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Classic Album Review: Junior Kimbrough | You Better Run: The Essential Junior Kimbrough

This compilation collects a dozen killer cuts from the late juke-joint master's career.

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This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):

 


If you wanna hear the blues — and I mean the real, deep-down, nasty blues, not that sad white-boy bar-band jam-session crap — there is just one thing you have to do today:

Buy this compilation from late juke-joint singer-songwriter Junior Kimbrough. With a dozen killer tracks from Junior’s all-too-brief recording career — a mere four albums in five years — You Better Run captures the best of Kimbrough’s droning, hypnotic guitar work, primal rhythms, jagged, haunted moan and dangerous, violent lyrics. Just crank up All Night Long, Done Got Old or the menacing title cut and you’ll hear a sound as painful and unforgettable as a cut from a rusty straight-razor. That’s the blues for real.