21 Songs, 1 Hour 20 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Buddy Guy isn’t just an old-school bluesman; he’s an old-school showman. So if his albums seem a bit brighter and more conceptual than those by his contemporaries, it’s because Guy is every bit as much a goodwill ambassador to the music as he is a practitioner. This results in tracks that sizzle with a modern-era patina and guests such as Kid Rock, three-fifths of Aerosmith, Gary Clark Jr., Keith Urban, and Beth Hart. This 2013 issue is divided into two halves. The first is “Rhythm"; the second is “Blues.” But that's more a statement of purpose than anything listeners need to concern themselves with. Fact is, these tracks rock harder and louder than ever. Whether this is a good thing rests with your devotion to the “pure” Chicago-styled blues of the '50s and how much you enjoy hearing Steven Tyler going mouth to mouth on “Evil Twin.” (For the record, Tyler sounds more road-weary and worn than Guy!) “One Day Away” with Urban catches a sleek groove; it could bring Guy to commercial radio and to country fans, who'd surely admire the man’s soul.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Buddy Guy isn’t just an old-school bluesman; he’s an old-school showman. So if his albums seem a bit brighter and more conceptual than those by his contemporaries, it’s because Guy is every bit as much a goodwill ambassador to the music as he is a practitioner. This results in tracks that sizzle with a modern-era patina and guests such as Kid Rock, three-fifths of Aerosmith, Gary Clark Jr., Keith Urban, and Beth Hart. This 2013 issue is divided into two halves. The first is “Rhythm"; the second is “Blues.” But that's more a statement of purpose than anything listeners need to concern themselves with. Fact is, these tracks rock harder and louder than ever. Whether this is a good thing rests with your devotion to the “pure” Chicago-styled blues of the '50s and how much you enjoy hearing Steven Tyler going mouth to mouth on “Evil Twin.” (For the record, Tyler sounds more road-weary and worn than Guy!) “One Day Away” with Urban catches a sleek groove; it could bring Guy to commercial radio and to country fans, who'd surely admire the man’s soul.

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About Buddy Guy

Keith Richards called him the godfather. Eric Clapton likened his impact to Elvis’. And Hendrix reportedly said that heaven was lying at his feet while listening to him play. But Buddy Guy tends to weigh himself a little more modestly: “Music makes people happy,” he said. “And that’s why I go on doing it.” The Louisiana-born guitarist got his footing as a session man with Chicago’s Chess Records. In the years to follow, he synthesized the traditions of Delta blues with a fierce, theatrically modern style, embracing volume and distortion before they were vernacular, sometimes playing with his teeth and feet and using an extra-long cable to wander through the crowd and onto the street, soloing the whole way. As beloved as he is as a player, Guy also serves as an ambassadorial figure, bridging the gap between his generation of collaborators—which includes B.B. King and Junior Wells—and later ones, working first with British blues acolytes like Jeff Beck and The Rolling Stones, then with artists like John Mayer. A sharp wit, Guy sums up his trajectory: “When I went to Chicago, I'll put it like this: I was looking for a dime and I found a quarter.”

HOMETOWN
Lettsworth, LA
GENRE
Blues
BORN
July 30, 1936

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