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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Complete Trumpet, Chief and Fire recordings: Elmore James - Essential blues collection, 29 Nov. 2011
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: King Of The Slide Guitar: The Complete Chief & Fire Sessions (Audio CD)
This essential collection brings together a significant part fo the work of Elmore James, one of the most influential of early blues guitarists. Starting off with his breakthrough hit, 1951's Dust My Broom, then concentrating on his later output of the late fifties and early sixties with Chief and Fire. To complete your Elmore collection I would suggest the classic early recordings set, which neatly fills in most of the gaps.

Elmore James' sound was incredibly influential. In large part he inspired most of the great guitar heroes of the sixties and seventies, the likes of Clapton, Green and Hendrix all drew on the heavier, louder, muscular style of blues, almost blues rock, with innovative slide techniques that James originated. With his aggressive guitar style and home made amplification his sound is instantly recognisable, as is his singing.

His early death from a heart attack in 1963 sadly ended his career all too early, but as this 3 CD set shows, he still managed to leave a significant recorded legacy behind. Many of the tracks have become standards, covered by many people, for instance Shake your Moneymaker (Fleetwood Mac), The Sky Is Crying (Clapton) or Dust My Broom (Elvis). But the originals, in alltheir innovative glory and with Elmore's powerful guitar and singing are always the best. For my money the closest to him in guitaring style and power is Pete Green, but he couldn't match the vocal intensity.

This set contains three discs, each in a card slipcase. There is an informative booklet, and the lot are collected into a sturdy card outer, about the size of 2 normal jewel cases. The sound is superb, whoever has remastered this has taken real care over it. The set is pleasingly comprehensive, and there are a few alternative versions that add to the overall enjoyment, and a 3 min 40 s conversation with Elmore that is really the piece de resistance. It's an excellent set, and at the price being asked a real steal. I would also recommend you check out the other Elmore box set:The Classic Early Recordings: 1951-1956, and the Jimmy Reed set: The Essential Boss Man: The Very Best of the Vee-Jay Years, 1953-1966 in the same series. These appear to be the only two releases in this series, which is a shame, as they are excellent and I would like to see what the compilers make of other great artists sitting in their vaults.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Where it all began, 7 Aug. 2012
By 
R Raybould "richard17025" (Newport, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: King Of The Slide Guitar: The Complete Chief & Fire Sessions (Audio CD)
I bought this as I am a big Allman Brothers Band fan (big enough to travel from the UK to NYC just to see them) and I wanted to get to hear some of the songs that inspired them. This box set contains Done Somebody Wrong which was on Fillmore East and One Way Out which was recorded at the same time and first appeared on Eat A Peach.

The earthiness and emotion in these, and all of the other songs, is wonderful. I keep this going at home and in the car virtually non-stop; truly wonderful and so glad that I invested.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Music that makes you smile, 21 Dec. 2012
By 
J. Mcguire - See all my reviews
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This review is from: King Of The Slide Guitar: The Complete Chief & Fire Sessions (Audio CD)
After first hearing of Elmore James through some early fleetwood mac & Paul Butterfield cd's, youtube opened a door. After a few rounds on yt I got this cd to get better quality sound (it was recorded 50+ years ago so isn't the finest quality) but the music is fantastic. Quite a few songs sound similar, but if you listen you can hear Elvis, the Stones, the Doors & a few others - ELMORE JAMES HAS OPENED MY EARS TO THE FINEST OF GOOD MUSIC & THE CD HAS SOME MILE-STONES THAT HELPED SHAPE MUSIC AS WE KNOW IT. If you like good music (why else would you be reading this) then buy this cd - lots of songs & amazing guitar, bass, piano & brass = rock & roll before rock & roll was invented :) Now what one do I get next?
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