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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 Sterling Koch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sterling Koch. Show all posts

Monday, January 4, 2016

Full Force Music artist: Sterling Koch - Rock Slide - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Rock Slide, from Sterling Koch and it's a sliding boogie master. Opening with Shake 'em On Down, Sterling Koch on vocal and lap steel is joined by Gene Babula on bass, Jon Goba on drums, Bret Alexander on rhythm guitar and Jack Kulp on harp for a great driving opening. On Sugar, Koch uses a walking line as well as slick lead lap steel to brighten an easy slung boogie. With Jennifer Dierwechter on backing vocals this is another cool track. Leading a bit more toward country rock and the two step, Good To Go, finds Koch putting out a rocking slide tone, kind of a blend between JJ Cale, Rod Price and Eric Clapton. Slow and soulful, Leavin' Me With The Blues, is my favorite track on the release with Koch's best vocals and joined by Bob Wagner on keys. This track to me shows a lot of early British blues influence and crisp slide riffs. Made popular by Stevie Ray, Crossfire doesn't get much of a rework but a sliding interpretation which is actually pretty slick. Another of my favorites on the release is I'm Packin' Up, with it's walking bass line and tight bluesy slide riffs. Very nice! Rocker, Comin' For Your Love has a great driving rhythm. I like it's cocky rock swagger and straight forward drive. Super! Wrapping the release is Last Call, is a lumbering blues along the lines of Key To The Highway. Koch pulls out the stops on slide riffs on this track with a monster guitar duel. Excellent closer to another fine release from Sterling.

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Full Force Music Management artist: Sterling Koch Trio - Place Your Bets - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Place Your Bets, from Sterling Koch and it's more purely pop blues than previous releases. Opening with SRV's House Is Rockin', Koch is joined by Jack Kulp on harp and backing vocals. On Hound Dog Taylor's It's Alright, Koch again keeps the bottom easy but hits the slide nicely as well as complimenting with a sweet articulated guitar solo. Kulp again does a nice job on harp. Jimmy Reed's Dizzy doesn't vary much from Reed's original but with an easier approach. Again backing vocals from Kulp add to the breadth of the vocals and Koch's slide playing is top notch. ZZ Top's Tubesnake Boogie sees the addition of backing vocals from Jennifer Dierwechter. Again keeping it to a simple acoustic style, this track has a totally different feel from the heavy romper that Gibbons throws down. On Albert King's, Don't Bother Me, Kulp opens the track on harp and some of the most slicing slide work on the release bites through. Sonny Boy Williamson II's, Checkin' Up On My Baby defaults from lead harp to some real nice clean slide work. Kulp does check in with a nicely blown harp solo for one of the coolest track on the release. John Lee Hooker's Dimples, has a real nice swing, taking Hookers original feel to the next slickest step. I had noticed on earlier recordings Koch's proficiency on guitar but on this release, I have more of an appreciation of him as a vocalist. Neat and clean guitar and harp riffs fill this track. Otis Rush's My Baby (She's A Good 'Un) is up next and with a little twist of that southern flare and even maybe a taste of Johnathan Edwards, this track has some of the best harp work on the release. Kenny Wayne Shepherd's Blue On Black is a well known ballad with quiet approach. Jennifer Dierwechter has a more dominant role vocally and Koch, along with a rhythmic acoustic strumming, fills the air with sweet slide runs. Original Koch track, Nothin' But The Blues, has a super, wide open open slide solo and Kulp follows with a cool harp solo of his own. Wrapping the release is Peter Green's Oh Well!. Koch continues to reaffirm his skill as both a vocalist and guitar player. Nice job. If you're looking for a release where you'll remember each track and love slide work, this may be your ticket.

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Friday, March 15, 2013

Full Force Music artist Sterling Koch - Let It Slide - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Let It Slide from slide guitar master Sterling Koch and it's a blast! I really enjoyed Koch's last release but this one literally blows the doors off! Opening with a short interlude on an acoustic hollow body lap steel Koch opens the carps and lets out with the electric onslaught. Shape I'm In, a countrified blues track with a rock beat, is full bore! You like slide...you've come to the right place! Wrong Side Of The Blues has a more traditional blues rhythm led by Gene Babula on bass and John Goba n drums. Koch has a take no prisoners attack on his slide and even has a bit of wah sound added in. Cool track. We've all heard Mercury Blues done by different artists such as Steve Miller and Dave Lindley but Koch takes his own take on it and it isn't by any means a regular cover tune. Koch is really establishing himself as one of the dominant slide players to watch with his performance on this recording. Blow My Mind has a driving bass and drum line and Koch really is developing as a decent singer to match with his slide guitar playing. Blending both conventional electric and lap steel guitars Koch is giving the steel guitar a new face playing Hendrix and James style riffs. A real standout track on this release is It Hurts Me Too and with a different timbre and attack than other slide players who have covered this track, Koch establishes his as one that should be heard rather than an also played. Too Sorry is a cool Texas style blues track by D. Bramhall and Koch delivers a great rendition of it. I Don't Know Why, another of the 8 original tracks on this release is a bit lower key but shows strong rhythm and enthusiasm. Lonely Avenue is a great ballad style track.. almost like a soundtrack/theme song but played on slide. Nicely done. My Baby's Hot is structured like something right out of Elmore James songbook. Koch's slide work shows real control and taste. I Only Want To Be With You takes a solid dirty blues style but the guitar work is more distinctly lap steel in sound. The riffs are hot and the singing is strong. This guitar is just crying to be rubbed! Ending up with Working Man's Blues, a bit more of a rockin' blues Koch leaves you wanting more. Although I liked Koch's earlier release, I must say this may be the surprise recording for me so far this year. If you really love slide guitar, this is a must have!   

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Full Force presents : Slide Ruler - Sterling Koch - Review


I just received the new recording, "Slide Ruler" by Sterling Koch. I am impressed. First I have to qualify that I don't have a real love for the steel guitar except when played in traditional fashion in the manner of Buddy Cage but this recording is converting me. It is being played in the manner of a slide guitar and on traditional blues tracks. It is a very tasty recording and I bet will get the appreciation of many blues lovers. A few recordings that have been played by popular blues bands are redone here but they are not my favorites. "Slide Ruler", the title track is a great demo of what a steel guitar can do slide style.... and it leads into a great song, "If You Wanna Rock & Roll". JL Hooker's "Dimples is done very well over a Booker T rhythm beat. The recording continues over a jukin "Roosevelt Sykes "Driving Wheel". Peter Green's "Stop Messin' Round" and "I'm a Bluesman", a Koch original hold solid in the middle of the recording. The next two tracks on the recording, Otis Rush's "Double Trouble" and especially Hound Dog Taylor's "Taylor's Rock are the serious draw on this release. Kock is backed by Double Trouble (SRV) bassist Tommy Shannon and Doobie drummer Chet NcCracken. Overall this recording is really great! You won't be finding this one on Ebay!

Get one quick! (By the way...the fidelity of the recording adds a lot vs the video shown below!)

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