Album: Various Artists, The Essential Guide to New Orleans (Union Square)
Friday 08 August 2008
Retailing for well under a tenner, this has to be the bargain of the year: a three-CD set doing exactly what it says on the sleeve, tracking the development of America's most fertile music city, from the hot jazz of Louis Armstrong and Jelly Roll Morton, through the classic rock and R&B of the Fifties and Sixties, to the swamp-funk that has defined New Orleans' subsequent output.
We get the great rumba-rock piano stylings of James Booker, Professor Longhair and Dr John; the Mardi Gras Indian chants of The Wild Magnolias and Wild Tchoupitoulas; tastes of cajun, zydeco and the marching-band tradition; and lots of soul and funk.
The second CD is the killer; it has Ernie K Doe's "Mother-in-Law", The Showmen's "It Will Stand", Chris Kenner's "Land of 1,000 Dances", Robert Parker's "Barefootin'", Lee Dorsey's "Working In a Coal Mine", Benny Spellman's "Lipstick Traces" and Irma Thomas's "Ruler of My Heart" – a monument to the production genius of Allen Toussaint.
Pick of the album:'Mother-in-Law', 'Working In a Coal Mine', 'Hercules', 'Land of 1,000 Dances', 'Barefootin''
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
- 3 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 4 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Isis publicly behead man in Syrian town square for 'insulting Allah' as he screams for help
Heavy metal producer's corpse to be mutilated by models as per his dying wish
The Jump 2015 line-up: Joey Essex, Phil Tufnell, Heather Mills and co take to the slopes
Game of Thrones: Grey Worm actor Jacob Anderson is all for more male nudity – as long as he can keep his clothes on
Angelina Jolie confirms retirement from acting: 'I've never been comfortable on-screen'
Roald Dahl letter warning student to 'eschew beastly adjectives' goes viral 35 years later
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures