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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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Thursday, October 15, 2015

Delta Groove Music artist: Andy Santana & the West Coast Playboys - Watch Your Step - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Watch Your Step, from Andy Santana & the West Coast Playboys and it's a mover! Opening with Fran and West 50's R&B track, Knock Knock,Santana delivers with a full New Orleans swing. Bob Welsh handles piano in fine form, joined by Anthony Paule on guitar, Kid Andersen bass, Robi Bean takes on the drums and Frankie Ramos hits a hot sax solo. Very nice! Bobby Parker's Watch Your Step has a cool Latin rhythm and Santana carries lead vocal and some really tasty lead guitar. Kid Andersen kits the sax on this track adding some key lines and Nate Ginsberg handles the keys. Dave Bartholomew's swing boogie, Playgirl is a really nice track to feature the fine harp work of Santana. He also takes a great lead guitar solo on this track backed by Kid Andersen as well as Mike McCurdy on bass and Robi Bean on drums. Hot track! ZZ Hills R&B track, One Way Love Affair had some real nice dynamics compliments of Eric Spaulding on sax, Jack Sanford on bari and Manny Angel on trumpet. Santana again takes center stage on guitar laying down some really gritty lead riffs backed by Rusty Zinn. Ginsberg is back on B3 and Mike Phillips lays down some real nice bass lines. Hi steppin R&B track, Love Sickness, penned by Bonny Rice features Bob Welsh on lead guitar Lorenzo Farrell on B3, Phillips on bass, and D'Mar on drums but it's the groove that pumps this track. Gill and Jones', up tempo jump boogie track, You May Not Know, features solid vocals by Santana and again he gets a fine opportunity to hit the harp. Welsh on piano and warm vocal backing by Lisa Leu Andersen add a solid middle as Paule hits it hard on lead guitar solo. Rick Estrin track, No Double Talk, has a 60's rock feel with wild guitar effects from Kid Andersen and keys by Welsh. Chuck Willis' super nice slow blues number, Can't You See, features Santana on some of his strongest vocals and Paule steps up on lead guitar. Farrell's B3 work compliments Paule's extremely tasty guitar riffs with B3 warmth, Welsh pulls out some strong piano lines, Phillips riding on bass and June Core keeps the drums low and tight. Phillips really drives rocker, Take Me Back,on bass and Santana shows his guitar flash once again with cool retro guitar riffs. Very cool! Funky Greaseland, is a cool instrumental with Santana, Paule, Mighty Mike Schermer and Welsh each taking turns at lead guitar. Santana even takes an interesting Moog interlude on this one. Phillips plays a pretty plucky bass line and Core holds down the bottom on drums. Very nice! One of my favorite tracks on the release, You Smell Like Cookies, a straight up Chicago style shuffle. Jammin the harp balanced against Welsh on piano and featuring Paule on lead guitar, this track is really sweet! What's Wrong? has some really interesting components over a basic blues rocker including some cool keyboard tones from Farrell and and surf machine gun guitar from Andersen. Wrapping the release is another Dave Bartholomew R&B track, Go On Fool. A country style guitar riff by Andersen and a hot sax solo by Ramos gives it flair and Spaulding, Sanford and Angel on horns and LL Andersen on percussion and shouts give it a bit of a New Orleans finish. Cool closer to a very enjoyable release.

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