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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!


Please email me at Info@Bmansbluesreport.com
Showing posts with label Warren Haynes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Warren Haynes. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Provogue Records artist: Supersonic Blues Machine - West Of Flushing South Of Frisco - New Release Review

I just received the newest release, West of Flushing South of Frisco, from Supersonic Blues Machine and it's a smokin' cool release. Featuring the leadership of Lance Lopez (guitar and vocal), Kenny Aronoff (drums and percussion) and Fabrizzio Grossi (bass, Hammond and vocals) this band is cooking. Opening with Miracle Man, a southern influenced blues rocker, the band is really off to a great start complimented by Jimmy Z Zavala on harp, Serge Simic on acoustic guitar, Garrett Hollbrock on lap steel and Francis Bentez and Andrea Grossi on backing vocals. Next up is I Ain't Fallin Again, a sophisticated rocker with a cool back beat and a solid drive. Billy F Gibbons leads the way on vocal and guitar on Running Whiskey a straight up rocker with a definite Gibbons flavor. Remedy, features Warren Haynes and his influence is immediately noticed with a warm, laid back feel. Trading lead riffs and vocals with Lopez, Haynes doesn't dominate the track at all and it actually feels a bit like a cool Marshall Tucker influence with new wind in it's sails. Bone Bucket Blues is a great boogie with Paulo Verdone on lead guitar with Lopez on lead vocal and guitar. This track is hot with Jimmy Z's harp work as icing. Let It Be is a cool soul rocker track with some of Lopez's best vocals on the release. I particularly like Grossi's bass work on this track complimented by Hammond work by Sam Lusting and a solid solo from Lopez. Very nice! That's My Way features Chris Duarte on some flaming hot guitar riffs joined by Lopez on lead guitar and vocal and also featuring some tight bass work from Grossi. Ain't No Love (In The Heart of the City) is one of my favorite tracks on the release with particularly strong vocals from Lopez and strong backing vocal support from Francis and Andrea. Excellent! Nightmares and Dreams takes a heavier swagger and rightly so with guitar monster Eric Gales joining. Lopez, Francis and Andrea handle the vocals really nicely and with a rock solid bottom from Aronoff and lively bass by Grossi, this track is propelled by the guitar pyrotechnics of Lopez and Gales. Can't Take It No More has an almost Wishbone Ash feel with twin guitar leads courtesy of Lopez and Walter Trout. Trading lead vocals and Pink Floyd backing vocals by Francis and Andrea, this track is super. This is a really nice stack up with Trout and Lopez. It isn't as much a slug fest as it is a choreographed joust. Very nice! Whiskey Time is a 2 plus extended jam excerpt from Running Whiskey. You like guitars... this is cool! The king of the melodic blues guitar players, Robben Ford shares center stage for ballad, Let's Call It A Day. Lopez is in the left channel and Ford in the right channel, playing melodically along with Lopez's smooth vocals on this top selected radio track. Wrapping the release is Watchagonnado, a funky track with a super groove. Grossi sets a really nice bottom and Francis and Andrea highlight Lopez's super vocals. Phil Parlapiano adds a grat funky Hammond set and Lopez's guitar riffs really make this the best track on the release. Very cool!

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Monday, May 4, 2015

OUT TOMORROW (5/5): Otis Taylor's 'Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat' features guests Warren Haynes, Langhorne Slim, String Cheese Incident




ROOTS MUSIC VISIONARY OTIS TAYLOR CREATES ATIMELESSS PSYCHEDELIC ALBUM AND DEBUTS HIS TRANCE BLUES FESTIVAL LABEL
Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat seamlessly blends hypnotic songs
and instrumentals;
features guests Warren Haynes, Langhorne Slim and String Cheese Incident’s Bill Nershi, out May 5

