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by C. Michael Bailey
I began listening to John Hammond at the Crossroads at the same time as I was listening to Richard Goode’s long awaited completion of Bach’s Partitas for Keyboard (Nonesuch, 2003). It struck me that the two recordings were very similar. Both are interpretations of a cultural canon. Bach’s Partitas for Keyboard are considered among his best compositions and has been the subject of hundreds of recordings and performances. Like the Goldberg Variations, the Partitas for Keyboard exist as an artistic ...read more
by Ed Kopp
John Hammond Jr. is a steady performer who continues to revive some classic blues material that might otherwise be forgotten. Best of the Vanguard Years provides a nice overview of his early days.
Hammond began his recording career on the Vanguard label, generating five albums between 1964 and 1967. After stints with Atlantic and Columbia, Hammond returned to Vanguard for three records in the late '70s. Both intervals are represented on this retrospective CD, but only five of the 23 ...read more