Smiley Lewis made several fabulous singles, had a booming, terrific voice, and received the same great backing and support that defined the city's R&B sound. But Lewis' records seldom made it outside New Orleans, even though they were frequently brilliant. This great 24-track anthology contains the four that did make it to the charts, among them the signature song "I Hear You Knocking." It shows Lewis doing first-rate novelty tracks, ballads, weepers, up-tempo wailers, and blues, and making wonderful recordings. The set also includes a thorough discography and good notes, and is superbly mastered. It's magnificent, exuberant R&B, and deserved a much better national fate than it enjoyed.
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AllMusic Review by Ron Wynn