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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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Showing posts with label Endless Blues records. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Endless Blues records. Show all posts

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Endless Blues Records artist: Lew Jetton & 61 South - Deja Hoodoo - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Deja Hoodoo, by Lew Jetton & 61 South and it's a solid blues rocker. Opening with Two Lane Road, band leader Lew Jetton's vocals have grit and swagger and his guitar lead is notable. With another solid guitar player in Sam Moore, Dan Bell on keys, guitar and bass, Erik Eicholtz on drums and Greg Walker on bass this band has a strong flavor of Skynyrd without any of the stale after taste of 1980. Waffle House Woman is a clever rag style blues with an easy delivery. With country blues style picking and light percussion, and the addition of Bob Lohr on keys this is surely a crowd favorite. JD Wilkes on harmonica opens Betcha, a romping boogie with a great driving beat. I can just see my pal Stilladog whistling this one and increasing the tempo as he goes with blazing slide guitar and Fred Hoover on keys. Really nice. Swampy, I Been Cheated, has the great feel of a CCR track and Jetton's vocals hard work on guitar really pay off on this, one of my favorites on the release. Move On Yvonne is another great rocker with the addition of some terrific vocals by Miranda Louise. I love the harmonica work of Wilkes on this track and the overall groove is really strong. Sandy Lee digs in deep with the feeling of old school blues. Jetton's vocals, coupled with Wilkes on harmonica, James Sullivan on bass, and some real nice piano riffs by J Solon Smith on piano give this track a feel of authenticity. Easy shuffle, State Line Blues and a cool swinging pace and Jetton's vocals fall right into the groove. With Hoover on keys, Wilkes on harmonica and cool guitar riffs, this is another memorable track. Slow blues, Drinking Again is sure to hit home with a number of listeners with it's warm guitar chords and some of  Jetton's most soulful vocals on the release. Straight forward, melodic guitar lead, a cool bass line by Walker and tight rhythm by Eicholtz make this track another favorite. Wrapping the release is rocking boogie, Will I Go To Hell, with a simple bass line and drums. Jetton leads the drive on vocal and rhythm guitar and Wilkes adds tension on harmonica. This is a strong endless boogie in the flavor of John Lee Hooker and a great closer for a very enjoyable release. 


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Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Endless Blues Records artist: Mick Kolassa - Uncle Mick's Christmas Album - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Uncle Mick's Christmas Album, by Mick Kolassa, and it's quite entertaining. Opening with Mariah Carey's, All I Want For Christmas, and I think its a real solid cover. Never been crazy about pop music and Kolassa's slow bluesy approach with Jeff Jensen on lead guitar, Bill Ruffino on bass, Rick Steff on keys and James Cunningham on drums gives this track a new, fresher life. Original track, The Best Christmas Ever, is up next with a funky R&B approach. Kolassa on lead vocal and with warm backing vocals by Reba Russell and Susan Marshall over cool piano and organ work by Steff set a nice stage and pinched down guitar soloing by Jensen adds spice. Johnny Moore's Merry Christmas Baby really gives Jensen a chance to show some real nice riffs both bluesy and jazzy making it one of my favorites on the release. Tom tom laden rhythm gives Jingle Bells and whole new face. Get far enough from the music that you can't hear the words and I defy you to determine that it's Jingle Bells. This swampy, Dr Joh like approach is really cool and again, Jensen's guitar work adds real shine to the apple. Very nice. Wrapping the release is a Jensen/Kolassa original, Beale Street Christmas Jam, a hot shuffle ala Gatemouth Brown style. Jensen always has great riffs, and here he's complimented by Marc Franklin on trumpet (solo), Cunningham on drums (solo), Ruffino on bass (solo), Eric Hughes on harmonica (solo). This track will get your foot tapping. Excellent closer. 


