Muddy Waters

Got My Mojo Working [DVD]

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The Muddy Waters DVD Got My Mojo Working, released by Yazoo, is a must-own DVD, and the perfect companion to any compendium of Chess or Epic-released music by the blues legend. Comprised of live television performances across a ten-year stretch from 1968 through 1978, they show the singer/guitarist reveling in his element as a performer. Admittedly, there's no shortage of late-era Muddy video releases -- there was even a laserdisc out on his late concert work -- but the makers have distilled down a lot of the best of his work and repertory, and it's always a delight to see and hear him scratch and slash out a break on his guitar. The real treat, however, are the 1968-vintage performances, which feature Otis Spann and the rest of his classic late-era Chess-era band in his backing band. Additionally, the pair of songs from that period -- which was represented on record by the LP travesty Electric Mud -- compensate for some of the ridiculousness of that album; most fans would rather know that Muddy was still doing powerful versions of "Got My Mojo Working" and "Long Distance Call." The dozen songs each get chapter markers, and the disc opens on a very simple, straightforward menu -- the only flaw in the program is the lack of full music and production credits; otherwise, the audio is good and loud and detailed, and the image is beautiful.