Tag Archives: Joe Bonamassa

A Baker’s Dozen of Blues: March 17, 2014

A Baker's Dozen Of Blues

A Baker’s Dozen Of Blues

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone. Hope the lead up to this Green Monday was well behaved….
We are just pleased as ever to say that Micah Kesselring is our #1 artist for this week. Micah is a young, throw-back, old soul kinda guitar playin’, sing-songing artist who I just can’t get enough of.

We welcome to the Bakers Dozen play list, two awesome and awe-inspiring artists. Randy Oxford and his fabulous high energy band, and Jim Suhler who brings the Texas Brazos to the blues. When Jim isn’t creating super releases like this current one, he is George Thorogood’s second guitarist. That’s not a bad resume! I hope you check these two new folks out and give them some love.

Our ‘Amuse Bouche’ this week features a Irish Stew of the Blues. We chose some artists who are undeniably of Irish descent, and then did some name research and found others with Irish surnames. So they make for a fantastic collection of tunes that should have us all  singing “I Ain’t Drunk, I’m Just Drinking’ from that classic Irish surnamed gentleman of the blues Mr. Albert Collins! Slainte !

Remember to tune into the Radio version of A Baker’s Dozen of Blues,
on MojoWax Radio presented by Blues Music Magazine at LIVE365.com.

Broadcast times are as follows:
Tuesday - 10pm EST
Wednesday - Noon EST
Thursday -  11pm EST
Friday -  4pm EST
Saturday – 2pm EST
please do the math for your own timezone.

A Baker’s Dozen:

CW LW CD TITLE Artist/ Web Site Record Label Track#/Title
1 2 “Log Cabin Blues” Micah Kesselring Self 6 Mean Uptown Mama
2 3 “Laying Down Our Blues” Andra Faye & Scott Ballentine Self 3 Slow Burning Love
3 4 “Happy For Good” Ori Naftaly Band Acum Records 2 Envy
4 5 “Might Just Get Lucky” Deb Ryder BeJeb Music 6 Ce Soir Ce Soir
5 6 “Wanted Woman” Niecie Ride The Tiger Records 7 Just Can’t Walk Away
6 7 “Roosters Happy Hour” The Blues Doctors Modern Blues Harmonica 6 Sugar
7 9 “I Am The Blues” Michael Packer img 9 I’m In Love
8 10 “You Better Mind” Mudcat 30 Miles UP 1 When Mama’s Happy
9 11 “Cry Of Love” Shaun Murphy Vision Wall 2 Gotta Mind To Travel
10 13 “Far As I Can See” Matt Schofield Provogue 2 Clean Break
11 12 “New Attitude” Root Doctor Self 1 Rear View Sight
12 ~ “It Feels Good” Randy Oxford Band Figgleblall Records 1 Trouble
13 ~ “Panther Burn” Jim Suhler & Monkey Beat Underworld Records 8 Sky’s Full of Crows

Chef Suggestions:

“Sounds of Home” Damon Fowler Blind Pig 9 TV Mama
“Baptized By The Mud” Kat Danser Independent 10 Prove It On Me Blues
“Blue Yonder” Hard Garden Hard Garden Music 2 Depot Blues
“Belle of The Blues” Lisa Biales Big Song Music 8 Peach Pickin’ Mama
“Guitar Angels” James Armstrong Catfood Records 8 Saturday Night Women
“Goin’ To The Delta” Kim Simmonds & Savoy Brown Ruf Records 2 Nothing Like The Blues
“30th Anniversary Special Edition” Blue Lunch Special Rip Cat Records 10 Sixty Minute Man
“Wicked” 24th Street Wailers Self 10 Aw Baby
“Blues With Friends” Dixie Peach Big Shew Records 1 Too Much Trouble
“Chunkabilly Blues” Chris Lord & Cheatin’ River Self 5 Jelly Bean
“He Digs Me” Sunday Wilde Self 9 Gimme One More

Amuse Bouche:

We’re all Irish on
St. Pattys Day!
Bad For You Baby Gary Moore   5 Walkin’ Thru The Park
Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa Beth Hart w/Joe Bonamassa   2 Chocolate Jesus
Rattle & Hum U2   12 When Love Comes To Town
Soulscape Harrison Kennedy   12 Caught You Creepin’
Life of Ease Sean Carney   1 Life of Ease
Compass Polly O’Keary   1 Fool’s Gold
Next To Nowhere Beth McKee   7 Tug of War
Cold Snap Albert Collins   5 Cold Snap
Congratulations Amy Hart   7 Rich Ass Daddy
Getting There Quinn Sullivan   2 Catch A Groove
Unscheduled Flight Chris Cain   1 Drinking Straight Tequilla
Mr. Used To Be Chris O’Leary   4 Blues Is A Woman
What’s Wrong With This Picture Van Morrison   2 Whinin’ Boy Moan
Crest of A Wave, Best of Rory Gallagher   7 Calling Card


