B.B. King: Live at Montreux [Blu-ray]
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B.B. King is the greatest living exponent of the blues and considered by many to be the most influential guitarist of the latter part of the 20th century. His career dates back to the late forties and despite now being in his eighties he remains a vibrant and charismatic live performer. B.B. King has been a frequent visitor to the Montreux festival, appearing nearly 20 times, so choosing one performance was no easy task. This 1993 concert will surely rank as one of his finest at any venue. With a superb backing band and a great set list it's a must for any blues fan.
1) Six Pack
2) Two I Shoot Blues
3) B.B. Blues
4) Let The Good Times Roll
5) When It All Comes Down
6) Chains Of Love
8) All Over Again
9) Since I Met You Baby
10) Playing With My Friends
11) Ain't Nobody Home
12) Why I Sing The Blues
14) Rock Me Baby
15) Please Accept My Love
16) The Thrill Is Gone
Bonus Features - Blu-ray Exclusive:
Three tracks from B.B. King's 2006 Montreux appearance: 1) Why I Sing The Blues 2) When Love Comes To Town 3) Guess Who
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Another interesting thing about this performance is that BB stands up throughout it and it really chronicles the last years of this Blues great's live shows (This is also when I saw him last in Australia). Just as a matter of interest, the set and band are very similar to the "BB Live" set that came out just about two years ago, filmed at BB's Blues Club in Memphis (and the one in Nashville).
This concert was filmed in 1993 and BB is still in top form. The set is an extensive catalogue of his hits and live numbers. The band includes many members that have played with BB for many, many years. Foremost is the great James Toney an extraordinary organ player and keyboardist who just died in 2007. He was with BB since his famous PBS Jazz Casual session in 1968. Also prominent is the excellent bass player Michael Doster. His nephew and sax player Walter King is the Musical Director and he also is a great musician. This band is impeccable!
The set list is very comprehensive. It includes a great band "warm up" with the "Two I Shoot Blues" which showcases the great musicianship of BB's band. Highlights of the set list include Louis Jordan's "Caldonia", Ray Charles' "Let The Good Times Roll", the old standard and favourite "Why I Sing The Blues", a newer offering "Blues Man" and of course the seminal "The Thrill Is Gone", always a favourite and always a bit different. This DVD is 99 minutes long and , while it doesn't say it was filmed in HD on the package, on the end credits it does say that, like the Albert Collin's show, it is in fact in HD, the picture is incredibly clear and sharp. And sound is excellent. I would rank the SRO session and this as BB's two best DVD releases.
A must have purchase for classic Blues Lovers.
B. B. King and the band are tight and bring down the house. B. B. is generous with the band and we hear great solos from the bass player, horns, etc. B. B. is in top form and his guitar wails the blues. I really enjoyed the set list and a few stand out songs for me are All Over Again, Caldonia and The Thrill Is Gone. What could have been a low point when his guitar string broke during Chains Of Love, was nothing less than great - B. B. belted out the vocals as he fixed his string, and we hear his superb backing band, with a nice horn solo. Then B. B. brings it home with his own solo with Lucille. B. B. is still The King Of The Blues. This DVD is highly recommended.
I just watched the re-issue of the 2009 Soundstage show in Chicago and I liked this 1993 DVD much better.
Hope this helps, j
This disc is well worth buying, and my wife and I enjoyed it thoroughly.