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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 Ron Holloway. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ron Holloway. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Moonshine Society - Sweet Thing - New release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Sweet Thing, from Moonshine Society and it's rich in blues. Opening with title track, Sweet Thing, lead singer, Black Betty uses her heavy, Big Mama styling to throw this track around like a rag doll with support from the likes of Jason Ricci with Joe Poppen on guitar, Wes Lanich on keys, Tod Ellsworth on bass and Rodney Dunton on drums. R&B ballad, Come On Home has great depth with the addition of Ron Holloway on tenor sax, Vince McCool on trumpet, Ken Wenzel on Bari sax and Billy Mayfield on backing vocals. Very nice. Funky, Southern Roads is one of my favorites with a super back beat and Ricci back on harp pushing Betty vocally and the excellent drum and guitar combo of Dunton and Poppen. Use Me On Guilded Splinters takes Bill Withers' classic Use Me, reinforces the funky rock bottom and hits it with a really hard dash of guitar, then rolls it all up in gumbo … Dr John style with I Walk On Guilded Splinters. Very cool jam. Etta James' I'd Rather Go Blind is a strong showcase for Betty's vocal lead and features a nice solo by Poppen as well. Wrapping the release is sensitive blues ballad, The One Who Got Away, with well crafted vocals by Betty and cleanly woven guitar lead by Buddy Speir, backed by Eric Scott on bass, Will Rast on keys and Andy Hamburger on drums. Very nice closer for a solid release. 

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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Root Nine Records artist: Revelator Hill with Ron Holloway - Live By The Creek - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Live By The Creek, by Revelator Hill with Ron Holloway and it's a smoking blues rocker. Revelator Hill is back with another super release and this time with Ron Holloway and live! Opening with Bad Luck Goodbye, front man Bobby Thompson sets the pace with fat guitar tones, rocking rhythm and solid vocals. backed by Seth Morrissey on bass and vocal, Wes Lanich on keys and Gary Crockett on drums these guys rock the joint and guest artist Ron Holloway adds some real hot sax. Great opener. Gets Me Over is certainly a crowd pleaser with it's warm melody, Cream like vocal harmonies, ultra solid drums work reminiscent of Ginger Baker and fat sax work by Holloway. Very cool. With it's driving bass line by Morrissey, excellent slide work by Thompson, articulate drums work, a super understated bass line, Look At You Now is another solid entry which of course also includes rich sax work by Holloway. Lightly funky ballad, Consider Me changes the pace up a bit featuring mostly vocals by Thompson and the cool organ work of Lanich. Holloway, always ready on the trigger of course contributes nicely here as well. A cover of Howlin' Wolf's How Many More Years is one of my favorites on the release. I know I have said this before on an earlier review but Thompson's vocals are very similar to Jack Bruce and that's a heavy endorsement from me. His own excellent guitar riffs, chasing his vocals, boiling in the pot with strong organ work by Lanich make this track stand out large. Until We Shine is a formidable track with a wealth of slide guitar work and a driving rhythm. Lanich takes a nice organ interlude and this band presses right at the edge of being a formal jam band (like Govt Mule). Very nice. Wrapping the release is Eric Clapton's Bottle Of Red Wine using mostly his original arrangement. Thompson and Morrissey blend vocals nicely and Lanich's piano work is tops. Holloway adds really nice sax work to top to close out this really enjoyable release. 

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Soul Stew Records artist: Billy Thompson - Friend - New Release Review

