Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble - The Complete Epic Recordings Collection

by Kevin Wierzbicki

Here's the collection that Stevie Ray Vaughan completists have long desired: a 12-disc box set containing, as the title indicates, every official album that's ever been released plus a collection of rarities and a live concert recording that has until now been unavailable commercially.

The most essential of Vaughan's recordings are his four studio albums, Texas Flood, Soul to Soul, Couldn't Stand the Weather and In Step; these are all here in their original forms as are live releases Live Alive and Live at Carnegie Hall. And while these releases hold the bulk of what Vaughn is famous for, it's the other four titles that many will find the most exciting.

Among these are the previously available but lesser-known live albums In the Beginning, a live radio broadcast from 1980 that predates Stevie's first studio album by two years and that features killer cuts like Eddie Jones' "The Call Me Guitar Hurricane" and Vaughan's own soon-to-be-a-hit "Love Struck Baby," and Live at Montreux 1982 & 1985.

The '82 Montreux show, although disliked by some members of the audience (amazingly, booing is heard between many of the cuts) was actually a major catalyst for Vaughan's career; in the audience were Jackson Browne, who after hearing the show let Vaughan cut debut album Texas Flood in his personal studios for free, and David Bowie, who took Vaughan on as a side man for his Let's Dance album and tour.

Then the real plum here is another live set recorded at the famed El Mocambo club in Toronto in 1983; A Legend in the Making is released commercially here for the first time, having been until now a very hard to find "promo only" item.

Vaughan used the El Mocambo set to spotlight Texas Flood as eight of the show's nine cuts come from that album; the ninth cut is perennial favorite and Jimi Hendrix cover "Voodoo Chile."

Topping off the set is the double disc Archives collection where 22 previously released "extras" (alternate takes, bonus tracks from previous expanded editions, etc.) are brought together in one place for the first time. Guitar World honcho Damian Fanelli contributes new liner notes to the included 30-page booklet.

Order the box set here.

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble - The Complete Epic Recordings Collection

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