B.B. King Live in Cook County Jail

A real gem surfaced in the pile among interesting album cover art.  Let me tell you a little about it here; but first check out the front and back covers.

B.B. King Live in Cook County Jail

B.B. King – back cover

I think it’s a compelling find.

If you are unable to view my link above, here’s the text:

On September 10, 1970, blues legend B.B. King performed for over two thousand inmates in Chicago’s Cook County Jail, a place termed “a jungle” by both the Illinois Crime Commission and a group of reformers who investigated it.

The background of the impressive cover has a prisoner’s blue denim shirt, the album title stenciled in black paint with a superimposed photo of Mr. King performing, his back to a brick wall and barred windows.

The reverse side is a photo taken from above and behind Mr. King and his band as they perform to the audience of prisoners. The photo is overlaid with the story of Warden Winston E. Moore, and how it was when B.B. King performed there.

Perhaps most compelling of this cover is the history which in part says, “B.B. King—Cook County Jail is a story of two men, the man who “cleaned up the mess,” and a man who felt Cook County Jail was as important an engagement as Caesar’s Palace.”

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