RETROSPECTIVE the CD
About this point in one’s career, well actually before this, many artists choose to release a “Best Of” CD. But I have decided to release this Retrospective CD, which is a project that presents alternate recordings of tunes from earlier projects, early recordings of tunes no one has heard yet, and live recordings from some Scandinavian performances, including the Nottodden Blues Festival. I think it’s a really fun project, and fans will find a few surprise and twists!
For nearly 20 years now, I have been recording on all kinds of projects with the multi-talented Paul Opalach at his studio, LONG HILL RECORDING. Paul’s number one instrument is the bass, but he also plays one heck of a guitar and I get to feature some of his playing on this CD. Paul also adds piano and organ on the studio recordings, and we brought in Crispin Cioe to overdub some tenor and alto sax parts. Crispin and I first met when his horn section, THE UPTOWN HORNS, joined Albert Collins on stage at Carnegie Hall in NYC, and on tour promoting Albert’s Point Blank release, Iceman. Crispin is the real deal, and another kindred soul from “back in the day.”
It’s quite amusing to me to listen to some of the older recordings as I can’t sing many of these tunes in the same keys anymore, so if my voice sounds higher on some of those mid ’90’s recordings, that’s ‘cuz it is!! My playing has grown a lot since then too, but I am still proud of what I was puttin’ out back then, and happy to share it with you all. I think my favorite version of everything Paul and I recorded is LUCKY IN LOVE. I left his guitar work on there, front and center, because I find his solo so haunting and perfect. To me what Paul plays here is reminiscent of the artistry of Jesse Ed Davis.
The first live cut is from a tour of Sweden that I did with my trio about 10 or 12 years ago. I was so proud that I got through a tune like “WHERE THE BLUES COME TO DIE” with its many chord changes outside of one, four and five, without too many glitches, that I had to add this one! Damn, the boys are tight on it, aren’t they?
The rest of the live tunes are from a 2007 performance at the Notodden Blues Festival with Janiva Magness and Her Band. Janiva was just really starting to take off at this point, and I was fortunate to be able to do a series of shows and festivals with her that year. The band is hot, and her vocals on GOOD MORNING LITTLE SCHOOL ‘BOY’ are other worldly! I can’t wait for all of the fans to hear this burnin’ batch of tunes!! The rest are my performances, with Janiva’s band. Sit back, relax, and crank this baby up!
Now you may ask, if this is RETROSPECTIVE the CD, will there be a RETROSPECTIVE the DVD? Ya never know!