Customer Review

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical History Tour, 15 Jun. 2010
This review is from: The History Of Rhythm And Blues 1942-1952 : The Pre Rocknroll Years (Audio CD)
I had a mate whose Dad Tom worked as a school librarian. He made jewellry in his spare time and he adored blues music. He once saw Big Bill Broonzy perform live at our local cinema back in 1957, i loved to hear him tell that tale. I treasure an image of him. He sits in a battered leather arm chair polishing precious stones for a necklace, in between listening to a Lightnin' Hopkins lp that he's blown the dust off and placed ever so gently onto his garrard deck. he nods and smiles in the avuncular way that only scholars and gentlemen know how. Then as the lp reaches it's spin out groove, he lifts the stylus, slides the record back into it's sleeve and says, "put the kettle on; i belive it's time for some Louis Jordan, he goes to a leaning row of alphabetically filed records, hovers his fingers and turns, gives that smile again and wonders aloud, "Or what about some Elmore James?"
I thought about Tom as I listened to the discs in this glorious boxset. "The History of Rhythm and Blues 1942-52" is just splendid, it's a labour of love and a work of supreme scholarship, put together by people who obviously care. From boogie men to boppers, hillbilly's to honkers it is beautifully programmed and has polished some dusty old gems into a relevant and modern work of art.
Compilations of the music of any genre from history are ten a penny these days, thrown together with little thought for anything bar profit. This is something else, something very special indeed. It realises that recorded music has a place in social history, it's own mythology, a narrative and in it's four discs and lovingly annotated 64 page book, it tells that story. So as well as the fabulous and joyful music, we get thoughts on the development of radio, the race laws of early 20th century America and the migration of workers, the jukebox phenomenon and even technical information about patterns in the 12 bar blues form.
The compilers of this set have created a desirable object every bit as a precious as a memory, as valuable as a necklace, they are heroes of the gramaphone, the record player, the cd machine. Just buy it, you won't go far wrong.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Dec 2010 13:00:15 GMT
Anthony says:
I'd like to have met your mate's dad! Reminds me of some lines from Old Dan's Records by Gordon Lightfoot, also my dad's PL Yearbook of Jazz 1948 that he talked me through.
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