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SHOWDOWN! has been a favorite of mine for many years now. I’ve followed it through three different formats: vinyl, audio cassette, and CD. 8-Tracks had fell by the way by the time this one came out or I’d likely have one in that one also.

Albert Collins was born in Texas in 1932, was a distant relative of Lightnin’ Hopkins, and was known as “The Master of the Telecaster.” His recording career began in the ’60s and eventually took him all over the world. He passed in 1993 a few months after being diagnosed with lung cancer. Johnny Copeland came from Louisiana, born in 1937, and began his recording career in the mid-fifties. He died in 1997 during complications from heart surgery for a transplanted organ six months previous. Robert Cray was the new blood at the time of this album, born in 1953, and he signed his first record contract in 1982. Collins and Copeland were idols of his from a young age.

The album SHOWDOWN! won the 1987 Grammy for best traditional blues and it is a good one. Separately these three men recorded some great music, but when they got together for this one….

Here are four clips from the album. They recorded nine songs for the release.

Some nice harmonica work here from Collins:

and in this last clip, each of the trio has a turn with a solo that highlight’s each style: