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4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Audio CD, September 3, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

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Review

James Booker, a lifelong New Orleans resident, was someone special. His R&B piano playing was on a par with Professor Longhair's: more dazzling than liquid mercury, rock-ribbed, painterly, drenched in gospel and classical. His singing? Fibrillating melismas and glides hinting of Ray Charles, but all his own. Recording in late 1982, Booker is joined on five of the dozen tracks by bassist James Singleton and drummer John Vidacovich, with local legend Red Tyler lending tenor saxophone to four. -- © Frank John Hadley 1993 -- From Grove Press Guide to Blues on CD
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 3, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rounder
  • ASIN: B0000002VU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #284,783 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
I saw James Booker perform in a little hole in the wall bar in 1983 New Orleans. He had this album propped up on the piano while he played to a very small crowd, yet he played as if he were playing to thousands of people. James Booker enjoyed playing music, and he did it as well as anyone. This would be the last album he would record, and it's one of his best...We spoke while he was on break, and he tried to convince me to buy a copy, but I had just spent my last few bucks buying drinks. He said "take it anyway, and if you like it pay me the next time you see me". Well I went home, put it on, and needless to say, it was all good; from the first cut to the last. James Booker died three weeks later, and I never had the opportunity to go back and pay him, or to thank him for his kindness. I'll be forever indebted to him, not only for the album, but for the memory of that time, and for the story that ultimately came with it. Give James Booker a listen and you'll be rewarded, I promise....
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Format: Audio CD
Dr. John and Harry Connick Jr. both acknowledge Booker as the greatest of New Orleans piano players. So who are we to argue? The beauty of music in New Orleans has always been the blurring of musical categories: blues, jazz (both traditional and modern), r&b, gospel, and Caribbean-infected funk were and are played in the Crescent City by the same great artists who also happen to be great entertainers. It's a gumbo town. And no one embodied this gumbo spirit better and with more virtuosity than James Booker. He could play it all, including classical, separately, at the same time, or all at the same time! I think this is Booker's best studio recording, and it is true that the version of "King of the Road" on this record is by itself worth the price -- trascendent.
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By A Customer on June 10, 1999
Format: Audio CD
this album has often been described by critics as haphazard and in many ways unfinished. that may or may not be the case, but check it out for yourself, there are plenty of golden gems here. i bet you a dollar or two that roger miller's "king of the road" will never be the same ever again to anyone who hears booker's far out version...
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