Ira Robbins
September 21, 1990 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Legends of the Blues Vol. One

Current Status
In Season
Various Artists
Blues, Reissues

We gave it an A

Widespread interest in folk music, plus rock;s enthusiastic embrace, helped turn traditional blues into a major musical style in the ’60s. Its popularity waned, but Columbia has now undertaken a major reissue series, drawing on the rich lode of blues in its vaults. This 20-track sampler provides an excellent introduction to the series, encompassing many eras and styles: Bessie Smith and Blind Lemon Jefferson from the ’20s, Leadbelly and Charley Patton from the ’30s, and Bukka White and Muddy Waters from the ’40s. With the best possible audio quality and Paul Oliver’s informative liner notes, Legends of the Blues Vol. One could easily spark a new blues revival. A

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