Tim Taylor Blues Band - Too Long Gone

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Tim Taylor Blues Band - Too Long Gone

Postby blueswriter » Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:46 am

Tim Taylor Blues Band
Too Long Gone
Hogwand Music (2007)

11 tracks, 39 minutes. Highly recommended. Blues music, at its core, is all about combining the varied influences an artist has and delivering something with a personal stamp on it. The Tim Taylor Blues Band has accomplished that goal in spades with more to spare. Tim Taylor has long been a well-respected journeyman harp player in and around the Providence, RI area. While Taylor's stomping ground was once a hotbed of blues activity, that's not necessarily the case these days, but he has never once faltered in his musical direction. He's a bluesman from the ground up and from the head down. No second guesses, no questions, no ifs, ands or buts. Too Long Gone is easily one of the finest, most archaic and incredibly hot recordings to ever come out of the small Ocean State. Taylor refuses the simple route and steers clear of generic interpretations when covering Slim Harpo's I'm A Kingbee, Jimmy Rogers' Sloppy Drunk or Muddy's Sail On Honeybee. Each of these three tracks has Taylor's personal handstamp all over them. He tackles Slim Harpo's classic with the panache of a true elder statesman, then rocks the daylights out of Sloppy Drunk (John Packer's nasty juke joint guitar tone is masterful) and stomps through Muddy's gem with reckless abandon. As a vocalist, Taylor knows his comfort zone and mines it perfectly, but as a harmonica player, he hits paydirt delivering classic, throaty tones with tough-edged and concise solos. Twenty Miles, All Day Boogie, Too Long Gone and She's Got Good Lovin' are all well-crafted originals worth the price of admission with no need for grandstanding. Taylor simply leans hard on the grooves and blows up a storm. Other covers include a tough reading of Willie Cobbs' You Don't Love Me, the traditional Amazing Grace and Rice Miller's I Don't Care No More. The sleeper could well be Taylor's diamond in the rough original R.L. This a rollicking slice of pure Mississippi hill country blues that comes right out of Providence, of all places. The contributions of Taylor's bandmates are mighty, too. John Packer (bass and guitar), Marlie Wanseth and Duke Robillard handle the stringed instruments. Tasteful piano and organ comes from Charlie Huntington and Mike Kane pumps the backbeats solidly laying a foundation of granite. There are indeed a great many self-produced efforts released each and every year, but Too Long Gone from the Tim Taylor Blues Band is one of the best in a long time. A righteous, personal and soulfully moving blues recording. Have mercy!

In memory of the late, great John Packer. You left us too soon.

Tim Taylor on Myspace
Tim Taylor - Ourstage

© 2009 by Craig Ruskey
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