I just received the new release, Friend, from Billy Thompson and I think it's really super! Opening with Soldier of Misfortune, a funky rocker, Thompson demonstrates not only a cool singing voice but unique arranging talent and hot guitar riffs. Backed by Chris Dominicion keys, Gene Monroe on bass, Jonathan Greenburg on trumpet, Ian Charlton on sax, Tom Tierney on sax and Eric Selby on drums Thompson really lays out nice guitar riffs making this a really hot track. Garden has a contemporary Latin rhythm and Thompson really shosw a mastery of slide guitar and vocals and is also backed by Mr Bill Payne on keys. Interlude is a deep gripping blues ballad featuring some of the best vocal work that I have heard in weeks. Mike Finnegan adds warm organ to this track and Thompson skillfully adds nice guitar backing to his own vocals like a master trimming his bonsai. A really tasty guitar solo erupts but never out of character of a contained ballad. Masterfully beautiful! Farmer Kenny is a cool swing track with a cool lope on the bottom by Chris Brown. Ron Holloway and Wes Lanich (keys) add a lot of texture to this track but Thompson really knows how to showcase his skills and here they are...kick back and listen. On title track, Friend, Mike Peed (keys) and James East (bass) join Thompson for a somewhat straight forward radio player. Very nice melody and hook. Half A Man is a soulful ballad which really has the stuff that gives a track longevity. Thompson again demonstrates that he really is a vocalist first and an instrumentalist second. His vocals are really terrific. I don't often comment on the credibility of vocalists unless they are superior because I really hear the voice as an instrument. When I hear someone who sings like this, I have to comment. I really like it... and he can rip on guitar too! Happy go lucky with a bop, Many Faces, has that light funk and great horns to push it along. Ron Holloway whips out some key riffs on this track and you need to think to keep your butt from squirming on this one... very hot! Also nice vocal backing from Dani Grays and Xzantiny Grant. With it's Louisiana stomp, Satisfied is driven by Selby's hot drumming and Bill Payne on keys. Undercover slide work adds nice texture to the track but it's really about the beat, the keys and cool vocals. Then I, My Love is another smokey blues ballad. It is so infrequently that I am really attracted to the vocal work of an artist that I have to stop once again and say...this guy is terrific! Mike Finnigan props up the vocals on this track with a bed of organs while Thompson dances lightly on the fretboard under his singing... brilliant. Ain't But One is a full out New Orleans hi speed funky march again featuring Finnigan but with Kenny Gradney on bass. Thompson doesn't hold back on his riffs on this track adding yet another track to the list of really great tracks on this release. On Bill Withers' Ain't No Sunshine, Thompson throws his own spin and Peed adds drama with piano. Bassist Dave Curtis and percussionist Danny Campbell join the mix and Thompson's vocal interpretation sounds fresh. Completing the release is While The World's Winding Down, sounding a lot like Further On Up The Road, is a great blues boogie romp giving Thompson on final chance to rip and rip he does. Finnigan adds really nice organ lines and Gene Monroe is right on with the bass. Selby has maintained the rhythm like a rock throughout the release. Overall this is one of the most enjoyable releases that I have had the pleasure of reviewing this year. Excellent job!

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Long Gone Records artist: Cathy Ponton King - The Crux - New Release Review

I just received the new release, The Crux, by Cathy Ponton King. King has assembled a who's who of contemporary blues artists including Jimmy Thackery, Ronnie Earl, Butch Warren and Ron Holloway. The release features 10 new blues ballads covering the spectrum from the zydeco influenced I Want You To Be Happy to the jazz infused Little House In The Country. Opening with Sugarface, a horn filled track with cool guitar riffs from Thackery and nice key work from Bill Starks King sets the groundwork for the release. I'm Just A Woman has a bit of country blended into the blues again featuring Thackery on guitars. The riffs on this track are right out of Thackery's bag of country tricks. Cerulean Blues is a pure ballad featuring the beautiful guitar phrasing of Ronnie Earl. Blues Companion, again featuring Earl, is a standard 12 bar blues track. Tattoo On My Heart, a country folk style ballad, features some really nice acoustic guitar work from Jason Byrd. Holloway has a nice sax run on this track as well. Sweet Change To My Heart really has some exceptional guitar riffs by Earl. This is my favorite track on the release. With it's Bossa Nova beat, Little House In The Country touches on the light jazz fare and could easily make airplay. Earl and Starks each play some really sweet riffs on this track making it quite memorable. Bridges That You Burned has some really nice guitar work by Dave Hovey and Mike Lessin. Finishing up with funky track, I'm Suffering, CPK leads the band through another jazzy track featuring Thackery on guitar. Other musicians on the release include Chris Battistone on trumpet, John Jensen on trombone, Bruce Swaim on sax, Antoine Sanfuentes on drums, Jim Roberson on bass, John Priviti on bass, Tom Corradino on accordian, Butch Warren on Bass and Jeff King on Vocals. This is a smooth blues/jazz CD for a mainstream listener. 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”