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Monday, August 9, 2021

Endless Blues Records artist: Mick Kolassa - Wasted Youth - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Wasted Youth, from Mick Kolassa, and it's chocked full of hot contemporary blues players doing what they do best. Opening with blues rocker, Throwing Away These Blues, Kolassa on vocal and guitar leads the way with James Cunningham on drums, Tullie Brae on backing vocal, Rick Steff on piano, Jeff Jensen on guitar, Bill Ruffino on bass and Marc Franklin on trumpet. Solid opener. Title track, Wasted Youth, has a thunder bass line by Ruffino and with Doug McMinn on drums, Brad Webb lays in some real nice slide work and Eric Hughes adds some real nice harmonica. Funky rocker, I Can't Get Enough gives Anthony Paule a nice chance to show his stuff and Kirk Smothers blows a real nice sax solo topping the track off. Victor Wainwright plays a real clean piano on Feeling Sorry For Myself, a cool blues track with just the right amount of sway. Brandon Santini adds his superlative harmonica tone to My Mind Doesn't Wander, an easy blues rocker. Slow blues, Pieces of my Past has a real nice pace and Jensen plays a soulful lead solo on guitar over his rich chords. Very nice. Wrapping the release is Edge of a Razor, an acoustic blues featuring  Albert Castiglia on slide guitar. Very nice closer. 


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Thursday, May 20, 2021

Endless Blues Records artist: Chris Gill - Between Midnight and Louise - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Between Midnight and Louise, from Chris Gill and it's a cool folk blues release. Opening with Thank You For Another Day, Chris Gill slips right into the pocket with this nicely finger picked country blues instrumental. With thoughts of Honey Boy Edwards and Hubert Sumlin, delta style blues, Song For Honeyboy has great bones with Gill showing his absolute knowledge of delta style guitar playing. Very cool. Another beefy, delta style track is Fleas and Ticks showing really nice acoustic blues guitar riffs and a solid melody/vocal combo.  With a solid grip on a baritone  guitar, Gill really makes his slide talk. Fat tones and slide belong together. Magic. Wrapping the release is title track, Between Midnight and Louise. This track has a more contemporary ballad feel with a quiet melody played through a 31 National Duolian. It's metal body rings nicely throughout the lush melody. Cool closer. 


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Friday, April 30, 2021

Endless Blues Records artist: Dexter Allen - Keep Moving On - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Keep Moving On, from Dexter Allen and it's a solid mix of soul, R&B and blues. Opening with title track, Keep Moving On, Dexter Allen sets up a high stepper on lead vocal and guitar, backed by Christopher Minter on drums and Joey Robinson on keys. Solid opener. Shuffle Blues Eyed Girl has a a cool swing and fluid lead guitar under Allen's vocal. One of my favorite tracks on the release is slow blues track, F.A.B.U.L.I.S.T. Woman with it's BB King like call and response style guitar riffs and some of Allen's best vocal on the release. Lightly funky, If I Ain't Got You is a real cool track giving you a strong urge to get up and move. Very cool. Soul track, Can't Live Without You, is another of my favorites on the release with gospel like bones and great vocals by Allen. Wrapping the release is R&B influenced blues track, My Cup Of Tea, with a rolling beat and strong vocal lead by Allen. 


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Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Endless Blues Records artist: Mick Kolassa - If You Can't Be Good, Be Good At It! - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, If You Can't Be Good, Be Good At It!, by Mick Kolassa and I think it's his best release yet. Opening with I Can't Help Myself, a R&B style track with a light funky beat featuring Kolassa on lead vocal and acoustic guitar, Jeff Jensen on electric guitar, Bill Ruffino on bass, John Blackmon on drums, Rick Steff on keys, Marc Franklin on trumpet, and Kirk Smothers on sax, this is a solid opener. With deep gospel richness, James Taylor's Lo and Behold has great guitar underpinnings and super vocal by Yullie Brae. Rocking title track, If You Can't Be good, Be Good At It! is clever and has solid guitar riffs by Jensen, and power horn work by Franklin and Smothers. My favorite track on the release, A Good Day For the Blues, features nice guitar work by David Dunavent and Jensen and some of Kolassa's best vocal work on the release. Smooth blues ballad, Slow and Easy Love gives Jensen a wide road to really lay down on lead guitar and he capitalizes nicely over the warm organ bed of Rick Steff. Howlin' Wolf's Who's Been Talking? has a super Latin (read Santana) rhythm and features Dunavent and Jensen again on guitar with super backing by Willie Hall on drums and Weston Caldwell on percussion. Very nice! Wrapping the release is acoustic ballad, She Kept Her Head Up with it's easy rhythm and cool melody over reverb saturated guitar lead and tight drum rhythms by John Blackmon. 


