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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!


Please email me at Info@Bmansbluesreport.com
Showing posts with label Don Heffington. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Don Heffington. Show all posts

Monday, June 14, 2021

True North Records release: A Sweet Relief Tribute to Joey Spampinato - New Release Review

 


I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release (June 25, 2021), A Sweet Relief Tribute to Joey Spampinato, NRBQ founding member and writer of all of the tracks on thie release. Opening with blues rocker,You Can't Hide, by Al Anderson on lead vocal and guitar, with Carl Minor on acoustic guitar, David Dorn on keys, Steve Mackey on bass, and Evan Hutchings on drums. Energetic opener. Los Lobos contributes Every Boy and Girl, with David Hildago on guitar, accordion and vocal, Steve Berlin on sax, Vince Hidalgo on bass and David Hildago Jr on drums. Pop tune, How Can I Make You Love Me, is performed by She and Him with Zooey Deschanel on vocal and M. Ward on guitar and keys. The Minus 5 brings us Don't She Look Good in a slightly punky rockabilly style. Scott McCaughey on guitar, piano, organ, percussion and vocal with Mike Mills on bass, Peter Buck on guitar, and Joe Adragna on drums and with a really cool guitar solo by Dave Depper. I really like Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale's work on How Will I Know. Simple guitar and drum accompaniment under nicely blended the vocal duet is the ticket. Bonnie Raitt's take on Green Lights is electrifying with Scott Ligon on guitar, Terry Adams on clavinet, Casey McMcDonough on bass, John Perrin on drums and wild slide work and lead vocal by Raitt. Excellent! Robbie Fulks does a stright up country work on Chores keeping it fun with Val McCallum on guitar and backing vocal, Davey Faragher on bass and backing vocal and Pete Thomas on drums in support of Fulks on guitar and lead vocal. Very cool. The Nils set out a real straight rocker with edge in That's Alright with Carlos Soria on bass and vocal, Mark Donato on guitar and vocal, Phil Psarakos on guitar, Emilien Catalano on drums, Peter Work on harmonica and featuring Chris Spedding on lead guitar a cool ass kicker. Wrapping the release is Kami Lyle with Joey Spampinato on First Crush. This track is quite cool with a simple Brazilian feel. Kami's vocals backed by her own piano and trumpet, and Joey Spampinato on guitar, bass and vocal is an excellent closer for this ecclectic release.


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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Live On - Solomon King - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Live On, by Solomon King and it has an interesting flair. This is a soundtrack and companion cd relating to Phil Spector and his demise. The movie is really a bonus to the cd which is the primary part of the package. It reruns a possible scenario at Phil Spector's place with a young wanna be singer working Phil for a break and exploring Spector's lust for younger women and strange sexual fetishes. Let's just say it's visually interesting. The cd opens with a classic Spector tune, Be My Baby, with King on vocal and guitar and our old buddy Don Heffington on drums. It was a great track when it was written and here it is stripped down to it's basics. Next up is Shakedown, a dance track featuring mostly programmed music and King on vocals. Not bad. Baby Does Me Good has a real Bo Diddley sound with a real muffled distorted guitar sound and Heffington again on drums. Real cool track. Trouble has a period sound and is primarily King on vocals and Heffington on drums. This track is mostly atmospheric and sound a bit like Lou Reed in his moodiness. Don't You Love Me No More? is a loose blues along the lines of dust my broom. King uses a simple guitar and vocal style and Heffington is a pro just keeping things tight and in line. This track does have a cool whacked out blues solo on it that I liked. My Father's Watch is a cool track and is a pretty strong composition maybe reminiscent of Leonard Cohen. Looking For You is a fuller band production brushiing rock with horns and keys. Make You Mine is a cool boogie track again, just King and Heffington. Keeping it really stripped down and loose this is the best track on the release. Suicide is a full blown rocker with slide guitar and vocal distortion. Hotter guitar riffs are let out on this track and could blow your hair back in the right situation. Under The Sun is a slower blues boogie with strong bass support from Reggie McBride, harp by Jimmy Powers and drums by Ollie Brown. The release is wrapped by Medicine, a slow blues ballad again only Heffington and King. This is a cool track keeping it solemn and quiet. Very effective for the ending of the release.
http://www.solomonkingmusic.com

  If you support live Blues acts, up and coming Blues talents and want to learn more about Blues news and Fathers of the Blues, Like ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorites band! ”LIKE”

