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Various Artists - House of Blues: Essential Blues 3 (Platinum Entertainment)

I was all set to give this CD to my dad as a birthday present when Maria Muldur/Dr. John's duet, "You Get the Best of Me" came on. This isn't any sort of dis to the CD, my dad usually gets the best blues and jazz that comes across my desk when I'm done reviewing it, just because I know he'll listen to it more than I will.

But after hearing that track, I'm keeping this. Other wonderful bits in the two-CD set are contributions from John Lee Hooker, R.L. Burnside (who, by the way, is now being produced by Atari Teenage Riot's Alec Empire), Taj Mahal, and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown (who my dad used to run sound for way, way back in the day). There's an equal share of acoustic delta and electric blues here, so whichever kind's your preference, you'll definitely get your fill with this collection.

by Holly Day.