own musical journey with so many years ago.

That's not to say that it is totally divorced from Renbourn's later albums. There s still a fascination with early music, and his very distinctive melodic and cleanly pickedguitar style is still present. But overlaid on to that is a foray into the blues, with a melancholic voice that tells some great stories accompanying the guitar. It is, as usual, elegant and thoughtful, and stands as a great debut.

This 2001 remaster form Sanctuary is excellent, treating the music with the respect it deserves. The remastering is superb, with a clean, crisp sound. As well as the 15 original album tracks there are three contemporary bonus releases that really add to the set, especially the now album closer `Blues Run The Game'. There is a reproduction of the original sleeve and some interesting liner notes. The release has been put together by people who care about the music for people who care about the music. 5 stars.
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on 26 June 2009
Over the years I've been through several original vinyl issues of this album, and they all suffered from the usual flaws of that medium, particularly inner groove distortion. Despite the shortcomings of the CD medium this is a very fine alternative, as good as it can be. The sound is open and not too hard, the artwork is as good as possible on the narrow space available on a compact disc, and there are some knowledgeable sleeve-notes. "A lot of people have a lot to thank John Renbourn for," they begin. Count me in.
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on 22 May 2014
has consistently been one of the best acoustic guitarists ever. Solo, with Pentangle, or with Bert Jansch, he always cuts it.
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on 9 October 2014
Not the best !
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on 5 May 2009
[ ASIN:B00005QX6G John Renbourn]]John Renbourn,s first album is a classic example of 60,s folk,
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