Harvey Brooks has an energetic new pop/blues band and they display the chops and musical prowess of every band he's been a part of; from Bob Dylan's backing band on Highway 61 Revisited to his work with Miles Davis on Bitches Brew and the Super Session album with Mike Bloomfield & Al Kooper. In this aggregation he provides that always steady support with his bass giving the music the foundational structure from which to take the risks. However, a band is more than one person and he is surrounded here by some exceptional players. Arthur Migliazza is a wizard on the piano bringing his love of boogie-woogie and New Orleans R&B to the mix. Tom Kusian's jazz and blues roots show up in his very tasteful playing. Tom Walbank does the soulful vocals, except on Same Mistakes (Harvey sings that one) and also contributes harp and slide guitar on a few cuts. Dustin Busch adds his country and blues influences with his lap steel playing, while Darryl Roles anchors the proceedings with solid drumming, keeping the dancer's feet moving.
There are 13 songs, three of which are well known covers and the rest were written, or co-written by Mr. Brooks and the band. There is a great jump blues tune, Sing Sing Gramps, that is reminiscent of the big band sound of yore, the heartbreaking slow blues of Midnight Got Me Crying, and the band's theme song/train song, Positively 17th Street. There is energy, good songwriting and very solid playing in this group.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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