John Mayall reformed the Bluesbreakers in 1995. Over the course of the next 12 years from 1995 to 2007, John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers released six more albums. Our list of the top 10 John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers songs will look at only the records released by John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers in the 1960’s. There are far too many albums released just under the John Mayall name to be included on this list. We will keep that for a separate list.
The recordings that John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers released in the 1960s served as a very strong inspiration for so many bands that grew up in the classic rock era of 1970s. John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers defined the British Blues scene at the dawn of the classic rock and roll era
# 10 – Snowy Wood
We open up our Top 10 John Mayall And The Bluesbreaker Songs list with a track from the band’s third studio album entitled Crusade. The great song “Snowy Wood,” was written by John Mayall and future Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Taylor. The man who would soon take the guitar chair in the band The Rolling Stones was only 18 at the time. Mick Taylor shreds it up on this great track.
# 9 – I’m Your Witchdoctor
“I’m Your Witchdoctor,” was released as a non album single in 1965 by John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. On the track, the legendary Eric Clapton played guitar, John Mayall performed on keyboards and vocals, John McVie of Fleetwood Mac fame played bass and Hughie Flint was on the drums. Listen to this track. This is such great stuff. Clapton’s guitar licks are so killer.
# 8 – Crawling up a Hill
From simply an historic point of view, including the single “Crawling Up a Hill,” on this top 10 John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers songs list is important because it was the first single ever released by the band. The song was released in 1964. On the track was John McVie on base, John Mayall on keyboards, Bernie Watson on guitar and Martin Hart on drums. History aside, we would have included “Crawling Up a Hill,” on this top 10 John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers songs list no matter what, because it is such a fabulous blues track.
# 7 – Bare Wires (suite)
As we continue our top 10 John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers songs list, we turn to the great album Bare Wires. The Bluesbreaker album Bare Wires was the last album of the 1960s in which John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers recorded together under that name. The band would return again in 1995, but for the time being John Mayall would just release albums under his own name. The “Bare Wires (suite)” actually took up the entire side A of the record. It’s an incredible suite of songs that we could not leave out on this top 10 John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers songs list.
# 6 – Sitting In The Rain
One of our favorite John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers songs was a single released in 1966 entitled “Sitting In The Rain.” The song’s mid temp laid back groove and John Mayall’s cool vocals was a bit reminiscent of The Grateful Dead. Just take a listen, you will hear what we are talking about.
# 5 – Double Crossing Time
As we get closer to the head of our top 10 John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers songs list we turn to the legendary album the band recorded with Eric Clapton on lead guitar. The band’s first album was released in 1966 entitled Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton. If you don’t own this record you are missing out. We could have easily filled this John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers songs list with every song from this amazing album. The song “Double Crossing Time,” is a slow blues jam that is simply to die for.
# 4 – Lonely Years
The great John Mayall and The Bluesbreakers song “Lonely Years,” was released as a non album single in 1966. The song was written by John Mayall. The track features Eric Clapton on lead guitar. While the song was not issued on the original album. it was included on the cd release in the 2000’s. The original single also contained a great song written by Eric Clapton entitled “Bernard Jenkins.”
# 3 – Hideaway
The dynamic track “Hideaway,” is the second of three tracks to appear on this list from the band’s debut album Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton.The song “Hideaway,” was written by Freddie King and Sonny Thompson. It appeared as the second track on the record. Clapton plays his guts out on this red hot smoking track. The blues do not get much better than this.
# 2 – The Stumble
The legendary track “The Stumble,” was the opening song on the John Mayall and The Blues breakers album A Hard Road. The great guitar work on The “Stumble,” was performed by Peter Green who would also become another Fleetwood Mac alumni. “The Stumble,” is a short instrumental track, but it gets the job done brilliantly in defining the heart and soul of the Bluesbreakers sound. The A Hard Road album was released in 1967.
# 1 – All Your Love
We close out our top 10 John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers songs list with the classic song “All Your Love.” The song was the opening track on the band’s smash debut album Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton. The album featured Eric Clapton on guitar, John Mayall on lead vocals and keyboards, John McVie on bass and Hughie Flint on the drums. The album’s great sound was credited to Gus Dudgeon as the album’s engineer. Gus Dudgeon would go on to become the legendary producer behind all the great Elton John albums of the 1970’s.
Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton is one of the most important records of the classic rock era . The record’s take on the blues inspired thousands of musicians over the course of the next few decades. It remains one of the greatest rock albums of all time.