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Album Review

These nine cuts are from various live performances of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band during their heyday in the middle-to-late '60s. This album was put together by Mark Naftalin, who played keyboards on those first few incredible Butterfield albums. Don't look for the clearest sound (it's adequate) because these are live tunes recorded at clubs, often with minimal equipment. It is the music that is in focus here — a window into that incredible band at a time when they were hot. Those of us who were on the scene at the time know that, although the original Butterfield albums are great, the band was a total knockout when heard live. Featuring Butterfield's harmonica, here are glimpses into that time and music. Most of the tunes have appeared elsewhere, but the extended instrumental "Strawberry Jam" (written by Naftalin) is unique to this album — worth hearing. It features great guitar by Elvin Bishop.

Customer Reviews

The Real Blues

Paul Butterfield ( from chicago ) was the Ambassador of urban blues. Paul Butterfield plays the harp. He plays it like nobody before or after him. The CD you are looking at is recorded live at various locations between 1966 and 1968. If you are a big fan of Butterfield then this recording is a must have simply because we do not have a lot of live recordings of the band. The music is excellent the quality of the sound is not great but not that bad either. There is some excellent harp playing as well as some nice guitar work from Elvin Bishop and Mike Bloomfield. If you are new to blues ( The Real Blues ) check out the first two Lp's by this band. The Paul Butterfield Blues Band ( 1st Album ) and East-West the 2nd LP. Both are classic groundbreaking Lp's. Check these out first they are ***** Lp's without question. There is no one trying to carry the mantle for the now deceased Paul Butterfield the last of the great blues harp players

Need More Butterfield?

Strawberry Jam is no substitute for The Butterfield Blues Band's first two studio albums, which display a combination of energy and discipline that most other white bands experimenting with the Blues in that mid-sixties era (The Lovin' Spoonful, the Rising Sons, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, the early Stones) cannot come close to matching. But, if you are like me, those two albums only whet the appetite for more, and Strawberry Jam provides it. As the official review points out, the sound here isn't great, but the energy and precision of the performance is true Butterfield magic, featuring not only the bandleader's muscular harp playing, but the double guitar attack of Mike Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop. In addition, I would recommend this album over "The Lost Elektra Sessions" which, despite some standout tracks, seems to showcase a band that hasn't quite gelled yet.

Strawberry Jam, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band
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Customer Ratings

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