When it comes to blues cats like Robert Lockwood Jr., there really isn’t much to tell you except to pay homage, pay attention and pay up. Buy anything and everything with the man’s name on it. That includes this 2-CD collection, which represents most of Lockwood’s studio work from the 1970s.
Fetzer Mills Jr. says it best in the liner notes: "This ain’t no bluesman going through the motions. Lockwood’s the real deal, one of the last we have left."
For this reason alone, blues fans should pick this one up. I shouldn’t have to explain why it’s so important to support the originals while they’re still here to benefit from that support. It’s fine to light a candle for all the bluesmen and women gone home, but while you’re at it, be sure and light one for those who are still here layin’ down the music.
Yes, it’s true Lockwood hit the road with famed blues harp player Sonny Boy Williamson when he was only 15 years old. It’s also true that he played with the legendary Robert Johnson. That’s great, but that’s not the reason to hear this CD. If you wanna hear Sonny Boy or Robert Johnson, then go hear them. You should. But when you listen to Lockwood, appreciate Lockwood. Unlike any other old-time bluesman I’ve ever heard, Lockwood exhibits a wide range of influences that stretch far beyond the standard blues format. Still, he manages to integrate those various sounds and rhythms into a blues voice that can drum up images of anyone from Robert Johnson to T-Bone Walker to, well, Robert Lockwood.