Down Beat - 8/97, p.604 stars (out of 5)
- "Guy's reputation as the premier fire-spewing Chicago blues guitarist is secure....Guy the guitarist plays eloquently....his strong, relaxed singing draws inspiration from Bobby "Blue" Bland..."
Personnel includes: Buddy Guy, Lacy Gibson (vocals, guitar); Matt Murphy (guitar); Junior Wells (harmonica); Donald Hankins (tenor & baritone saxophones); Jarrett Gibson, Bob Neely, A.C. Reed (tenor saxophone); Lafayette Leake, Little Brother Montgomery, Otis Spann (piano); Jack Meyers, Phil Upchurch (bass); Clifton James, Fred Below (drums).
Recorded between 1960 & 1967.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
This is part of Chess Records' 50th Anniversary series.
Personnel: Buddy Guy (vocals, guitar); Lacy Gibson (vocals, guitar); Matt "Guitar" Murphy, Lefty Bates (guitar); Junior Wells (harmonica); Jarrett Gibson, Donald Hankins (tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Bob Neely, Abe Locke, Gene Barge, A.C. Reed, Milton Bland (tenor saxophone); Sonny Turner , Murray Watson (trumpet); Lafayette Leake, Leonard Caston (piano, organ); Little Brother Montgomery, Otis Spann (piano); Clifton James, Fred Below, Al Duncan , Phil Thomas, Charles Stepney (drums).
Recording information: Chicago, IL (03/02/1960-07/??/1967).
Photographers: Joseph Sia; Ray Flerlage; Don Bronstein; Brian Smith .
As part of MCA's Chess Records 50th Anniversary series, Buddy's Blues sweats Guy's multi-disc retrospective, The Complete Chess Studio Recordings down to a scintillating 15-track package and comes up with a bare-bones winner. There are loads of great guitar on classics like "First Time I Met the Blues," "Let Me Love You Baby," "Pretty Baby," "My Time After Awhile," "Stone Crazy," and Guy's voice is at its whiplash exuberant best. Unexpected bonuses pop up in the comp's kickoff track, a full-length version of "Worried Mind," issued here without the overdubbed applause and crowd noises that accompanied its original release on Folk Festival of the Blues (see Muddy Waters' entry). Also noteworthy is Junior Wells' appearance on chromatic harp on "Ten Years Ago," and Guy's stellar guitar behind Lacy Gibson's vocal on a Buddy Guy original, "My Love Is Real." And special note must also be made of the spacious stereo mixes used on this compilation, making these 30-year-old-plus tracks shine like diamonds coming off the laser beam. We also experience all the stylistic turns toward a kinship with the burgeoning soul and rock scenes that Guy would make toward the end of his Chess tenure, along with the smoking slow burners that are his trademark, some of which clock in at four to six minutes here. With his very best tracks compiled on one disc, and with beautiful transfers of them to enhance the listening experience, this should be one of your very first stops in absorbing the sides that made Buddy Guy's reputation among blues fans and guitar aficionados the world over. ~ Cub Koda