Vee Jay's 1964 album John Lee Hooker on Campus is titled to sound like a live recording but it isn't. As part of the Collectables Vee Jay reissue campaign, these 12 tracks originally tried to capitalize on Hooker's emergence on the coffeehouse/college tours he was involved in at the time. This is an electric album that contains excellent material from Hooker, even though the occasional background singers get in the way, attempting to modernize his gritty blues with a smoother soul sound. All of the Vee Jay reissues of John Lee Hooker material are worth having and are budget priced as a bonus.
This release presents one of John Lee Hooker's finest albums, The Big Soul of John Lee Hooker. It was recorded in 1962 and released by Vee-Jay Records. Here the bluesman explores the soul and R&B sounds of the early ‘60s, while maintaining the essence of his own boogieblues style. His gritty voice is as heavily emotive and unshakable as ever on these recordings. Hooker is backed by the seed of one of the most successful studio bands of all time, which would later be known as The Funk Brothers (the Motown studio band), as well as by a wonderful female backing vocal group. In addition to the original masterpiece, this remastered collector's edition also contains 10 bonus tracks from the same period, and constitutes one of the peaks of John Lee Hooker's incomparable musical legacy.
John Lee Hooker is one of the foremost blues performers of the postwar period. He is in actuality a Mississippi country bluesman and his music has always been firmly grounded in the traditional blues of his native state. He has remained true to its fundamental principles throughout a professional career of more than five decades.
Two classic Hooker LPs, all digitally re-mastered, 22 solid slabs of dark, leathery, brooding nostalgia. This is the electric blues at its very roots. If there’s still anyone out there reading this magazine who hasn’t at least one Hooker album in their collection, then you’re still a long way from qualifying as a blues aficionado. So this is a good place to start. This stripped-bare, one man and a growling electric guitar (on most tracks) music is the stuff those guys who fled the south for the auto production lines in the north used to listen to.
This Soul Jam release presents one of Hooker's most difficult to find albums on CD, the eponymous John Lee Hooker. It was originally released in 1962 by the Fantasy Records' subsidiary Galaxy label. The album includes a selection of hard-to-find recordings taped with his electric guitar during different sessions in the 1950s, all of them produced by Bernard Besman, the man who helped define Hooker's recorded sound, which has often relied upon heavy walking beats, boogies, and an eerie atmosphere. In addition to the original masterpiece, this remastered collector's edition also contains 8 bonus tracks from the same period.
Two classic Vee-Jay albums from blues master John Lee Hooker! One of the great blues collections of the post-World War II era. John Lee Hooker developed a “talking blues” style that became his trademark. Though similar to the early Delta tradition, his metrically free approach and unique sound would make him a staple of the Detroit blues tradition. Often called the “King of the Boogie”, Hooker’s driving, rhythmic approach to guitar playing has become an integral part of the blues.
Hooker 'n Heat is a double album released by blues legend John Lee Hooker and blues-rock band Canned Heat in early 1971. It was the last studio album to feature harmonica player, guitarist and songwriter Alan Wilson, who died in September 1970 from a drug overdose. The photo on the album cover was taken after Wilson's death, but his picture can be seen in a frame on the wall behind John Lee Hooker. Guitarist Henry Vestine was also missing from the photo session. The person standing in front of the window, filling in for Henry, is the band's manager, Skip Taylor. Careful examination of the photo reveals that Henry's face was later added by the art department. It was the first of Hooker's albums to chart, reaching number 78 in the Billboard charts.
Don't Turn Me From Your Door comprises a set of 1953 sessions that were originally released in 1963 and later in 1972, under the title Detroit Special. Despite its twisted historical background, this is fine, first-rate Hooker. A few tracks feature the support of guitarist/vocalist Eddie Kirkland, a few others, an unnamed bassist, but this is pretty much pure John Lee Hooker – just him and a guitar, running through a set of spare, haunting blues that include such tracks as "Blue Monday" and "Stuttering Blues." There are none of his best-known tracks on the album, but it's one of his most consistent original records.
Final recordings: Face to Face combines previously released material from John Lee Hooker with unfinished tracks he was working on before he died. Compiled by the estate of Hooker, with his daughter Zakiya at the helm, the unreleased material leans heavily toward soul-blues united with Hooker's patented electric Delta boogie. "Loving People," "Funky Mabel," "Six Page Letter" (a ballad with synth strings), and "Rock These Blues Away" are highlights. Zakiya Hooker takes the spotlight on "Mean Mean World," singing lead alongside her father, and the acoustic "Wednesday Evening Blues" features George Thorogood on guitar…