Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down
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In March 1977, Muddy Waters, Johnny Winter, and James Cotton did a concert tour together in support of Waters' then-recent Hard Again LP, on which Winter had played guitar (as well as produced) and Cotton had played harmonica. This CD, not released until about 30 years later, has an hour of music drawn from three different shows on the tour. It might have been spurred by a Muddy Waters album, but in fact Waters, Winter, and Cotton all took vocals — sometimes alone, and sometimes on the same song — on stage, and these 11 songs feature the vocals of each of the three in about equal measure. Often these kind of touring combinations are too many cooks in the kitchen, or, if not quite that, at least more fun to attend than to listen to on tape. The latter could be said of the material on this disc, which is really just okay, not great, and not even among the best recordings that have been issued of Waters in the mid-'70s. It's still solid and decent, including some Waters classics ("Can't Be Satisfied," "Got My Mojo Workin'," "Trouble No More"), Cotton originals, and covers of staples by Jackie Brenston ("Rocket 88"), John Lee Hooker ("I Done Got Over It"), J.B. Lenoir ("Mama Talk to Your Daughter"), Lowell Fulson ("Love Her with a Feeling"), and Elmore James ("Dust My Broom"), as well as the famed jump blues "Caledonia." It's undeniable, however, that Waters was, even at this relatively advanced age, by far the most commanding singer of the trio. The songs on which his vocals are prominent (especially "Can't Be Satisfied" and "Trouble No More") kind of dwarf the ones on which his singing is absent or secondary, making the cuts that emphasize Cotton and Winter seem rather workmanlike in comparison. Nevertheless, the sound is good, and the band filled out competently with sidemen (particularly Pinetop Perkins on piano), making this a satisfactory listen for serious blues collectors, though a little superfluous for most fans.
AS MUCH FUN AS THE COVER PHOTO
Bluesheads have had this material for years on lesser quality bootlegs and finally part of this great live show appears on an official CD. The sound is clear and fullbodied. Every track cooks and you can just hear how into this show each of these blues legends are. This is a great sampler of Muddy, Johnny and Cotton that would only be better if it were a two disc set with the entire set list. Buy it now and turn a friend on to it later.
Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down
Some 33 years or so ago, Muddy and James came to Concord College in Athens, WV and played to a not so packed house. I remember hearing Muddy make the comment that went something like, "For all those that are not here will not know what they've missed, but for you that are here, we're gonna blow you away!" It seemed like they played forever! They were absolutely awesome! They had a great time playing songs and just "jamming" on stage. This album brings back a wonderful memory of a great concert. These gentlemen are true artists! Add this album to your collection and you'll never regret it!
Breakin it up, Breakin it down
Excellent music.....you will begin to understand why good blues music comes from deep within. You can feel the raw passion and emotion from the artists. Got My Mojo Working and Dust My Broom/Blackcat Bone are some of the best blues music/renditions I have ever heard...but with three great talents you would expect nothing else!
Born: July 1, 1935 in Tunica, MS
Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s
Top Albums and Songs By James Cotton
||Black Cat Bone / Dust My Broom||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||5:53||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Caledonia||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||6:57||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Blues in My Sleep||Deep in the Blues||6:09||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Got My Mojo Workin'||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||4:59||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Cotton Mouth Man||Cotton Mouth Man||3:47||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Route 66||Superharps||5:15||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Rocket 88||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||2:09||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Trouble No More||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||4:09||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Can't Be Satisfied||Breakin' It Up, Breakin' It Down||3:47||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Wasn't My Time To Go||Cotton Mouth Man||4:16||$0.99||View In iTunes|