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Reviews Written by
Mark Anderson (Victoria, BC, Canada)
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Specialty Profiles
Specialty Profiles
Price: CDN$ 23.60
30 used & new from CDN$ 8.66

4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Introduction To Roy Milton's Specialty Records Material From The Late 1940s And Early 1950s, April 25 2015
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This review is from: Specialty Profiles (Audio CD)
Specialty Records was an influential independent label in the 1950s. It released artists like Little Richard and its catalog includes many R&B standards. The label is now owned by Concord Records, which is re-releasing material from Specialty's back catalog. This is one of those re-releases.

Roy Milton was the first artist recorded on Specialty Records. He is not as well known today as he deserves to be but that doesn't change the fact that Roy Milton & His Solid Senders was a major R&B act in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

This 2CD collection consists of 14 Roy Milton tracks on the first CD and a second CD with 10 bonus tracks of Specialty Records' classics.

What's here is great material, the sound is good and the price is reasonable but it doesn't come close to including all of Roy Milton's recordings for Specialty Records. IMHO that's a major limitation. The 14 tracks here clock in at just over 38 minutes total playing time, so there's plenty of room on the CD for more material.

Other, more complete, CDs of Roy Milton's Specialty Records recordings (like the Specialty Records Legends CD series from the 1990s) typically have 25+ tracks. But they typically sell for over $20, were compiled and mastered in the 1990s and are often hard to get. My suggestion to Concord Records is to fill an entire CD with re-mastered Specialty Records' Roy Milton recordings (25 tracks would fit easily on one CD) and keep the price reasonable. I'd buy a more complete, recently re-mastered CD collection of Roy Milton.

The second CD in this set is basically a promotional teaser of 10 Specialty Records tracks from various artists, clocking in at just 26 minutes total playing time. It's great stuff, but it's basically just included as a promotional CD to entice prospective buyers to purchase more CDs of this Specialty Profiles series. It seems to be the same promotional CD in all of the Specialty Profiles releases, so once you've bought one set in the series you're just duplicating the promotional CD in any subsequent purchases.

Overall, the 14 Roy Milton recordings here are great material but they are only a basic selection of his recorded material for Specialty Records. This Specialty Profiles series would be so much better if the full storage capacity of the CD was utilized to include a more complete selection of each artists' work. But this is a good introduction to Roy Milton for anyone not familiar with his music.

Live In '67
Live In '67
Price: CDN$ 12.99
32 used & new from CDN$ 12.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent John Mayall Performances FRom 1967, Featuring Peter Green on Guitar, April 24 2015
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This review is from: Live In '67 (Audio CD)
This CD features excellent live performances from John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in 1967.

The band line up is John Mayall, Peter Green on guitar, John McVie on bass and Mick Fleetwood on drums. Peter Green's guitar playing is superb; too bad that Green's health problems in the early 1970s derailed what should have been a very productive career. Green is at the top of his game on these recordings.

The CD clocks in at just over 76 minutes total playing time so the full storage capacity has been used.

Although these are live performances, the audience noise is minimal. The sound quality is good but not up to studio standards. I've deducted one star for the sound quality.

But the performances are first rate. If you're a Mayall fan, this one is well worth adding to your collection. It's also worth having for Peter Green's performances. Peter Green only recorded one studio album with John Mayall (A Hard Road - I've given it a 5 star rating on Amazon) before leaving Mayall's band with John McVie and Mick Fleetwood to form the first incarnation of Fleetwood Mac. Since Peter Green largely disappeared from the music scene in the early 1970s due to his health problems, this CD is well worth having as an example of Peter Green's playing in his heyday, before his health issues set in.

Overall, a very worthwhile John Mayall CD.

Small City in a Big Valley: The Story of Duncan
Small City in a Big Valley: The Story of Duncan
by Tom Henry
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 36.95
13 used & new from CDN$ 13.45

4.0 out of 5 stars Good General History of the City of Duncan, B.C., April 18 2015
Good general history of the city of Duncan, British Columbia and the surrounding Cowichan Valley. Written by a local author and published by a local publisher in 1999.

Complete Recordings 57-58 (5 CD)
Complete Recordings 57-58 (5 CD)
Price: CDN$ 32.00
25 used & new from CDN$ 14.11

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent 5 CD Mose Allison Collection From The Best Known Era Of His Career - Good Re-Mastering, Reasonable Price, April 16 2015
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This is an excellent 5 CD collection of 11 complete Mose Allison albums recorded between 1957-1962 (not 1957-58 as the Amazon listing states), one of the most productive periods of Mose Allison's lengthy career.

The re-mastering is very good and the price is reasonable. If you're a Mose Allison fan this is a very cost effective way of purchasing these 11 albums. If you're not familiar with Mose Allison, this would be an excellent introduction.

