Johnny Rivers

Totally Live at the Whiskey a Go Go

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The "totally live" appellation is a bit of a reach (translation: there are obvious after-the-fact overdubs), but nevertheless this is a pretty faithful representation of what a good mid-'60s rock & roll club band sounded like. Rivers was (and remains) a flexible, expressive singer, equally at home covering R&B, rockabilly, country, and the Beatles, and as a guitarist, while no virtuoso, he was occasionally capable of the sort of stinging, bluesman's attack associated with original '60s axe heroes like Lonnie Mack (as on the hit version here of Chuck Berry's "Memphis"). In retrospect, this is all a bit shagadelic, but it's fun nonetheless.

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