ARTIST: B. B. King
TITLE: Singin’ the Blues
YEAR RELEASED: 1956
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Almost every cut was a Top 10 R&B hit, including three number ones (Three O’Clock Blues, Please Love Me, You Upset Me Baby)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Every Day I Have the Blues is on this.
LINEUP: BB King – a bunch of other guys – but it’s BB King.
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Record company collects BB King’s mid-50’s singles and other masters. Yeah, it’s good.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: The debut album for King collected a whole bunch of his singles. Those early singles are not only touchstones for the blues as a genre, but established King at the forefront of the electric blues movement.
Many of these songs have become blues standards, and you can find a lot of cover versions, especially from UK blues bands in the 60’s and 70’s.
A few songs don’t feature his guitar, or much of it. King is a fine singer, but his guitar is his moneymaker. It’s also an album that’s thrown together – great stuff but there wasn’t much thought about where things went. The first side is much stronger, though side two is no slouch.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Most of these songs were credited to a “Jules Taub” along with King, which was a pseudonym for one of the owners of the record company.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: In Japan and the UK they added some other tracks from this era.
GRADE: A-: Blues hounds need it. We all need lots of it, because it’s good to have the blues.