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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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Monday, February 10, 2020

Popa Chubby - It's A Mighty Hard Road - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, It's A Mighty Hard Road, from Popa Chubby and I hear a real maturing off styles with Chubby that I haven't heard before. Opening with, The Flavor Is In The Fat, a meaty shuffle with certain radio and crowd appeal. Backed by Dave Keyes on piano and organ, Steve Holley on drums, Brett Bass on bass and with a memorable melody and a singable chorus, Chubby is off to a great start. Two stepper title track, It's a Mighty Hard Road, is a blend of rock and blues and could also be a strong radio track. With it's simple melodic format and solid melody and a gritty guitar solo, this song hits home. R&B track, The Best Is Yet To Come is one of my favorites on the release with warm vocals and harmonies. Reinforcing the melody with a clean guitar solo gives this track even more radio traction. I'm The Beast From The East is a great blues rocker with plenty of swagger and featuring Don Castagno on drums. Anther of my favorites on the release is Gordito with it's light Latin flavored instrumental melody, carried by as delicate a solo guitar hand as you've heard from Chubby. Very nice. Straight up rocker, More Time Making Love, again has the radio formula. A solid melody, firm vocals and a great beat make this a certain crowd pleaser. Boogie rocker, Why You Wanna Bite My Bones has a strong walking bass line and Chubby leads the way on vocals, echoed by stiff guitar lead. On Leon Russell's I'd Rather Be Blind Chubby winds the band up, Leon style, and gets the lays down a solid rocker with a blues overtone. I really like Chubby's vocal work on this track where he just lets it all hang out. Very cool. Wrapping the release is a slightly grittier take on Prince's Kiss. The basic arrangement is true to the original but with a funky bass line, a straight up harmonica line, no falsetto vocals and less twitchiness, the track is a solid rocker to close a solid release. 

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