|Artist: B. B. King|
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|B.B. King Brings Together Eric Clapton, Elton John And Others For New Duets Album Of Blues Standards To Celebrate The Blues Great's 80th Birthday. 80 is yet another landmark in the career of one of the most influential guitarists of the 20th Century and the blues' greatest ambassador.|
With long-time admirer and recent collaborator Clapton, B.B. reinvigorates his 1970 Grammy-winning classic "The Thrill Is Gone." He also gives new spins to other B.B. flashbacks from the '70s, "Never Make Your Move Too Soon" with The Who's Roger Daltrey and the Leon Russell-penned "Hummingbird" with John Mayer. In what may be the album's most unusual and intriguing pairing, Gloria Estefan duets on the Grammy-winning Doc Pomus-Dr. John song from the '80s "There Must Be A Better World Somewhere." In another teaming with a female singer, Sheryl Crow is heard on Little Willie John's "Need Your Love So Bad."
Album Notes and Credits
Notes & Personnel Info
|Personnel: B.B. King (vocals, guitar); Glenn Frey, John Mayer , Billy Gibbons (vocals, guitar); Van Morrison (vocals, harmonica); Elton John (vocals, piano); Daryl Hall, Gloria Estefan, Roger Daltrey, Sheryl Crow, Bobby "Blue" Bland (vocals); Davey Johnstone , Dean Parks, Eric Clapton, Larry Campbell, Mark Knopfler, Clem Clemson (guitar); Brandon Fields (saxophone); Gary Grant, Jerry Hey (trumpet); William Frank "Bill" Reichenbach Jr. (trombone); Luke Smith (Hammond b-3 organ); Chris Stainton, Guy Babylon , Robbie Buchanan, Brian Mitchell (keyboards); Leland Sklar, Bob Birch (electric bass); T-Bone Wolk, Yolanda Charles (bass guitar); Nigel Olsson, Russ Kunkel, Ian Thomas , Billy Ward (drums); John Mahon (percussion).|
|Although star-studded duet albums are often a mixed bag, when executed with appropriate collaborators and material the results can be impressive. Such is the case with many tracks on B.B. King's 80, which celebrates the blues legend's birthday with panache and, of course, a slew of high-profile guests. The 2005 album begins with "Early in the Morning," a pitch-perfect mid-tempo number performed with Van Morrison, and continues in finest form when it features other performers fluent in the blues, including Eric Clapton (a Hammond-tinged take on "The Thrill Is Gone"), Mark Knopfler (the simmering "All Over Again"), and King's longtime friend and peer Bobby "Blue" Bland (the intimate, conversational "Funny How Times Slip Away"). On every tune, King commands his guitar (the beloved "Lucille") better than performers a fraction of his age, and his weathered voice only adds to the record's charm.|
|Bobby "Blue" Bland|
Associated Artists and Works
|Release Date : 09/13/2005|
|Original Release Date : 2005|
|Catalog ID : 0005263|
|Label : Geffen|
|Number of Discs : 1|
|Studio/Live : Studio|
|Mono/Stereo : Stereo|
|SPAR Code : n/a|
|UPC : 00602498842461|
- "...King seems less an archetypal grizzled bluesman than a wise old Zen master, at peace with the world and himself. That doesn't mean he can't still sing and play some mean blues...." - Grade: B
His reign as King of the Blues has been as long as that of any monarch on earth. Yet B.B. King continues to wear his crown well. He is still light on his feet, singing and playing the blues with relentless passion. Time has no apparent effect on B.B., other than to make him more popular, more cherished, more relevant than ever. Don't look for him in some kind of semi-retirement; look for him out on the road, playing for people, popping up in a myriad of T.V. commercials, or laying down tracks for his next album. B.B. King is as alive as the music he plays, and a grateful world can't get enough of him.
For more than half a century, Riley B. King - better known as B.B. King - has defined the blues for a worldwide audience. Since he started recording in the 1940s, he has released over fifty albums, many of them classics. He was born September 16, 1925, on a plantation in Itta Bene, Mississippi, near Indianola. In his youth, he played on street corners for dimes, and would sometimes play in as many as four towns a night. In 1947, he hitchhiked to Memphis, TN, to pursue his music career. Memphis was where every important musician of the South gravitated, and which supported a large musical community where every style of African American music could be found. B.B. stayed with his cousin Bukka White, one of the most celebrated blues performers of his time, who schooled B.B. further in the art of the blues.
