Career anthology that runs out of steam halfway through
Ten early live tracks and radio sessions present a fascinating insight into the freak of nature that was the man’s voice in the teenage body of Steve Winwood. Mirroring all the fuss over Joss Stone, Winwood was just as young when he recorded these dynamic versions of such R&B classics as “Dimples”, “I Can’t Stand It” and an unbelievable “Georgia On My Mind” that rivals Ray Charles for soulful passion. Incredibly, he was still only 18 when he quit the band in early 1967. By then, he’d written “Gimme Some Lovin'” and “I’m A Man” as well, heard here in similarly rudimentary pre-Radio One recordings. The 10 tracks post-dating Winwood’s departure can be skipped: fortunately they’re chronologically ordered to enable just that.