blues Archive

John Mayall: “Live in 1967” and Live in 2016

Though he doesn’t actively encourage the label, John Mayall has for many years now been known as “the godfather of the British blues boom.” He’s revered in blues and rock circles both for his impressive body of work and for his prescient ability to hire some of the best musicians for his various bands. Now

Hundred-word Reviews for September 2016, Part 5

My week-long barrage of brief reviews wraps up with these last five. Look for more soon. Professor Longhair – Live in Chicago In 1976, New Orleans legend Professor Longhair played at the University of Chicago Folk Festival. This high-quality recording documents that show, and the acoustic piano is captured wonderfully. The nuances of Longhair’s work

Hundred-word Reviews for September 2016, Part 4

Five more quick ones. All these albums bear further investigation. Wild Man Fischer – An Evening with Wild Man Fischer Conventional wisdom holds that while Gail Zappa was alive, she prevented reissues of many albums originally released on Frank’s Bizarre/Straight labels. Whether that’s true or not, Gail’s gone now and we finally have a legit

The Record Company: Just Call it Rock ‘n’ Roll

On the group’s 2016 debut album Give It Back to You, The Record Company displays its modern-day take on musical forebears like Jimmy Reed, Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. But guitarist-vocalist Chris Vos isn’t comfortable with being labeled a blues band. “Take the Rolling Stones and Yardbirds; they were influenced by blues. But they’re rock

The Edgar (W)interview, Part 2

Continued from Part One … Dan Hartman was also an original member of The Edgar Winter Group; he was with the band 1972-75. Winter says that “Dan was the first person I enlisted for The Edgar Winter Group. It was a huge talent search; I listened to hundreds of demo tapes to choose talented people

The Edgar (W)interview, Part 1

Edgar Winter was one of the most popular rock artists of the 1970s. From his solo debut – 1970’s Entrance – through his first album of the next decade (Standing on Rock, 1981), Winter crafted catchy and intriguing music that folded in the many styles of music that had influenced him. From gritty rhythm and

Hundred-word Reviews for July 2016, Part 5

Today wraps up my week-long collection of new album reviews in concise (read: exactly 100 word) form. Rogue Wave – Delusions of Grand Fur While nothing on Delusions of Grand Fur sounds as if it’s lifted from other artists, I get the nagging feeling that I’ve heard it all before. The songs are melodic and

Hundred-word Reviews for June 2016, Part 1

Here we go with another baker’s two-dozen (okay, 25) capsule reviews. Five a day, all work-week long. Today it’s (more or less) blues. Zuzu Welsh Band – Fault Line Good timin’ meat-and-potatoes blues rock is served up by this Asheville NC-based quintet. Tasty electric slide guitar is the centerpiece on some tracks, and the songs

Album Mini-review: Janiva Magness — Love Wins Again

File next to: Bonnie Raitt, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Shemekia Copeland Though she’s been making albums for decades now, blues vocal powerhouse Janiva Magness was initially an interpreter of other composers’ music. It’s only been in recent years that the seven-time recipient of Contemporary Blues Female Artist award has turned her attention to the task of

Book Review: Rollin’ ‘n’ Tumblin’

I don’t claim to know whether Reverend Keith A. Gordon‘s title is an honorific, or if he’s truly a man of the cloth. But what I do know is that he’s here to spread the good news. And that news takes the form of a new book crammed full of album reviews (with some book