Spin it On: Denny Laine on Wings’ ‘Back to the Egg’ at 40 (Part Two)

Continued from Part One … I have a bootleg recording which is probably a rough mix of a working version of Back to the Egg, and the version of “Getting Closer” on it has you singing lead. Was that the original plan? I was probably just doing it along with the backing track or something.

Spin it On: Denny Laine on Wings’ ‘Back to the Egg’ at 40 (Part One)

In the very early 1970s, not long after the Beatles had broken up, Paul McCartney decided he wanted to have a band again. With wife Linda, he recruited Denny Laine, a multi-instrumentalist, along with other musicians. It’s sometimes forgotten today, but Laine already had a well-established career long before Wings. He was the original lead

Album Review: Reese Wynans and Friends — Sweet Release

In the liner notes for Sweet Release, producer-guitarist Joe Bonamassa poses a rhetorical question: “How do you make it a Reese record as opposed to an album of guitar players with Reese?” His solution, he explains, is to give the keyboardist the first solo on each song. Whether that approach achieves the goal is up

Album Review: Jack Oblivian & the Dream Killers — Lost Weekend

Among the audiophile set, the term “lo-fi” is cause to run for the hills. Having grown up on a steady diet of 1960s garage rock, I have no such qualms. Hell, I even dig “Green Fuz.” And with that in mind, I welcome Lost Weekend, an LP from Jack Oblivian & the Dream Killers that

Album Review: Phil Alvin – Un “Sung Stories”

With the departure of Dave Alvin in 1986, it looked the Blasters were finished. So it was no surprise that guitarist Phil Alvin took the opportunity to record and release his first solo album, Un “Sung Stories”. But Alvin’s solo debut found him traveling far from the straight-ahead rockabilly sounds of the Blasters. On three

My Conversations with Woodstock Performers

Woodstock took place 50 years ago (August 15-18, 1969). If you find yourself in a Woodstock frame of mind, you might be interested in reading some interviews with artists who were there. Over the last decade-plus, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of talking to a few of them. Here’s a list with links. Richie

Santana Speaks, Part Two

Continued from Part One … Bill Kopp: One of the qualities of your work that has always struck me is the way that you approach each project with what I would call intention. An album like Caravanserai probably didn’t seem like a commercial bid at the time, and it really wasn’t. It was not a

Santana Speaks, Part One

2019 is an important year for Carlos Santana. It’s the 50th anniversary of the Woodstock festival, featuring a breakout performance of his then largely-unknown band, two weeks ahead of the debut Santana LP. This year also marks the 20th anniversary of Supernatural, the end-of-century “comeback album that returned Santana to the top of the charts,

Hundred-word Reviews for August 2019, Part Three (Archival)

Time for a look at ten new albums featuring reissued, compilation and/or archival material. Rock, jazz and beyond. Collect ’em all, kids! Soul Asylum – While You Were Out / Clam Dip & Other Delights Minneapolis’ Soul Asylum labored in relative obscurity for quite awhile before their national breakout. They became a household name with

Hundred Word Reviews for August 2019, Part Two

Ten more reviews. All new music, covered in the space of 100 words each. Jazzmeia Horn – Love & Liberation I love instrumental jazz, but I have to admit that vocal jazz resonates less strongly with me. Thus, you’ll find remarkably few reviews here that cover jazz vocalists. This is well worth an exception; very