JazzTimes - 9/01, p.89
"...An excellent retrospective..."
Living Blues - 3-4/02, p.77
Personnel includes: Freddie King (vocals, guitar); Leon Russell (guitar, piano); Don Preston (guitar, background vocals); Eric Clapton, George Terry, Bobby Tench, Fred Jordan, Cornell Dupree (guitar); Trevor Lawrence, Willie Bridges (tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Chris Mercer, Mick Eves, Steve Gregory, George Coleman, Frank Wess (tenor saxophone); Bud Beadle (baritone saxophone); Gene Reed, Clifford Scott (saxophone); Ernie Royal, Martin Banks, Ron Carthy (trumpet); Patrick Henderson (piano, organ); George Stubbs, Sonny Thompson (piano); Roy Davies (electric piano, Clavinet); John Gallie, Dick Sims (organ); Bill Willis, Gerry Jemmott, Dick Dunn, DeLisle Harper (bass); Steve Ferrone, Jamie Oldaker (drums); Mike Vernon (percussion).
Producers include: Leon Russell, Don Nix, Denny Cordell, Mike Vernon, Tom Dowd.
Compilation producer: Andy McKaie.
Recorded between August 26, 1960 and March 31, 1975. Includes liner notes by Bill Dahl.
Digitally remastered by Erick Labson (Universal Mastering).
Hip-O's Ultimate Collection is one of the first truly comprehensive overviews of Freddie King's career, starting with his seminal recordings for Federal and running all the way to his final recordings for RSO in the mid-'70s. This is a mixed blessing. On one hand, it's nice to have a disc that tells the whole story, but the shifting production values and performance aesthetics make for slightly uneven listening. Throughout it all, though, King's playing shines and it's clear that even if his material and approach wavered toward the '70s, there was plenty to enjoy within his musicianship. Nevertheless, this is a place to go when you want to dig a little deeper, when you want a map of his entire career; if you want to delve in, head toward Rhino's collection of his Federal/King sides. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine