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sku: SSP 71352
- Released: September 23, 2003
- Originally Released: 2003
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
- 1.SENOR BLUES
- 2.DON'T CALL US
- 3.(YOU'VE GOT TO) LOVE HER WITH A FEELING
- 4.LOVIN' IN MY BABY'S EYES
- 5.BETTY AND DUPREE
- 6.HERE IN THE DARK
- 7.THAT'S HOW STRONG MY LOVE IS
- 8.LONELY AVENUE
- 10.MAILBOX BLUES
- 12.SITTING ON TOP OF THE WORLD
- 13.MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS
- 14.CAKEWALK INTO TOWN
- 15.BLUES WITH A FEELING
- 16.TAKE A GIANT STEP
- 17.THE NEW HULA BLUES
- 18.THE HUSTLE IS ON
- 19.LET THE FOUR WINDS BLOW
- 20.BLUE LIGHT BOOGIE
Personnel: Taj Mahal, Etta James (vocals); Eric Clapton (guitar); Daryl Hall, John Oates, Sheryl Crow (background vocals).
Producers: John Porter, Skip Drinkwater, Carey Williams.
Compilation producers: Barry Feldman, Joshua Sherman, Tom Vickers.
Recorded between 1991 & 1998. Includes liner notes by Tom Vickers.
Liner Note Author: Tom Vickers.
Photographer: James Minchin III.
Throughout his career, Taj Mahal has always been considered a bluesman, which is true enough, since the basis for everything he does has been the country blues, but he is not a traditionalist at heart, and he has always looked for ways to push the blues into new places and shapes. Adding at times rhythms and sensibilities that are drawn from reggae, ragtime, calypso, zydeco, and other genres, Mahal practices a kind of blues hybrid that is his alone, and he has been a huge influence on newer artists like Chris Thomas King and Corey Harris. This collection derives from the five albums he recorded with Private Records during the 1990s, and overlaps somewhat with The Best of the Private Years, released in 2000. Highlights include his version of Doc Pomus' "Lonely Avenue," a bebop blues take on Horace Silver's "Se¤or Blues," and an atmospheric reading of Goffin & King's "Take a Giant Step." Among the most interesting tracks here are the ones penned by Taj Mahal himself ("Mailbox Blues," "Cakewalk into Town," "New Hula Blues"), each of which demonstrates aptly the singer's melting-pot approach to the blues. ~ Steve Leggett
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