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Butterfield Blues Band CD

113 customer reviews

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Audio CD, CD, September 1, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Bloomfield, Bishop and Butterfield knocked down walls between black and white with their strong love of blues and their equally powerful chops. Here are Born in Chicago; Blues with a Feeling; Last Night; Mellow Down Easy , and the rest of their 1965 debut!

A slew of albums by young white men out of their minds in love with music made by older black men came from both sides of the Atlantic during the mid-1960s, but two records really laid the groundwork for the decade's blues revival--the self-titled releases by John Mayall's Bluesbreakers out of London and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band out of Chicago. Both bands were led by harmonica-blowing vocalists; both featured ascending guitar gods--Eric Clapton with Mayall and Mike Bloomfield with Butterfield. Butterfield's ensemble, however, came of age closer to the roots of the music. The rhythm section heard on the group's 1965 debut was hired away from Howlin' Wolf, and Butterfield, while still in his early 20s when the album shipped, was already a familiar face on the Windy City's club circuit. "Born in Chicago" opens the album on a gritty note that never flags through this 11-track landmark. The slashing duo guitars of Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop and Butterfield's flash harp helped make Muddy Waters fathomable for a new audience and, decades later, it's still easy to understand how. --Steven Stolder

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
  1. Born In Chicago 3:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. Shake Your Money-Maker 2:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Blues With A Feeling 4:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Thank You Mr. Poobah 4:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. I Got My Mojo Working 3:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Mellow Down Easy 2:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Screamin' 4:36$0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. Our Love Is Drifting 3:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Mystery Train 2:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Last Night 4:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Look Over Yonders Wall 2:27$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 1, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: September 1, 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Elektra / Wea
  • ASIN: B000002GZ1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,820 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Gavin B. on May 18, 2004
Format: Audio CD
In the early Sixties, the prevailing wisdom was that the blues was a music based on the shared experience of African Americans and that any attempt by a "Caucasian" to play the blues, uh...pale in comparison to the authentic renditions of the blues by African Americans. In 1965, Paul Butterfield broke that color barrier, not by successfuly "imitating" black blues musicians, but by developing his own signature playing and singing style that demanded that audiences and critics accept Butterfield on his own terms. Butterfield's passion and intensity transcended any formulamatic notions of authenticity simply because of Butterfield's refusal to be evaluated as an imitator. His playing and singing were so uniquely stylized and original that when Butterfield played "Look Over Yonder's Wall" nobody used the Elmore James original as a litmus test of authenticity. I've heard enough bad imatators of B.B.King, both black and white, to know that racial authenticy is not a very reliable benchmark to evaluate good blues. Mediocrity is color blind, as is brilliance and any argument to the contrary is simply, as they say, academic.

Butterfield's band was bi-racial with rythym section consisting of Howlin' Wolf Band veterans Jerome Arnold on bass and the mighty Sam Lay on drums. Elvin Bishop, a University of Chicago student from Oklahoma learned guitar under the tutelage of another Howlin' Wolf veteran, Smokey Smothers. From 1963 until 1965 Bishop and Butterfield played together at Little John's a smokey blues joint on Chicago's northside. Near the time of this recording, Mark Naftalin was added to the band. Naftalin, a former University of Chicago student, played understated but tasty solos on Hammond organ.
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191 of 210 people found the following review helpful By BOB on November 2, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Yes, this is the great PBBB 1st album (actually, the 2nd, see below), but it's not the CD you should be buying.

This domestic CD was released in 1990 and has never been remastered.

The import 2CD version of this title (backed with the PBBB's 2nd album "East West") is the one to get. It was remastered by Bob Irwin in 2001.

Ditto for "Pigboy Crabshaw" & "In My Own Dream"; the 2004 import 2CD is also remastered (and sounds incredible) and the domestic CD's are not.

Why WEA and Elektra have not made these four remasters available domestically is a mystery.

Don't waste your money on these inferior versions: Get the imports!

Also: Don't miss the "Original Lost Elektra Sessions" CD, which was the real first PBBB album, recorded before this one. There is some fabulous music on that CD, and the liner notes by Paul Rothchild are worth the price alone.
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful By deepbluereview on September 26, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Butterfield's debut CD burst on the scene in 1965 and the blues, rock and pop scene were never the same after it's release. In it's original form, the band consisted of Butterfield on vocals and harmonica, Mike Bloomfield on slide guitar, Elvin Bishop on rhythm guitar, Jerome Arnold on bass, Sam Lay on drums and Mark Naftalin on organ. One can argue which Butterfield CD should be at the top of the heap but there is no denying that this would rank in the top five of any Butterfield enthusiasts list. The CD contains a variety of blues styles as well as what became the bands signature song, "Born In Chicago" as well as the Bloomfield gem "Screamin'". If you love Butterfield, this is a must have CD. If you are unfamiliar with Butterfield, this is the place to start. In either case, you should own this disc!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By BluesDuke on June 29, 2001
Format: Audio CD
It's only too easy to overrate the original Butterfield Blues Band, who kick-started the original mid-1960s blues revival and, as it happens, sent the folk "revival" of the earlier part of the decade all but packing as a mass phenomenon, both with their own electrifying workshop performances at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival and with a few of them (guitarist extraordinaire Mike Bloomfield, drummer Sam Lay, and bassist Jerry Arnold) limbering up behind Bob Dylan for the latter's long-legendary electric set. But there's no overrating the Butterfield gang's music or debut album - almost forty years after the sextet first laid it out, it's riveting, elemental, and demands to be heard all through each layer of the thrustingly sensitive sound.
They may have anchored themselves with Howlin' Wolf's rhythm section (Lay and Arnold), but Butterfield's heart seemed more to belong to Little Walter, both in the preponderance of Walter's material covered (and with reverence but not redundancy) here and in elements of his own harmonica style. (As it happened, Butterfield, Bloomfield, and second guitarist Elvin Bishop had each known, played with, and learned from the Chicago electric blues masters previously, and never lost the old masters' respect.) Bloomfield, of course, was already an outsized talent in his own right - he's not quite the sleek, polished old pro who would go from drop-dead to existentially expressive (by way of his luminous work with first the Electric Flag and, later, the Al Kooper "Super Session" projects), but he's exuberant, committed, and passionate, and he's already figuring out how to temper his chops and subordinate them to taste and to melodiousness in his solos by the time the set begins to wind down.
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