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Monday, July 20, 2020

Endless Blues Records artist: Eric Hughes Band - Postcard from Beale Street - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Postcard from Beale Street, by Eric Hughes Band and it contains a variety of music styles and turns. Opening with shuffle, Ain't Whipped Yet, Hughes is upfront on lead vocal and sweaty slide with Walter Hughes on backing guitar and vocal, Leo Goff on bass, and Brian Aylor on drums. Great guitar tones by Eric give this track a great spice. Oh, Booze! has a terrific, early Beale feel with solid vocals by Eric, with trumpet by Marc Franklin, Kirk Smothers on sax and Mick Kolassa on tussolin, spoons and backing exclamations. Ballad, Homesick Angel is the definite radio track on the release with a strong melody, solid backing vocals and tight accompaniment. Straight up acoustic blues ballad, Blackberry Patch has Eric on lead vocal and slide resonator over Walter on guitar. Simple and solid. Blues rocker, Waiting For That Day has a super boogie (woogie) feel with a great bass line by Goff, organ by Steff and harmonica by Eric. Possibly my favorite track on the release. Wrapping the release is It's 4:20 Somewhere, a bouncy track with a nice mixture of harmonica, guitar and slide with an almost Klezmer sound. Cool closer for an interesting release. 

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Thursday, February 20, 2020

Endless Blues Records artist: Kern Pratt - Greenville, MS ... what about you? - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Greenville, MS … What about you?, from Kern Pratt and it's a straight up blues rocker. Opening with Loving That Feeling, Kern Pratt is digging into that southern funky blues pot with a great New Orleans rhythm. leading the way on vocal and guitar, this track is moving with Chris Gill on slide, Bobby Walker on rhythm guitar and drums and Bob Dowell on bass and keys. Cool opener.  Slow blues track, Baby's Got Another Lover is a real nice track with Pratt singing lead and responding with smart guitar riffs of his own. With the addition of Shannon Goree on drums, this is one of my favorites on the release. In the vain of Jimmie Oden, Something's Gone Wrong has a really nice bottom courtesy of Dowdell and Pratt again gets a nice chance to stretch on guitar and Kris Jenson lays out a real nice sax solo. Bluesy ballad, Rita not only has nice instrumentation but a perfect radio melody. Sharing lead vocal spot with Denice Owen and backed by Marc Franklin on trumpet and James Evans on sax, this is a smooth track. Wrapping the release is funky, Chicken Heads, with Jeff Jensen on guitar, Bill Ruffino on bass and David Green on drums. This track has just the right raggedy edge funk and cool guitar interface between Pratt and Jenson that makes it one of my release favorites. 

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Friday, October 11, 2019

Endless Blues Records artist: Tennessee Redemption - self titled - New Release review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent self titled release Tennessee Redemption and its strongly written and performed. Opening with Glad To Be, a solid radio track, Brandon Santini is up front on  harmonica, backed by Jeff Jensen on lead vocal and guitar, Timo Arthur on guitar, Bill Ruffino on bass and David Green on drums. With it's rumbling bass line and funky wah wah guitar rhythm, We Got A Thing Going On has a real cool sound. A swampy overall sound and nicely woven instruments, under Santini's super lead vocals makes this one of my favorites on the release. A dark underpinning on Leave My Body and Jensen's nice lead vocals create a lot of tension with an active bass line, particularly nice drum work by Green and nicely crafted guitar lead. This isn't your basic blues track and really has a lot going no. Definite cool track. Gospel flavored Come On Up To The House has a real nice laid back country feel with soothing lead vocal by Jensen and warm vocal backing by Santini, Arthur Ruffino and Green. Very nice. Jensen takes control on You Don't Love Me giving it a strong guitar entry. His vocals are always warm and Santini's harp tones solid. With just a light funk underneath, this track is sneaky good. Blues stomper, Watch Yourself, features Jensen driving on guitar and Santini on vocal and harp. Keeping you focused with it's driving beat, this is one of my favorites on the release. Wrapping the release is I'm Going To Mexico with a light acoustic feel. Pairing Jensen and Santini on lead vocal with acoustic guitar and harmonica backing, this is a solid closer. 

