In the early to mid-'90s, no "Young Lion" was hyped to death by jazz critics more than Joshua Redman; to hear some critics tell it, he was as important a saxophonist as John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, or Sonny Rollins. The problem with such excessive hype is that it gives a young talent like Redman way too much to live up to at an early age; the tenor man was only 22 when this self-titled debut album was recorded, and he needed time to grow and develop.
Blues on the South Side is probably the best album slide guitarist Homesick James ever laid down (originally for Prestige in 1964). The stylistic similarities to his cousin, the great Elmore James, are obvious, but Homesick deviates repeatedly from the form. Tough as nails with a bottleneck, he goes for the jugular on "Goin' Down Swingin'", "Johnny Mae", and "Gotta Move", supported by pianist Lafayette Leake, guitarist Eddie Taylor, and drummer Clifton James.