Other post-WWII Chicago bluesmen are better known, but the work of Elmore James holds up as well as any of theirs. If he never had the technical accomplishment of, say, Earl Hooker, he did have as much depth of emotional expression as Muddy Waters; just listen to the sweetness of "I Need You" or the pain of "It Hurts Me, Too." The Sky Is Crying: The History of Elmore James contains some of the most important work of a man who still reigns as the king of slide guitar; anyone who wears a bottleneck today owes a debt to James. Highlights include Robert Johnson's "Dust My Broom," which James made his signature tune, as well as the title track, which contains some of the sweetest licks in blues history. --Genevieve Williams


1. Dust My Broom
2. The Sun Is Shining
3. Hawaiian Boogie
4. Sho' Nuff I Do
5. Please Find My Baby
6. T.V. Mama
7. My Best Friend
8. Madison Blues
9. Cry For Me Baby
10. The Sky Is Crying
11. Sunny Land
12. I Can't Hold Out
13. Look On Yonder Wall
14. I Need You
15. Done Somebody Wrong
16. Shake Your Moneymaker
17. The 12 Year Old Boy
18. It Hurts Me Too
19. Rollin And Tumblin
20. Something Inside Me
21. Standing At The Crossroads

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