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  • JOHN NEMETH -- Name The Day, CD review
    its uptown rhythms and driving beat are a Memphis treat as satisfying as BBQ on Beale Street The title tune Name The Day is an ode to the classic Sam Dave style of R B with its swinging guitar stabs and smooth brass backing John s melodic and inviting lover s call Certainly every song on NTD could have been culled from the STAX Greatest Hits That Never Were collection it is conceivable that even the most ardent listener could mistake any song on NTD as a vintage side that slipped under the radar screen It is also refreshing to hear harmonica played in the context of these subtle soul excursions Nemeth s harp chops are as reminiscent of old school Stevie Wonder as they are Sonny Boy How many harmonica players does it take to screw in a lightbulb Answer ten one to screw it in and nine to say Little Walter never woulda done it that way Indeed John Nemeth s prodigious harp playing can stand up to that old saw all day Don t think that NTD is all soul and R B however Nemeth serves the blues aficionados notice with Heartbreak With A Hammer a fine South Side toe tapper that will fill the dance floor with shuffling humanity Throughout NTD Nemeth demonstrates that he has the inner rhythm and the old soul required to pull off this demanding material The modern vocalists capable of this level of play are on a short list Backing Nemeth on NTD are Bobby Welsh on guitar and piano Smokey Davis on bass Nick Fishman on drums Austin de Lone and Jake Smolowe on organ The amazing brass consists of Jeff Teczon on sax Frank Bailey on trumpet and Mike Rinta on trombone The minimal backing vocals are provided by

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/john-nemeth-cd-10/john-nemeth-name-day-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • MISSISSIPPI HEAT, Let's Live It Up!, Delmark CD Review
    Galilee I m steadfast and true is the song s message It flows through the potent rhythm and laconic lead of Primer s guitar Primer puts meaning and value into each note and the sound of his distinctive guitar will be recognized instantly I Got Some News Today contains more traditional Chicago blues by Primer Betty Sue completes the hat trick of songs sung by Primer It has an extremely fun old time rock n roll rhythm and it s a road racer It gives Lacocque a chance to demonstrate his Little Walter influence and skills Another Sleepless Night contains some wicked axe shredding from Weathersby and is loaded with much emotion Too bad the blasting horns sound synthesized The pain in Visor s voice doesn t match the suffering contained within the lyrics but you ll love the few bars of the traditional funeral march included in Lacocque s gloomy and temperamental chromatic harp solo She Died From A Broken Heart contains a very sweet melody which sharply contrasts with the tragic lyrics Visor wrote it about her best friend It reveals the consequences of continuing to live in a doomed relationship The harp shares the anguish of the lyrics The guitar moves you to take control of the situation The backing vocals are both sexy and haunting The overall melody is melancholic which is enhanced via Weathersby s solo Let s Live It Up is a one chord rockin boogie that Lacocque describes as John Lee Hooker on steroids It features a drilling bass drum rhythm section and a forget about tomorrow theme The guitar and organ fills are amazing Here Visor wails on vocals as much as Lacocque squalls on harp Like the title track Don t Cry For Me has a live for today attitude and

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/mississippi-heat/mississippi-heat-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • Dave Weld and the Imperial Flames, CD review
    Dave Kicking the tempo up the title track Burnin Love cooks along like a road trip This rockin little number has sax guitar and piano trading licks while layering a nice danceable groove behind Dave s relaxed tenor voice and humorous ad libs On I Got Mad Dave hands the vocal mic to drummer Jeff Taylor His smooth spot on vocal treatment reminds me of classic Johnny Guitar Watson On this track we are once again treated to Abb Locke on sax soloing rhythmically There is also a first taste of Dave Weld s trademark slide guitar playing The tune which is destined to be a crowd pleaser has some nice four part vocal harmonies on the last chorus Dave sings a wonderful harmony hook with Monica on She s Mine an up tempo warning to all the fellas who may have their eyes on his girl He sings yeah she ll socialize but don t think she s got wandering eyes Nuff said Monica takes the lead vocal on her original tune Talk Dirty with a kittenish growl and unabashed enthusiasm as she begs talk dirty talk talk dirty to me If you liked classic Lou Anne Barton give Monica Myhre a listen This girl s got chops and she s sober Monica displays spot on intonation great phrasing and a dose of moxy that makes this song more than just cheesecake Classic Delta blues guitar starts the slow grind Donnie Lee Dave s tribute to his late mother The song describes his mother s courage in the face of poverty illness and her childhood of playing on a dirt floor He speaks of her wise words about women he wished he d heeded and finally her sad passing that taught him how to die This is some deep blues Slide guitar guru and Dave s long time friend Lil Ed Williams makes a guest appearance with Ed s Boogie This song nearly jumps right off the music machine as it careens along at breakneck speed Ed hollers We re gonna boogie all night boogie all day with his unmistakable vocal delivery and then proceeds to light his guitar on fire Slowing it down to a fast clip Dave laments his lost Peace of Mind with the lyric I had that rope around my neck feet up on the chair Life don t get no better gonna swing on away from here His prayer is answered in the form of a good woman who gave him back his Peace of Mind The end vamp with its smoking guitar layered with the cookin rhythm section and tasty vocal injections from Monica surely will satisfy Monica belts out a warning to all us women on Listen To Mama in a spirited shuffle that is the perfect framework for Dave s tasty slide playing I can t get enough of Monica who like Dave sings without affectation but with plenty of conviction and humor Listen to Mama she s nobody s fool

