11 tracks/48 minutes
Roger Girke is a singer, writer and guitarist from Wilmington, DE. Roger is a true road warrior, with over 4,000 live shows, concerts, festivals and numerous recording sessions and releases. This includes a top ten finalist at the 2009 International Blues Challenge and two time “Self-Produced CD” finalist at the 2005 and 2009 IBC.
Silver Lining, his fifth CD release, includes nine originals and two covers, with Roger handling the guitar and vocals on all tracks. His band for this CD, The Wondering Souls, include Glenn Ferraccone, Drums; Tam Sullivan, Keyboards; Bennett Sykes, Bass; Andrew Haley, Drums; and Dan Gutwein, Sax. Guest artists include Jimmy Pritchard, Bill Schilling, John Swana, Chris Farr and Joe Anderson.
Silver Lining, offers the listener a well-crafted collection of Blues and R&B songs. A couple of highlights include the following tracks.
The opening number, “Gas And A Match” starts the CD off with a bang. It features vocals and guitar from Roger and lets Dan Gutwein stretch out a little on his Sax. When Roger sings “Sometimes We Burn So Hot, Sometimes We Just Don’t Catch” I think we all know what he’s talking about. With Roger’s soulful vocals and Dan’s sax “Ring My Bell”, another original song, has a classic Stax R&B groove. One of the two instrumentals on the CD, “The Philly Boogaloo”, offers guest artist Bill Schilling some time to shine on organ, and he delivers throughout the song.
Other standout tracks include the title track “Silver Lining” a slower number with Roger and Dan trading guitar and sax solos. “Soul Food Cookin’” again features Bill Schilling on organ and a piano solo from Tam Sullivan. The band does a nice version of Lloyd Price’s “Baby Please Come Home”, with some more tasty guitar work from Roger and Tam Sullivan’s Keyboards and Dan Gutwein’s saxes keeping the groove. The band also offers a nice take on Larry Williams’s “Slowdown”; including John Swana on trombone and Joe Anderson on Trumpet really add to the song.
With Silver Lining, Roger Girke has continued his growth as an artist and writer. He has produced a well-crafted set of original songs with two thoughtfully chosen covers. Roger and his band are solid throughout.
I really liked Silver Lining; and there is not a weak track on the CD. Blues and R&B fans will find a lot to like.