This forty-track double disc is one of the best of the many Big Bill Broonzy-compilations on the market, especially considering the price, and it does a great job om summarizing Big Bill's thirty-year career. William Lee Conley Broonzy was a huge source of inspiration to many younger bluesmen, Muddy Waters and Memphis Slim among them, and once you've heard him do "I Can't Be Satisfied", "Worrying You Off My Mind" and "You May Need My Help Someday", you'll know why. Compare this CD to the earliest plantation recordings of Muddy Waters, and suddenly you have the giant of Chicago blues, the great McKinley Morganfield, looking like a Bill Broonzy-imitator. (Muddy actually recorded an entire album of Big Bill's songs, as did Memphis Slim, Broonzy's one-time pianist.) Big Bill Broonzy was one of the first country-blues musicians to pack up and head north to Illinois, where he became a vital link between rural and urban blues. This collection features most of his best songs, such as "Keep Your Hands Off Her", "Serve It To Me Right", "Long Tall Mama", "Good Time Tonight", "All By Myself", "I Feel So Good", "When I Been Drinking" and of course "Key To The Highway". A few songs aren't here which should have been, and a few songs are less remarkable than others, but all in all, this is a very fine testament to the talent of one of the true greats of the blues.
A great entry level cd for those who are new to Big Bill. From early solo material, thru a trio to a full blow band with horns. Worth the price for the track "Keep Your Hands Off Her" alone. Four stars.