Various Artists

Blues: Gold

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None of the cuts on this two-disc, 38-track collection is particularly obscure or hard to find elsewhere, but what makes it a useful set is having them all in one package, and the end result is a nice introduction to modern electric blues. Included are such classic blues performances as Big Mama Thornton's "Hound Dog," T-Bone Walker's "Call It Stormy Monday," Slim Harpo's "I'm a King Bee," Jimmy Reed's "Big Boss Man," John Lee Hooker's "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer," Albert King's "Born Under a Bad Sign," Etta James' "I'd Rather Go Blind," and Stevie Ray Vaughan's "Flood Down in Texas," among many others. Again, nothing here is going to make a blues collector jump up and shout, but they aren't going to complain, either, since every cut is a stone cold classic.

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