Bo Diddley

Go Bo Diddley

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Bo Diddley's second album, 1959's Go Bo Diddley, didn't have as many hits and instant classics as his self-titled 1957 debut, but in terms of ceaseless rhythm, choppy guitar heroics, fearless statements of purpose, and inspired eccentricity, it's nearly as brilliant as Bo Diddley, and no one who follows Bo's genius should be without it. Go Bo Diddley has it all -- oft-covered classics ("Oh Yea," "Dearest Darling"), hoodoo blues workouts ("You Don't Love Me"), red-hot dance numbers ("Don't Let It Go"), tall tales ("The Great Grandfather," "Willie and Lillie"), stories of romantic difficulties ("Crackin' Up"), Bo getting frantic on his guitar ("Bo's Guitar," in case you couldn't tell), Bo and maracas man Jerome Green trading insults ("Say Man"), and even Bo showing off his skills on the violin ("The Clock Strikes Twelve"). The recording is full of that priceless five-foot-thick Chess Records echo, which only adds to the epic-scale mystery of these performances, and Bo is audacious and energetic on all 12 tracks. Bo Diddley was always one of the most unusual artists in the first wave of rock & roll, a guy whose sound and songwriting style always set him apart from his peers, and Go Bo Diddley finds him sounding truly individualistic, and truly entertaining to boot. An essential item for fans of early rock at its most beautifully bent.

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