Love, Peace & Chicken Grease
©Blues411.com 2014
Where Blues Thrives

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Wednesday’s One: James Cotton: Cotton Mouth Man (Alligator Records)

James Cotton Cotton Mouth Man

James Cotton
Cotton Mouth Man

These days it is common for artists to play on one and other’s releases, it provides a great opportunity for artistic cooperation and it allows an artist to share the spotlight with others whom he respects and admires.

With that being said check out this release which features the likes of Chuck Leavell, Gregg Allman, Ruthie Foster, Warren Haynes, Keb Mo, Colin Linden, Delbert McClinton and more – that in itself is worth the price of admission then add the production and ferocious drumming (and excellent songwriting) of Tom Hambridge and you got an all-start concert right here on your iPod, iPad, computer et al. But this is not just an all-star gathering, we also get to hear James work with his excellent road band which consists of Tom Holland, Jerry Porter, Noel Neal and aforementioned Darrell Nullisch.

Straight from the first track this release drives right to the soul of the blues and the man who’s name is on the release. ‘Cotton Mouth Man’ starts with a rocking rhythm and goes for the throat with Darrell Nullisch singing lead to some stunning harp attack by the master himself. A deep biographical tune, we get the tour of Mr. Cotton’s trail to today. As (one of the many) guest guitarist Joe Bonamassa sets fire to the fretboard with his own identifiable style and the harp work by Mr. Cotton is both a lesson on how to play and how to REALLY play!

Back to the disc, Mr. Allman offers up some throw back vocals on ‘Midnight Train’ as former Allman Brother keyboardist extraordinaire Chuck Leavell rolls those eighty-eights with a verve and finesse that serves up a solid groove – and when Mr. cotton blows that railroad train styled harp we are at once transported to riding the rails and understanding it’s relationship to the blues harp through out history.

Slowing it down to feature Mr. Keb Mo on vocals we get served a big dish of ‘Mississippi Mud’. There is an understated excellence to Keb’s vocal presentations that might seem so easy to come by but upon listening reveals that if it were this easy then many more would be copping to that fact. The pairing of Mr. Mo and Mr. Cotton provides us with some fine enjoyment as the roll on into the heat and pace of the deep south Blues.

There is not a soft track on this release, and while it is tempting to cover each and every track (because they are all worth the spotlight) I will just hi-light just one more that seems to me a special track. ‘Bonnie Blue’ is the name of the cotton plantation where James was born. Featuring Mr. Colin Linden playing deep soulful resonator guitar while Mr. Cotton steps up to the microphone to sing his own personal thoughts on his birthplace. Think about what this means and says folks, step away from the keyboard and cell phones – listen and ingest what Mr. cottons is singing about and his his own personal path. It is a wonderful and very personal song and it’s reaches straight to your soul.

Thank you Bruce Iglauer, for this release and for providing Mr. Cotton with a world wide network by which his music can be heard. This release is a perfect portrait of an amazing artist and his life’s work and toil. BTW this release hits the streets on May 7, 2013, be the first to grab it and play it loud and proud!

Visit Mr. Cotton’s web home at http://www.jamescottonsuperharp.com/ or stop by Alligator records at http://www.alligator.com/ good times are guaranteed.

Love, Peace & Chicken Grease

©Blues411.com 2013
Where Blues Thrives
Photos: Courtesy of artists


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CD Reviews: Sizzling Summer CD’s, Three For The Road!

Man, there ain’t nuthin’ like summer time, you can do what you want and take the music with you. Loud and proud standin’ out in the crowd with these tunes just perfect for summer fun….

Lady Bianca – Servin’ Notice (Magic-O Records)

Starting with that groove that makes your head nod – up and down to that funky, syncopated rhythm of the ages. “He told Me The Same Thing Too” the first cut, is timeless in its simplicity of statement and also in it’s passionate vocals by this talented lady from the West Coast.

Following that funk is a slow burner “You Got Me Drinkin’ ” features a bottom of the barrel bass line that will act like a defibrillator on your heart should you need it coupled with lyrics that deftly expresses this lady’s need for the bottle as she calls them by name as if they were part of the family.

