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Deuces Wild

B.B. King

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Album Review

This is B.B.'s celebrity duet album, and a straight-ahead blues album this is not. But longtime fans who are aware of King's genre-stretching capabilities will find much to savor here. Kicking off with B.B. playing some beautiful fills and solo work behind Van Morrison on "If You Love Me," the superstars start lining up to jam with the King, with Tracy Chapman ("The Thrill Is Gone"), Eric Clapton (a funkified "Rock Me Baby"), the Rolling Stones ("Paying the Cost to Be the Boss," with a fine harp solo from Mick Jagger), Willie Nelson (his "Nightlife," long a standard in B.B.'s set list), Bonnie Raitt ("Baby I Love You"), and Marty Stuart ("Confessin' the Blues") all turning in fine efforts. The only clinker aboard here is an ill-advised attempt to make a rap record with Heavy D, the execrable "Keep It Coming." [The import edition adds four bonus tracks: "Let the Good Times Roll," "Bring It Home to Me," "Hummingbird," and "Pauly's Birthday Boogie."]

Biography

Born: 16 September 1925 in Indianola, MS

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Universally hailed as the reigning king of the blues, the legendary B.B. King is without a doubt the single most important electric guitarist of the last half century. His bent notes and staccato picking style have influenced legions of contemporary bluesmen, while his gritty and confident voice — capable of wringing every nuance from any lyric — provides a worthy match for his passionate playing. Between 1951 and 1985, King notched an impressive 74 entries on Billboard's R&B charts,...
Full bio

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