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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!


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Friday, August 7, 2020

FMI Records artist: Dave Fields - Force of Will - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Force of Will, from Dave Fields and it's quite good. Opening with modern boogie, I Love My Baby, multi instrumentalist Fields on vocal and guitar (among other things) is joined by Bill Ferns on harp. A solid melody and rhythm and always tight vocals make this opener a natural radio track. Big Block is a hard driving blues rocker with tight drum beat by Van Romaine and metal influenced blues guitar riffs that will curl your hair. Very cool. Hunger is a bit more of an abstract rocker with a solid foundation and Jeff Beck influenced guitar riffs with Buddy Allen on bass and Lee Jeffryes on drums. Very nice. Straightforward blues ballad, Why Can't You Ever Treat Me Right is really strong with excellent modern blues soloing by Fields and excellent vocals. Joined by Bjorn Hagset on bass and Kare Andersen on drums, this is my favorite blues track on the release. Another solid blues ballad, It's Not Ok with Fields on lead vocal and and soaring guitar lead, demonstrates real crowd appeal while capturing the guitar crowd with low fretboard work and excellent dynamics. Chloe & Otis is a cool funky jazz based number based on a Steely Dan format. You like Becker and Fagen, you'll love this with Vlad Barsky on keys, Buddy Allen on bass, Kenny Soule on drums and Fields working lead vocal, guitar and keys. Very nice. You want wide open guitar work.... Delmar is it. Distortion, divebombs and tapping... excellent! Another track that really gets my attention is Jack Ham Her with an excellent bottom from Boyd and Romaine and just guitar instrumental. Fields could do an entire release of this style work for me and I'd be happy but I love the all out guitar exploration stuff. This is terrific! Wrapping the release is Best I Can, a radio rocker in the Free/Paul Rogers vein, with a solid melody and heavy bottom. Fields on lead vocal and keys over Soule on snappy drumming and tightly knit in guitar work makes this a strong closer. 

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Thursday, August 6, 2020

Echo Decco Recordings artist: Eddie 9Volt - Way Down The Alley - Live at Blind Willies - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Way Down The Alley - Live at Blind Willies, from Eddie 9Volt and it's packed with live, authentic blues. Opening with 36th & Main Eddie continues where he left off on his studio opener with great blues delivery. Joined by Lane Kelly on bass, Colin Dean on drums, Jackson Allen on harmonica and Chad Mason on piano, this is a super opener. On a lumbering, Look Over Yonder Wall, Eddie has a unique vocal style that I like and excellent guitar lead inserts. Mason takes the first extended lead on piano and Allen gets a nice opening as well. On slow blues, Bottle And The Blues, Eddie takes the intro with his beautifully phrased lead work and Mason's piano creates the scene. With very nice call and response with his on vocal and lead guitar, Eddie shows you why he's one of the new hot guns to watch. His soloing is gripping and clean but not over played. Very nice. With a low slung pace, Cod's Song is one of my favorites on the release with a strong piano solo, Eddie 9V on slide and a super solo by Jackson on harp. Very nice. Catfish Blues is another strong entry following Mud's original format and solid instrumental interplay in the band under Eddie's vocal lead. Allen works the crowd with solid blues riffs on his harp fueling Eddie with his Water's styled guitar riffs. Wrapping the release is Got My Mojo Working with excellent pace with the entire band pushing hard. Jackson really works his harp and Eddie smokes the fretboard over the power bottom of Mason, Kelly and Dean. Strong closer for another strong release from Eddie 9V. 

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