BOULDER, Colo. — Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat, the new album from visionary roots music songwriter and bandleader Otis Taylor, is a psychedelic masterpiece. Blending his uniquely poetic songwriting and the compelling musical approach that he calls “trance blues,” the recording — due on May 5, 2015 on Taylor’s new Trance Blues Festival label — cuts to the core of the human spirit with its mix of vocal and instrumental performances, letting its hypnotic sound as well as Taylor’s lyrics tell its story.
The artist explains that his 14th album is “about decisions and their consequences. It’s about how decisions and the actions that result can change our lives, the lives of our families and the lives of people we don’t even know. Sometimes you win in life; sometimes you lose. You want the outcome of your decisions to be good, but sometimes its bad. And that’s when you don’t eat the meat. The meat eats you.”
Typical for Taylor, he’s found a unique way of expressing those ideas in a grand work. The songs on Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat comprise a suite in 10 parts, designed to be heard as a complete recording, with the classic song of decisions and their consequences “Hey Joe” as its overarching theme. That number, made famous as the debut single from the Jimi Hendrix Experience in 1966, was written by folk artist Billy Roberts and has intrigued Taylor and been part of his live concerts for two decades.
In a gambit that recalls Pink Floyd’s use of recurring musical themes on their enduring multi-platinum album Wish You Were Here, “Hey Joe” appears on Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat twice. The first version, which starts the album, features Gov’t Mule and Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes. The second features Langhorne Slim on backing vocals. Haynes also plays on the first of three appearances of the Taylor composition “Sunday Morning,” which follows. His bold guitar tones mesh perfectly with Taylor’s sonic tapestry as both songs set the tone for the album. The recurring motifs in “Sunday Morning” are especially striking, drawing on powerful, single-chord rhythms and the interplay of Taylor band members Todd Edmunds on bass, guitarist Taylor Scott, drummer Larry Thompson and violinist Anne Harris, who often plays melodic and textural foil to Taylor’s idiosyncratic, mesmerizing guitar. They’re joined by keyboardists Gus Skinas and Steve Vidaic, cornetist Ron Miles, banjo player David Moore and, on “Peggy Lee,” a song about a man undergoing a sex change, String Cheese Incident guitarist Bill Nershi. Together they bring Taylor’s unfailingly brilliant ideas to kaleidoscopic life.
The album introduces four more new Taylor songs. “The Heart Is a Muscle” is a driving tune about the complexities of love and “Cold at Midnight” mixes loneliness and infidelity into Taylor’s potent aural swirl. There’s also “Red Meat,” driven by Taylor playing his signature model Santa Cruz acoustic guitar, and the elegant instrumental “They Wore Blue,” which transitions the album into its second half. 
“I’m always trying to find something different to do with each album,” says Taylor. “It gets harder with each one I make, but I really enjoy the idea of challenging myself to find new ways to tell stories and make art.” His previous album, 2013’s My World Is Gone, explored the struggles of Native Americans and enlisted the virtuoso guitar of Indigenous frontman Mato Nanji, who is a member of the Nakota Nation.
Taylor has been pursuing his own singular musical vision — a fusion of the primal hum of raw, primitive blues and contemporary, free-ranging expressionism — since the 1960s, when the banjoist, guitarist, bassist and harmonica player first toured the U.S. and Europe with a variety of blues-based bands including Zephyr, for whom Taylor played bass, and G&O Short Line, which included legendary guitarist Tommy Bolin.
Taylor left the music business in 1977 to pursue dealing in art and antiques, and to raise a family. (His daughter Cassie has appeared on many of his recordings singing and playing bass, and today is a recording artist in her own right.) He also pursued his passion for bicycle racing, as a coach. During the ’90s, Taylor was drawn back into music making by friends in the Boulder area. By 1996 and the arrival of his debut album Blue-Eyed Monster, he was performing once again. With the release of his next two discs, When Negroes Walked the Earth and White African, Taylor began to emerge as a singular voice in the American roots scene, acclaimed here and abroad for his riveting music and his unflinching honesty in writing about racism, struggle, freedom, heritage and the complications of human life.
To date he has received 16 Blues Music Award (BMA) nominations. White African captured a BMA for best debut album. Taylor is also nominated regularly as an instrumentalist for his banjo playing, and won a Blues Music Award for his original style in 2009, following the release of Recapturing the Banjo, an album that examined the instrument’s deep African roots. His albums Double V, Definition of a Circle and Recapturing the Banjo all won DownBeat’s Best Blues CD award in 2005, 2007 and 2008, respectively. He also took the magazine’s Critic’s Choice Award for Best Blues Album for 2003’s Truth Is Not Fiction. And Taylor has been nominated two times for the prestigious Académie Charles Cros award in France, winning the Grand Prix du Disc for Blues in 2012. Three years ago, Contraband — his 12th album — took the DownBeat Critics’ Choice award again for Blues Album of the Year.
In 2009 Taylor’s Pentatonic Wars and Love Songs was unveiled the same week that two of his tunes appeared in the Hollywood blockbuster Public Enemy, directed by Michael Mann and starring Johnny Depp and Christian Bale. Previously his music had appeared in the 2007 Mark Wahlberg vehicle Shooter. And in 2000 Taylor was a fellow in the Sundance Institute’s Film Music Program.  
In 2010 Taylor began his Trance Blues Festival, which gives his new label its name, in Boulder, Colorado. The annual event brings a broad cast of professional and amateur musicians together for three days of performances, jams and workshops. This year’s Trance Blues Festival will be held at the eTown Theater in Boulder on November 7.
“Music is not a spectator sport,” he observes. “In a world where there is a lot of misunderstanding, music can help people communicate and break down barriers, and really start to see each other for who they are.”
His songs also lend perspective, thanks to the spare and insightful lyrics and elemental music that’s always at the core of his albums, including Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat. “My music,” says Taylor, “is always about the truth. People care about the truth, because the truth is important. And I want people to care about my songs, because I push myself very hard to create each album and make it the best that I possibly can. My albums are my legacy, and I want them to endure.”

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Provogue Records artist: Robben Ford - Into The Sun - New Release Review

I just received the newest release (March 31, 2015), Into The Sun, by Robben Ford and I really like it! Opening with Rose Of Sharon a smooth bluesy track with a very clean melody, Ford strokes a well articulated solo making very use of single and double time for emphasis. Day Of the Planets actually has an garage rock feel but but delivered on a polished silver platter. Howlin' At The Moon hits the road with a funky staggered rhythm. Brian Allen on bass lays down a nice funky groove with Wes Little on drums and Ford plays off the funk delivering a solo that rides the rumble. Very cool! Rainbow Cover is a straight up rocker with organ highlights and clean guitar riff adornment. Juttified features guests Keb Mo' on vocal and Robert Randolph on pedal slide. An easy blues swing with rolling piano and stylized fiddle set a super floor for Ford to highlight his nicely stylized solo. Breath Of Me featured ZZ Hill on lead vocals for possibly my favorite track on the release. Hill's soulful vocals are nicely complimented by Ford on beautifully clean solo runs. Excellent! High Heels And Throwing Things has an interesting light funky jazz feel with an almost Steely Dan polish. Warren Haynes lends his hand at guitar on the track giving it a feel of it's own. Cause Of War has a low slung, lumbering feel, a solid melody and with a hot guitar riff following each line of vocals. A heavy "bass solid" romp with tight drums makes this track tick. So Long 4 U features Sonny Landreth has an almost Little Feat swampy feel. I particularly like Ford's vocal delivery on this track and Landreth's slide tone really sets this track off. Excellent! Same Train feeds up more of the jazzy funk and it really has a contageous groove. Ford on guitar and lead vocal is chased by a tight harp line which I really like. This track is infectious with Ford really digging in on guitar and Allen and Little holding a tight bottom. Very very nice! Wrapping the release is Stone Cold Heaven and Ford trades hot guitar riffs with Tyler Bryant. This track with it's swampy rhythm gets really steamy with Ford and Bryant trading riffs and rich backing vocals. An excellent completion to a very cool release.

