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The Best Of Taj Mahal Original recording remastered


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

Samples
Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Statesboro Blues 2:57$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Leaving Trunk 4:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Corinna 3:02$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Going Up To The Country, Paint My Mailbox Blue 3:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. She Caught The Katy And Left Me A Mule To Ride 3:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Take A Giant Step 4:16$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Six Days On The Road 3:00$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Farther On Down The Road 4:38$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Fishin' Blues 3:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Ain't Gwine To Whistle Dixie (Any Mo') (Live) 8:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. You're Going To Need Somebody On Your Bond (Live) 6:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Cakewalk Into Town 2:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Oh Susanna 5:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Frankie And Albert 3:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Chevrolet 2:38$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. Johnny Too Bad 3:16$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen17. Sweet Mama Janisse (Previously Unissued Studio Version) 3:32$0.99  Buy MP3 

Amazon's Taj Mahal Store

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Biography

American blues musician Taj Mahal, was born Henry Fredericks in New York in 1942. His music is a mix of blues, Caribbean styles, bluegrass and the music of Hawaii, where he lived for a number of years.

He formed Rising Sons with fellow bluesman Ry Cooder, playing at Whisky a Go Go, which gave him the opportunity to play with blues legends, amongst them Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters and ... Read more in Amazon's Taj Mahal Store

Visit Amazon's Taj Mahal Store
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 5, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Columbia/ Legacy
  • ASIN: B00004XSUS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #35,752 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

Taj Mahal's been chasing the blues around the world for years, but rarely with the passion, energy, and clarity he brought to his first three albums. Taj Mahal, The Natch'l Blues and The Real Thing are the sound of the artist, who was born in 1942, defining himself and his music. On his self-titled 1967 debut, he not only honors the sound of the Delta masters with his driving National steel guitar and hard vocal shout, but ladles in elements of rock and country with the help of guitarists Ry Cooder and the late Jessie Ed Davis. This approach is reinforced and broadened by The Natch'l Blues. What's most striking is Mahal's way of making even the oldest themes sound as if they're part of a new era. Not just through the vigor of his playing--relentlessly propulsive, yet stripped down compared with the six-string ornamentations of the original masters of country blues--but through his singing, which possesses a knowing insouciance distinct to post-Woodstock counterculture hipsters. It's the voice of an informed young man who knows he's offering something deep to an equally hip and receptive audience.

Soon, Mahal turned his multicultural vision of the blues even further outward. The live 1971 set, The Real Thing, finds him still carrying the Mississippi torch, while adding overt elements of jazz and Afro-Caribbean music to its flame. But it's overreaching. His band sounds under-rehearsed, and the arrangements seem more like rough outlines. Nonetheless, these albums set the stage for Mahal's career. (For a condensed version, try the fine The Best of Taj Mahal.) Today, he continues to make fine fusion albums, like 1999's Kulanjan, with Malian kora master Toumani Diabate, and less exciting but still eclectic recordings with his Phantom Blues Band. --Ted Drozdowski

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 28 customer reviews
Taj Mahal is one of the great blues men.
Toni L. Carter
Aside from the songs on this collection that really cook, there are others that seem to transcend the blues and create a different feeling.
s.e.a.
I got the wrong one sent to me and am very glad you had this one in stock !!
pete swanton

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By s.e.a. on February 17, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I had heard the name, Taj Mahal over the years but never took the time to investigate his music. Then one day while listening to the radio, the song "Fishing Blues" came on and it sparked my interest. When I saw that he had this "Best Of..." collection I figured it would be a good place to start. Well,I haven't stopped playing it since I recieved it. What a find, this is great music! Every track on this cd touched me in some way. Songs like "Statesboro Blues", "Leaving Trunk", and "She Caught The Katy" are gritty, bluesy, and soulful. Taj sings with a voice that was made for the blues, and plays a mean harmonica to boot.

