ExPatriatePen wrote:I'm a hard core Blues fanatic so Beale St is Mecca to me.
Good, just the one to ask. I love Blues. I have some basic material: BB, Johnson, hooker and some things from Alligator Records. 20th anniv. Compilation, katie webster whose voice is incredible, etc.
But I want to grab a few more cds. So, what's your 5 favorite albums? What would you recommend outside of the aforementioned?
So you're lucky in that there are a ton of great compilations out there. You can really get good samples from some of those.
The Blues really is a very broad genre, you've got Delta Blues, Chicago Blues, Texas Blues. You'll probably find yourself migrating to one or more of those as you get deeper into the genre.
Also, I personally have noticed more of a focus on intrumentation in the Blues (as opposed to other types of music). Lot's of great blues horns, pianists, blues harp (harmonica) and guitar players.
I'm a huge fan of slide guitar and blues harp.
From a historical perspective I'd go with Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Mississippi John Hurt and Albert King. (Grab the compilations instead of individual releases until you decide which of those 'float your boat' the most.)
Ruth Brown and Etta James are my favorite female Blues artists from a historical perspective.
There are a ton of modern day blues artists as well. I'm a huge fan of Jonny Langs "Lie to Me", Kenny Wayne Sheppard (his 10 days out: "Blues from the backroads" is awesome!), North Mississippi all-stars gives you blues with a jamband feel. R.L. Burnside combines that with a slightly hip-hop feel.
I'd also read up on some of the early RnR legends biographys (Clapton, Rod Stewart, Keith Richards, Mick etc...) they talk a ton about what their influences were.
One of the most obscure blues albums I like is "Fleetwood Mac Live in Chicago".
I haven't even mentioned Robert Johnson.
The other person on here to give you blues advice is Willie Kool. He continually impresses me with his Blues/Music Knowledge.