  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”

 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Robben Ford - INTO THE SUN - Coming March 31

 

GUITAR LEGEND ROBBEN FORD’S NEW ALBUM INTO THE SUN
 CAPTURES HIS CONTEMPORARY SONGWRITING MASTERY


To Be Released Via Mascot Label Group On March 31st  

Guest Appearances By Blues Icon Keb’ Mo’, Vocalist ZZ Ward,  
And Fellow Guitar Heroes Warren Haynes, Sonny Landreth,  
Robert Randolph and Tyler Bryant 

February 5, 2015 - Guitar virtuoso Robben Ford’s forthcoming new album Into The Sun (Mascot Label Group) shines a bright light on his artful, contemporary songwriting and the stunning playing that’s made him a favorite foil of Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, George Harrison and other legends.

The five-time Grammy nominee describes the 11-song set as “one of the top recordings I’ve ever done” — a staggering observation considering his extensive discography, which embraces more than 35 albums under his own name and with his various bands. There’s also Ford’s session and sideman work, which includes hundreds of concert appearances and albums by Bonnie Raitt, Barbara Streisand, Charlie Musselwhite, KISS, Ruthie Foster, Jimmy Witherspoon and Rickie Lee Jones. 

Into The Sun, which follows last year’s critically acclaimed A Day In Nashville and 2013’s Bringing It Back Home, explores the breadth of Ford’s sophisticated, visionary writing and playing, creating a new chapter in his brilliant musical history. The album features a coterie of guests: Allman Brothers guitarist and Gov’t Mule frontman Warren Haynes on “High Heels And Throwing Things,” slide guitar guru Sonny Landreth on “So Long 4 U,” Americana and blues icon Keb’ Mo’ and pedal steel wizard Robert Randolph on “Justified,” vocal sensation ZZ Ward on “Breath Of Me," and along with gritty Southern rock newcomer Tyler Bryant on “Stone Cold Heaven.” Niko Bolas, whose credits include Neil Young, John Mayer and Keith Richards, engineered.

“The album is really upbeat,” Ford relates. “It has a positive vibe to it — a good time feel. There are a lot of different rhythms and colors and the way the instruments are used is really different on this. It makes me very happy to have something so diverse.”

Although Ford’s recent releases have been hailed as returns to his musical roots — which go back to his discovery of blues as a teenager in the 1960s – Into The Sun is a clear departure, using tradition as a springboard to incorporate his timeless vocabulary of jazz, pop, blues and rock into a modern framework for his poetic lyrics and the most graceful, emotionally nuanced and melodic vocal performances of his career. 

“This album is obviously of these times,” Ford says. “And the rule during the recording process was to have no lid on things. I’ve worked very hard to master my craft as a musician and a songwriter, but other than relying on my strengths in those areas, I made sure there was room for new ideas and everything my collaborators brought to the music. When you’re open to different concepts and approaches, the most beautiful things can happen.”

All of the music and most of the lyrics from Into The Sun came directly from Ford, but he also collaborated with ZZ Ward on “Breath Of Me” and enlisted the enigmatic Kyle Swan, whose own recordings liberally mix images and styles to build articulate modernist-pop tone poems. That quality reverberates in the four songs Ford co-wrote with Swan, married to the guitar giant’s own deep commitment to narrative. “Working with Kyle was part of my desire to toss up everything and see what might happen, to get a fresh perspective,” says Ford. 

“Justified” is a sheer gas with Keb’ Mo’ and Ford trading tongue-in-cheek vocal lines as Randolph adds soaring pedal steel punctuation over Jim Cox’s purposefully wobbly honky tonk piano. 

Into The Sun was recorded by Bolas, a collaborator of Ford’s since his all-instrumental 1997 album Tiger Walk. “Niko is simply the best tracking engineer I’ve ever encountered,” says Ford. “He gets great sounds instantly.” All the better to capture Ford’s glorious guitar tones, this time derived from four of his go-to instruments: a pair of Gibson SG’s from 1963 and 1964, his beloved 1960 Telecaster and his Gibson B-25 acoustic. As he’s done on every album he’s made since 1983, Ford used a Dumble Overdrive Special amplifier. 

