Various Artists – Down At The Crossroads:The Robert Johnson Connection

Boxed three-disc set exploring the historical context surrounding the '30s country-blues guitarist

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Nearly everyone is aware of the mythology surrounding Johnson, who reputedly sold his soul to Satan for meteoric development as a musician. Disc one explores the origins of Johnson’s sound, and includes Son House, who famously inspired him. Disc two contains the entire Robert Johnson songbook (bar alternate takes), 29 tracks recorded over two brief sessions in 1937, only a year before the Devil came to close the debt in 1938. Largely ignored in his day yet achieving legendary status in the ’60s, disc three features a plethora of artists (Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Alexis Korner, Jack Bruce) who attempted to recreate the ethereal power of Johnson’s voice and the sheer brilliance of his slide guitar work.

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