Plaid Hat Communications
Old News is Good News
The modest CD jacket could fool you. No flashy artwork, no frills. It didnt take this blues fan long to discover that all the flash was recorded on the very cool looking disc inside the jacket. From the opening "desert island" distant drumbeat of the traditional hymn "Get On Board Little Children", I was definitely on board. Track 2 is a definite change of pace and seems to be playing homage to the classic Southern Rock/Blues tunes you might find on an 8-track in any 78 Oldsmobile on an Alabama Saturday night, yet it does so with a very modern sound and vocals that would have been at home in the '78 Olds or the '08 Cadillac.
Track 3, "Damn Shame", is a musical delight. The lyrics are the sort of poetry that first tugs at your chest, and then leaves you hunting for a bottle of Old Number 7, yet the song could have been done as an instrumental and been fantastic. That blues ballad is followed up by a more upbeat and almost comically themed "Permanent Lovin Man" on track 4. An instant classic for the blues fan that likes to smile when they hear the blues. By the time you reach track 5, Chris Simmons' velvet rasp has you captured, and you are caught unaware by an old familiar voice... that of living legend Leon Russell. Leons appearance on the record gives the listener a real treat. The harmonies and terrific lyrics make this easily one of the best "listens" on the record. Track 6, "Lyin Again" puts you back in the Jack Daniels again, but it goes down smooth. Another straight out of the swamp ballad, making it right at home preceeding track 7, the Delta Blues feeling "Hellhounds On My Trail". I could almost feel the ghost of Mr. Johnson riding in the backseat while I drove along an Alabama country road listening to the tune. Track 8, "To Be Lovin You", will leave you feeling like something is missing. Whats missing is a whole albulm of songs with that style of Blue/Jazz piano. I hope the world does not have to wait too long for that. Its a great tune and right at home on this record, but when you are humming it tomorrow, you will be wondering how many more like it there are! Track 9, "The Blues Most Every Day", is traditional Chicago pool room blues. The only thing missing on it is the sound of someone busting a tight 9 ball rack in the background right before one of the stellar but short guitar solos. "Whiskey Wine Blues" on track 10 is more of track 9, but with an even bluer feel, and again you will be tasting a shot of Jack, only this time, just finish the bottle. We return to a hair raising (and I mean that literally) gospel tune with track 11 and "Amazing Grace". A song I have heard no fewer than 10,000 times in my life, and this time was like the first time. Its a very nice touch for the end of the record, but like track 8 it leaves you wondering if there's more where that came from.
The most fun part of the whole recording is that each time through, I hear a new note, a new sound, a new instrument that I missed last time. This record could be the end of the CD changer. On the other hand, its gonna save me a lot of space in the console box of my pickup.