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Crate Digger’s Gold: Albert King – Truckload of Lovin’ (and Agharta Records)

April 14, 2014

albert King Truck        agharta_color_med

Many years ago a buddy of mine turned me on to this album.  I picked it up as a CD and have enjoyed it for many years.  I was recently at Agharta and picked up a near mint vinyl edition of this gem.

Agharta is a fresh vinyl-only record store in St. Paul Minnesota.  I only had 15 minutes to crate dig and survey the store (I only had two quarters for the meter and I was way past my feeding time) so I did not get to study the place too hard.  But what little I saw was impressive.  It has some nice ambiance.  Looks like it could handle a in-store performance.  There is some free street parking in front of the door and meters near buy if you can’t snag a free spot.  It has a good location at the corner of University and 280 – easy to get to for both Minneapolitans and St. Paulites.  The inventory is small, but high quality (both in selection and grade).  Prices are appropriate (e.g. the Albert King LP I picked was right in line with Discogs for a near mint edition). I look forward to seeing this store prosper over the next few years.  Thanks for my twitter buddy Ali (@egyptoknuckles) for tipping me off to this new store. There website is still under construction, so rely on Facebook for now.

Albert King is one of the great bluesman of his generation (April 25, 1923 – December 21, 1992).  He was great guitar player and singer.  Visually he was a giant of a man (built like defensive lineman) and he played a Gibson Flying V guitar left-handed (an upside down right-hand guitar just like Jimi).  He was often cited by Stevie Ray Vaughan as having been his greatest influence and Clapton credits him as influencing his Cream era work.

This album has a mid-70s pop (borderline disco) aesthetic which will either turn your stomach or turn you on. Personally I dig it.  I can get bored by blues purists. This is a great merger of soul music and the blues.  This album has horns, back up singers and strings – but Albert’s stinging guitar and soulful blues voice keeps it cool.  There are some great songs on here too (wry and sexy).  Stand out tracks for me are “Cold Women With Warm Hearts,” “Sensation, Communication Together,” and the titular track “Truckload of Lovin’.”  The band is top-notch with players like Joe Sample, Wa Wa Watson and Charles Rainey. The recording has a great sound – with Albert’s guitar and vocals out front on top of a solid pop foundation (great separation of the instruments).  If you are a fan of soul-fusion music with that mid-70s vibe you will dig these grooves.

 

 

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One Comment
  1. Have the CD. Just listen to ‘Born Under a Bad Sign’ Reissue but the record. Very good also

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