When Jerry McCain re-emerged on Ichiban in 1989 after many years of not doing nearly enough recording, followers of the Alabama native were delighted to see him back in the studio again. This 1998 CD (which spans 1989-1993) points to the fact that while his Ichiban output may not have been in a class with his great Excello recordings of the 1950s, he could still blow a mean harp and make us laugh with his funny, insightful storytelling. "Brand New Mojo" and "Spoiled Rotten to the Bone" are excellent examples of how witty he can be, and on "Sue Somebody," he takes an amusing jab at Americans who file frivolous lawsuits. Many of the selections have an urban blues outlook, although "Lucy Pearl," "Strut Your Stuff" and "I've Got the Blues All Over Me" are pure Louisiana-style swamp blues. Close your eyes while listening to these tunes, and it's easy to pretend you're in the steamy Louisiana bayous. Although not quite essential, Retrospectives paints an enjoyable picture of McCain as he sounded when he was in his late 50s and early 60s.
AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson