Cover photo by Bob Kieser © 2014 Blues Blast Magazine
Featured Blues Review – 9 of 9
The Blues Doctors – Roosters Happy Hour
Modern Blues Harmonica Label
13 songs – 52 minutes
Mississippi-based Adam Gussow and Alan Gross – the eponymous Blues Doctors – are a two-man band with some serious history. Gussow is probably best known for his 25 year stint in Satan and Adam, as well as being an award-winning author, the founder of www.ModernBluesHarmonica.com and the organiser of the Hill Country Harmonica festival. Gross, whilst perhaps less recognized (Roosters Happy Hour is his recording debut), has a resume that includes playing guitar with Terry “Harmonica” Bean, Kenny Kimbrough, Lightning Malcolm and Eric Deaton. And both men hold down day jobs as professors at the University of Mississippi: Gross in clinical psychology and Gussow in English and Southern Studies.
The duo named the album after their steady Friday night gig at Rooster’s Blues House in Oxford, Mississippi, where they first played together. Gross plays electric guitar. Gussow plays harmonica, tambourine pedal and kickdrum. They both sing and together they make a big and hugely enjoyable sound.
Opening with the aforementioned “Put It Where You Want It”, one of the album’s several highlights, it is immediately obvious why the Blues Doctors work so well together. Gussow’s DIY percussion beats out an incessant rhythm, Gross’s imaginative guitar work provides understated rhythmic support and Gussow’s virtuoso harmonica adds the catchy melody. When it is time for Gross’s solo, Gussow provides supportive backing harp.
And the musicians make the most of the limitations imposed on them by the fact that they don’t have a full band behind them. Sometimes over-played songs such as “Pride and Joy” and “Rock Me” take on a new life when treated almost as acoustic duets.
Seven of the 13 songs are instrumental on Roosters Happy Hour. Gussow takes the majority of the vocals but Gross also sings on “Rock Me” and “Trouble In Mind”. Perhaps because this is his recording debut, he sounds a little under-confident in his voice, which is a shame because he has a sly, knowing voice that would benefit from a little added attitude. Gussow’s voice reminds me somewhat of Kim Wilson’s – not in timbre or voice type, but in his eschewing of any attempt to sound anything other than himself, which also makes his vocals particularly affecting.
The key to the album however is Gussow’s wonderful harmonica playing, which meshes technical brilliance with deep blues feeling – constantly inventive, constantly entertaining and constantly enjoyable. For the musicians out there, Gussow helpfully even provides details of the relevant harp key (and whether or not he is using a chromatic harp) in the liner notes.
Reviewer Rhys Williams lives in Cambridge, England, where he plays blues guitar when not holding down a day job as a technology lawyer or running around after his children. He is married to an American, and speaks the language fluently, if with an accent.
Blues Overdose 4/24/2014 – These free tracks are available for 30 days. More info below.
1.) Click the link below where it says “Click HERE to download” just after any of the artist descriptions below. (You only need to do this once as all the tracks are there!)
3.) On The Blues Overdose Page click the on any artist to listen to the song. You do NOT have to join Soundcloud.com to listen or download these tracks!
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“Get On The Horse” from the album Get On The Horse
On their new third release “Get on the Horse”, Delta Generators have stepped up everything from songwriting to production. This album was mixed by famed Grammy winning producer David Z. (Prince, Eric Clapton, Jonny Lang, Buddy Guy, Etta James, Gov’t Mule etc.). The album was then mastered by Dave McNair (David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Los Lobos, Derek Trucks etc.). “Get on the Horse” was recorded just like every other DG album, live in the studio, with a few overdubs after the fact. The songs range from roots rock to slow blues, Americana to funky soul. This album was funded by DG fans through PledgeMusic.com. “Get on the Horse” has already been nominated for “2014 BLUES ALBUM of the YEAR” by the Independent Music Awards. (http://www.independentmusicawards.com/imanominee/13th/Album/Blues)
In the last couple of years, the Delta Generators have shared the stage with such acts asRobert Cray, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Three Dog Night, James Cotton, Jimmie Vaughn, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Johnny Winter, Walter Trout, Popa Chubby, Bonerama, Candye Kane, Michael Burks, John Lee Hooker Jr. and Sonny Landreth among many others. Get your CD or download of this new album now, see tour dates and more at: www.DeltaGenerators.com
Our MP3 title track “Get on the Horse” from our new album is attached. Album release date May 6th, 2014, but it’s already available for sale on our website and iTunes, Amazon Mp3 and all other maker online retailers.
Click HERE to download these Free tracks on our Soundcloud
“Move On” from the album Move On
Lisa Mann reminds you in this funky title track to keep pushing forward no matter what slings and arrows may fly your direction, and Her Really Good Band provides the Hallelujah chorus to back her up. Hailing from blues-soaked Portland, OR, Lisa Mann has been awarded the Cascade Blues Association’s coveted Muddy Waters Award 8 times for her skills on both vocals and bass guitar. Originally from West Virginia, Mann’s voice effortlessly straddles the line between the honey sweet warmth of the South, and the force-of-nature sound Mann has cultivated by mastering everything from rock to Memphis soul. Her clever blues balladry is complimented by her considerable prowess on bass, with grooves that touch on the hallowed soil of Soul greats James Jamerson and Bob Babbitt, and the funk of Larry Graham. . For more info visit www.lisamannmusic.com
Click HERE to download these Free tracks on Soundcloud
“I’ve Been Used” from the album Move On
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned… and if you want to know the tragic conclusion of this sordid musical tale, be sure to listen through to the end of “I’ve Been Used.” Guitarist Jeff Knudson delivers a blistering solo leading up to the dark finale. Hailing from blues-soaked Portland, OR, Lisa Mann has been awarded the Cascade Blues Association’s coveted Muddy Waters Award 8 times for her skills on both vocals and bass guitar. Originally from West Virginia, Mann’s voice effortlessly straddles the line between the honey sweet warmth of the South, and the force-of-nature sound Mann has cultivated by mastering everything from rock to Memphis soul. Her clever blues balladry is complimented by her considerable prowess on bass, with grooves that touch on the hallowed soil of Soul greats James Jamerson and Bob Babbitt, and the funk of Larry Graham. .
For more info visit www.lisamannmusic.com
Click HERE to download these Free tracks on Soundcloud