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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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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Stony Plain Records artists: James Burton, Albert Lee, Amos Garrett & David Wilcox - Guitar Heroes - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Guitar Heroes, from James Burton, Albert Lee, Amos Garrett and David Wilcox and it's quite terrific. Not since Danny Gatton passed have I heard such a tastefully done release of tele rippin guitar riffs in one spot. These tracks were recorded live in a one time special performance at the Vancouver Island MusicFest on July 12, 2013 and is being released on both Cd and 180 gm vinyl. Opening with Big Boy Crudup's That's All Right featuring Albert Lee on vocal and each of the featured guitarists soloing. First Albert with his country style picking, then James with his trademark chicken pickin', then David more traditional country styling, Amos who has a distinctive riff styling of his own and then back to Albert all backed by Jon Greathouse on keys, Will MacGregor on bass and Jason Harrison Smith on drums. Great opener! Greathouse takes the mic on Suzie Q and Wilcox is up first with a real nice riff, followed by Burton with a real authoritative solo of his own. Garrett's solo steps out of the box with his solo with a bit more of free approach followed by a nice key solo by Greathouse. Garrett brings forward a really nice interpretation of Johnny and Santo's Sleepwalk. Excellent bending, chording, double stops and feel! On Ray Charles' Leave My Woman Alone, Lee is back on vocal. Lee takes the first solo and it is strong and crisp interwoven with piano work by Greathouse. Lee then leads off a flurry of solos followed by Burton and Wilcox. Hot! On You're The One, Wilcox takes the mic as well as a lead slide riff. Wilcox lets out some of the best vocals on the release and Burton, Lee and Garrett proceed to unload extended guitar solos each nicely complimenting the other on this easily paced blues number. One of my favorite tracks on the release. On Latin influenced instrumental, Comin' Home Baby, Wilcox leads the way with a cool sliding/bending solo followed by Burton, Lee and Garrett. Very very nice track. Wilcox is back at the mic again for blues shuffle, Flip Flop and Fly. He has a real interesting slide sound with a richness almost like a lap steel guitar. Lee is up next with fleet fingered riffs as clean as a whistle. Garrett really captures the swing feel and his guitar tone with echo is tops. Closing it out is Burton with slick riffs of his own. Very nice! Jimmy Seals' instrumental, Only The Young, is a quiet introspective track with lead chords by Burton, an extended key solo by Greathouse and inventive "jazz" solos by Wilcox, Garrett, Lee and Burton. Beautiful execution! Tony Joe White's Polk Salad Annie goes totally instrumental with the first melodic solo by Burton. Garrett has a more aggressive blues rock style solo followed by MacGregor who keeps it tight. Greathouse bridges the guitars with a short key solo and then it's Lee who literally blows the doors off. Wilcox is last on the list but certainly not least with a country blues attack. Two stepper, Bad Apple, features Wilcox on lead vocal with simple kicked back guitar solos by Garrett, Burton, Burton and Wilcox. Wrapping the release is Albert Lee's Country Boy featuring Lee on lead vocals and of course Lee setting the pace with his tasty rapid fire soloing right up front. Wilcox takes the second (third) solo with a real steel like sound that really sets him out. Very nice. Greathouse lays down a real nice finger wrenching piano sol before Albert steps back up to close the track. Excellent!

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