“For me,” Ford says, “it’s all about the art. If you work hard at something you’re going to get better. I honestly think I reached a point with my writing on Into The Sun where I could just go with the flow and bring some of the best songs I’ve ever created to life.”

Ford already has an impressive number of shows lined up to support the album, both in America and overseas. In addition to a lengthy list of tour dates, another notable upcoming appearance will be Robben Ford’s Traveling Dojo Guitar Camp at the elegantly rustic Full Moon Resort in Big Indian, NY in the Catskill Forest Preserve (about 30 miles west of Woodstock) from August 31-September 4, 2015.  Ford will host guitar enthusiasts and guitarists of all skill levels for this once in a lifetime opportunity.

In addition to his robust profile as a world-class musician, Ford is a highly sought-after educator with a series of acclaimed and groundbreaking interactive videos presented on a variety of formats including disks, downloads and mobile apps.  This Traveling Dojo Guitar Camp will include master classes, one-on-one sessions, landmark live performances with sit-in opportunities, and all-inclusive meal options and lodging accommodations.  Ford will be joined by special guest guitar virtuoso John Jorgenson; as well as Ford’s ace rhythm section (Brian Allen on bass and Wes Little on drums), who will conduct master classes on groove, time, and pocket; and Ford’s friend and trusted guitar tech, Rick Wheeler, a jazz virtuoso, will also conduct sessions on jazz guitar.  One of the most thrilling aspects of the Traveling Dojo Guitar Camp will be hearing these complimentary talents make music together.  A 10% discount off camp registrations is available through February 14.  To get more details on the camp and/or to register, visit: http://www.robbenfordguitarcamp.com/

ROBBEN FORD - INTO THE SUN Track Listing
1. Rose Of Sharon
2. Day Of The Planets
3. Howlin’ At The Moon
4. Rainbow Cover
5. Justified (with Keb’ Mo’ & Robert Randolph)
6. Breath Of Me (with ZZ Ward)
7. High Heels And Throwing Things (with Warren Haynes)
8. Cause Of War
9. So Long 4 U (with Sonny Landreth)
10. Same Train
11. Stone Cold Heaven (with Tyler Bryant)

ROBBEN FORD - INTO THE SUN EPK:


ROBBEN FORD – TOUR DATES
Feb. 17-21 - Miami, FL / Key West, FL / Nassau, Bahamas - Keeping The Blues Alive Cruise
Feb. 22 - Clearwater, FL - Clearwater Sea Blues Festival - Coachman Park
March 13 - Aschaffenburg, Germany - Stadttheater (with hr-Bigband)
March 14 - Rüsselsheim, Germany - Theater (with hr-Bigband)

ROBBEN FORD – INTO THE SUN - 2015 TOUR DATES
April 10 - Ft. Worth, TX - Main St. Fort Worth Arts Festival
April 11 - Oklahoma City, OK - Academy of Contemporary Music
April 12 - Kansas City, MO - Knuckleheads Saloon
April 14 - Minneapolis, MN - Cedar Cultural Center
April 15 - Milwaukee, WI - Shank Hall
April 16 - Evanston, IL - SPACE
April 17 - Columbus, OH - Woodlands Park Street Saloon
April 18 - Pittsburgh, PA - Rex Theater
April 19 - Sellersville, PA - Sellersville Theater
April 21 - Syracuse, NY - Wescott Theatre
April 22 - Londonderry, NH - Tupelo Music Hall
April 23 - Fall River, MA - Narrow Center For The Arts
April 24 - Beacon, NY - Towne Crier
April 25 - Norfolk, VA - Infinity Hall
April 26 - New York, NY - City Winery
April 29 - London, England - O2 Academy Islington
April 30 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - North Sea Jazz Club
May 1 - Breda, Netherlands - Mezz Concerts & Dance
May 2 - Groningen, Netherlands - Rhythm n Blues Night
May 5 - Leuven, Belgium - Het Depot
May 8 - Karlsruhe, Germany - Tollhaus
May 9 - Hamburg, Germany - Fabrik
May 10 - Cologne, Germany - Kantine
May 12 - Munich, Germany - Technikum
May 18 - Zvecan, Kosovo - North City Jazz and Blues Festival
               Kosovska Mitrovica - Cultural Centre “Trepca"
May 20 - Zurich, Switzerland - Kaufleuten Festival
May 30 & 31 - Oakland, CA - Yoshi’s at Jack London Square
June 2 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theatre
June 3 - Seattle, WA - The Triple Door
June 26 - Carpentras, France - Auzon Le Blues
Additional dates to be announced soon…

