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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, February 9, 2016

The Prodigal Returns - Keith Stone - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, The Prodigal Returns, by Keith Stone and it's a healthy slice of New Orleans. Opening with Prelude (Just A Closer Walk With The) featuring the incomparable Dr John on piano, Tim Stambaugh on sax, Kevin Clark on trumpet, David Phy on Trombone and Cale Pellick on alto sax. This is the unmistakable sound of New Orleans. Better Things To Do is a funk infused rocker with hi steppin horns and tweaking guitars.Featuring Stone on vocal and guitar, David Hyde on bass, Nelson Blanchard on drums and organ, Lacy Blackledge on trumpet and Mike Broussard on sax. First Love digs down for a smooth blues number and Stone rips some really gripping riffs on this one. With Blackledge and Broussard on horns, Hyde's guiding bass riffs and Blanchard's drum and key contributions, this one's hot! Cindi Leigh has a cool bass rhythm and flavorful accordion work from Bruce "Sunpie" Barnes. With some of the best vocals on the release this track also features a super sax solo by Bobby Henderson. Take Me Home has solid pop R&B style with particularly nice bass runs by Hyde, bari sax work by Broussard and backing vocals by Elaine Foster and Nelson Blanchard. On ballad, New Orleans Moonlight, Stone is really featured up front on vocal with solid horn backing. A pure radio track. Time To Move On has that great New Orleans style funk with hot horn punctuation. Henderson steps up again with a killer sax part and Stone rips loose again on guitar stirring the pot. Very nice! Make Me Feel Alright is a rocker with snappy snare work by Blanchard and another hot sax solo from Henderson. Stone's country flavored guitar riffs and backing vocals by Blanchard give it a rockabilly feel. Buster's Place is driven by a great walking bass line by Hyde and perfect balance between Blackledge and Broussard's horn work and nicely stylized guitar soloing by Stone. With it's solid jazzy feel it's possibly my favorite track on the release. Excellent! Title track, The Prodigal Returns, has a cool N.O. funky feel with a bit of O'Jays and with an open floor gives Stone and Henderson great opportunities for excellent explosive solos. Very cool! Wrapping the release is a full track of Just A Closer Walk With Thee featuring Dr John on piano,Stone on guitar and vocal, Hyde on bass, Joe Krown on organ, Doug Belote on drums, Tim Stambaugh on sousaphone, Kevin Clark on trumpet, David Phy on trombone and Cale Pellick on sax and Elaine Foster with spiritual like backing vocals. With New Orleans style blues phrasing, an excellent closer!

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