This is an excellent collection of Big Joe Turner's early blues sides from the '40s. Cut before Turner gained widespread fame scoring rock & roll hits for Atlantic, the 26 cuts here were recorded on both coasts while the singer notched up a slew of gigs nationwide. Working for several labels, including RPM, Aladdin, and MGM, Turner waxed immortal versions of such classic R&B and blues sides as "Corrine Corrina," "Nobody in Mind," and the Leroy Carr gem "How Long, How Long Blues." Turner also penned many of the songs here and collaborated with jump blues great Wynonie Harris on the raucous duet "Battle of the Blues." Besides Harris, Turner gets fine help from pianists Willie "The Lion" Smith, Freddie Slack, and his early cohort Pete Johnson. A stellar addition to the Turner Catalog.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cook