Thursday, August 8, 2013

American Showplace artist: John Ginty - Bad News Travels - New Release Review

I just received the new release, Bad News Travels, from John Ginty and it's really quite good. It's unusual that I find a release that is actually built around an organ player (James Brown and Lucky Peterson) but here's one. Opening with The Quirk, Ginty starts this instrumental track with a B3 vamp and slowly piece by piece the band joins in. Dan Fadel on drums, Paul Kuzik on bass and then out pops an outrageous guitar player.... Albert Castiglia. Playing a blues rock fusion, this track rips! (Listen to those drums!) On Black Cat, Ginty slows everything down and Castiglia takes the mic for some really nice vocals. Ginty plays really soulful B3 keys against really tasty blues riffs by Castiglia. Peanut Butter, another instrumental, has a great hook driven by Ginty on keys and Todd Wolfe steps in playing great response to Ginty's call on guitar. This is some really intense guitar work and I credit Ginty not only for assembling this great crew of musicians and building the tracks, but also for bringing out the best in all of these musicians. On a more pop oriented track, Seven & The Spirit, Alecia Chakour takes the lead on vocals and Neal Casal sits in on guitar. This is definitely the airplay track of the release and it should do quite well. Chakour has a great voice for this style track and Casal plays a super melodic, well articulated guitar solo to top off the track. Next Up is Mirrors, a high steppin instrumental featuring Warren Haynes on guitar with a solid overdriven guitar tone with an attack more like Santana than I have heard from him. The track takes a bit of a Latin turn as Ginty solos on B3 and Fadel and Kuzik absolutely jam. Really nice. Switch really features Ginty on keys more than any other track and it's a driver. With tom tom work pushing the bottom, Ginty really gets the most out of his 3 piece band on this cool jazz instrumental. On Damage Control, Ginty gets a bit more of the New Orleans beat going and Castiglia is back on vocal and guitar. A hot country blues like guitar solo erupts and Cris Jacobs joins on acoustic guitar and backing vocals. Rock Ridge features Martie Maguire on fiddle starting with a bit of a folk/mountain sound but then breaking into a full blown jazz rock track, not unlike early Dregs stuff. This is a really cool track showing yet more versatility from Ginty and crew. Castiglia joins again for the funky Elvis Presley. With clever lyrics and and great vocals, Castiglia leads the way on this track, laying down a really sweet solo with a lot of feel. Ginty unloads some heavy sounds on this track and the bottom is solid and consistent. This is a cool track and should meet a totally different audience than the standard radio play group... this could be the big one! Just the right amount of hook and heft. Trinity is a full blown foot stomper featuring Cris Jacobs on guitar. Breaking midwave it takes on a gospel like swing and is a super closer. This is a really super release and one that could appeal to a very wide audience with loads of guitar, great writing great beats and of course cool keys.

  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”

This track is not from the release but does show the texture of Ginty's music.