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/dave-weld-cd/dave-weld-burnin-love-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • Pinetop Perkins & Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Joined at the Hip, CD review
    that is suggestive without being risqué Similar to that aspect but a little more forward in its lyrics is an easy shuffle Eyesight To The Blind written by Sonny Boy Williamson II aka Rice Miller Willie s vocal timing is perfect as he sings when she gets to lovin she gives eyesight to the blind These are the phrases that brought notoriety to the blues years ago back when you didn t hear those kind of lyrics on America s radio stations Clever double entendre filled songs still draw people into the clubs today as they cheer laugh and enjoy the earthiness of the blues The CD opens with Willie Big Eyes Smith s up tempo song Grown To Be A Man that he co wrote with his son Kenny The clever lyrics and the catchy rhythm immediately make your body move with the steady downbeat It makes you feel like you re right there in Chicago listening to him play and sing Bob Stroger on bass is strong and solid locking with Kenny s drums as Willie sings with his Delta inflected vocals and plays melodic tones on his harp Smith delivers vocals that are fun such as in the jazz swing Cut That Out by John Lee Sonny Boy Williamson with Pinetop answering cut that out to Willie s phrase The bass impressively walks up and down the fret board as Pinetop plays a boogie woogie in the background behind Willie s singing and harp solo Willie is skillful as he sings and plays some licks on his harp between phrases The harmonica has that slightly distorted sound that the blues is known for The CD is kept interesting by introducing different sounds such as Take Your Eyes Off My Woman that is reminiscent of a Got My Mojo Working feel Willie displays his diversity by playing the harmonica in clear and precise notes as opposed to the slightly distorted gritty sounds he performed in Grown To Be A Man The slow blues Walkin Down The Highway is accented by the guitar as the piano and harmonica open the tune by showing a different style and keeping interest by changing the pace of the CD Gamblin Blues by Melvin Lil Son Jackson has a haunting arrangement to it with the unusual guitar lick in the background that almost mimics the bass line This song showcases Willie s voice as he sings with a little vibrato Here his harp intro calls out drawing you in This is one of those numbers that makes you want to find a partner to dance close with Pinetop Perkins sings his own arrangement to the Thomas A Dorsey Take My Hand Precious Lord as a slow blues based gospel song He and Willie play the intro and then take turns playing rhythm behind the other s solo Pinetop ends the song with a sense of humor playing a short ditty of Jingle Bells and then a soft giggle You can t help but

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/pinetop-willie-cd/joined-at-the-hip-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • CHAINSAW DUPONT CD reviews, Acoustified Electrified and The Real Guitar Hero
    to its name and showcases Dupont s considerable guitar skills Recorded three years ago at Chicago s late lamented Hot House which was in a building that now houses the new location of Buddy Guy s Legends Dupont delivers the prototypical modern day Chicago blues show Songs are stretched out to as many as 12 minutes and the only non original on the album is a funked up version of I ll Be Doggone the Marvin Gaye hit There are six musicians on stage including a two man horn section and they miraculously manage to stay out of each other s way It s a decent effort but I have a definite preference for Acoustified Electrified The electric portion of the show was recorded at the now defunct Bossman s Blues Center a black jook joint near the Lake Street el tracks The sound is so raw I m surprised that the tape didn t pick up the overhead trains passing by Compared to the polite handclaps of The Real Guitar Hero the crowd is getting into it with spontaneous singalongs and encouraging shouts The bass player gets a little too funkdafied on the cover of Killing Floor but this

