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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 Sax Gordon Beadle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sax Gordon Beadle. Show all posts

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Whitney Shay - A Woman Rules The World - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, A Woman Rules The World, from Whitney Shay and it's lively. Opening with pop track, Ain't No Weak Woman, lead vocalist Whitney Shay is joined by Jim Pugh on piano, Kedar Roy on bass, Sax Gorgon Beadle on sax, and Alexander Pettersen on drums. Slinky Blues Down Home settles down into a nice groove with full sax and trumpet punctuation by Beadle and John Halbleib respectively. A solid sax solo by Beadle, harp work by Aki Kumar and piano and organ work by Pugh gives this track real oomph. With a rolling R&B feel, Love's Creeping Up On Me has great feel, with super vocals, stinging guitar riffs by Igor Prado and nicely blended vocals. One of my favorite tracks on the release is title track, A Woman Rules The World with super vocals by Shay and Lisa Leuschner Andersen, nice guitar phrasing by Andersen and an overall great soul feel. Freedom has a soulful strut with a great bass line, tight drums and powerful bari sax work by Beadle. With a funky bottom, Shay's best vocals shine on Get It When I Want It. A nicely woven instrumental backing of organ, slide guitar, organ, piano and drums, this track it hot! Soulful ballad, Empty Hand, is laden with rich organ and sax giving Shay a perfect stage to belt out the blues and Beadle get yet another chance to lay out a super sax solo. Wrapping the release is rocking R&B track, Get Down With It, with all of the enthusiasm of Little Richard, driven by Pettersen on drums and Pugh on piano. Beadle's sax soloing and some cool guitar work by Andersen put a bow on this one. Very cool. 

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Thursday, December 14, 2017

Gandy Dancer Records artist: Peter Ward - Blues On My Shoulders - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Blues On My Shoulders, from Peter Ward and it's quite good. Opening with solid shuffle, She Took It All, Peter Ward on guitar and lead vocal sets a great pace with Mudcat Ward on bass, Neil Gouvin on drums and Sugar Ray Norcia on harp. Excellent opener. Surf rocker, Which Hazel, is a solid rocker along the lines of Chuck Berry with a strong surf twist. Clever lyrics and guitar riffs by Ward give this track a lot of gas. On title track, Blues On My Shoulders, Anthony Geraci adds nice piano and I particularly love the guitar work by Monster Mike Welch. Collaborate is all about lush chords and sassy sax and Ward's guitar work with Sax Gordon Beadle's sax work is just that. Excellent! Shuffle track, It's On Me is another outstanding entry on the release with a hot sax solo from Beadle and hot fingering from Ronnie Earl and Ward. Very nice. Southpaw is a hot number with a smoking B3 solo from Rusty Scott, solid bass work from George Dellomo, and hot guitar riffs by Ward.  One of my personal favorites on the release is jump track, Kansas City Blues featuring great vocals, a strong bass line by Joe Delia and really nice soloing by Ward. Wrapping the release is Drummin' Willie, about Willie Big Eyes Smith with Neil Gouvin on druma, Mudcat on bass and Sugar Ray Norcia on harp. This is a strong release with a lot of cool surprises. Check it out. 

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Monday, August 28, 2017

Boston-Based Guitarist Peter Ward Sets October 20 Release Date for His New CD, "Blues on My Shoulders," on Gandy Dancer Records; Special Guests Include Ronnie Earl, Sugar Ray & the Bluetones and Sax Gordon Beadle



Boston-Based Guitarist Peter Ward Sets October 20 Release Date for His New CD, Blues on My Shoulders, on Gandy Dancer Records

Special Guests Include Ronnie Earl, Sugar Ray & the Bluetones and Sax Gordon Beadle

BOSTON, MA – Guitarist Peter Ward announces an October 20 release date for his new CD, Blues on My Shoulders, on Gandy Dancer Records. Besides Ward on guitar and vocals, special guests on the new disc include multiple Blues Music Award-winning guitar legend Ronnie Earl, Sax Gordon Beadle on sax and the members of Sugar Ray and the Bluetones: Sugar Ray Norcia (vocals and harmonica), “Monster” Mike Welch (guitar), Anthony Geraci (piano), Michael “Mudcat” Ward (Peter’s brother – bass) and Neil Gouvin (drums). 

“It pleases me to present Blues on My Shoulders, my first solo project,” Peter Ward says about the new album. “I wrote the words and music to 12 of the 13 songs. I grew up wearing out the vinyl records trying to understand how Robert Jr. Lockwood, Tiny Grimes, Louis Meyers and Jimmy Rogers made songs sound so good. It's what I wanted to do. I was lucky to sit in often with my friend (and former roommate) Ronnie Earl and play alongside many of my musical heroes. A highlight was touring with the Legendary Blues Band: Joe Willie ‘Pinetop’ Perkins, Willie ‘Big Eyes’ Smith, Calvin ‘Fuzz’ Jones and Jerry Portnoy, who had brilliantly backed Muddy Waters for years. The way they played blues was everything I believed in, then and now. Willie Smith was an inventive drummer — and a wily character. I pay tribute to him in the song, ‘Drummin' Willie.’ The track ‘Which Hazel’ is my homage to Chuck Berry. Sugar Ray Norcia honored me by singing the heck out of ‘Collaborate,’ a tribute to Lockwood and Lonnie Johnson. I appreciate that Ronnie Earl and Sax Gordon Beadle accepted my invitation to perform on two songs: ‘A Little More’ and ‘It's On Me.’ ‘Southpaw’ is my ode to lesser-known left-handed swing guitarist Dickie Thompson, who worked with organist and front man Wild Bill Davis. My instrumental, ‘Shiprock,’ reminds me of a hallowed part of Navajo country I visited with my wife Mai Cramer, who died of breast cancer in 2002 and previously hosted a popular blues program every weekend for 24 years on WGBH-FM. She was an avid supporter of the blues and its purveyors. I think she would have liked Blues on My Shoulders. I hope you do.”

