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Boogie Chillun (Live)

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iTunes Review

Recorded live over the course of several nights in the first week of November 1962, Boogie Chillun shows John Lee Hooker in top form in front of a rapt audience at San Francisco’s Sugar Hill folk club. Hooker’s guitar sound here is somewhere between electric and acoustic and Boogie Chillun is a grand display of the man’s bag of tricks. In particular, it is a tour through his rhythm arsenal. With simple flicks of his wrist, the light touch of a ring finger, and the snapping movement of a thumb, Hooker could create dozens of different dances. There is the shuffle of “I’m Gonna Keep On Walking,” the popcorn jump of “Run On Babe” and the slashing “It’s You I Love, Baby,” in addition to the canonical stomp of “Boogie Chillun.” The subtle-yet-ineffable rhythms that are displayed here would go on to affect a generation of blues players, not least of which was North Mississippi’s RL Burnside, who adopted Hooker’s pick-less style. The set also showcases his interpretative powers, as the guitarist turns in sinister renditions of Charles Brown’s “Driftin’ Blues,” Barrett Strong’s “Money” and Ray Charles’ “Night Time Is the Right Time.”

Customer Reviews

A classic!

Unique, haunting, funky, and downright soulful!


Born: August 22, 1917 in Clarksdale, MS

Genre: Blues

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

He was beloved worldwide as the king of the endless boogie, a genuine blues superstar whose droning, hypnotic one-chord grooves were at once both ultra-primitive and timeless. But John Lee Hooker recorded in a great many more styles than that over a career that stretched across more than half a century. "The Hook" was a Mississippi native who became the top gent on the Detroit blues circuit in the years following World War II. The seeds for his eerily mournful guitar sound were planted by his stepfather,...
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