Roy Buchanan
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Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography

 

Roy BuchananRoy Buchanan

Roy Buchanan

Roy BuchananRoy Buchanan

 
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Studio ] Live ] Compilations ] Books, etc. ]
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography

Roy Buchanan

Live: Amazing Grace - August 2009 release date

Roy Buchanan's is one of the most innovative guitar players that I have heard. I was fortunate to see him perform live twice in the 1970's. Amazing! He generally plays with a blues or rock attitude. though he does stretch into different genres like surf, or country. So while Roy isn't not a strictly blues performer, but when he goes for that approach he's clearly one of a kind. From Second Album, "Tribute To Elmore James" is a great example of him playing the blues. Why that song gets left off of so many compilations should be criminal, there is room for those three and half minutes of bliss. 

Buchanan's playing offers the guitar sustain that Carlos Santana mastered, the phasing of David Gilmour (particularly like he demonstrated on Animals), the natural blues flow of Stevie Ray Vaughan, all rolled into one. Buchanan also is quite an exceptional melodic player when he wants to be, but doesn't emphasize that side into his playing as extensively as players like Jerry Garcia. Perhaps most important or at a minimum utterly impressive, is that Buchanan's playing is so unique and original. 

If I was to name a guitarist most like Roy Buchanan I'd say Danny Gatton. Though, Gatton leaned more to country, jazz and other genres. But the way these two play their Telecaster's is breathtaking. Gatton met Buchanan, who taught Danny some tricks. They even shared a bandmate, keyboardist Dick Heintze. 

Trivia
The Departed by Martin Scorsese ends with Buchanan's rendition of the Don Gibson country classic "Sweet Dreams."

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Building a Roy Buchanan collection.

My favorite Roy Buchanan material is: in the studio, his self titled album and Second Album. In, addition any of his live offerings. Besides that, his other albums all of some dazzling material. Guess what, his two disc compilation, Sweet Dreams: The Anthology, has all of that, except his Alligator material. 

One of the problems with collecting Roy Buchanan's material on a budget is that many of the releases are short in length and several are hard to find and as a result are sold for high prices. Below are a couple of good options to build a Roy Buchanan collection.

Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Discography sections
Studio ] Live ] Compilations ] Books, etc. ]
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Suggestion one - Two to four discs to...
This recommendation is built around the two disc compilation Sweet Dreams: The Anthology as a foundation. It includes studio material from his Polydor and Atlantic albums and a large number unreleased studio and live songs. No Alligator records material is included. I bought this and am extremely happy with it. Though, in time I realized that it is not quite enough. Of the five complimentary releases there is very little overlap, a handful tracks from Guitar on Fire and two from Live in Japan.

Supplements
1.) Deluxe Edition
2.) American Axe (This live release has no duplication)
 

Second tier supplements. 
3.) Guitar on Fire: The Atlantic Sessions (some overlap)
4.) Any other live Roy Buchanan

Sweet Dreams: The Anthology Deluxe Edition American Axe: Live in 1974
Guitar on Fire: The Atlantic Sessions Messiah on Guitar Live in Japan
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Suggestion two - Comprehensive 1

This recommendation is built buying the the two for one (twofers) releases on Polydor, which will result in three studio albums and one live release. Add to that a compilation of his Atlantic and his Alligator material. Some additional live material wouldn't hurt. The six releases below I don't think has any duplication. 

Roy Buchanan and Second Album Live Stock/A Street Called Straight Deluxe Edition
Guitar on Fire: The Atlantic Sessions Messiah on Guitar American Axe: Live in 1974
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Suggestion three - Comprehensive 2

This recommendation is built around the getting the different labels of studio material and a live release or three? 

 

20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Roy Buchanan Guitar on Fire: The Atlantic Sessions Deluxe Edition
American Axe: Live in 1974 Messiah on Guitar Live in Japan
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Suggestion four - One disc

If you want just one disc, I'd ask you first to consider the two disc release Sweet Dreams: The Anthology. If you insist...there are compilations and that is a good way to go, the common route. Alternatively, and perhaps even more satisfying route is a live release or the twofer combo of Roy Buchanan / Second Album.

Compilations: There are presently there are four good single disc compilations. Two that focus on his early Polydor years, one on Atlantic, and one on Alligator. One of the Polydor releases is the better starting place.

20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Roy Buchanan American Axe: Live in 1974 Roy Buchanan and Second Album
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
Roy Buchanan - Reviews and recommendations, discography
 

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