Various Artists

Best of the Blues, Vol. 1 [BMG]

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While longtime blues fans will find little of interest here, listeners new to the music may discover a wealth of classics in this budget-line compilation, a ten-track collection featuring giants like Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Leadbelly and John Lee Hooker. Although the fidelity varies wildly from track to track, the overall quality of the performances is fine, and with any luck the cumulative effect will inspire neophytes to investigate the featured artists in much greater detail.

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