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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 The Traffic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Traffic. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Toots Lorraine & the Traffic - Make It Easy - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, Make It Easy, from Toots Lorraine & The Traffic and it is some red hot smoking blues. Opening with title track, Make It Easy, Lorraine opens on vocal supported by Aki Kumar on fat harp and Chad Mo on swinging guitar riffs. Lorenzo Farrell adds a cool organ ride along with Mike Phillips on bass and June Core on drums. Farrell leads the way on piano on When Did you Stop Tryin', a smooth slow blues track. Lorraine and Kumar share the spotlight with Kumar really laying down some nice phrases. Mo steps up and establishes his own line with nicely articulated guitar solos and Farrell also takes a cool piano solo. Very nice! Let Your Tears Fall Baby, a fast shuffle track, has a T-Bone Walker feel with Mo and Lorraine playing call and response. Mo and Farrell each take a sweet solo on this track as well. One of my favorite tracks on the release, Get Back To Lovin' shows Mo in exceptional form with excellent guitar runs and tone. Lorraine has a rich voice and singing straight on the rhythm line against Mo's double step guitar playing gives the track exceptional feel. Farrell steps up with a super key solo and Mo is back with a really hot solo run. My favorite track on the release. Excellent! Kid Anderson steps in on guitar for shuffle track, Satisfied, trading riffs against Lotrraine on lead vocal. Another hot track, Anderson has a cool vibrato that adds nicely to his soloing. Very nice! Spiritual influenced and jazz flavored Wade In The Water plays nicely into Lorraine's vocal strength. The general feel of this track, enhanced by Phillips solid bass work makes this track the best showcase for Lorraines voice and Mo steps up with a crisp solo of his own. Hot! Classic Built For Comfort holds it's Chicago roots and features a really nice harp solo by Kumar. Mo also shows a slightly different side of his guitar chops on this track. Very nice! Quiet paced Wrong Side Of Love features Lorraine in the spotlight with the band peeled back. Clean, under the melody riffs from Mo and Farrell brighten the overall presentation of this fine track. Chad Mo Shuffle is a really nice instrumental featuring Mo just laying it out there. Farrell also jumps in on organ over a tight rhythm set by Phillips and Core. Very cool! Swing track Low Down Dog is a hot footed number with a smokin' harp solo from Kumar. Mo steps up with a slick bop of his own really getting the band revved up! On slower ballad, Hindsight, Lorraine leads the band down a soulful highway with a really dark feel. Farrell plays the lead solo on this track, the piano keeping with the stormy night feel. Wrapping the release is Love The World, a swampy track by Dr. John. With a mix of guitar work by Anderson, vocals, background vocals(like field hollering) and rudimentary rhythm, this is one of the most effective tracks on the release.

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