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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 31, 2016

Blues Mountain Records artist: Big Harp George - Wash My Horse In Champagne - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Wash My Horse In Champagne, from Big Harp George and it's a nice dose of  harp. Opening with Home Stretch, George takes the lead on vocal with Little Charlie Baty laying down some real nice guitar along with Kid Andersen on bass and Raja Kawar on drums. Georges vocals are tight and his harp riffs certain and well punctuated. Nice opener. On Road Kill, a bikini beach rocker, George really gets the track swinging and Kid Andersen's guitar work is excellent. Wash My Horse In Champagne is a cool track with stylized Spanish guitar and cool vocal blending with Loralee Christensen, this track sets up nicely for a longer melodic harp lead. Very nice. Swing track, Cool Mistake, has a great beat and George lets his harp do a lot of his talking. With a sweet guitar lead from Baty, this track really hums. Slow blues track, My Bright Future, gives George a really nice opportunity to stretch both vocally and on harp along side the beautiful piano work of Chris Burns. With a nice walking bass line by Andersen, I Ain't The Judge of You, has a real nice boogie beat fostering a super fat sax solo by Michael Peloquin. Burns brings up the heat with his keen organ work and Baty adds his own signature to the guitar line. R&B style blues track, I Wasn't Ready, is one of my favorite tracks on the release with George leading nicely on vocal. Rich sax work from Peloquin, strong lead piano lines by Burns and excellent guitar and harp lines from Baty and George really make this track shine. Excellent! Big band style swinger, If Only, gets a fuller sound with Mike Rinta on trombone and Peloquin on sax. Rolling piano work by Burns really pushes the track and George excels as a lead vocalist with hot solos by Peloquin on sax and Andersen on guitar. Light From Darkness has traces of War (the jazz funk fusion band) with funky wah wah by Andersen and snappy drumming by Kawar. With a natural fit in this style of music of the chromatic harp and a constant interweaving of fluid lines by Andersen and Burns and addition of percussion by J Hansen, this track gives the release even another strong dimension. Mojo Waltz is a really interesting track a jazz oriented feel. George takes the lead on harp on this instrumental with killer solos by Baty on guitar and Rinta on trombone backed by a warm interweaving of horns, bass and drums. Excellent! Big time swinger, Size Matters, is a super opportunity to cut the harp loose and that's exactly what George does. Another of my favorite tracks on the release, This track is a perfect display of just what George can make a 16 hole chromatic harp do. Very cool! Somber blues number, Justice in My Time wraps the track. With clean harp lines and really tight acoustic bass work by Andersen, this is a super track to close a really cool release.

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