While known the world over as the undisputed King of the Blues, B.B. King at his best bears his soul with his underrated vocals and deep lyrics. At the same time his guitar Lucille can rip out your heart with a single note. Always a gentleman with an incredible life story (I strongly recommend Blues All around Me: The Autobiography of B. B. King ), B.B. is a national treasure not to be overlooked. Born on this day in 1925, I give you a few soulful classics from the ever humble King.
B.B. King: Hummingbird
Here's Bee's soulful rendition of a Leon Russell staple. Heartfelt vocals and searing fret work lead up to a triumphant gospel choir. Find this track on one of B.B.'s best, 1970's Indianola Mississippi Seeds.
B.B. King: Ghetto Woman
Eager to repeat the success of his crossover hit The Thrill Is Gone, B.B. seemed to try the same formula for several years to no avail. One result was this moving, though string heavy track co written with Dave Clark from the 1971 In London LP.
B.B. King: I Like To Live The Love
One of my favorite B.B. soul tunes from 1973's To Know You Is To Love You. Backed by the same Philly rhythm section that powered The O'Jays, The Stylistics, & The Spinners B.B. lays a smooth infectious groove.