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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, September 18, 2017

Alt 45 Records artist: Big Joe Shelton - Ridin' A Chicken - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Ridin' A Chicken, from Big Joe Shelton & The Black Prairie Blues Ambassadors and it's real cool. Opening with Put The Chairs In The Wagon, a driving rocker, Big Joe Shelton is up front on vocal and harp with firm backing by Bob Damm on percussion, Ed Swan on bass and Ben Ferrell laying down some real strong riffs on guitar. Title track, Ridin' A Chicken, has a real Latin flavor and the tight percussion work of Damm is nicely complimented by Bobby Shannon on keys. Shelton shows solid vocals and Swan lays solid footing under the adventurous guitar soloing of Ferrell. Very nice! Got So Hot is a smokin' blues rocker with shifting keys, nice guitar work and strong percussive punctuation. With a walking bass line and a familiar Sonny Boy Williamson form, Just Let Me Breathe has a great feel. Shelton's vocals are solid and rich key work by Shannon is nicely complimented by the flowing guitar riffs and a nice sax solo by Doug Thomas. No Man's Land is a hot rocker with Shelton leading the way on vocals, tight riffs by Ferrell and cool sax by Thomas. Low slung blues number, Pool Hall Red, features some real nice harp work by Shelton and stinging guitar riffs by Ferrell over percussive key work of Shannon. Heavy bottomed, Too Wet To Plow has super blues roots with the rock edge of Led Zep. A great rock groove and powerful harp work, this is one of my favorites on the release. Wrapping the release is country flavored, My Future Lies Behind Me Now with it's ballad sensibilities and subtle pedal steel work of Susan Alcorn Lobato. Very nice.

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