Sunday, November 27, 2016

Joe Turner - His Greatest Recordings

Back in the days before virtually everything was reissued on expansive CD's you had to search through places called Record Stores to find vinyl compilations of classic rock'n'roll and blues artists. I happened upon this a few decades ago and while I have since bought CD comps of the Big Man, I still pull this one out for the sound and the cuts that haven't been added to other collections.

Big Joe Turner got his nickname from both his size and his huge, blues-belting voice. The album truly does have some of his best recordings that showcase his vocals along with his jumpin' pre-r'n'r, r'n'b style.

Of course, "Shake, Ratlle and Roll", the cut that helped to bring Bill Haley and the Comets to prominence, is included in its original swingin' state - less frantic than Haley but certainly more sexy) as well as similar cuts like "Honey Hush", "Flip Flop and Fly" and "TV Mama". His take on "Corina, Corina" is, for me, marred a bit by some corny backing vocalists, but there's lots more groovy, honkin' sax boogie like "Oke She Moke She Pop", "Boogie Woogie Country Girl" and "Midnight Cannonball". "Chains of Love" is a true, weepy ballad, "Crawdad Hole" is a slower, sultry blues and the closer, "The Chicken and the Hawk" is another killer jumpin' jive number.

I certainly don't know all of the comps that are currently available, but if you are vinyl-centric and come across this one, be sure to pick it up. Cool gatefold with plenty of loner notes, too!