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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, April 2, 2018

Tommy DarDar - Big Daddy Gumbo - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Big Daddy Gumbo, from Tommy DarDar and it's a healthy helping of swampy gumbo music. Very nice to get this release after DarDar's death in July of 2017. Opening with Johnny Lee Schell's It's Good To Be King, with DarDar on vocal and featuring Johnny Lee Schell on some exciting slide, backed by Hutch Hutchinson on bass, Jon Cleary on piano, Mike Finnigan on keys and DarDar on harp. Great opener. Baby I Can Tell has a great Chicago blues feel with solid bass lines and DarDar's vocals and harp up front. This has a great SB Williamson feel. C'mon Second Line really shows off Braunagel's excellent New Orleans drum styling with solid bass lines by Hutch. Very nice. With pure New Orleans R&B style, Jon Cleary's Let's Both Go Back To New Orleans is a nice showcase for DarDar on vocal, anchored by Cleary's piano rhythm and Hutch's bass. Very nice. The absolute radio track on the release is Dangerous Woman with it's Latin fused R&B feel and strong melodic lyrics, strongly supported by Teresa James, Tommy Lee Bradley, Larry Fulcher and Terry Wilson on backing vocals and a smooth harp solo by DarDar. Shake A Leg is a cool countrified blues rocker with bright piano and bouncy rhythm. Schell snaps in with some real nice country style riffs and DarDar's own harp work is super. Wrapping the release is my favorite track on the release, funky title track, Big Daddy Gumbo with it's infectious rhythm, a super sax vamp by Joe Sublett, excellent slide work by Schell. It's rich backing vocals, big bass lines, funky organ and tight drums make it almost impossible to sit still. Excellent closer! 

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