Lady Bianca shows her smooth touch on the ivories as she tells the tale of “Stealin’ “. Yes indeed, love is always so nice when you’re stealin’, the thrill of the act at damn the consequences. A modified second line feel helps the feel of the songs message keeping it light but passionate, good yet oh so bad.

This twelve song release showcases Ms. Bianca’s vocal range and talents very well. She can burn down the mission or raise the rafters of the church, slow smoke lies till they are sweeter than the truth and tell you a story that is at once timeless while being spank brand new. Check her out, this is a wonderful and much needed soul R&B blues release that should garner awards in the years balloting. She could be the best kept secret on the soul blues circuit, but not for long.


Shawn Starski – self titled (cookitup music)

Speaking of names to know, Mr. Shawn Starski has earned a solid reputation by playing with the likes of Jason Ricci, Kelley Hunt and Otis Taylor – that’s not chopped liver for sure. This is THE album we have been waiting for.

Straight out of the box Mr. Starski rocks us with “Sea of Faces “ a biographic anthem that aptly states his position and his resolve to move forward as spoken thru the lyrics and his guitar work.
Picking it up with da funk of “Was It You” he grooves it a nasty bit of fuzz-faced guitar work over a high end funky chicken sort of rhythm – his vocals are somewhat reminiscent of Joe Bonamassa with a low end depth that I did not expect but love.

Throughout this release Shawn shows his versatility and expertise at various styles and forms of music. Whether it be the jump swing styled “Dirty Deal “, the Mississippi Hill Country influenced “How It Come To Be “, or the sultry torch burner “The Truth” with his wife, Ellen Deible. One track that showcases his wide swath of abilities is the instrumental “Hallows Eve”. A very tasty bit of Jazz that weaves in and out in a musical tryst that combines Return to Forever, Joe Beck/David Sanborn progressive rock-jazz music of the seventies. Quite tasty indeed in it’s capture of the era and his moving forward of the styles. His several instrumentals are captivating and wondrous to behold.

As I mentioned earlier this is THE release we have been waiting for. It firmly places Shawn in the forefront of the young guitarists club. His style, tone and tasteful licks are a joy to hear and I am certain that there will be more in the future that will build upon this success.


Harper And Midwest Kind – Live at The Blues Museum

Summer also holds for us a certain nostalgic feel, we like to return to places we have been before. The feel of those old cut offs against our skin in just the right places is vital to many a summer recollection.

This is what we have in Peter Harper’s new release Live At The Blues Museum. A comfortable, good fitting set of excellent music that feels good against our ears. Recorded in December, 2011 Harper and his band Midwest Kind were inducted into the Canada South Blues Society Hall of Fame – congrats.

Opening the release with his signature fast paced harmonica gyrations that blends into a funky bit of soul strutting by him and the band that once again morphs in to “Sure There’s A Place” at about 2:30. Mr. Harper has one of the finer voices in the Blues/Roots family of music. Stunningly clear and quite versatile, no doubt to the cessation of cigarette smoking, he provides us with his prayer that he can surely find a place to call home.

To the slashing wah-wah work of Matt Besey on guitar Peter and the Kind takes us into his world of political/cultural songwriting with “Does Anybody Really Care”. Harper hails from Australia and is very close to the Aboriginal culture that are native to his home land. He takes it a step further and reinforces his ties to them by playing the Didgeridoo – not your typical Blues instrument. A hollowed out tree trunk that can be fashioned to any key by adjusting the length of the tube it is a very unique instrument that is also used in healing rituals by the Indigenous people of Australia.

What seems to be an anthem of sorts the break into a deep grooved “Love = Peace = Freedom” once again riling the political close mindedness and separatists that if we all came together and worked for the common good we would truly attain the freedom that is ours to claim. This track moves right into “One Day” where we get some more luscious harp licks intertwined with nasty guitar chord work and a rock steady bottom end by Chris Wiley Smith.

This is a super capture of his live shows, there is a certain dynamic edge that has been somehow transcribed into the grooves (ahh, burned into the digital media logs – ugh sounds rather lame huh?). A solid choice for blasting at the beach or for settling into a groove on the front porch with some iced tea, NOT a Foster’s.

So there it is, some sizzling releases for your early summer enjoyment. There are many more out there that could fill the bill from harp masters, to guitar wizards and yes some keyboard gymnasts who tickle the ivories with style and aplomb. All ya gotta do open yer mind and look for them, ya never know when you will find a keeper that might turn into your own personal anthem for the summer months to come.

Until next time,
Love, Peace & Chicken Grease
©Blues411.com 2012
photos: courtesy of artists



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