Often hailed as one of the last living links to the real deep American blues, John Lee Hooker’s music is of artistic and historic importance. Rooted in the deep gutsy guitar style of blues tradition, Hooker’s music simultaneously breached new artistic territory via seminal collaborations. This Rough Guide features the legend solo, alone with just his immeasurable talent and cool boogie style to keep him company.

Many of Hooker’s biggest and best hits are featured on this collection. ‘Boogie Chillun’ is one of Hooker’s most famous tracks. His rich buttery vocals riff above a spellbinding guitar drone and the musicians signature foot-tap. Another popular tune, ‘Crawlin’ King Snake’ spotlights Hooker’s voice with his signature soft and chalky sub-tone. The guitar line slithers around scrunched blues chords. On ‘Hobo Blues’ Hooker’s guitar part swoops from repeating mid-range patterns to thick earthy bass lines.  The track ‘Dimples’ showcases Hooker with a pulsing hearty blues band backing. The version of ‘I Love You Honey' from 1958 on this album is a reminder that Hooker was equally as charming in a positive and romantic swing mood. Glittery crisp piano articulations, a winding bass line, brushed fuzzy drums, rounded guitar bends and Hooker’s charming baritone velvet voice make for an pleasantly smooth love song.

Hooker’s boogie style brought him to fame and influenced generations of musicians who came after him. This album celebrates Hooker’s cool boogie accent on the aptly named tracks, ‘Low Down Midnite Boogie’, ‘Too Much Boogie’ and ‘I’m A Boogie Man’.

The bonus disc of blues greats showcases some of Hooker’s worthy predecessors and colleagues in the blues trade. A host of well-known names grace the track list: Sonny Boy Williamson, Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf to name but a few. 


CD1: John Lee Hooker

01         John Lee Hooker: Dimples (1956)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), George Washington (Bass), Tom Whitehead (Drums)

02         John Lee Hooker: Crawlin’ King Snake (1959)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Taylor (Guitar)

03         John Lee Hooker: Boogie Chillun’
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

04         John Lee Hooker: I’m In The Mood
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Taylor (Guitar) 

05         John Lee Hooker: Hobo Blues (1959)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

06         John Lee Hooker: Taxi Driver (1954)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Otis Finch (Tenor Sax), Bob Thurman (piano), Eddie Kirkland (guitar), Tom Whitehead (drums)

07         John Lee Hooker: I’m So Excited (1957)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar, Eddie Taylor (Guitar), Quinn Wilson (Bass), Tom Whitehead (Drums)

08        John Lee Hooker: Mercy Blues (1948)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

09         John Lee Hooker: I Love You Honey (1958)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Joe Hunter (Piano), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), Everett McCray (Bass), Richard Johnson (Drums) 

10         John Lee Hooker: Low Down Midnite Boogie (1948)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

11         John Lee Hooker: Little Wheel (1957)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Frankie Bradford (Piano), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), Everett McCray (Bass), Richard Johnson (Drums)

 12         John Lee Hooker: Mean Mistreatin’ (Late 1950s) 
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Unknown (Guitar, Bass, Drums)

 13         John Lee Hooker: Time Is Marching (1955)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Jimmy Read (Harmonica), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), George Washington (Bass), Tom Whitehead (Drums)

 14         John Lee Hooker: Sally May (1948)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

 15         John Lee Hooker: Trouble Blues (1956)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), George Washington (Bass), Tom Whitehead (Drums)

16         John Lee Hooker: I’m Gonna Kill That Woman (1949)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

17         John Lee Hooker: Too Much Boogie (1953)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

18         John Lee Hooker: Everybody Rockin’ (1957)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Taylor (Guitar), Quinn Wilson (Bass), Tom Whitehead (Drums)

19         John Lee Hooker: I’m A Boogie Man (1953)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar), Eddie Kirkland (Guitar)

20         John Lee Hooker: Never Satisfied (1950)
Musicians: JLH (Vocal, Guitar)

CD2: Blues Greats

01         Jimmy Reed: Honest I Do (1957)
Musicians: Jimmy Reed (Vocal, Harmonica, Guitar), Eddie Taylor & Remo Biondi (Guitars), Earl Phillips (Drums)

02         Muddy Waters: Walking Blues (1950)
Musicians: Muddy Waters (Guitar, Vocal), Big Crawford (Bass)

03         HowlinWolf: Smoke Stack Lightning (1956)
Musicians: Howlin' Wolf (Vocals, Harmonica), Hosea Lee Kennard (Piano), Jody Williams & Hubert Sumlin (Guitars), Willie Dixon (Bass), Earl Phillips (Drums)

04         Sonny Boy Williamson: Don’t  Start Me Talking (1955)
Musicians: Sonny Boy Williamson (Vocals, Harmonica), Otis Spann (piano), Muddy Waters (guitar), Jimmy Rogers (guitar), Willie Dixon (bass), Fred Below (drums)

05         Big Bill Broonzy: How You Want It Done? (1931)
Musicians: Big Bill Broonzy (Guitar) 

06         Elmore James: Dust My Broom (I Believe My Time Ain’t Long) (1951)
Musicians: Elmore James ( Vocal, Guitar), Sonny Boy Williamson (Harmonica), Leonard Ware (Bass), Frock O'dell (Drums)

07         Eddie Taylor: Ride ‘Em On Down (1955)
Musicians: Not Listed

08         Big Joe Williams: Baby Please Don’t Go (1947)
Musicians: Big Joe Williams, Sonny Boy Williamson, Ransom Knowling (Bass), Judge Lawrence Riley (Drums)

09        Little Junior's Blue Flames: Mystery Train (1953)
Musicians Junior Parker (Vocals), Raymond Hill or James Wheeler (Tenor Sax), Bill Johnson (Piano), Floyd Murphy (Guitar), Kenneth Banks (bass), John Bowers (Drums)

10         J.B. Lenoir: Mama Talk To Your Daughter (1954)
Musicians: J.B. Lenoir (Vocal, Guitar), Lorenzo Smith (Tenor Sax), Joe Montgomery (Piano), Al Galvin (Drums)

11         Lightnin Hopkins: Katie Mae Blues (1946)
Musicians: Lightnin' Hopkins (Vocal, Guitar) "Rhythm Background"?

 12         Bo Diddley: Who Do You Love? (1956) 
Musicians: Bo Diddley (Vocal, Guitar), Jody Williams (Guitar), Jerome Williams (Maracas)