The Blues Is Alive and Well

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The Blues Is Alive and Well
Buddy Guy, wearing overalls and holding an electric guitar, stands near a sign saying "Lettsworth"
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 15, 2018 (2018-06-15)
GenreBlues
Length64:00
ProducerTom Hambridge
Buddy Guy chronology
Born to Play Guitar
(2015)
The Blues Is Alive and Well
(2018)

The Blues Is Alive and Well is the 18th studio album by American blues musician Buddy Guy. It was released on June 15, 2018 by RCA/Silvertone Records.[1][2][3]

The Blues Is Alive and Well won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album at the 61st Grammy Awards.[4]

Keith Richards and Jeff Beck play guitar on the song "Cognac", and Mick Jagger plays harmonica on the song "You Did the Crime".[1][2][3]

Critical reception[edit]

In DownBeat, Bobby Reed wrote, "... Guy delivers what one would expect from an 81-year-old elder statesman (albeit one who performs like someone half his age). This album is filled with Guy's trademark, stinging electric guitar solos – each packing enough power to peel paint off a house. Guy's guitar heroics attract so much attention that his vocal prowess has long been underrated, and his voice remains in superb shape, a supple instrument with impressive range."[5]

On AllMusic, Stephen Thomas Erlewine said, "The Blues Is Alive and Well is full of songs charged with mortality.... [The album] has a lot of songs in general – a full 15, lasting well over an hour. This excessive length means there's a lot of room for levity, too, including James Bay sitting in for a duet on "Blue No More", Mick Jagger's wailing harp on "You Did the Crime", and, best of all, a showdown with Keith Richards and Jeff Beck on "Cognac"."[6]

In Blues Blast, Mark Thompson wrote, "Throughout his career, Buddy Guy has been known for his guitar prowess. Often times his skill as a singer would slide by with little notice. On this release, he consistently reaches into the emotional depths, often with bone-chilling intensity, conveying hard-earned lessons on life and the people you meet along the way."[7]

On Rock and Blues Muse, Dave Resto said, "It was a lifetime ago when the Lettsworth, Louisiana native followed his dreams and moved to Chicago to make his fortune. There, he worked as the house guitarist at Chess Records where he formed musical alliances with Muddy Waters and Junior Wells and went on to influence generations of legendary guitarists. Today, the 81-year-old Guy boasts a long list of accomplishments in the music industry. The Blues Is Alive and Well is Guy's assertion that both he and the genre still have a lot to say."[8]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."A Few Good Years"Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge4:47
2."Guilty as Charged"Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge3:20
3."Cognac" (featuring Jeff Beck, Keith Richards)Buddy Guy, Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge5:22
4."The Blues Is Alive and Well"Gary Nicholson, Tom Hambridge5:13
5."Bad Day"Mac Davis, Tom Hambridge3:18
6."Blue No More" (featuring James Bay)Jamey Johnson, Tom Hambridge3:39
7."Whiskey for Sale"Tom Hambridge4:02
8."You Did the Crime" (featuring Mick Jagger)Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge6:53
9."Old Fashioned"Buddy Guy, Tom Hambridge3:57
10."When My Day Comes"Bill Sweeney, Tom Hambridge4:38
11."Nine Below Zero"Sonny Boy Williamson6:19
12."Ooh Daddy"Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge3:17
13."Somebody Up There"Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge4:27
14."End of the Line"Richard Fleming, Tom Hambridge3:25
15."Milking Muther for Ya"Buddy Guy0:57

"Milking Muther for Ya" contains a portion of "Mother Fuyer" written by Red Nelson.

Personnel[edit]

Musicians

Production

  • Produced by Tom Hambridge
  • Recording: Ducky Carlisle
  • Mixing: Michael Saint-Leon, Tom Hambridge
  • Mastering: Greg Calbi
  • Art direction, design: Jeff Schulz
  • Photography: Chuck Lanza, Paul Natkin

Charts[edit]

Chart (2018) Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[9] 45
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[10] 22
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[11] 43
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[12] 53
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[13] 58
Czech Albums (ČNS IFPI)[14] 57
Dutch Albums (Album Top 100)[15] 57
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[16] 14
Italian Albums (FIMI)[17] 72
Polish Albums (ZPAV)[18] 26
Scottish Albums (OCC)[19] 22
Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)[20] 60
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[21] 4
UK Albums (OCC)[22] 65
US Billboard 200[23] 69

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ritz, David (June 15, 2018). "Buddy Guy Talks Enlisting Mick Jagger and Keith Richards to Ensure The Blues Is Alive and Well". Billboard. Retrieved June 20, 2018.
  2. ^ a b Kreps, Daniel (June 6, 2018). "Buddy Guy Enlists Keith Richards, Jeff Beck for New Song "Cognac"". Rolling Stone. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well". Discogs. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  4. ^ Rosenbaum, Marty (February 11, 2019). "Buddy Guy Takes Home Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album". WXRT. Retrieved February 11, 2019.
  5. ^ Reed, Bobby (June 2018). "Buddy Guy: The Blues Is Alive and Well". DownBeat. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  6. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "The Blues Is Alive and Well". AllMusic. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  7. ^ Thompson, Mark (June 15, 2018). "Buddy Guy: The Blues Is Alive and Well – Album Review". Blues Blast Magazine. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  8. ^ Resto, Dave (June 20, 2018). "Review: The Blues Is Alive and Well by Buddy Guy". Rock and Blues Muse. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  9. ^ "ARIA Australian Top 50 Albums". Australian Recording Industry Association. June 25, 2018. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  10. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved June 28, 2018.
  11. ^ "Ultratop.be – Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved June 22, 2018.
  12. ^ "Ultratop.be – Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved June 22, 2018.
  13. ^ "Buddy Guy Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved June 26, 2018.
  14. ^ "Czech Albums – Top 100". ČNS IFPI. Note: On the chart page, select 201825 on the field besides the word "Zobrazit", and then click over the word to retrieve the correct chart data. Retrieved June 25, 2018.
  15. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved June 22, 2018.
  16. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Buddy Guy – The Blues is Alive and Well" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved June 22, 2018.
  17. ^ "Album – Classifica settimanale WK 25 (dal 2018-06-15 al 2018-06-21)" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  18. ^ "Oficjalna lista sprzedaży :: OLiS - Official Retail Sales Chart". OLiS. Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved June 28, 2018.
  19. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  20. ^ "Top 100 Albumes – Semana 25: del 15.6.2018 al 21.6.2018" (in Spanish). Productores de Música de España. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  21. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Buddy Guy – The Blues Is Alive and Well". Hung Medien. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  22. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  23. ^ "Buddy Guy Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved June 26, 2018.