Live in Cook County Jail is a 1971 live album by B.B. King recorded in Cook County Jail, Chicago, Illinois. It was ranked as number 499 in the book version of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. It spent three weeks at #1 on the Soul Albums chart. The album cover of the original release was textured like prison denim. (Wikipedia)
Live in Cook County Jail is a 1971 live album by American blues musician B.B. King, recorded on September 10, 1970, in Cook County Jail in Chicago. Agreeing to a request by jail warden Winston Moore, King and his band performed for an audience of 2,117 prisoners, most of whom were young black men. King's set list consisted mostly of slow blues songs, which had been hits earlier in his career. When King told ABC Records about the upcoming performance, he was advised to bring along press and recording equipment.
Live in Cook County Jail spent thirty-three weeks on the Billboard Top LPs chart, where it peaked at number twenty-five. It also reached number one on the Top R&B chart, King's only album to do so. In addition to positive reviews from critics, much of the press surrounding Live in Cook County Jail focused on the harsh living conditions in the prison, which led to an eventual reform.
Although Live in Cook County Jail continues to receive praise as one of King's best albums, critics often overlook it in favor of 1965's Live at the Regal. Rolling Stone ranked Live in Cook County Jail at number 499 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and in 2002, it was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame. The performance at Cook County Jail had a profound impact on King, who not only continued to perform free concerts at prisons throughout his life, but also co-established the Foundation for the Advancement of Inmate Rehabilitation and Recreation.
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