Sunday, June 30, 2013
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Friday, June 28, 2013
Here is Little Willie Littlefield performing "Kansas City"and a performance with Candye Kane.
Stony Plain has just issued Avalon, the fourth of Rory Block recordings that pays tribute to some of the blues legends that inspired her and from whom she learned in developing her own music. To me this is a far better recording than her Reverend Gary Davis tribute where some of her vocals, or should I say shrieking on some vocals, made several of the selections unlistenable.
Thursday, June 27, 2013
|Zac Harmon, James Goode, Finis Tasby, Anson Funderburgh (courtesy VizzTone)|
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
The music of Sly and the Family Stone was innovative and has influenced so many artists. Sly Stone's music's impact can still be heard today. Reflecting this influence is an extraordinary release by Global Noize, Sly Reimagined on the Zoho Roots label that shows how Sly and the Family Stone remain contemporary.
Jason Miles is the instigator (along with DJ Logic) behind Global Noize and this release. Jason came to notice with his groundbreaking synth programming for Miles Davis’ ‘80s recordings Tutu, Music from Siesta and Amandla, and later contributed to a genre-crossing array of artists as well as a variety of legacy-based dedications to Marvin Gaye, Ivan Lins, Vandross, and Grover Washington. Miles, a visionary conceptualist, producer, arranger, composer and keyboard wizard, has organized this tribute to the legendary Sly and the Family Stone with a remarkable group of contemporary singers and musicians including, but not limited to) (b DJ Logic; vocalists Nona Hendryx; Roberta Flack; Fatu; Maya Azucena; and Mike Mattison; guitarist Will Bernard; trumpeters Ingrid Jensen and Barry Danielian; saxophonists Jay Rodriguez and Ron Holloway; bassist Amanda Ruzza; and drummer Greg Errico (Sly’s original drummer).
Sunday, June 23, 2013
Jerry Mason of the Boogie Report, just posted that the passing of Bobby Bland has been confirmed. Bland was one of the greatest blues singers of the post-war period with a career that started some sixty odd years ago. One of the Beale Streeters with Johnny Ace and others, Bland's made a number of classic recordings for Duke, ABC and Malaco Records that influenced countless blues, rock and soul performers. I was fortunate enough to see him perform over the course of several decades and even if his range lessened over the years, his vocals are models on timing and phrasing that would-be blues singers would do well to study.
Friday, June 14, 2013
Here is the legend himself:
The great Vi Redd with Count Basie, singing and wailing on the tenor sax. This clip inspired me to make this post.
Thursday, June 13, 2013
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
This is a change in pace for her as nine of the ten songs on this are interpretations of vintage material in contrast to her originals. Biales interprets songs associated with Blu Lu Barker, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Sippie Wallace and others. Opening is her straight cover of Barker’s peppy A Little Bird Told Me, followed by her rendition of Sister Rosetta Tharpe’s Strange Things Happening Every Day, likely the most familiar song here.
Biales roots includes country as well as blues as indicated by the lovely bluegrass-infused rendition of Mississippi John Hurt’s Let the Mermaid’s Flirt With Me, with fiddle and mandolin in the backing. Hey country-based singing also lends a nice flavor to Sippie Wallace’s bawdy You Got To Know How. Magic Garden is the only original here and her honey-sounding performance benefits from Doug Hamilton’s violin and Bill Littleford’s guitar. A lovely reading of Careless Love is followed by an evocative I Only Have Eyes For You (modeled on The Flamingo’s hit) with Nye and Stelmaszack playing tastefully behind her. Biales has played Patsy Cline onstage and Write Me In Care of the Blues, was a song she uncovered researching the part, and she certainly does wonderfully on this traditional country gem. The recording closes with the title track, another Sister Rosetta Tharpe composition, that Lisa and the band provide a crisp reading.
Lisa Biales is an appealing singer who brings a mix of roots influences to Singing My Soul, a delightful, if not earthshaking recording of old school country, swing and blues.
I received my review copy from a publicist. Here is a video of Lisa performing Magic Garden.
Sunday, June 09, 2013
The annual Tinner Hill Blues Festival was at Cherry Hill Park in the City of Falls Church, Virginia for a full afternoon of blues.
Perhaps the highlight for me was Sista Monica Parker and her band that included the DC area's marvelous Deanna Bogart on saxophone. Sista Monica Parker is aA vocalist with power and nuance, she can caress a lyric before belting out her heartbreak or defiance. Mix in her ability to communicate with the audience in introducing her songs and her excellent band with Danny B on keyboards, and one has one superb blues performance.
|Pearl Bailes, Eleanor Ellis and Gina DeSimone of the Acoustic Blues Women|
|Beverly 'Guitar' Watkins|
Next up was Sista Monica who I already have raved about. After Monica, Daryl Davis came on the pump some boogie woogie, blues and rock and roll. Chris Polk was with him on guitar and Deanna Bogart joined Daryl for his set as Daryl showed why he is a "Boogie Woogie Man," and even channeled Chuck Berry in his set (Daryl is Chuck's East Coast pianist).
|Chris Polk on guitar and Daryl Davis|
Saturday, June 08, 2013
Opening was Phil Wiggins and the Chesapeake Sheiks which surprised and delighted with a performance that included some gypsy jazz inflected swing as well as blues. What a terrific set of material that included Duke Ellington's "Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me," the standard "Rosetta" that is best associated with Earl 'Fatha' Hines and "Roberta," which was one of the great tunes that Phil did with John Cephas.
The excellent band included Matt Kelley on guitar, Marcus Moore on violin, Eric Shranek on bass and Ian Walters on piano. It was a refreshing set and when I asked about whether this showed a bit of the late Howard Armstrong's influence after the show, Phil mentioned he had done some of this material with the late West Virginia performer, Nat Reese.
Roy Bookbinder was marvelous with his wry humor, wonderful guitar playing (one of Reverend Gary Davis' students) and John Hammond conjured up Robert Johnson, John Lee Hooker and Big Joe Williams in a fabulous set.
I should mention that I am a volunteer with this wonderful festival that continues today at Cherry Hill Park.