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Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Endless Blues Records artist: Tullie Brae - Revelation - New Release review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Revelation, from Tullie Brae who mixes power vocals and a heavy rhythm section producing a solid rock sound. Opening with Price of the Blues, Brae belts with a  Grace Slick like swagger laying heavy on the bass line of Bill Ruffino, and adding her own slide work on with David Green on drums. Powerful opener. On ballad Mississippi Rain, we see the other side of Brae's sensitive vocals with excellent guitar phrasing by Jeff Jensen and bright piano highlights by Rick Steff. On blues rocker, Break These Chains, Brae strikes a nice medium with a bluesy vocals, deep raspy guitars by Jensen and nicely highlighted by Brandon Santini on harmonica. My favorite track on the release is soul track, New Shoes with it's straightforward radio melody. Smooth, gospel like piano work over the organ on this track really drives the bottom and Brae's vocals are spot on. My other favorite track on the release is Shine, another soul track with excellent backing pushing Brae to "Shine". Backing vocals by Mick Kolassa,  Dauniele Hill and Susan Marshall give this track that extra warmth and a sweet guitar solo by Jensen gives it a real Muscle Shoals kind of feel. Very nice.



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Thursday, January 10, 2019

Endless Blues Records artists: In Layman Terms - Strong Roots - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Strong Roots, from In Layman Terms, and it's funky, soulful, rocking blues. Opening with title track, Strong Roots, Cole (guitar and vocal) and Logan Layman (bass and vocal) lead this funky track with Hamed Barbarji on trumpet and Nick Davidson on drums. It really has a super feel and show some of Logan's best vocals on the release. I'm Somebody, with a happy go lucky sense and just a twist of country, Cole really lays into his cigar box guitar and Davidson's percussion is zany and tight. One of my favorite tracks on the release is straight up slow blues, Ain't Gonna Fake It No More, with T-Bone Walker like chords, supple vocals by Logan and laid back trumpet work by Barbarji and firm blues guitar riffs by Cole. Very nice. With it's walking bass line, Notice Me, really struts with solid vocals, swinging trumpet solo and crisp guitar work.  Wrapping the release is Way Too Far a rocking blues number with warm guitar rhythm, wah wah and trumpet accents under Logan's cool vocals. 

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Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Endless Blues Records artist: Mick Kolassa and the Taylor Made Blues Band - 149 Delta Ave. - New release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, 149 Delta Ave, from Mick Kolassa and the Taylor Made Blues Band and the talent is thick. Opening with I Can't Slow Down, a 2 steppin rocker, Mick Kolassa on lead vocal is backed by David Dunavent on guitars, Leo Goff on bass, Lee Andrew Williams on drums, Chris Stephenson on keys and Susan Marshall and Daunielle Hill on backing vocal this is a cool opener. Eric Hughes joins on US 12 to Highway 49, a smart shuffle with solid harp work. Cotton Road is one of my favorites on the release with roots in chain gang work songs. Toronzo Cannon adds some really smart guitar lead and wailing backing vocals make this track rich with feel. Pullin Me Down has a creeping R&B blues style with solid bass work from Goff, crisp guitar soloing by Jeff Jensen and includes tight trumpet and sax work by  Marc Franklin and Kirk Smothers. Very nice. A funky version of Ashford and Simpson's I Don't Need No Doctor has a real nice groove and the trumpet work of Franklin is bright. Alternating solos by Franklin, Smothers, Jensen and Stephensen really fill out the track. Wrapping the release is an interesting remake of classic Stuff Smith track, the Viper. Kolassa's vocals work well and with Suavo Jones on trombone, Alice Hansen on Stuff Smith's part (violin), Mike Wilson on Puccalo, and Marc Franklin on trumpet, this is a terrific closer.



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