Recorded in 1971, but unreleased in the U.S. until 1999, B.B. King's Live in Japan deserves high marks for exuberance alone. Had Live in Cook County Jail not just jumped into the charts, this live album might have been released long ago. The recording opens with a swelling of enthusiastic cheers, as King launches into an uptempo "Every Day I Have the Blues." There are plenty of other classics here as well, including "How Blue Can You Get?", "Sweet Sixteen," and "The Thrill Is Gone" (which elicits another round of cheering from the opening notes). Live in Japan may not have the long-standing reputation of Cook County Jail or Live at the Regal, but it's an excellent album, with a decidedly different feel from these two classics. King's obvious enthusiasm for his music and for his audience is infectious, and you can hear the sheer joy of it in every note. And, for those who don't really feel that they need additional versions of well-known songs, let it be mentioned that Live in Japan contains King's only live rendition of "Hummingbird," not to mention a couple of unique jams ("Japanese Boogie," "Jamming at Sankei Hall," and "Hikari #88").
The Iceman is in remarkable form on this 1992 live date, offering proof positive that his smoldering Texas-style electric blues is ageless. With a set list that spans from his early hit "Frosty" to tracks from his 1991 release, ICEMAN, Albert Collins's stinging technique makes his Telecaster sing out over his no-holds-barred full electric band. A deeply satisfying blues excursion, LIVE AT MONTREAUX was recorded merely a year before Collins's death from cancer, making it a fitting tribute as well as a fine concert recording.
Filmed just a year before his untimely death from cancer, this 1992 concert from Montreux finds the great Albert Collins still at the top of his game. With his trademark Fender Telecaster and distinctive finger picking style well to the fore "The Iceman" delivers a set that runs from his early million selling single "Frosty" right up to songs from his final studio album "Iceman".
This "Live from Austin Texas" set is also incredible and features Collins with a superlative Texas-based band. The performance is fantastic and should be heard in 5.1 sound! The set was filmed just about two years before he died, October 1991. He was still a vital performer. This set was originally released from a video tape by Vestapol as "Texas Blues Guitar" in conjunction with the Stephan Grossman Guitar Workshop. "Iceman", "Light's Are Out" and "Head Rag" were included in that DVD transfer. I knew this complete DVD would be great! On this show the picture quality is excellent and the sound fantastic.
Hearing Albert Collins' icy guitar sound on disc is exciting, but watching the "master of the Telecaster" burn through a typically blistering set adds a whole other level of appreciation to the experience. He was a consummate showman whose crowd-roaming with a 150-foot guitar cord – before the advent of wireless gear – made him as famous for his live sets as his studio ones. This generous DVD delivers a two-for-one bargain, as it features Collins' first 40-minute show at Montreux in 1979 in addition to the hourlong titular set, the latter also available as a companion audio CD. He is on fire for both shows, although perhaps moving a bit more slowly in 1992, which preceded his untimely death by just a year. As was his norm, Collins stretched songs to their breaking point on-stage, and three of the seven tunes he performed in 1992 break the ten-minute mark. But his playing was so inventive and his stage presence so rousing that nothing seems overly extended or drawn out…….