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Alligator Records artist: JAMES COTTON - COTTON MOUTH MAN - New release Review - Ellis James guest contributer



Blues harmonica legend, James Cotton releases his new CD “Cotton Mouth Man” which will be available at local and online record stores beginning May 07, 2013. May is also a time in which Cotton’s 77 year old face fills the cover of the current issue of Living Blues magazine. Writer and walking Blues almanac, David White provides a 10-page look at a career spanning nearly 60 years. This CD was premiered at a live performance, Saturday, May 25, 2013 at the Tupelo Music Hall in Londonerry, New Hampshire.

Cotton Mouth Man follows the trend of collaboration and featuring key players to round out the disk filled with 13 no-nonsense blues tunes. This by no means is a compromise but in this case is a certain gift to the listener. Guests as they appear in order are Joe Bonamassa, Gregg Allman, Keb’ Mo, Warren Haynes, Ruthie Foster, Delbert McClinton and vocalist Darrell Nulisch, long time veteran of Cotton's road band. The backbone of Cotton's band on this CD are the great Tom Hambridge on drums, Rob McNelley on guitar, Chuck Leavell  on keys, and Glenn Worf  on bass.The title track, Cotton Mouth Man,  features Joe Bonamassa on  guitar played with the fervor and sound of  Ten Years After at Woodstock. Next up is Midnight Train  featuring Gregg Allman. Subtle harmonica intro that kicks into a full band punch. A healthy and strong sounding Gregg Allman delivers the vocals and organ amongst great doses of Cotton’s distinctive harmonica and tasty guitar licks from beginning to end. Mississippi Mud featuring Keb Mo is next as acoustic juke joint piano lays down the solid foundation for Cotton’s harp, tasty electric guitar with Mo’s distinctive and cool vocals covering the top. This is one cut wherein there is an extra nice harmonica bridge solo that is quite cool. A none too subtle homage is given to Muddy Waters in both name dropping tip of the hat and song title inference. Something For Me wakes things up with the Warren Haynes' slip and slide which seems to fit hand and glove to the harmonica work. Touches of the ZZ Top like ‘buzzin’ and processed vocals add to an over all effect. Heartfelt female vocals from Rutie Foster gives a great change up in style in the Wrapped Around My Heart torch song.  A more complex harmonica arrangement meshes perfectly with the blistering guitar riffs and passionate lyrics.  
Saint on Sunday gives a two-for-one “Devil on Saturday and Saint on Sunday” view of two women rolled into one. This is a straight ahead driving song with prominent harp and bass line with the organ taking a more subtle back seat. Delbert McClinton lends his distinctive vocal delivery and guitar to a definite dance tune. Hard Sometimes reminds us the of difficulties of getting someone out of your mind with a funky double entendre to boot.  Drums and Bass are featured more than other cuts in the respect lent to Young Bold Women. Three words that work well together in describing what makes everything alright. Beginning with an almost a Calypso skip beat morphs into a straight up basic 4/4 blues beat only to bounce back and forth between the timing changes resulting in a song that would be easy to believe as a fun romp for the players to perform. Story telling is  key to the lucky find of a Bird Nest On the Ground. Once again a good Cotton bridge solo which stands out as my favorite example of James’ notable talent on this recording. I have to admit that Keb’ Mo is one of my favorites for vocal style and his ability to tell a story. Wasn’t My Time To Go draws in the listener with more round house piano and subtle harp with what sounds like a tasty arch-top
Blues is Good For You is a pleasant bass-driven walking blues with a simple story filled with references to Southern style and a strong platform for Cotton to blow his blues away. This is sure to bring a tap of the toe and a smile to your face. Bonnie Blue features Cotton on vocals and harmonica laid over a basic resonator guitar.  It’s great to hear Cottons voice both because of the texture that he gives to the song and as a testament to his right to call himself a bluesman. 


If you are a fan of harmonica blues then this is certainly a release that demands your spin time and attention. Less is more in this case. Production values are superior and a definite recommended collection!

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 favorite band! Here's James live in concert. Not a cut from his current release.

