Atlanta Twelve String
Label: Rhino Atlantic
McTell's utterly distinctive style of blues, from the percussive 12-string guitar slapping that marks his songs to his unmatched choice of subject matter -- doomed crapshooters, doomed card players, doomed women, doomed men -- are all here in a perfectly condensed collection of recordings from 1949. "Little Delia," "Kill It Kid" and "Dying Crapshooter's Blues" are archetypal examples of a blues that belonged exclusively to McTell, with his slick voice and even slicker diction. Anyone who's never heard McTell's wide range of brilliance is in for a real treat here.