If you only have the space or budget for one Mose Allison album in your collection, this one would be a great choice.

The Complete RPM & Chess Singles As & Bs, 1951 - 1962
The Complete RPM & Chess Singles As & Bs, 1951 - 1962
Price: CDN$ 28.00
20 used & new from CDN$ 16.89

5.0 out of 5 stars 80 Classic Howlin' Wolf Recordings At A Reasonable Price, April 12 2015
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This is a 3 CD set containing 80 tracks of classic Howlin' Wolf, from his first recordings with Sam Phillips at Sun Studio in Memphis in 1951 to his well known work with Chess Records in Chicago during the 1950s and early 1960s.

Many of these tracks are very well known, are very influential and have been covered extensively by other artists including the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and others of that caliber.

If you're a blues fan, you need to have these Howlin' Wolf recordings in your collection. This 3CD set is a worthwhile way of getting them. It's well done and is reasonably priced. The sound is good, the liner notes are decent and the recordings themselves are among the most influential blues recordings ever made.

Record Makers and Breakers: Voices of the Independent Rock 'n' Roll Pioneers
Record Makers and Breakers: Voices of the Independent Rock 'n' Roll Pioneers
by John Broven
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 37.50
22 used & new from CDN$ 34.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Very Worthwhile History Of The American Independent Record Labels Which Promoted R&B and Rock and Roll, April 1 2015
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This is an excellent history of the American independent record labels of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s which played a major role in the development of rock and R&B. It's well written and well researched, with many first hand interviews with the people actually involved with these independent labels.

It covers everything from the major independents like Atlantic and Chess to small, little known independent labels in regional markets. It also goes into interesting detail on the business side of the music business, which often gets glossed over in many music histories.

Overall, a very worthwhile book for anyone interested in the history of the music business and the development of rock and roll and R&B.

Selected Recordings 1934-1948-Volume Two
Selected Recordings 1934-1948-Volume Two
Price: CDN$ 28.22
32 used & new from CDN$ 22.97

5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Worthwhile Leadbelly Collection At A Reasonable Price, March 27 2015
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This is the second great collection of Leadbelly recordings from JSP Records.

The recordings run from Leadbelly's first recordings - the 1934 John and Alan Lomax recordings of Leadbelly at Angola Penitentiary in Louisiana - to Leadbelly's last recordings in 1948. The sound is good, the liner notes are decent and the price is reasonable.

Leadbelly was one of the major figures in blues and folk history; this is a very worthwhile collection of Leadbelly recordings.

America: Imagine a World Without Her
America: Imagine a World Without Her
by Dinesh D'Souza
Edition: MP3 CD
Price: CDN$ 17.28
17 used & new from CDN$ 9.85

5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Conservative Analysis of The Effects of Obama and Progressive Policies On America, March 27 2015
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This is an excellent conservative analysis of the effects on America of leftist policies in general and Barack Obama's administration in particular.

Prospective buyers should be aware that Dinesh D'Souza is not an Obama supporter and this is quite a partisan book. But D'Souza is an excellent writer and the book is very interesting.

The mp3 audio book edition is well done. D'Souza's writing style lends itself well to narration and the reader does a good job with the material.

Richard Thompson: Live from Austin, TX [CD + DVD]
Richard Thompson: Live from Austin, TX [CD + DVD]
Price: CDN$ 19.65
33 used & new from CDN$ 13.84

5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Richard Thompson Performance From 2001 - The CD/DVD Combo Is Good Value For Money, March 21 2015
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This is a CD/DVD combo of a Richard Thompson performance on Austin City Limits in 2001. The performance is 16 tracks on DVD, 15 on the CD.

Thompson is backed by a drummer and a bass player and performs material from various albums he has released over the years. The sound is very good and the performance is excellent. On the DVD the camera work and editing are very good. The video looks good.

Overall, an excellent performance and the CD/DVD combo is very good value for money.

Any who likes Richard Thompson should like this one. If you're not familiar with Richard Thompson, this would be a great introduction.

R&B: from the Roundhouse to the Ealing Club
R&B: from the Roundhouse to the Ealing Club
Price: CDN$ 24.54
27 used & new from CDN$ 10.85

5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Album From One Of The Leading Figures of Early 1960s British Blues, March 18 2015
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This release from UK based Jasmine Records is an excellent CD of early 1960s British blues.

Alexis Korner was one of the most influential figures in the late 1950s and early 1960s British blues scene and this CD is a great example of his early 1960s work. It features the material released on the 1963 album R&B From The Marquee as well as other first rate Alexis Korner material from the period.

For those unfamiliar with the name Alexis Korner, note that people like Mick Jagger, Charlie Watts and Long John Baldry came out of Alexis Korner's bands.

The recorded sound is very good and the music easily stands the test of time. If you're interested in early 1960s British blues, this is an album you should check out.

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