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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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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Wolf Records Artist: Vance Kelly & His Backstreet Blues Band - Tell Me Why - Release Review

Today I'm featuring another fine release that was not sent to me for review but that I feel deserves a good listen. I checked on Amazon and even they don't have a review. Well readers, here's a review of a real cool release that deserves your attention. This is an August 2012 release of Tell Me Why by Vance Kelly. Opening with Twenty Four Hours, a smooth shuffle track, Vance demonstrates in seconds that he is a first rate blues singer. Wall To Wall is a high stepping R&B song along the lines of James Brown (Living In America among others). How can you not like this. Kelly strikes hard with his guitar and with solid bass behind him and brass pushing, this is a super track. Foot Loose & Fancy Free is a solid blues track with gospel influence. This is a super track with Kelly playing smart guitar riffs balanced by organ, horns and harp. Possibly my favorite track on the release, it's certainly one not to be missed. Doing My Own Thing is a strong R&B /soul track which melds into a cool arrangement of the Temptations' I Can't Get Next To You. Members Only is a gospel style blues track having a strong resemblance to Curtis Mayfield's People Get Ready. Kelly does a nice job both vocally and on his six stringer. Drivin Wheel is a very cool blues track with a R&B twist. Vance leads the way with strong vocals but steps up a bit on guitar work and does a real nice job laying it down. There's also a part of the track that calls to mind Leon Russell's version of Youngblood. I know that this isn't specifically a Russell characteristic but it is effective. The title track, Tell Me Why has a really nice slow pace and Kelly opens with a nice intro on guitar. Another of my favorite tracks on the release, Kelly really grabs the essence of the blues and holds it in his hands. A sax solo on this track is right on the money and blends well with Kelly's great soul singing. Kelly rips a fine guitar solo on this one as well. Bad Taste In My Mouth takes the 12 bar route with warm horns carrying the bottom supporting the rich vocals of Kelly. Really hot harp riffs on this track floating on a bed of fine horns and sugar sweet guitar riffs make it another of the releases best. You Steppin Out has a real nice tempo and Kelly continues to show over and again his prowess as a band leader and vocalist. With a swagger all it's own, this is a great blues show tune with horns blazing. Highway Here I Come is a smokin hot slow blues with a smokin hot guitar intro. Kelly delivers some really bluesy vocals on this track and really pumps the track with fluent guitar riffs over great drumming. A fast paced version of Wilson Picket's Mustang Sally gets the groove moving leading up to an explosive version of Hendrix's Hey Joe. Opening with guitar pyrotechnics, Kelly switches gears to a reggae beat and then with strings blazing, lights the towers and burns it down with white hot guitar riffs (and a little China Grove). Excellent! This is one of this sleeper releases that I didn't have direct exposure to. If you missed it, here''s your chance to check it out!

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2 comments:

  1. Did I turn you on to Vance Kelly, Bman? I know I've had this album since late last summer. Might it be one I "recommended" for you? Glad you like it. It is indeed a very good release. I believe it's like a compilation of recordings Kelly has made over some period of years.

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  2. Yeah dog... it was you. Took me a while to get it into print due to the amount of stuff arrives here every day but I thought it was fitting that it the printer.

    thanks pal

    Bman

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