In the late 80s the blues were a new discovery for me, and I was devouring the music—but there were certain artists I avoided. At the time I was working at Jazz Record Mart, where I got to drink in the genre’s entire history, and I distinctly remember picking up a bias against Albert King. I can’t remember if it came from a coworker or not, but I know I was skeptical of him because he played a Gibson Flying V, and his fluency with the guitar’s upper register seemed to me like a short hop from the self-indulgent blues-rock wanking that followed in his wake (he’s been cited as an influence by Eric Clapton, Mark Knopfler, and Stevie Ray Vaughan, to name a few). That was enough for me to ignore King, even if it wasn’t his fault.