Rick Galusha's Pacific St. Blues and Americana

Since inception (1989), Pacific St. Blues & Americana strives to be a discerning voice helping roots fans sift through the mountains of music released every year. We are not for everyone; we want to engage active, critical listeners that hear beyond d'jour. Interviews include: Johnny Winter, Bill Wyman (Rolling Stones), Jerry Wexler, Tommy Shannon & Chris Layton, B.B. King, Dr. John, Robin Trower, Robben Ford, Mato Nanji, Joe Bonamassa, Harry Manx, Sue Foley, Marshall Chess, Billy Lee Riley, Charlie Louvin, Kim Richey, Radney Foster, Eric Johnson, David Clayton Thomas, Al Kooper, Phil Chen (Wired, Blow By Blow), Ian McLagan, Art Neville, Southside Johnny, Miami Steve Van Zant, Nils Lofgren, Bruce Iglauer, Charlie Musselwhite, Studebaker John, Chris Duarte, Smokin' Joe Kubeck, Hamilton Loomis, Peter Karp, Roomful of Blues, James Harman, Hadden Sayers, Malford Milligan, Melvin Taylor, Otis Taylor, Dave Alvin, Coco Montoya, Jimmy Thackery, Marsha Ball, Maria Muldaur, Shelby Lynne, Magic Dick & J. Geils, Lil' Milton, BuddyGuy, Aynsley Lister, Matt Schofield, Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks, Guy Clark, Joe Ely, James Cotton, Robin & Jesse Davey, Hugh Coltman (Hoax), Sean Kelly (Samples), John Entwistle (The Who), Mark Olson (Jayhawks), Walter Wolfman Washington, Anthony Gomes, Bob Malone, Chubby Carrier, Buckwheat Zydeco, Murali Coryell, David Jacob Strain, DeAnna Bogart, Michael Lee Firkins, Guy Davis, Jason Ricci, John Doe, Little Feat, Matt Woods, MikeZito, Peter Buffett, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Corky Siegel, Todd Park Mohr, Watermelon Slim, Magic Slim, Corey Harris,- - - - - - ------------------------Radio archives: http://www.kiwrblues.podomatic.com/. Playlists: http://www.omahablues.com/ Reviews featured in http://www.blueswax.com/. Email: KIWRblues@gmail.com Live online; Sundays 9 a.m. (-6 GMT) http://www.897theriver.com/

Thursday, January 10, 2008

So you wanna buy some blues? Various albums worth your time

Thursday, September 11, 2003

What would I spend my money on these days?
Good question!
Glad someone asked me that finally.

About this time of the year I begin to kick around a Top Ten list for January. Some of the discs that are bound to be in that list include (in no particular order);

Robben Ford / Keep On Runing -

If you aren't hip to Robben Ford yet, the time has arrived. No list of great guitar players is complete without Robben Ford. Ford's performance at last year's Indigenous Jam was nothing short of spell-binding. Ford teams up with John Wooler to produce a polished yet passionate disc that includes some brilliant covers including; Nick Lowe's 'What So Funny 'Bout Peace Love & Understanding', 'Homework' as covered by the J. Geils Band and Albert Collins earlier, and 'Badge' by Eric Clapton & Cream. This is a VERY GOOD' album replete with horns, great band, and excellent music. What's not to like?

Various Artists / Remembering Patsy -

You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a tribute album these days. What's the deal? There are three reasons you're seeing so many tribute albums (most of which are stink-ola);
a.) Its an effort to bring rock fans back into the music buying mode (and in many cases into the blues genre specifically), b.) There is a need for tested "great" songs, and c.) They're fun and allow artists to record songs that are quick, easy, and fun.

You may THINK you don't know a lot of the music of Patsy Cline but chances are you actually do know quite a few of the songs she sang. Jazz chartreuse Diana Krall covers the Willie Nelson penned tune, Crazy; k.d. Lang simmers on 'Leavin' On Your Mind' and Natalie Cole's cover of I Fall to Pieces' (also covered by Linda Ronstadt) is excellent. Other artists featured on this VERY GOOD disc include multi-Grammy award-winning-it-kid Nora Jones, Patty Griffin, Amy Grant, Michelle Branch, and more.

Los Lonely Boys / Los Lonely Boys -

When Austin's Waterloo Records owner John Kuntz recommends a band; you listen. LLBs have lite the critical world on fire with a buzz hotter than Joe Perry hot sauce! Apparently three Hispanic brothers from the San Marcos area just north of Austin LLB use three part layered harmonies on top of a faux-Mexican/rock guitar sound and pumpin' Texas-blues sound. Its really worth some looking at. Like any debut albums this one is relatively unfocused on a 'specific sound' and, for me, that's what makes debut albums interesting.

Joe Bonamassa / Blues Deluxe -

This kid is quickly rising to the top. Luckily he's NOT on a major label and his fan base will develop at the same speed as his notoriety. You only have to see this guy one time to understand that he's got that something special that differentiates good from great. In many ways Bonamassa is the great continuation of 70's arena blues-rock with bands like Humble Pie and Spinal Tap (just kidding). A healthy mix between Jimi, Stevie, Carlos, and Keith, Bonamassa has a super sharp feel for playing the guitar with a keenly developing ability to do what so many great players can't do... write a bluesy pop song. I am a bonafide fan of this kid: maybe you should be too?

Jonny Lang / Long Time Coming -

This could very well be a 'GREAT album: time will soon tell.

Jam packed with great songs, excellent playing, and dynamic vocals I can't imagine anything coming between this record and imortality. I've seen Lang play numerous times and I can see the appeal. For whatever reason I still don't consider myself to be a "fan" but this album may soon teach this old dog to change his ways!

Lyle Lovett / My Baby Don't Tolerate -

I hate to fall into predictable trends; however, I suspect I'll be buying Lyle Lovett records as long as he's inspired to put them out. Oh sure, I know, he's now being labeled as Yuppie Roots Music. Oh hogwash. Just because someone finds commercial success does not mean they've sold out or watered down their art. After seemingly having suffered from writers block for nearly a decade Lovett finally releases a new album of new songs. While he won a Grammy for the album,' The Road from Ensenada' Lovett's last few albums have been a soundtrack, a greatest hits album, a live album, and a double album of cover songs written by some of the great Texas songwriters. So all I can say is, "IT's ABOUT TIME LOVETT!" And say that with great affection!

Now, as they say on M*A*S*H... that is all


Bela Lovemusic said...

I am glad that you mention Los Lonely Boys. Their first CD is certainly wonderful, but there is so much more to this band. For a real doze of the Blues, try Blue Cat Blues (recorded live in 2000 when they were very young) or their latest effort, SACRED. Their third CD, still untitled, is coming out sometime this summer.

To truly appreciate this band of brothers from San Angelo, TX, you have to see them perform live. Atten a show if at all possible. In the mean time, look for their live videos on Google and youtube. Henry, the oldest brother, has been featured on the cover of Guitar World as one of the best. Watch this video if you want to see some incredible guitar playing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1O5WIJJKT0

Nan said...

Also glad you cited Los Lonely Boys...my favorite band! but what's with the "faux-Mexican/rock guitar sound"?

Also wanted to mention that Henry (Garza) is featured in the documentary "Solidbodies, The 50 Year Guitar War". And, my friend Bela lovemusic couldn't have said it better - LLB is a "live" band... you don't really get it until you experience them on stage and unencumbered!