Aside from the songs on this collection that really cook, there are others that seem to transcend the blues and create a different feeling. "Corinna", "Take A Giant Step" and "Johnny Too Bad" are more thoughtful and laid back, making for a good mix of tempos'. Then, just when I thought it couldn't get much better, I listened to the jazzed up, instrumental "Ain't Gwine To Whistle Dixie (No Mo')". Awesome! Then there's "Oh Susanna", a song that you might think you've heard before as a child, but not like this! I could go on, but just know that all in all this is a collection of incredible, inspired music from a great artist,and track for track, it's one of the best albums I have ever purchased.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By deepbluereview on April 12, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Taj has become the torchbearer of the blues and, over the years, has developed a very large following and a comprehensive catalog of releases. In order to put this recording into prospective it's necessary to look at what is here. What you find on this disc is a collection of some very fine material dating from 1967 to 1974. So, while the material may be the best of Taj for that period, and that is debatable, it would be unfair to Taj and to his fans to call this a collection of his best works. Anything short of a box set could not possibly cover the broad array of excellent releases put out by this individual. That being said, the reproduction of "Leaving Trunk" and "Corinna" are not of the best quality. However, the rest of the CD is a good representative sample of Taj's early releases. While I would encourage individuals to buy this disc, I feel a certain obligation to the man that has produced so many quality songs over the past 30 plus years to also suggest the box set "In Progress & In Motion".
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By jbembe on October 29, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I absolutely agree that one should own the box set, but this disc is worth owning alone for "Chevrolet." That song really gets me going, and I play it for my wife all the time to let her know how I feel. This disc will only fuel your longing for more taj mahal, so get it and save up for the box set!! If you get the chance check out the grammy-winning "Shouting in Key." That is the best disc of all.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Steven P. Lynn on May 22, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This collection focuses on the very early Taj Mahal and contains most of his early classics. For anyone not familiar with this artist this is a great place to start. You get a full taste of "Taj Mahal", "The Natch'l Blues" and "The Real Thing"(with the tuba band), his first 3 excellent albums, and it is obvious from these how eclectic a blues performer he is. Taj Mahal has always been one of my favorites, and he presented one of the best live shows I have ever seen. He is touring this summer so check him out if you get a chance, and delve deeply into the rest of his recorded material, particularly "Senor Blues".
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Joe Brodnicki on October 14, 2000
Format: Audio CD
On this early recording, Taj Mahal demonstrates his ability to take well-know blues songs like "Statesboro Blues", "Dust My Broom," and "Walking Blues" and make them uniquely his. Taj avoids the well-worn practice of taking a standard peice of music and re-producing the original sound and arrangement. He puts his own stamp on the songs and re-works them into his interpretation and style.
The sound, while clean, is a bit sparse and thin---it lacks the texture of "The Real Thing" or his work with Jesse Ed Davis and Ry Cooder. There's a good deal of energy, but its not quite full-throttle.
To me, this recording is a step on the way to better things for Taj Mahal. I recommend it to fans and musicians (aspiring and otherwise) who cover other artists work. It has some great examples of how to find yet-unheard potential in other people's songs.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Adam Taylor on September 24, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This is a great collection for fans old and new. Taj has such an amazing way of approaching blues and roots music, and this is a great demonstration.
My wife isn't much of a blues fan, but she loves this album.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By kevin blankenship on October 21, 2001
Format: Audio CD
this album was a refreshing taste of blues history for me. It was my first Taj Mahal album and I love it. The songs, Leaving Trunk, Corrina, Further On Down The Road, and Take a Giant Step are all beautifully written and performed. If you are a blues fan you will not be disappointed with this album.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ricardo Neves Gonzalez on August 31, 2001
Format: Audio CD
The capacity of Taj Mahal to go from rock'n roll to New Orleans blues in this cd is clearly evidence of his great versatile style to play.The interpretation of Statesboro Blues is a psychodelic way to play,sometimes remembering The Doors.The 4th.and 5th.tracks remembers New Orleans nights and...the 6th.some Dylan's tunes!!Great cd for those blues and early rock'n roll fans.The 7th.track,is something from Stones...ohhh!!!!....Is he a versatile bluesman or no???
What must be said is that all the tracks are from that early years of fertile sinergy between blues and rock'n roll..67;68;71;72;What more we can say???Nothing more...Just sit down and play this fantastic cd with the begining of Mahal's
career!!!
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