A Revisit of Two Previous Muddy Waters Releases
Perry Celestino | Tahmoor, NSW Australia | 04/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Muddy Waters is the best known and loved Chicago Bluesman. He invented the electric Blues Band, i.e., the Rock Band of today, used one of the first electric guitars to play what was Country Blues (the Telecaster in the early 1950s) and set the standard for urban blues singing. This set (or two sets) was filmed at the University of Oregon in 1971 and shows us Muddy at his most powerful, after he had become famous, and with arguably his best post-1950 (Little Walter, Jimmy Rogers, Otis Spann) band. The line-up is stellar with the addition of the very talented George "Harmonica" Smith on harp, with his curious side blowing technique. Also in the band is the fantastic Pinetop Perkins.
However, this DVD is a composite of three other previous released works. The credits and front screen of the DVD is from the Vestapol release "Muddy Waters in Concert 1971"- however, not this one. The first set comes from "Gunsmoke Blues" a great release a couple of years ago which also includes a set from "Harmonica' Smith and a rare look at the great talent of Big Mamma Thronton. This film was made by the film crew of the famous "Gunsmoke" TV show of the late fifties and early sixties. This DVD only has Muddy segment, but he is at his best. He stands up and delivers a great performance with such standards as "Long Distance Call", "Hoochie Coochie Man", Mannish Boy", "She's 19 Years Old", "Walking In The Park" and a great version of "Crawlin King Snake". A very engaging and interesting set.
The second section (not bonus material) goes into the famous (and recently re-released in the "Classic Concerts" DVD) Newport Jazz Festival Set which includes the great tracks "I Got My Mojo Working" and "I'll Put A Tiger In Yout Tank". However, the segment is disjointed a bit by a TV commentator who introduces each tune. It is nothing new but if you don't have these already they are perhaps two of his best ever recorded performances. He is young, full of power and at the top of his game. The sound is good and the price is very reasonable. It should also be known that this DVD was produced in Germany and is an import."