Alligator Records artist: JAMES COTTON - COTTON MOUTH MAN - New release Review - Ellis James guest contributer



Blues harmonica legend, James Cotton releases his new CD “Cotton Mouth Man” which will be available at local and online record stores beginning May 07, 2013. May is also a time in which Cotton’s 77 year old face fills the cover of the current issue of Living Blues magazine. Writer and walking Blues almanac, David White provides a 10-page look at a career spanning nearly 60 years. This CD was premiered at a live performance, Saturday, May 25, 2013 at the Tupelo Music Hall in Londonerry, New Hampshire.

Cotton Mouth Man follows the trend of collaboration and featuring key players to round out the disk filled with 13 no-nonsense blues tunes. This by no means is a compromise but in this case is a certain gift to the listener. Guests as they appear in order are Joe Bonamassa, Gregg Allman, Keb’ Mo, Warren Haynes, Ruthie Foster, Delbert McClinton and vocalist Darrell Nulisch, long time veteran of Cotton's road band. The backbone of Cotton's band on this CD are the great Tom Hambridge on drums, Rob McNelley on guitar, Chuck Leavell  on keys, and Glenn Worf  on bass.The title track, Cotton Mouth Man,  features Joe Bonamassa on  guitar played with the fervor and sound of  Ten Years After at Woodstock. Next up is Midnight Train  featuring Gregg Allman. Subtle harmonica intro that kicks into a full band punch. A healthy and strong sounding Gregg Allman delivers the vocals and organ amongst great doses of Cotton’s distinctive harmonica and tasty guitar licks from beginning to end. Mississippi Mud featuring Keb Mo is next as acoustic juke joint piano lays down the solid foundation for Cotton’s harp, tasty electric guitar with Mo’s distinctive and cool vocals covering the top. This is one cut wherein there is an extra nice harmonica bridge solo that is quite cool. A none too subtle homage is given to Muddy Waters in both name dropping tip of the hat and song title inference. Something For Me wakes things up with the Warren Haynes' slip and slide which seems to fit hand and glove to the harmonica work. Touches of the ZZ Top like ‘buzzin’ and processed vocals add to an over all effect. Heartfelt female vocals from Rutie Foster gives a great change up in style in the Wrapped Around My Heart torch song.  A more complex harmonica arrangement meshes perfectly with the blistering guitar riffs and passionate lyrics.  
Saint on Sunday gives a two-for-one “Devil on Saturday and Saint on Sunday” view of two women rolled into one. This is a straight ahead driving song with prominent harp and bass line with the organ taking a more subtle back seat. Delbert McClinton lends his distinctive vocal delivery and guitar to a definite dance tune. Hard Sometimes reminds us the of difficulties of getting someone out of your mind with a funky double entendre to boot.  Drums and Bass are featured more than other cuts in the respect lent to Young Bold Women. Three words that work well together in describing what makes everything alright. Beginning with an almost a Calypso skip beat morphs into a straight up basic 4/4 blues beat only to bounce back and forth between the timing changes resulting in a song that would be easy to believe as a fun romp for the players to perform. Story telling is  key to the lucky find of a Bird Nest On the Ground. Once again a good Cotton bridge solo which stands out as my favorite example of James’ notable talent on this recording. I have to admit that Keb’ Mo is one of my favorites for vocal style and his ability to tell a story. Wasn’t My Time To Go draws in the listener with more round house piano and subtle harp with what sounds like a tasty arch-top
Blues is Good For You is a pleasant bass-driven walking blues with a simple story filled with references to Southern style and a strong platform for Cotton to blow his blues away. This is sure to bring a tap of the toe and a smile to your face. Bonnie Blue features Cotton on vocals and harmonica laid over a basic resonator guitar.  It’s great to hear Cottons voice both because of the texture that he gives to the song and as a testament to his right to call himself a bluesman. 


If you are a fan of harmonica blues then this is certainly a release that demands your spin time and attention. Less is more in this case. Production values are superior and a definite recommended collection!

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 favorite band! Here's James live in concert. Not a cut from his current release.