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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, May 12, 2016

Ruf Records artist: Tasha Taylor - Honey For The Biscuit - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Honey For The Biscuit, from Tasha Taylor and it has a super groove. Daughter of Stax giant, Johnnie Taylor, Tasha has some big shoes to fill and this release shows that she's not following on anyone's coattails. Opening with Feel So Good, Tasha Taylor sets the pace with a a super R&B number featuring Taylor on really nicely phrased vocals, guitar and keys, backed by Nathan Watts on bass, Don Wyatt on Wurlitzer and piano, John Notto and Jon Taylor on guitars and tight horn phrasing by Jamelle Williams, Matthew Demerrit & Lamar Buillary on horns. Wedding Bells is a soulful track with some of my favorite vocals on the release. Painterly instrumental arrangements nicely frame the featured vocals of Taylor. Excellent! Family Tree has a much more laid back R&B feel and features nicely phrased guitar work by Keb Mo. Tom Hambridge penned Weatherman, has a cool funky bottom with a real nice drum beat and again, really nicely orchestrated instrumental backing. Wyatt takes a real nice electric piano solo on this track and brassy horns give the track that extra spark. Soul track, One And Only has a super soul feel and Taylor delivers big time. Vocal harmonies and glistening piano work make this another of my favorites on the release. Little Miss Suzie has a revival sound (hand claps and all) with rich organ work and hot lap steel addition by Robert Randolph. I Knew, another sumptuous soul track, just has a special groove. Horns carefully caress Taylor's vocal delivery making this another of my favorites on the release. Another contribution by Hambridge, How Long, has a country rock flavor with a distinct 2 step feel. Laid back R&B feel on That Man should easily make considerable radio play. Catchy melody, warm, easy rhythm and nicely intertwined vocals make this a pop standout. Funky R&B track, Leave That Dog Alone, features the guitar fire of Samantha Fish. Taylor's vocals are always front and center, but Fish's contributions are hot and sweaty. Places I Miss has a light, jazzy sense and Taylor continues to show her versatility. With breezy, coastal like delivery and crisp guitar highlights this track sails. Don't Rush Off continues in that soft and easy feel with extremely nicely done drum work, supporting Taylor's solid vocals. Wrapping the release is Same Old Thing with an almost Al Green feel. Old school R&B with great horn punctuation and Tommy Castro joining on vocal makes this a perfect choice to conclude a very strong outing by Taylor.

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