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B.B. King: Completely Well

Album Reviews:

Down Beat (8/95, p.55) - 5 Stars - Excellent - "...combining heartache and bitterness in potent terms that his guitar Lucille mirrors with deep breaths and scornful rebukes of her own....his pained vocals and single-string wizardry again framed by a strong band..."

Down Beat (8/95, p.55) - 5 Stars - Excellent - "...combining heartache and bitterness in potent terms that his guitar Lucille mirrors with deep breaths and scornful rebukes of her own....his pained vocals and single-string wizardry again framed by a strong band..."

Mojo (Publisher) (3/04, p.118) - "[T]he 1970 album containing his definitive version of 'The Thrill Is Gone..."

Mojo (Publisher) (3/04, p.118) - "[T]he 1970 album containing his definitive version of 'The Thrill Is Gone..."

Album Notes

Personnel: B.B. King (guitar, vocals); Hugh McCracken (guitar); Paul Harris (piano, electric piano, organ); Gerald "Fingers" Jemmott (bass); Herbie Lovelle (drums).

Includes liner notes by Ralph J. Gleason.

Personnel: B.B. King (guitar, vocals); Hugh McCracken (guitar); Paul Harris (piano, electric piano, organ); Gerald "Fingers" Jemmott (bass); Herbie Lovelle (drums).

Includes liner notes by Ralph J. Gleason.

COMPLETELY WELL may have Peter Max-meets-YELLOW SUBMARINE cover graphics, but the original liner notes ("B.B. is to the blues guitar what Ernest Hemingway was to the novel...") are the only evidence of late-1960s excess. This album is raw, gritty, and real. King is in top form, playing his distinctive brand of blues with all the heart and soul of his greatest work. Contained here is "The Thrill is Gone," perhaps King's signature song. Reaching number 15 on the pop charts, it was his biggest hit, one that helped establish him as the premier blues man of his generation. King's powerful, poignant vocal--a mixture of regret and menace--is augmented by a simple but chilling string section and his lacerating guitar work.

Beyond that, the album is chock full of great tracks. The crackling opener, "So Excited," features a sassy horn section, subtly percolating organ, and wah-wah lead guitar. "You're Losin' Me," a sprightly funk number, is augmented by supple bass playing courtesy of the aptly named Gerald "Fingers" Jemmott. "You're Mean" is an extended jam session in which the only vocals are King's defiant cries of "You been mean!"



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