Freddy King’s Heads Up!: The First Fourteen Singles

11th July 2016

Title: Heads Up!: The First Fourteen Singles

Label: Jasmine

King was at the height of his fame during the 60s period when he and his blues guitar produced a series of popular instrumentals which were quickly lauded and picked up by a host of other blues players and white blues men. In fact, blue-eyed pickers loved him. Witness the effusive response when King’s name was mentioned to the likes of Eric Clapton, Mick Taylor, Stevie Ray Vaughan and more. Speaking of which, King was one of the first blues men who featured a racially mixed backing group.

Freddy had a blues style of his own. For example, he was different to the late B.B. King in terms of his approach. B.B. had a single string style whereas Freddy preferred the thumb and finger approach.

Freddy’s important work began with the Federal label which is the focus of this CD collection. You’ve Got to Love Her With a Feeling, for example, is featured here, which was a minor hit after it was released in August of 1960 along with Hide Away (which is also on this CD) that was released soon after. In fact, it was Hide Away that would stick in the public consciousness because it became a theme tune, of sorts, for King and would go on to influence many other musicians such as B.B. King and Magic Sam.

Oh, and that’s Hide Away, the B-side…not the A-side. At that time King would release a single and play the same song twice. He would press a vocal version of a song on the A-side and then re-record the song for an instrumental version for the B-side.

Other classics would follow including The Stumble, I’m Tore Down and San-Ho-Zay along with an album, his first, called Freddie King Sings.

This excellent set presents a stream of classic early electric blues.