It was only a week ago that Spring in Maine was greeted with a foot of snow. Since then we’ve felt parts of a Northeast earthquake, witnessed the totality of a solar eclipse, and most importantly, experienced two consecutive days of mild temperatures and sunshine. Can Spring now officially be declared here? Damn it, I say yes. And I’m ready. Ready as anybody can be.

Which, as you may recognize, is the opening line to the Blues classic “I’m Ready.” Written by Willie Dixon and first recorded by Muddy Waters in 1954, it was a Billboard R&B chart hit and soon became a Blues standard alongside the likes of ‘Hoochie Coochie Man.’

Here it’s sung by the legendary Steve Winwood in front of the Jools Holland Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, a huge operation with an attending gigantic sound, led by the often peculiarly-mannered Holland, one-time keyboardist for Squeeze and long-time host of the BBC institution Later…with Jools Holland, a show that takes musical eclecticism and idiosyncratic presentation to levels likely found nowhere else in broadcast television.

While presiding over the show, now for over 30 years and running, Holland has also overseen a series of truly grand albums, chiefly including these two big band/guest vocal showcases: Small World, Big Band (2001) – on which this Winwood number appears alongside those of Sting, Dr. JohnMark Knopfler, Joe Strummer, Van Morrison, and George Harrison – and More Friends (2002) – which includes jaw-dropping arrangements and performances by Ray DaviesChrissie Hynde, Dionne Warwick, Norah Jones, Jimmy Cliff, Robert Plant, and Tom Jones. Honestly, I can’t recommend both of them highly enough.

So, if you’re ready, check out Winwood and Holland’s resplendently large interpretation of ‘I’m Ready.’ And hopefully we can safely check off Spring’s arrival while you’re at it.

I’m drinking TNT, I’m smoking dynamite. I hope some screwball starts a fight. I’m ready.

P.S. As I’m finishing this it’s cold, cloudy, and pissing rain. It happens, but perhaps I spoke too soon.