Monday, February 6

Elmore James - "Standing At The Crossroads" / "Sunnyland" (1951)

"... The original 'Sunny Land' as recorded by James in 1954 was more of a loping shuffle, released on Flair Records, and backed by 'Standing At The Crossroads.' The songwriting is credited to Joe Bihari (one of James’ publishers under a pseudonym) and Elmore James. But the track that has captivated me all these years was recorded late in James’ life at the New Orleans studio of Cosimo Matassa, a legendary R & B producer and engineer. James was plagued by health problems and embroiled in disputes with the musicians’ union and died not long after these sessions took place. This 1961 version is far more driving and has a dirty, distorted sound with a blues-shout vocal style that gives the track an urgency the original lacks. ..."
The Vinyl Press
YouTube: Standing At The Crossroads, Sunnyland

2014 November: Blues Master Works