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/chainsaw-dupont/chainsaw-dupont-cds-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • Jimmy Warren Band, CD review
    classic players such as the Kings B B and Albert and modern pickers like Billy Gibbons Mark Knopfler and Amos Garrett he stands as a unique guitarist with a talent for laying down a silky riff as well as a spicy solo The CD opens with Watermelon Money one of my favorite tracks It has all the elements of a great blues song Warren plays some excellent guitar here and the band chips in with brilliant support On the instrumental Darker Shades of Gray Warren is in a Jimi state of mind paying homage to Hendrix while adding his own satisfying light touches Anna Ulrich contributes background vocals to two of the album s tracks Her voice provides a nice female accompaniment to Jimmy s heartfelt vows on the smooth I m Gonna Love You and the title track No More Promises Guesting on one song is the stellar slide guitarist Bob Margolin He takes a stinging solo on the otherwise steady rolling It Ain t Fair In what seems to be the norm these days Warren sings all the lead vocals plays the keyboards and drums besides playing lead guitar on all the tracks The other players in the band deserve mention notable is the bass playing of Mike Boyle and John DiGregorio does a fine job backing up Warren playing rhythm guitar usually an uncelebrated role The band s drummer Charles Price isn t heard on this CD Lyrics for Warren s 12 original songs are in the country and or blues vein of topics workin for the man out of work and down on my luck and love gone bad One gets the impression that Warren lived these songs by the conviction in his voice when he sings them Jimmy Warren is quite a talented guitarist and

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/jimmy-warren-cd/jimmy-warren-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  • Peter Karp & Sue Foley, He Said She Said, CD Review
    CD It is blues based in roots music that is dedicated to all facets of love in and out of relationships that we can all relate to at one time or another The production and arrangements have the couple alternating duets with solo performances thus making the CD interesting as each track is different Foley and Karp share equal ground as accomplished singer songwriters and talented guitarists The disc opens with a catchy cut that is reminiscent of a Bonnie Raitt type blues rock duet complete with sensuous slide guitar Treat Me Right depicts a couple having an argument and then transcends to the second song So Far So Fast a reflective folk number by Sue Foley that displays her wistful voice expressing surprise at unwittingly falling in love Peter Karp s earthy vocal delivery in the melodic song Wait has a great play on words as each line describes him in opposing views as he laments that everything changed when you left me here baby Two cuts stand out that highlight Foley s voice The torch like song Danger Lurks by Foley and the jazzy Scared by Karp showcases this songstress ability to show you a dark side of love and lust with her jazz infused deep breathy vocal description of getting involved in something over her head The CD s overall production by Karp Foley and Dae Bennett as well as the arrangements and strategic placement of the songs are excellent However the song Regret seems misplaced in a concept album concerning love and relationship as a couple Karp s soulful Ready For Your Love with haunting lyrics that burn there s a trail of tears behind every one of your steps of lost souls and broken men is brilliant Yet there were some lyrics in another song

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/peter-karp-sue-foley/karp-foley-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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  •  Janiva Magness, The Devil is an Angel Too, CD review
    Contemporary Blues Female Artist of the Year in 2006 Now fresh from her 2009 Blues Music Award for B B King Entertainer Of The Year she is only the second woman to ever win this award Magness is releasing her second album on the Alligator label and plans to tour extensively to promote it In The Devil she opts for a rawer and earthier tone than in her previous Alligator release What Love Will Do She takes chances pushing her vocal styling into new ground she doesn t always succeed but her gutsiness is breathtaking Magness kicks things off with the title track by Julie and Buddy Miller the rumbling percussion and guitar mirroring her growling snarling tribute to the allure of the dark side That knowing attitude pervades the next track I m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down a riff on karmic justice for the slipshod lover In Magness s world love isn t for the faint hearted Even the light hearted and rocking George Jackson Clarence Carter ditty Slipped Tripped and Fell in Love depicts love as an unexpected pratfall a kind of banana peel approach to affection Here Magness is more wry than righteous with infectious guitar work by both Dave Darling the album producer and Zach Zunis baritone sax by Jeff Turmes Magness husband and back up vocals by Brie Darling Even when Magness is warbling about how much she loves her man in Joe Tex s I Want to Do Everything For You with Brie Darling and Spanky D on backup vocals she sends this soulful melody across that fine line between adoration and obsession You almost want to tell the object of her affection Run for your life Magness saves her worst venom however for the other woman man in Homewrecker spitting out the

    Original URL path: http://www.chicagobluesguide.com/reviews/cd-reviews/janiva-magness-cd/janiva-devil-cd-page.html (2016-02-16)
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