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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 Skin and Bones. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Skin and Bones. Show all posts

Thursday, September 24, 2015

American Blues Artist Group artist: Dudley Taft - Skin and Bones - New Release Review

I just received the newest release (October 16, 2015), Skin and Bones, from Dudley Taft and it's a hot fusion of blues, country, rock, hip hop, metal, grunge and Dudley Taft! Opening with title track, Skin and Bones, Taft delivers vocals in almost a hip hop style but the guitars say country rock. Taft knows how to get his listeners attention when he grabs the strings and he does it. Lonesome Memphis Blues has a strut pushed along nicely by John Kessler on bass and Jason Patterson on drums. Warming organ work from Reese Wynans and soothing backing vocals from Rachael Williams gives this track balance and an slightly jazz feel but Taft's guitar tone says rock baby! Ain't Nothing Gonna Stop Us Now is a driving rocker with laser like focus. A simple pleasing melody and swift fingered blues guitar riffs make this an ideal radio track with a bleeped "F***off". Johnny Winter's Leland Mississippi Blues, keeps it's straight, Willie Dixon like blues romp. This is every man's blues rocker and Taft firrs it up. Very nice! Easy flowing, One Of These Days, is a total change up gone mellow ballad style. With it's memorizing melody and melodic guitar work, it's certain to cross pollinate the airwaves. Fuzzy Dice has great swagger with a rumbling bass by Kessler. With a clever guitar repetitive guitar riff the track has a contemporary northwest feel with a Frank Marino edge. One of my favorite tracks on the release, Taft lays out some really tight guitar lines to compliment his super vocals. This track breaks into a metal (say Deep Purple) driving rhythm setting a rock solid platform for Taft to really take it home. Very cool! Without You has a square kick in the pants feel with a nice back beat thanks to Patterson. Kessler is no wall flower driving a great bass line on this track and Taft's vocals are really ideal for this kind of blues rock music with hot flashes of guitar. Space Cake has a solid rock bottom and Taft takes command on vocal and guitar. I really like Patterson's work on this track and Taft's slide work adds texture to the track. Metal solidity sets the path for Ain't About The Money, a track that has a heavy overtone with drum, guitar and bass emphasis on the key notes in unity. A well crafted track with an interesting melody line, it should fare well in the rock market. Coming Home is an interesting composition with a a rocking rhythm. Just enough edge to make it sharp but not enough to fall, this track has surprises and a cool hook. Wrapping the release is Mojo Woman with it's southern country rock feel. Williams' vocals are almost Dark Side of the Moon in quality with smooth organ backing and plenty of room for Taft to hits some really slick guitar riffs. This is a nice track to sum up the release.

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Monday, August 3, 2015

Dudley Taft Rips Into You With Skin And Bones

Dudley Taft Rips Into You With Skin And Bones
The Guitarist’s New CD Out October 16, 2015

“… making paint peel from the walls with the heat of his guitar blitzkrieg…”
- Deep Roots

Atlanta GA – American Blues Music Group recording artist Dudley Taft brings his own version of the blues to the table with Skin And Bones, a hair-raising collection of blues, rock and a slice of grunge pie to be served on October 16, 2015. Recorded at Muchmore studio in his home in Cincinnati and Omni Sound in Nashville he and bassist John Kessler co-produced the record.

Skin And Bones came from three sessions with Jason Patterson on drums and John Kessler on bass at Taft’s home studio once owned by legendary rock icon Peter Frampton in Cincinnati, OH. Yes, that guy. Taft bought the house with the intent of utilizing the studio full time.  He didn’t know the support phone number when setting up the room would lead him to Frampton himself. Taking cues from Neil Young and his studio approach of using the first takes, Dudley gives Skin And Bones a raw feel with fresh air weaving in and out of the arrangements. Never mind the blemishes, let the soul of the songs shine through.

As the creeping chord progression starts the CD with the title track, “Skin And Bones”, Dudley sings about Bourbon Street in New Orleans. You can almost feel the hot pavement under your shoes as you walk through the Crescent City. He gives nods to the past musicians, the voodoo, and its patina history.

He grooves and boogies through riffs and melodies all while keeping his shades on

“Fuzzy Dice” is a musical air raid that started out as a riff using the Buzzmaster Fuzz Pedal and then researching the rearview mirror classic to get inspired to write the lyrics. Fuzzy dice were hung in B-17 cockpits showing 7 for good luck as the fighters carried out their missions. The heavy driving guitars and being honest with the subject matter makes this a standout. You can almost feel the plane soar and dive and shoot.

“Coming Home” is a simple yet expressive reflection of what matters in life. As we all know, life pulls us in 25 different directions, and we get lost; sometimes the home front is where we belong. Built off a classic 50’s fingerpicked riff, Dudley uses his bare knuckles to emulate Lightnin’ Hopkins and Hubert Sumlin. Another nod to a guitar hero of Taft’s is the straight forward, “Leland Mississippi Blues” from Johnny Winter. Never mess with a classic. “The descending riff is totally cool and fun to play. It’s one of my favorite songs to perform live,” Dudley states.

“I like blues because it touches on dark and heavy things. I’ve always believed that it’s important to have old and new influences.“ - Dudley told Premier Guitar in 2013

If you listen close, his influences range from Johnny Winter, Elmore James and ZZ Top to Alice Chains’ Jerry Cantrell. A gear head geek at heart he uses all the tools in his shed to create his sound. His relationship with Reese Wynans of the legendary Stevie Ray Vaughan band continues as he supplies the hum with his signature organ sounds. The backing vocals of Rachel Williams and Ashley Christensen add a sweetness to the choruses.

Dudley’s music career began in high school when he founded the band Space Antelope with friend Trey Anastasio (of Phish). In the 1990’s he joined Seattle band Sweet Water, touring the states with Monster Magnet,  Flaming Lips, Candlebox, and Alice in Chains. After recording two albums for Atlantic, he left the band to join Second Coming. More touring followed with an album on Capitol Records and a taste of success thanks to the single “Vintage Eyes” which made it to #10 on the Rock Radio charts.

In his music, you’ll hear Delta roots mingling with Seattle grunge, a southern twang with a high-octane crunch. Dudley’s music is a visual film that comes to life with his dark look and respect to the music itself. He honors the players that came before him and those around him but is always looking down the road into the future.

Dudley will be playing Seattle and Midwest cities throughout the fall in the U.S. and will return to Europe for festivals and club gigs in the summer. Look for that upcoming information on his website

Follow the Dudley Taft YouTube promo: