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Matriarch of the Blues Import

4.3 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Etta covers the classics including Bob Dylan's "You got to Serve Somebody", the Rolling Stones' "Miss You", Otis Redding's "Try a Little Tenderness", Elvis' "Hound Dog" and many more.

Amazon.com

The mark of great singers is their ability to turn a trifling song into an emotional masterwork. R&B legend Etta James has done it live for nearly 20 years with Kiki Dee's "Sugar on the Floor" and a few others. But what's really sublime is hearing James sink her teeth into numbers that stand up to her own greatest work--"At Last" and the other Chess hits that built her reputation. James ignites such sparks all over this new disc of mostly well-chosen covers, wrapping her deep, supple, and saucy pipes around Otis Redding's "Try a Little Tenderness" and "Hawg for You"; replacing Mick Jagger's flippancy with real heart on the Rolling Stones' "Miss You"; putting the gospel fire into Bob Dylan's "You Got to Serve Somebody"; and digging down 'n' dirty into O.V. Wright's "Don't Let My Baby Ride." The straight-ahead arrangements and undistinguished playing leave James to carry the album herself, but at 62, she's still a fireball and more than up to the task. --Ted Drozdowski
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 12, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sony Bmg Europe
  • ASIN: B00004W4LW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #178,804 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Etta albums can be uneven affairs, and this one is no exception. But overall this album will be tough to take out of the Discman. Not only does she belt out some classic blues, but she covers a few unlikely songs in the most interesting ways. Check out her cover of Dylan's "Gotta Serve Somebody" and the Stones' "Miss You." She also does something wonderful with "Hound Dog." For those who love the straight-ahead blues, your life will never be complete until you've heard Etta belt out Otis Redding's "Hawg for Ya." Not every song on this disc is a gem, but most of them are. So pick it up and get down with Etta, who is truly the matriarch of the blues.
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Format: Audio CD
For the people who ... their only perception of singers are teenage girls with lollipops hanging out their mouth,overweight and 63-years old Etta James must seems like insult.For us who are real believers in good music,her return to blues (after several surprisingly uninspired albums of jazz covers) is a welcome change and hope that she would follow her intuition next time around.From the first few seconds is audible that her heart is in blues and she is in total control of wide range of emotions on the album,spreading them around like a magiacian.While Aretha half-heartedly grooves with new R&B sound,Etta is doing what she is doing best and makes this old songs sounds like new.How many 63-year old singers can you name,who will turn Rolling Stones disco into slow,sexy blues or squeeze gentle bossa nova "Let's straighten this out" between gospel Dylan and rocking John Fogerty,sing heartbreaking blues "You're Gonna Make Me Cry" or cover of Al Green song AND end it all with a joyful,happy "Hound Dog" in which she is actually barking (you can imagine her in studio!)? Not just because of her famous past,but because her present is so decidedly uncompromising,I love and respect Etta James.(Please stop this "diva" thing - its overused expression,reserved for a every new big-haired top-charter and the word does not describe Etta James who is recording since 1955.)
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have never heard an Etta James record that I didn't like. She was the consummate performer and truly the matriarch of the blues. I love all 12 songs on this CD, with my two favorites being "You Gotta Serve Somebody" and "Walkin' the Back Streets". Highly recommend!
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Format: Audio CD
I am an avid fan of Etta James and find this CD to be one of her better efforts in the past 10 years but I also find some of her other albums to be preferable such as "Life, Love and the Blues" and "Live from San Fransisco". This CD certainly has some good stuff. The beginning Bob Dylan tune "Gotta Serve Somebody" is a good version as was the Elvis classic "Hound Dog" and the Stones' "Miss You". I really like Dylan's version ("...Serve Somebody") as much as Etta's, but her version is Etta at her purest. "Hound Dog" I like Etta's offering more than Elvis' mainly because it is more of a blues shuffle rather than a frantic 50's. Some of the tunes on this CD are pretty standard blues fare such as "Hawg..." and her version of Redding's "Try a Little Tenderness" is fine but doesn't have quite the climax I expected. A nice change on the CD is the tune "Let's Straighten It Out". It's more of a classical/latin blues style. It reminds me of her early years. "Born On the Bayou" (CCR) is not for the blues light fan...she really belts it out as she does on "Hawg for you Baby". This is a good CD with mostly good stuff but not one I would consider her best effort. Still, a good buy especially if you like Etta James.
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Format: Audio CD
Until buying this CD I rated Live in San Francisco as easily her best but this, Praise the Lord!!, is a total mindf*#k. This is righteous powerful stuff: funk in overdrive--turbocharged blues--funkified rock!!

The sound alone grabs you and slams you against your living room feature wall if you play it loud which I believe you must. It's clean and strong and goes right through you. (Even on my little NHT superzero speakers which aren't supposed to have any bass response - so where did all that incredibly powerful tight bass come from ??) It sounds more live than a "live" album.

Etta puts all of her personality into each song expressing more power and authority than I've ever heard from her. Fantastic!
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Format: Audio CD
At the House of Blues,the legendary diva of soul Etta James introduces for the first time her cover of the Stones ''Miss You '' to a capacity crowd! This is the way it should be sung and so is the other cover tunes that Miss James interpets in this stunning collection of song!Ranging from the bawdy ''Hawg for You'' snorting and carrying on like the Queen herself, to the broken hearted tear jerker ''Baby come Back''. Etta reigns supreme in her torch scorching, blues in the basement,come hither style that sends chills through your spine!No other female or male singer of this new century can come close to the vocal intensity and raw power that is Etta James.Her rendition of ''Hound Dog''has made Big Mama Thornton dancing in the heavens and proud to do her song justice!With the help of her sons Sametto and Donto, producing and playing along side there Mother,the legacy continues and only gets better!
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