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07/24/20




WAYNE NICHOLSON & JOHN CAMPBELLJOHN/Elmore's Blues: Just when you thought the role of being the preserver of blues classics on Canadian labels was the sole province of Rory Block, along come these two blues geezers that know what it was to be a fan when Butterfield and the gang were making the blues safe for the suburbs. Here they tip the cap and raise the glass to Elmore James giving it up on a baker's dozen of James' tunes (with a ringer of their own to top it off) doing it as wild and raucous as James did it with the Bihari's in tow. Well known as the real deal in their spheres, they keep the legacies for all involved alive and well. Raw, real deal classic blues that put all four on the floor as well as take it to church.
(Grindstone)

CROOKED EYE TOMMY/Hot Coffee & Pain: My grandmother always used to yap about Cock Eyed Joe. I wonder if Joe and Tommy know each other. This Tommy are a pair of guitar slinging brothers that are clearly Ventura County rockers that have been steeped enough in the blues to be award winners over the last decade with a future so bright they need to wear shades. Keeping the basics front and center, they know how to do a genre bending set that raises the roof but keeps it blues all the way. The kind of set that comes at you out of nowhere and blows you away with its dedication and spirit that come right from after hours.
(Blue Heart 3)

HEATHCOTE HILL/Stories We Are Told: After you finish falling in love with Megan Herspring, you'll just plain get into being blow away by these upstate New York roots rocking pros and their pedigreed pals. Americana via folk/rock, the songs and songwriting and solid and the performance hits that sweet spot where it's totally polished without being cheesy and soulless. Nice solid adult pop for adult ears that haven't given up.
(311)

AL B ASILE/Last Hand: The always reliable Basile records without Duke Robillard hanging around for the first time in forever and finds his inner Mose Allison on this intimate, after hours concept album about an old man in love with a young lovely. Sounding somewhere between roots and film noir, this disc proves there's still a lot of new frontiers in these old bones. Call it Tom Waits lite if you need to explain it to your friends but it's Basile all the way. Well done.
(Sweetspot 9927)

DUOTRIO/In the Bright and Deep: In the tradition of 60s jazzbos that found it more edifying to work for Johnny Carson and go home to have dinner with their families, trumpet man Daniel Nissenbaum is professionally following a trajectory of that studio route without it dampening his ‘real' chops as well. Keeping it real here recording in Philly and Holland with two separate crews, it's no wonder he's so in demand on both sides of the mirror. Classic, creative jazz played straight but with swing, all his hats fit him perfectly as he delivers the goods in a grand style you have to really search for these days. A solid set throughout.
(Blujazz)

PAULETTE McWILLIAMS/Woman's Story: First off the woman that gave up her seat in Rufus to Chaka Khan is here to prove that black don't crack. Having gone on from there to an illustrious career that found her doing everything with everybody, McWilliams has come back to her jazz vocal roots with a right on set that can almost make you forget Nancy Wilson. Finding the jazz even in "Both Sides Now", this is a smoking set full of the shot in the arm jazz vocal fans require. Killer stuff.
(Blujazz 3485)

EDDIE DANIELS/Night Kisses: So we have Daniels leading Bob James, Dave
Grusin and Josh Nelson in a tribute to Ivan Lins. If you need to know anything more, you don't know anything about jazz or Brazilian music. Very much a team effort with the producer being the sixth man on the court, the 70 (plus) year old finds there's still room to stretch and broaden his horizons as this volume was a stretch for him despite his love for Brazilian music. A spiritual return to CTI/GRP days, everyone is grooving on this jam. Well done.
(Resonance 1031)

RENA STROBER/Imagine That!: Producer Fred Mollin is no stranger to doing successful songbook albums so it's no surprise he's right on the money with this Sesame Street tribute to the street's major domo, Joe Raposo. Since the show premiered in 1969, this really is one of those sets adults can enjoy with their kids as the street has been a constant for generations. Protean Broadway and media force of nature Strober is the right choice to bring the gentleness to the recording that's sure to comfort the kids (of all ages). A cracker jack of a first class release, this is a top shelf set for all.
(Knigthhawk)

JW JONES/Sonic Departures: How does Canada store up all these award wining blues busters? Recorded during the shut down in which Jones decided to learn abut new technologies and new toys the result being a rip roaring good time of big, bold and brassy white boy blues that rocks the house. Astute enough not to let the technology be the star and overwhelm the proceedings, anyone that's not a snooty audiophile would be hard pressed to tell how many different times and places this was recorded at. This is the proof that the show must go on!
(Solid Blues 5)

Volume 44/Number 269
July 24, 2020
MIDWEST RECORD
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2020 Midwest Record


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