Sunday, September 22, 2013

Jimmy Rogers All Stars...Blues Blues Blues

Back in 1969, Muddy Waters and Otis Spann teamed with young guns Paul Butterfield and Michael Bloomfield to create Fathers & Sons. The idea was to match the sagacity of the "old timers" with the flash and commercial muscle of the upstarts. Nearly three decades later, Jimmy Rogers (like Spann, an alumnus of Waters's commanding '50s group) holed up in the studio with Butterfield-Bloomfield contemporaries Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, and Stephen Stills; the result is Blues Blues Blues, the late singer-guitarist's swan song.

Here's something to ponder: Waters was 54 when Fathers & Sons was recorded, the same age as Jagger when he cut his two tracks for this set. So maybe this collection should have been called Great-Grandfathers & Grandfathers. That said, Jagger's two contributions to Blues Blues Blues highlight this effort; he sounds invigorated dueting with the steady-rollin' Rogers on "Trouble No More" and gooses up Sonny Boy Williamson's "Don't Start Me to Talkin'" with studied nonchalance. With other rock-era titans (Taj Mahal, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page) and blues stalwarts (Carey Bell, Johnnie Johnson, Hound Dog Taylor & the Houserockers drummer Ted Harvey) along to lend support, Blues Blues Blues is a star-studded sendoff to one of the blues' noble patriarchs. --Steven Stolder (Amazon review)


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