Album Details

Sepia Tone
Rhythm & Blues, Early R&B, Regional Blues, East Coast Blues

Album Review

Despite Baker's well-deserved reputation as one of the most influential guitar players of early rock & roll, The Wildest Guitar was one of the few chances he really got to strut his stuff as a solo artist. This entirely instrumental set features keening, sharp, bluesy riffs in much the same distinctive style that gained him fame on "Love Is Strange" and other tunes with Mickey & Sylvia. The choice of material, though, is a bit surprising, favoring some surprisingly cornball standards: "Third Man Theme," "Autumn Leaves," "Lullaby of the Leaves," and Cole Porter's "Night and Day." Baker (who also arranged the album) manages to invest all of these with a snazzy R&B feel and biting solos. And he does actually write four of the 12 tunes himself, on which he fashions the kind of straightforward R&B that one would more likely to expect. This is a pretty good showcase to hear Baker's unadorned virtuosity. But he's really better-appreciated within the context of stronger material, either as half of Mickey & Sylvia or on the innumerable '50s R&B cuts (many on Atlantic) that feature his session work.
Richie Unterberger, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Third Man Theme
  2. Whistle Stop
  3. Night and Day
  4. Midnight Midnight
  5. Autumn Leaves
  6. Baia
  7. Milk Train
  8. Old Devil Moon
  9. Chloe
  10. Baker's Dozen
  11. Lullaby of the Leaves
  12. Gloomy Sunday