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DAVID G. SMITH/One House: Running with Nashville's malcontent crowd that seems to make a living on the fringes, Smith is kind of an odd duck in today's arena as he's writing cut to the chase songs that reflect a lot of facets of everything going wrong today. Not exactly a contemporary Phil Ochs or Llewyn Davis, Smith shines a light on the underside seemingly with hopes of drying up the mold. A first class throw back to real meaty songwriting that makes you sit up and pay attention.

MARK T. SMALL/Smokin' Blues: A hard working, versatile guitar man that's been playing all the clubs on the blue highways for the last 40 years comes in with his solo tour de force where it's just him and his various guitars and styles doing that solo thing the way his heroes like John Lee Hooker and the others did in their time. A real blazing guitar player that has so many styles he can take you around the block and back without exhausting his repertoire, this solo stroll down blues memory lane has a certain charm that any white blues boy will get pronto on the natch. Running on a lot of out of the ordinary charm, this is a date that will get in your ears before you realize what hit you. Check it out, it's a ride worth taking.

LENNY SENDERSKY-TONY ROMANO/Desert Flower: This international sax/guitar jazz duo has that certain easy something that effortlessly draws new fans into the tent. With a helping hand from Joe Locke, Randy Brecker and others, this date just falls right into the easy going, mainstream pocket and never wears out it's welcome. While it's undeniable that the comrade on sax knows a thing or two about camaraderie, he brings full blooded playing over here while everyone else knows how to adapt their big apple leanings to the festivities. Simply one of those snappy records that just catches you by surprise and makes sure you have a good time. Well done.

TERRY GILLESPIE/Bluesoul: A teenage blues fan that wanted to be a blues man rather than pop star shows us what's going on with him 40 years later. Acknowledged as Canada's king of roots music, Gillespie plays with that kind of self employed gusto that probably has him moving any kind of crowd with ease. Not blues in the hard core sense but not blues flavored either, Gillespie makes Gillespie music and he's been at it so long, he's entitled to be accorded his own genre. Regarded as a national treasure in Canada, it's time we got more of a taste of his back 40 charms down here. Just the right stuff to check out when you need a diversion that'll keep you in good hands throughout.

Volume 38/Number 72
January 12, 2014
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2014 Midwest Record

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