King of the Delta Blues Singers, Vol. 2 [Bonus Track]

by: Robert Johnson

King of the Delta Blues Singers,is a wonderful follow-up to the first compilation of Robert Johnson's small library of recorded work. This album boasts the first album appearance of "Love in Vain," as well as a number of other blues classics penned by the artist. "Sweet Home Chicago," "I Believe I'll Dust My Broom," "They're Red Hot," and "Malted Milk" are all present (and all covered by a multitude of artists -- the Blues Brothers, Elmore James, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Eric Clapton, respectively). As is generally the practice with Robert Johnson albums, a painting stands in for the cover (there are only two known photographs of the artist in the first place, and every other album released uses one of them). The music is certainly impeccable -- the self-accompanying bassline boogie was one of Johnson's greatest contributions to the blues, and it's displayed in all its beauty here. To top this, there's the beauty of his melodic work, and the interplay with his semi-gruff voice that help to make his songs memorable. He is the true legend of the blues, and anyone with even the slightest curiosity in that genre, or rock, needs to own both this album and its predecessor, or else the box set released in 1990 that covers both of them. [The disc was reissued in 2004 with one bonus track: a second take of "Ramblin' on My Mind."]~ Adam Greenberg

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