If, like me, you are a brand new comer to the music of Rory Gallagher, then this album is for you. It has a lovely mixture of blues, rockabily and, above all, 'Soul' from the man himself. Gallagher is a Legend here in Ireland and, for me, it really is very pleasing to learn that some of the world's greatest guitarists/musicians, specifically Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, put Rory before them.
Upon listening to this compilation, one must really admire Gallagher's guitar playing and style, especially given the fact that he self-taught himself the instrument!
For me, songs like 'Laundromat', 'Bad Penny', a live version of 'Brute Force and Ignorance', 'Loanshark Blues', another live track in 'As The Crow Flies', 'Slumming Angel' and 'Tatoo'd Lady' (which is also live) are all stand-out tracks here. These are songs that really showcase Rory's genius.
So, if you are a 'genuine' music lover, then you need to get this. If you are a newcomer to Gallagher's output, like myself, then this is an essential 'first taste'. If you are into your Bluesmen, why haven't you got this already??? Buy it!!!
I was lucky enough back in the sixties & seventies to see Rory Gallagher, often at my local pub venue the Black Bull in Whetstone, both as leader of Taste and under his own moniker. He was never less than great value, played guitar like he was born with one slung umbilically round his neck, sang like a fierce old Deep South blues barker, and generally seemed a thoroughly good bloke. By all accounts he was, and, according to Nigel Williamson`s excellent booklet notes, was much loved by everyone from Clapton and Dylan to compatriots Van Morrison and the Dubliners (with whom he played and whose alumnus Ronnie Drew was a pallbearer at Rory`s all too premature funeral - he died at 47). Rory thought up some of the best record titles of anybody - Calling Card, Against The Grain, Fresh Evidence, Blueprint, Photo Finish...there are tracks here - 28 in all - from each of his post-Taste albums, not (I`m happy to say) in chronological order, and including five live ones. Rory G was always a tremendous live performer, his virtuoso guitar and modest yet forceful stage presence coming into its own, things which, it must be said, rarely came across adequately on record. This generous 2-hour-plus compilation - though still leaving room for a few more tracks - is both a superb primer and a poignant reminder for Rory newcomer and fan alike. It`s not often I`m brought to actual tears by the blues, but remembering Rory in his denim-clad prime - and he was invariably in his prime! - I couldn`t help but feel overwhelmingly sad he`s no longer with us. He had his demons, one of them the bottle, but he never sold his hard-won fans short. What is sometimes forgotten is just how protean a singer and songwriter Rory was. Naturally, he covered some of the classic blues numbers, but mostly he wrote his own `versions` of the blues. He is still somewhat underrated as a songwriter, or perhaps he has always been a tad neglected (having died so young, too) with little of the lustre of a Clapton, Page or Beck. He was never in a band like Zep or the Yardbirds. Rory simply kept touring and playing, doing what he loved. The music? No need to highlight particular tracks. If you love the blues, if you love Rory, if you want to hear the most honest and unpretentious of all the British blues men, then get this wonderful 2-CD compilation, grab hold of your air guitar, let your hair fall into your face, and get a whole load of the indefatigable Rory Gallagher: the one everybody loved. God, I miss him.
I have always been a big fan of Rory but always preferred his live shows to his studio output .At the recent Rory Gallgher tribute festival in Ballyshannon i was taken aback when attending lunch time acoustic sesssions that there was a lot of songs that i did not know ,but still sounded great on first time hearing .This double cd at a terrific price was a good filler of the gaps of some of the songs i had missed .
New to RG. Love his guitar playing across the album: just such a natural talent. A number of the later tracks are a bit 'by numbers'. Prefer his voice when he was younger; later years and his vocal is gruffer and less attractive in my view. Good introduction to Gallagher, though.
Read about him in the Sunday Times, then listened on line. Good old quality guitar and drum work. Been looking for this style for ages now have finally caught up with him,. How did I not know he was around? The CD was well packaged and presented