Friday, April 7, 2017

Provogue Records artist: Ronnie Baker Brooks - Times Have Changed - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Times Have Changed, by Ronnie Baker Brooks and it's terrific! Opening with Joe Tex number, Show Me, Ronnie Baker Brooks (on vocal and guitar) is kicking ass and taking names right out of the chute featuring Steve Cropper on guitar, Steve Jordan on drums, Willie Weeks on bass, Felix Cavaliere on Hammond, Ben Cauley on trumpet, Lonniie McMillan on tenor sax and Jack Hale Sr on trombone. Big Head Todd sits in on Doing Too Much, a cool blue rocker with Leroy Hodges on bass, Charles Hodges on Hammond and Turner on piano. Recently passed and sorely missed, Lonine Brooks, sits in on Twine Time, a cool, sixties style surf rocker. Rapper, Al Kapone  sits in on traditional blues style track, Times Have Changed, with Weeks setting a great bass line and Brooks' solid vocals and guitar riffs. The addition of Jessie Munson and Wen-Yih Yu on violin, Beth Luscome and Jennifer Puckett on viola, and Mark Wallace and Jonathan Kirkscey on cello add a refined note to the short Kapone rap. Curtis Mayfield's Give me Your Love, a cool jazz infused soul track featuring Angie Stone on vocal has a true Mayfield smoothness. Robert Cray track, Old Love has great style and featuring Bobby Blue Bland on vocal and his own stylistic guitar work makes this a true favorite. On high stepper, Wham Bam Thank You Sam, Brooks really struts with cool vocals, great guitar accents, a solid bass line from Hodges and super R&B style horns. Very cool. Closing the release is When I Was We, featuring Hubby Turner on piano supporting Brooks' warm vocals.

Very nice conclusion to an exceptional release.

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