Mike Stern is a preeminent guitarist for two key reasons: One, he can play all styles very well and with equal command; and two, he plays very well with all other players. He always shows great respect for those with whom he is playing and gives them each the time and space to develop their musical ideas. Stern displays these two qualities in abundance on Play. Several notable guests join Stern and his core band for this release. Guitarists John Scofield and Bill Frisell and drummer Dennis Chambers each team with Stern on several tracks. If you enjoy straight-ahead jazz, listen to Stern and Scofield on the title track, or mix in Bob Malach's tenor sax on "Outta Town"…
Arthur Gunter, a seemingly obscure blues singer will never be forgotten because he holds a unique place in American pop history. His first recording, 'Baby Let's Play House' in 1954 for Excello Records of Nashville became one of the first recordings by Elvis Presley. This is the first time both sides of his Excello singles have been collected together in chronological order and the quality of these sessions are all exciting and typical of the kind of blues popular in the south.
Listen to the sounds of Arthur Gunter and wonder at the impression it must have had on the young Elvis Presley - stunning by all accounts. This collection is a must for blues and R&B fans.
When Marcia Griffiths' Play Me Sweet and Nice arrived in 1974, "Jamaica's First Lady of Song" had just left the hitmaking duo of Bob & Marcia – best known for "Young, Gifted and Black" – but was still a year away from forming the I-Threes with Rita Marley and Judy Mowatt. Released in Jamaica on the Wildflower label, the album launched her solo career with what was considered an instant classic back home, but liberties were taken – different cover art, a rearranged track list, and a new, less risqué title, Sweet Bitter Love – when the U.K. label Trojan released their version later that same year.