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Album Review

A budget compilation of Witherspoon's early years, this material has been subjected to many collections, but rarely has it received the thoughtfulness of track selection exhibited here. Most fans consider Witherspoon's early sides with Jay McShann to be a pinnacle of the artist's career, and listening to these selections, from "Confessin' the Blues" to "Big Fine Girl," it's hard to disagree. Witherspoon's style is already evolving, and by the end of these sessions he emerges as a confident and powerful singer. Gone With the Blues is as good an introduction as any to this material, and it's a necessary purchase to any new fan not yet familiar with this material.


Born: 08 August 1920 in Gurdon, AR

Genre: Blues

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

One of the great blues singers of the post-World War II period, Jimmy Witherspoon was also versatile enough to fit comfortably into the jazz world. Witherspoon was born on August 8, 1920, in Gurdon, AR. As a child, he sang in a church choir, and made his debut recordings with Jay McShann for Philo and Mercury in 1945 and 1946. His own first recordings, using McShann's band, resulted in a number one R&B hit in 1949 with "Ain't Nobody's Business, Pts. 1 & 2" on Supreme Records. Live performances of...
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Gone with the Blues, Jimmy Witherspoon
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