Live On - Solomon King - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Live On, by Solomon King and it has an interesting flair. This is a soundtrack and companion cd relating to Phil Spector and his demise. The movie is really a bonus to the cd which is the primary part of the package. Let's just say it's visually interesting. The cd opens with a classic Spector tune, Be My Baby, with King on vocal and guitar and our old buddy Don Heffington on drums. It was a great track when it was written and here it is stripped down to it's basics. Next up is Shakedown, a dance track featuring mostly programmed music and King on vocals. Not bad. Baby Does Me Good has a real Bo Diddley sound with a real muffled distorted guitar sound and Heffington again on drums. Real cool track. Trouble has a period sound and is primarily King on vocals and Heffington on drums. This track is mostly atmospheric and sound a bit like Lou Reed in his moodiness. Don't You Love Me No More? is a loose blues along the lines of dust my broom. King uses a simple guitar and vocal style and Heffington is a pro just keeping things tight and in line. This track does have a cool whacked out blues solo on it that I liked. My Father's Watch is a cool track and is a pretty strong composition maybe reminiscent of Leonard Cohen. Looking For You is a fuller band production brushiing rock with horns and keys. Make You Mine is a cool boogie track again, just King and Heffington. Keeping it really stripped down and loose this is the best track on the release. Suicide is a full blown rocker with slide guitar and vocal distortion. Hotter guitar riffs are let out on this track and could blow your hair back in the right situation. Under The Sun is a slower blues boogie with strong bass support from Reggie McBride, harp by Jimmy Powers and drums by Ollie Brown. The release is wrapped by Medicine, a slow blues ballad again only Heffington and King. This is a cool track keeping it solemn and quiet. Very effective for the ending of the release.

  If you support live Blues acts, up and coming Blues talents and want to learn more about Blues news and Fathers of the Blues, Like ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorites band! ”LIKE”

 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Gasoline and Matches - Buddy Miller, Don Heffington, Don Was, Jim Lauderdale, Greg Leisz

Steven P. "Buddy" Miller (born September 6, 1952 in Fairborn, Ohio) is a country singer, songwriter, musician, recording artist and producer, currently living in Nashville, Tennessee. Miller is married to and has recorded with singer-songwriter Julie Miller. Miller formed the Buddy Miller Band, which included singer-songwriter Shawn Colvin on vocals and guitar. In addition to releasing several solo albums over the years, Miller has toured as lead guitarist and backing vocalist for Emmylou Harris's Spyboy band, Steve Earle on his El Corazon tour, Shawn Colvin, and Linda Ronstadt. He co-produced and performed on Jimmie Dale Gilmore's 2000 album Endless Night. He has also appeared on several albums by songwriter and singer Lucinda Williams. In 2004, Miller toured with Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin, Gillian Welch, and David Rawlings as the Sweet Harmony Traveling Revue. At the 4th Annual Americana Music Association Honors & Awards, the Ryman Auditorium September 2005, Miller received the Album of the Year Award for Universal United House of Prayer, and the opening cut of that album, "Worry Too Much" (penned by Mark Heard, and originally released on his Second Hand album), won the Song of the Year Award. Buddy Miller has also produced albums for a number of artists. During 2006 Solomon Burke came over to Miller's house at Nashville to record his country album 'Nashville' on which Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin, Gillian Welch and Dolly Parton appear as duet partners. He has a signature acoustic guitar made by the Fender company, and frequently uses vintage Wandre electric guitars. Buddy Miller toured as part of the band on Robert Plant and Alison Krauss's Raising Sand tour of the USA and Europe, and with Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin and Shawn Colvin on the Three Girls and Their Buddy tour. While on tour, Miller suffered a heart attack in Baltimore on February 19, 2009 following his performance as part of the MammoJam Music Festival and underwent triple bypass surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital on 20 February. At the annual Americana Music Association Honors and Awards program at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee on September 18, 2008, Miller received the "AMA Instrumentalist Of The Year" award, which was presented to him by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. Miller was joined by Plant on a performance of a new song "Whatcha Gonna Do, Leroy" from his album Written in Chalk which was released in March 2009. He also was part of the band for John Fogerty's The Blue Ridge Rangers Rides Again in 2009. In 2010, Miller again joined Robert Plant and Patty Griffin with Robert Plant's Band of Joy, touring both the US and Europe. Miller produced Patty Griffin's Downtown Church which was released in 2010 and won a Gram If you support live Blues acts, up and coming Blues talents and want to learn more about Blues news and Fathers of the Blues, ”LIKE” ---Bman’s Blues Report--- Facebook Page! I’m looking for great talent and trying to grow the audience for your favorite band!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Bman's Exclusive Interview with Howard Bernstein - Album Cover and Poster Designer


Bman: How did you get hooked up with ESP Disk?

