Classic Delta Blues collects 12 cuts Big Joe Williams cut in 1964. For these recordings, he played a standard six-string guitars instead of hauling out his custom nine-string and the effects are pleasant, but not revelatory.–by Thom Owens
As a comeback, Midnight Rainbows stands as a fine testament of Joe South's talent. While not exactly the pop sound he was famous for, it fits in nicely alongside such acts as Atlanta Rhythm Section, who helped out here and there, and the Marshall Tucker Band. Containing a truly gospel take on "For Your Precious Love" and a letter-perfect rendition of Leon Russell's "Stranger in a Strange Land," this disc has improved with age. Tinged with hints of country, "Midnight Rainbows" stands well alongside all the other fine Joe South releases, a fine product indeed.
The second (1969's Games People Play) and fourth (1971's Joe South) albums by Joe South were combined onto one CD on this 2006 reissue, which added three non-LP bonus tracks. To some degree, Games People Play was a rushed album, issued to capitalize on the unexpected hit single title track (which had first been issued as an LP-only cut on South's previous long-player, Introspect). Three songs that had appeared on Introspect ("Games People Play," "Birds of a Feather," and "These Are Not My People") were placed on Games People Play as well, and some of the other songs (like "Untie Me" and "Concrete Jungle") had been recorded by other artists as early as 1962.
Singer/songwriter Joe South (born Joe Souter) began his career as a country musician, performing on an Atlanta radio station and joining Pete Drake's band in 1957. The following year, he recorded a novelty single, "The Purple People Eater Meets the Witch Doctor," and became a session musician in Nashville and at Muscle Shoals. South appeared on records by Marty Robbins, Eddy Arnold, Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, Bob Dylan (Blonde on Blonde), and Simon & Garfunkel ("The Sounds of Silence"). During the '60s, South began working on his songwriting, crafting hits for Deep Purple ("Hush") and several for Billy Joe Royal, including "Down in the Boondocks." South began recording his own material in 1968, scoring a hit with the Grammy-winning "Games People Play" (Song of the Year) the following year. While South produced hits like "Don't It Make You Want to Go Home" and "Walk a Mile in My Shoes," Lynn Anderson had a smash country and pop hit in 1971 with South's "(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden."
This 24 BIT fully remastered classic masters contains 15 Grand Funk Railroad hits on one CD and it sounds absolutely wonderful. This classic masters CD has a good representation of Grand Funk Railroad's career at Capitol (69-76) from Time Machine and Mean Misterater, to I'm Your Captian/Closer To Home (There Magus Opus), to We're An American Band (there biggest Hit) Walk Like A Man and Shinin On (Both Big its), to Take me and Bad Time (there two last Radio hits whit Bad Time being the most played song on the radio in 76).
The April Wine entry in Capitol Records' midline-priced Classic Masters series is a reasonable best-of culled from the group's tenure at Capitol from the late '70s to the mid-'80s.
It's hard to call Joe South a neglected artist, since so many of his songs have become pop standards, often through covers by other artists. "Hush" was Deep Purple's breakthrough, "Down in the Boondocks" was Billy Joe Royal's big hit, Lynn Anderson is forever identified with "Rose Garden," the Tams had a hit with "Untie Me," and Elvis Presley turned "Walk a Mile in My Shoes" into a signature anthem late in his career. Plus, South himself had big hits with "Don't It Make You Want to Go Home?" and "Games People Play," the latter of which won two Grammy Awards.