Buddy Guy would become one of the best and most celebrated electric blues guitarists of the 20th century, but in 1958, he'd only been living in Chicago for a year and was struggling to make a name for himself. That year, on the advice of Magic Sam, Guy met with Harold Burrage, the owner of Artistic Records, a Chicago-based record label that specialized in blues acts. Artistic would soon go out of business, but before they did, they issued Guy's first single sides. In the Beginning: The Artistic & USA Sessions collects Buddy Guy's early material for Artistic Records, as well as material cut for the label that was later released on another Chicago label, USA Records. Featuring rare outtakes and alternate versions, this collection includes the songs "Sit and Cry," "Try to Quit You Baby," "Too Many Cooks," "God's Gift to Man," "The Way You Been Treatin' Me," and many more.
AllMusic Review by Mark Deming