Howie: In 1966 I was living in a tenement building on Broome Street on the Lower East Side. Living in the apartment above me was Michael Solden, a friend of Jordan Matthews, who was the art director for ESP Disk. Jordan was looking for an artist to do the first album covers for ESP Disk. I worked at a drawing board in his apartment almost non-stop for two years. I had total freedom to create the artwork and was never given any input.

The poster shown here was designed by Bernstein and is available through Wolfgang's Vault (Bill Graham)

Bman: Looks like you did quite a few covers while you were there. How long was your affiliation with ESP Disk and who else were you working with?

Howie: Approximately three years. During that time I built a portfolio.

Bman: I have a number of the early ESP Disk covers that you designed available for viewing here. I understand that you actually did these by hand?

Howie: Yes, the first 200 album covers were hand silk screened by Jordan Matthews and me.



Bman: I understand that a few of these covers have other relevance other than just the art and the immediate music.

Howie: Yes, curiously enough. The Willow cover is Debbie Harry's first lp and Jean Erdman (who I did one of covers for) was married to Joseph Campbell.

Bman: Joseph Campbell.... That's wild!
I found quite a few of your early posters on the internet. I have a few compiled here:



Bman: I also saw a newspaper article about your meeting with Salvadore Dali. Tell us about that.

Howie: Dali was my art hero during my teenage years. While I was living in NYC, a friend of mine, Jacqueline Battle, telephoned Dali at the St. Regis Hotel, and using her command of French and Spanish, managed to arrange an audience for us to meet Dali in the hotel’s King Cole Bar. Before the meeting with him I bought the Dali book, which he signed for me. Dali was more interested in examining and discussing our sketchbooks rather than talking about himself.

Bman: I also read that you did some book covers. One that comes to mind is the outrageous cover for Roger Zelazny’s book “Lord of Light.” Were there others?

Howie: Yes. I did numerous book cover illustrations that were published by Random House, Doubleday, Alfred Knopf, Ballantine Books, Herald Tribune, Village Voice, Evergreen Review, Cashbox and Billboard, including full-page ads for The Who’s “Magic Bus,” and also designed album covers for MGM, Capitol Records, RCA, DECCA, and Verve Folkways.

Bman: Now this was all in NYC. Then you moved to San Francisco?

Howie : Yes. I left New York City in 1969 and headed for San Francisco, but moved to the Napa Valley where I did a series of ten posters for Sausalito-based Tho-Fra (Tom Burke). Went back to New York briefly, then headed north to Canada and traveled across the Trans-Canada Highway, stopping in numerous cites before crossing back into the U.S. in 1970. Moved to Scottsdale, Arizona and lived at the Stable Art Gallery owned by Avis Reed, a legendary art dealer.



Bman: I’ve also seen a bit of work that you have done with a sharpie pen. In fact, I saw Don Heffington on the Tonight Show with drum heads designed by you if I’m not mistaken.

Howie: Yeah, I drew on his drum heads using a big black marker.




Bman: Those are really wild. I came up with this cool photo of Elvis Costello with Hef's drums. I'm sure that they get attention wherever Don Plays!

What really gets me going is your line work. I just love your sketches. You have taken this to a new level. Tell us about “Werner Von Burner.”

Howie: The heart of the subject matter on the wood comes from the night sketchbook with a micro-ball pen. It just flows. I’m very grateful for that.

Bman: I know you have been working for years with the Boys & Girls Club and love the interaction with the kids and young adults. . . . . . . . I remember seeing one of Werner’s pieces called “The Palms” which relates directly to your work with the club. Can you tell us about this exceptional piece?


Howie: This was the only piece that was a direct response to a street “moment” in the hood. I was working at a B&G Club in South Phoenix and witnessed a drug bust at the Palms Motel, home to drug dealers and prostitutes.

Bman: This is a powerful piece. It has the same intensity of your earlier work but your style has matured and obviously you have really honed your skill with burning instruments.

Howie: I had a buddy in San Francisco, Ron Armstrong, a guitar maker (ex Alembic, Stars Guitars), who told me to check out the Leichtung torch. This precision tool shoots out a butane flame that can be adjusted to a fine point, which allows me to shade the work.

Bman: You seem to have gotten it down to a science... just like drawing with a pen! Is there anything else that you’d like to share with your fans?

Howie: At the age of five I was on the kitchen floor pushing my toy truck. Dad came home from his law office, sat down, called me over and pulled out his fountain pen and drew a profile of a man’s head on his yellow pad. I never again played with a truck and Mom kept me supplied with art materials.

Bman: I'm guessing that your mom and dad's support of your interest in the arts is now being given back 10 fold to the community through your involvement with the young people. Thanks a lot for your time Howie.

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