Albert King's landmark Stax effort Born Under A Bad Sign is getting remastered and reissued on April 5, the latest in a line of the famed Memphis' label's campaign, just in time for the late blues legend to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame.
The album has been remastered and several previously unreleased tracks from those sessions -- some alternate takes and a previously unheard instrumental -- have been appended to an album that stands as the pinnacle of King's illustrious career. King was backed on these songs by several Stax luminaries including members of Booker T. & The MGs and found King contributing his own material as well as recording revered, definitive versions of material others had recorded before him.
Born Under A Bad Sign wasn't conceived of as an album as we've come to understand the concept, some of these songs having been issued first as singles before being assembled on a single vinyl LP. "Laundromat Blues" is the first song King cut for Stax and it is included on this set as is the title track, "Crosscut Saw," "Oh, Pretty Woman," and perhaps the best version of the famous tune "Kansas City." He also delivered flawless performances on a pair of ballads, "I Almost Lost My Mind" and (my favorite) "As The Years Go Passing By."
The album will include brand new liner notes written by blues historian Bill Dahl (a brilliant historian I've had the pleasure of meeting and consider a mentor), whose liner notes and articles have appeared in countless collections and publications. This is the second of King's albums to be included in the Stax Classic series, the first being his outstanding I'll Play The Blues For You.
Here is the complete tracklisting for King's Born Under A Bad Sign:
- Born Under A Bad Sign
- Crosscut Saw
- Kansas City
- Oh, Pretty Woman
- Down Don t Bother Me
- The Hunter
- I Almost Lost My Mind
- Personal Manager
- Laundromat Blues
- As The Years Go Passing By
- The Very Thought Of You
- Born Under A Bad Sign [Take 1 - Alternate]
- Crosscut Saw [Take 1 - Alternate]
- The Hunter [Take 1 Alternate]
- Personal Manager [Take 15 Alternate]
- Untitled Instrumental [Take 3 Alternate]