Ira Robbins
October 05, 1990 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Good Time Tonight

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
performer
Big Bill Broonzy
genre
Blues, Reissues

We gave it an A-

In contrast to the gritty electric performers who succeeded him on the Chicago scene, Big Bill Broonzy wrote and sang highly developed, upbeat tunes about love, lust, and life, all in a handsome folk style. Good Time Tonight, a 20-song collection of recordings (most previously unissued) from 1930-40, finds him variously alone with his guitar, teamed with a pianist and bassist, and joined by a quintet complete with horns. Broonzy’s engaging solo work stands easily on his melodic strength, instrumental skill, and charisma, but this blend of rural blues and urban jazz is a revelation. A-

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