While the 1976 issue of Chicago Bound
, the first collection of Jimmy Rogers'
Chess material has been rightly hailed as a definitive cornerstone in absorbing the history of early Chicago blues; sadly, that vinyl album has been out of print for a number of years with virtually nothing in the catalog to take its place. Until now. This two-CD (in a single-disc package) anthology collects up everything that appeared on Chicago Bound
, a number of notable cuts from a two-vinyl-disc anthology that was barely released in the late 1970s, and no less than ten unreleased alternate takes from a variety of sessions with one of them, "Luedella," emanating from his first solo session in 1950. The singing, playing, and songwriting is virtually a textbook for the early Chicago style, as the players involved include Muddy Waters
, Little Walter, Otis Spann
, Willie Dixon
, and Big Walter Horton
, with all but Horton
regular mainstays of Muddy's
original band, the blueprint of the early electric band sound. While some novices will find a two-disc set perhaps more than they want to pop for, this is as good as '50s Chicago blues gets, and no collection should really be without this one.