As a teenager growing up in Lewiston, Maine, Peter and his brother Michael (“Mudcat”) listened intently to blues records and went to see Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells, Taj Mahal and Hubert Sumlin whenever they performed in the area. Peter played blues with Mudcat and did gigs also with his younger brother Jeff, who died in 1991. “Jeff was too young to drink, but club owners would let him in so he could play bass with New York City drummer Ola Dixon and me,” Ward recalls.

Ward later moved to Boston and played in various bands, frequently sitting in with Sugar Ray & the Bluetones, who then featured his brother and Ronnie Earl, and backed blues artists such as Jimmy Rogers, Eddie ‘Cleanhead’ Vinson and Lowell Fulson.

“In the Big Apple, I was thrilled when Otis Rush told me I played chords like an ‘old man,’ Ward remembers. “In 1978, each week I drove across I-90 to Rochester, N.Y. to play blues for three nights with guitarist-vocalist Joe Beard. Beloved there, Joe had once been a neighbor of Son House. In the 1980s, I loved everything about touring with the Legendary Blues Band — the traveling and camaraderie, but especially the way we played blues in an unhurried, improvisational way. We recorded a CD for Rounder Records that featured Duke Robillard, whose brilliant guitar I had first heard at a high school dance.


“I married Mai Cramer, who spun records for Boston station WGBH-FM every weekend from 1978 until 2002, when she died of breast cancer. Her fans and I stage a fundraiser in her honor each spring for charity at the Regent Theatre in Arlington, Mass. Headliners have included Jody Williams, Luther ‘Guitar Junior’ Johnson, Lurrie Bell, Ron Levy and Eddie Taylor, Jr. In 2010, I produced Goodbye Liza Jane: Hello Western Swing, a CD of western swing (a cousin to the blues) with Herb Remington, an original member of Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys. In recent years I've begun writing songs, as I culled the many snippets of melodies and phrases stuck in my mind. It's fun to turn thoughts into songs and then sing them while people dance. It's been a blast, and it's not over.”

Friday, September 23, 2016

Stony Plain Records artist: Duke Robillard - Blues Full Circle - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Blues Full Circle, from Duke Robillard and it's styling. Opening with Lay a Little Lovin' On Me, Robillard has lead vocals and the band is sets up a creep. Bruce Bears lays the ground work on piano, backed by Brad Hallen on bass and Mark Teixeira on drums. Robillard ealks in with a really nice fat guitar scream giving the track real attitude. Nice opener. On easy shuffle, Rain Keeps Falling, Bears and Robillard swap lead work under the vocal keeping it tight. Mourning Dove slows it down a bit and Duke plays some of his most expressive riffs of the release. Ouch! Back up to tempo, No More Tears, has a nice groove and Robillard steps out in style backed by Bear's organ work. Very nice. Jimmy Lewis' Last Night features Sugar Ray Norcia and his vocals are rich. Robillard's guitar work is clean and tight and Saw Gordon Beadle lays in some real nice sax work. On New Orleans saturated, A Fool About My Money Bears and Teixeira really set the scene with Bears taking an extended piano solo leading into a contained solo by Robillard. Quite a cool track with particularly nice vocals by Robillard. Kelley Hunt takes the floor on vocal and piano on The Mood Room. A rolling blues rocker, has strong bass work from Hallen and cool solos by Bears and Robillard. Very cool. Taking the tempo down a few notches, I've Got A Feelin' That You're Foolin' has a cool Tulsa country blues style and Robillard shows he knows this style well nice blues riffs throughout. Jimmie Vaughan's Shufflin' and Scufflin' features Robillard paired with Jimmie Vaughan on guitar. A real cool shuffle tune with Bears on organ, and the boys trading, it's Doug James who steps up with the grand slam on Bari sax. Very nice. Blues for Eddie Jones is a cool track about Guitar Slim. Bears' piano work nicely nighlights the scatter guitar riffs. Sweet. On jazz shuffle, You Used To Be Sugar, has a real nice groove pushed by Hallen's bass work and Duke takes a nice walk on the fretboard. On somber ballad, Worth Waitin' On, Robillard put's up some of his best vocals, carried by Bears, who not only sets the carrier but also plays a really nice organ solo. Wrapping the release is Come With Me Baby, a real nice low slung blues, with Robillard answering his vocal call with his guitar response. Saving the best for last, Robillard hits the groove square on with some excellent guitar riffs. Super closer for a cool release.

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