B.B.'s first big break came in 1948 when he performed on Sonny Boy Williamson's radio program on KWEM out of West Memphis. This led to steady engagements at the Sixteenth Avenue Grill in West Memphis, and later to a ten-minute spot on black-staffed and managed Memphis radio station WDIA. "King's Spot," became so popular, it was expanded and became the "Sepia Swing Club." Soon B.B. needed a catchy radio name. What started out as Beale Street Blues Boy was shortened to Blues Boy King, and eventually B.B. King.
In the mid-1950s, while B.B. was performing at a dance in Twist, Arkansas, a few fans became unruly. Two men got into a fight and knocked over a kerosene stove, setting fire to the hall. B.B. raced outdoors to safety with everyone else, then realized that he left his beloved $30 acoustic guitar inside, so he rushed back inside the burning building to retrieve it, narrowly escaping death. When he later found out that the fight had been over a woman named Lucille, he decided to give the name to his guitar to remind him never to do a crazy thing like fight over a woman. Ever since, each one of B.B.'s trademark Gibson guitars has been called Lucille.
Soon after his number one hit, "Three O'Clock Blues," B.B. began touring nationally. In 1956, B.B. and his band played an astonishing 342 one-night stands. From the chitlin circuit with its small-town cafes, juke joints, and country dance halls to rock palaces, symphony concert halls, universities, resort hotels and amphitheaters, nationally and internationally, B.B. has become the most renowned blues musician of the past 40 years.
Over the years, B.B. has developed one of the world's most identifiable guitar styles. He borrowed from Blind Lemon Jefferson, T-Bone Walker and others, integrating his precise and complex vocal-like string bends and his left hand vibrato, both of which have become indispensable components of rock guitarist's vocabulary. His economy, his every-note-counts phrasing, has been a model for thousands of players, from Eric Clapton and George Harrison to Jeff Beck. B.B. has mixed traditional blues, jazz, swing, mainstream pop and jump into a unique sound. In B.B.'s words, "When I sing, I play in my mind; the minute I stop singing orally, I start to sing by playing Lucille."
In 1968, B.B. played at the Newport Folk Festival and at Bill Graham's Fillmore West on bills with the hottest contemporary rock artists of the day who idolized B.B. and helped to introduce him to a young white audience. In 1969, B.B. was chosen by the Rolling Stones to open 18 American concerts for them; Ike and Tina Turner also played on 18 shows.
B.B. was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1984 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. He received NARAS' Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award in 1987, and has received honorary doctorates from Tougaloo(MS) College in 1973; Yale University in 1977; Berklee College of Music in 1982; Rhodes College of Memphis in 1990 and Mississippi Valley State University in 2002. In 1992, he received the National Award of Distinction from the University of Mississippi.
In 1991, B.B. King's Blues Club opened on Beale Street in Memphis, and in 1994, a second club was launched at Universal CityWalk in Los Angeles. A third club in New York City's Times Square opened in June 2000 and two clubs opened at Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut in January 2002. In 1996, the CD-Rom On The Road With B.B. King: An Interactive Autobiography was released to rave reviews. Also in 1996, B.B.'s autobiography, "Blues All Around Me" (written with David Ritz for Avon Books) was published. In a similar vein, Doubleday published "The Arrival of B.B. King" by Charles Sawyer, in 1980.
B.B. continues to tour extensively, averaging over 250 concerts per year around the world. Classics such as "Payin' The Cost To Be The Boss," "The Thrill Is Gone," How Blue Can You Get," "Everyday I Have The Blues," and "Why I Sing The Blues" are concert (and fan) staples. Over the years, the Grammy Award-winner has had two #1 R&B hits, 1951's "Three O'Clock Blues," and 1952's "You Don't Know Me," and four #2 R&B hits, 1953's "Please Love Me," 1954's "You Upset Me Baby," 1960's "Sweet Sixteen, Part I," and 1966's "Don't Answer The Door, Part I." B.B.'s most popular crossover hit, 1970's "The Thrill Is Gone," went to #15 pop.