blues Archive

Full-on Fun: Guitarist Martin Barre’s Post-Jethro Tull World

Ask most people who the leader of Jethro Tull was, and they say, “Why, Mr. Tull, of course!” No, that’s Ian Anderson you’re thinking of. But the mainstay of that group alongside the flutist/singer was ace guitarist Martin Barre. On all but the first of the band’s twenty-plus albums, it’s Barre’s fretwork that you’ll hear.

DVD Review: Taste — What’s Going On: Live at the Isle of Wight

It happens quite rarely: I discover an album or video by a rock artist active decades ago, one who is totally unknown to me. And it’s happened now. Taste was an Irish power trio, fronted by young guitarist Rory Gallagher. Though the group wasn’t together long – in fact their recording career lasted barely two

November 100-word Reviews, Part 3

Today as my regular series of hundred-word reviews continues, I turn my attention toward the sounds of Americana. For my purposes, the term is even more loosey-goosey than the one used by the Americana Music Association: I include blues, rock, and singer/songwriter styles. And why not? Various – In their Own Words, Vols. 1 and

Album Mini-review: Buddy Guy — Born to Play Guitar

File Next to: (early) Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix No one can argue with any amount of credibility that Buddy Guy hasn’t paid his dues. Now 79 years old, the prime exemplar of Chicago electric blues can make any sort of album he cares to make. And it’s worth pointing out that bluesmen

Hundred-word Reviews for September (sic), Part 1 of 8

Time to clear the backlog of discs – worthy ones all – cluttering my office. Beginning today, and occasionally interrupted by other content, here’s a solid two weeks of hundred-word reviews. Terell Stafford – BrotherLee Love Lee Morgan was a hard bop trumpeter who recorded between the mid 1950s and 1971, mostly for the Blue

Album Review: Muddy Waters 100

I’m on record stating my belief that the majority of tribute albums are generally a waste of nearly everyone’s time. Often, the tribute version of the tributee’s songs are too reverent by half, adding nothing to the original. Or, in other cases, the artists go too far, applying their own trademark “sound” for better or

Shuggie Otis: The Music Keeps Calling Him Back (Part 4)

Continued from Part Three… Bill Kopp: A lot of highly-regarded musicians have named you as an inspiration. David Byrne was instrumental in the first [2001] CD reissue of Inspiration Information. Lenny Kravitz has said great things about your music. And I hear your influence in some of Prince‘s music. Those are just two examples. What

Shuggie Otis: The Music Keeps Calling Him Back (Part 3)

Continued from Part Two… Shuggie Otis: But the songs kept calling me back. A song would be really good, and I’d think about it, and realize that I have to face whatever it is that’s bothering me about this song. It might be something personal. It’s not not necessarily that the song has anything to

Shuggie Otis: The Music Keeps Calling him Back (Part 2)

Continued from Part One… Bill Kopp: You sent demo tapes to many labels, but nothing happened for years, until the reissue of Inspiration Information with the added Wings of Love material. That you finally got the notice you deserve seems to be more than luck. Why do you think you’re getting noticed now after being

Shuggie Otis: The Music Keeps Calling Him Back (Part 1)

“I look back now,” says Shuggie Otis, “and I think, ‘Wow. I must have a lot of patience!’” The multi-instrumentalist is reflecting on the curious arc of his career so far: his fame began in earnest when he was a young teen, continued into his early twenties, and ended abruptly after the relative commercial failure