Robert Johnson

King of the Delta Blues: The Complete Recordings [Columbia/Legacy]

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This 16-track single-disc compilation gathers up the best-known tracks from the two original volumes of King of the Delta Blues Singers for a nice entry-level collection of Robert's best. Utilizing the latest in remastering technology, these recordings have never sounded quite this clear and full-bodied before, and the difference between this and the first pressing of the Complete Recordings box set is quite noticeable. While sweating down Johnson's best to a 16-track selection is an arbitrary choice at best, it's hard to fault the selection here. It's also a focused set that isn't hampered by the inclusion of the more collector-oriented alternate takes that bog down much of the box set's listenability.

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