- Released: June 30, 1998
- Originally Released: 1998
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
Q - 3/02, p.1343 stars out of 5
- "...Contains plenty of her usual exuberance....powerfully moving..."
- 1.Born Under A Bad Sign
- 2.I Want To Ta Ta You, Baby
- 3.Here I Am (Come And Take Me)
- 4.Running Out Of Lies
- 5.Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)
- 7.Life, Love & The Blues
- 8.Hoochie Coochie Gal
- 9.Cheating In The Next Room
- 10.If You Want Me To Stay
- 11.The Love You Save May Be Your Own
- 12.I'll Take Care Of You
Personnel: Etta James (vocals); Josh Sklair (guitar, dobro); Leo Nocentelli, Bobby Murray (guitar); Jimmy "Z" (saxophone, harmonica); Lee Thornburg (trumpet, trombone); Tom Poole (trumpet); Dave Mathews (keyboards); Mike Finnigan (Hammond B-3 organ); Sametto James (bass); Donto James (drums, percussion).
Recorded at Fort Athens Studio, Riverside, California. Includes liner notes by Bob Merlis & Etta James.
LIFE, LOVE & THE BLUES was nominated for a 1999 Grammy for Best Contemporary Blues Album.
Personnel: Etta James (vocals); Leo Nocentelli (guitar, electric guitar, wah-wah guitar); Josh Sklair (guitar, dobro); Bobby Murray (guitar); Jimmy Z. (harmonica, saxophone); Lee Thornburg (trumpet, valve trombone); Tom Poole (trumpet); David Matthews (keyboards); Donto Metto James (drums, percussion).
Audio Mixer: Joe Chiccarelli.
Liner Note Author: Bob Merlis.
Recording information: Conway Studios, Hollywood, CA; Fort Athens Studio, Riverside, CA.
Illustrator: Dorothy Letherwood.
Photographer: Jeff Dunas.
Etta James' fine self-produced LIFE, LOVE & THE BLUES touts itself as a straight blues album, the one Etta says she always wanted to record. This isn't entirely accurate, since the smart choice of tunes here includes Al Green's "Here I Am (Come And Take Me)" and Marvin Gaye's "Inner City Blues." But why quibble with a legend, especially since she delivers the goods with such class and professionalism?
By 1998, her voice had lost some of its upper purity but hardly any of its flexibility and force. She's not riding any past glory as she steps forthrightly into Albert King's "Born Under A Bad Sign" like she owns it, as well as modern blues classics like Willie Dixon's "Spoonful" and "Hoochie Coochie Man (Gal)." Speaking of ownership, Etta co-wrote the title song - a smoldering statement of purpose cut with some fine slide acoustic work courtesy of her ace back-up guys, The Roots Band.