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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Big O Records artist: Greg Nagy - Stranded - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Stranded, from Greg Nagy of Root Doctor fame, and it's fine and soulful. Opening with title track, Stranded, Nagy shows his ability to not only craft a really super soul tune, but to sing on with the best of them. Joined by Scott Veenstra on drums, Jim Alfredson on keys and Joseph Veloz on bass, Nagy shows the warmth of his own voice and articulate Robert Cray like guitar riffs backed by Marcia Allen and Jen Sygit on backing vocals. Excellent! Simple R&B track Walk Out That Door, has a poppier feel with rich organ lead from Alfredson. Bobby Blue Bland's Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City has a soulful strut emphasized by Veenstra's rhythm. I really like Nagy's vocal work on this track in particular, joined again by Allen and Sygit. Soulful wails on his guitar sets this track off as one fine blues song. I Won't Give Up is a simple soulful ballad backed by Heather Jones and Donny Jones vocally. A very nice composition, Alfredson on keys carries the most of the instrumentation with only basic percussion. Run Away With You is a nicely constructed track with a catchy melody. Nagy's vocals blended with Allen and Sygit make for a natural radio track with clean piano and organ instrumentation. Blues rocker, Long Way To Memphis has the feel of Voodoo Chile with a funky lumbering beat. Very interesting. Jim Shanebeuger on bass and Karl Schantz on drums along with Alfredson on electric keys delivers this track into Nagy's hands to be crafter vocally and stylistically on guitar. Very nice! Still Doing Fine has a cool easy funky beat enhanced by Nagy's loose guitar riffs. Alfredson adds some really nice electric piano work on this track giving it a light jazzy feel. Kicked out funk on Been Such A Long Time driven by Veloz and Veenstra hits a nice groove and Nagy steps up with hot guitar riffs. The jagged rhythm further enhanced by the keys and percussion work of Alfredson make a super raft of rhythm to deliver Nagy's vocals. Sometimes is a smooth funky driving jazz rock track with a R&B kick. Sound good? It is. Zach Zunis keeps it simple but hits just the right notes like painting with an eyelash on guitar backing Nagy's vocals rounded out with Billy Preston like riffs from Alfredson. Wrapping the release is Kevin McKendree's Welcome Home, a simple ballad. Nagy lays in smooth guitar riffs and Alfredson on keys warms the track with organ and backing vocals. This is a warm soul style release with solid writing and performance.

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