Album: Various artists, A Complete Introduction to Chess (Chess / Universal)

There aren't many story arcs which begin with Jackie Brenston's "Rocket 88", cruise through a succession of plot developments as brilliant as Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, John Lee Hooker, Bo Diddley, Etta James, Dale Hawkins, Sonny Boy Williamson and, yes, Rotary Connection, and then conclude exactly 100 episodes later with "My Ding-a-Ling".

But that is the cruel bathos of life. The Chess/Cadet/Checker story amounts to four CDs of heaven on earth plus one trip to Chuck Berry's bathroom.

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