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17.6.09

Toni Lynn Washington




Toni Lynn Washington - Good Things - 2000 - Tone Cool

A great, cool, classy soul blues album from Toni Lynn Washington, who may be unfamiliar to many, but is one of the best contemporary blues vocalists of modern times. She is a lady who gets the best out of blues, soul and jazz songs. She sings twelve great songs here in her unique low-key style, demonstrating her great vocal talent to maximum effect. Check out her "Been So Long" album @ TLW/BSL

TRACKS / COMPOSERS

1 Good Things Come to Those Who Wait Bears, Kearns 4:17
2 Meet Me in the Middle Gearan 2:52
3 Satisfaction Frank, Kearns 3:20
4 Looking at the Future Clifton, Taylor 3:00
5 Oh, What a Dream Willis 4:58
6 Don't Forget Me Bears, Kearns 3:51
7 The Hammer Copyright Control 3:58
8 I Don't Know Why Mitchell, Randle 4:07
9 I've Had Enough Gearn 3:36
10 Allright, Okay, You Win Watts, Wyche 3:06
11 We Don't See Eye to Eye Mayfield 2:47
12 You're Gonna Make Me Cry Malone 3:52

MUSICIANS

Toni Lynn Washington - Vocals
Tim Gearan - Guitar
Ed Spargo - Bass
Bruce Bears - Organ, Piano
Craig McIntyre - Drums
Ricardo Munsin - Percussion on Tracks 1, 6
Paul Ahlstrand - Tenor Saxophone
Rob Lee - Baritone Saxophone
Walter Platt - Trumpet on Tracks 5, 7, 9, 10
Scott Aruda - Trumpet on Tracks 1-3, 4, 6
Patti Unatis/Ray Greene - Background Vocals on Tracks 1, 12

REVIEWS

Although she's best known today as the queen of Boston's blues scene, Toni Lynn Washington got her start on the Southern-soul circuit in the 1960s. Like blues legend Charles Brown, she dropped out of music for a couple of decades, only to return stronger than ever in the early '90s. Washington is a gifted and assured interpretive singer, and on Good Things, her third album for the Tone-Cool label, she tackles the polished blues of Joe Williams, the smooth soul of Johnny Adams, and the slow-burn ballads of Percy Mayfield. Backed by a six-piece band that includes horns, piano, guitar, bass, and drums, Washington specializes in the sort of sophisticated, soulful music that once flourished in New Orleans and Los Angeles, keeping alive a tradition slowly slipping into the twilight with each passing year. © Keith Moerer, Amazon.com

Toni Lynn Washington's third album on the Tone-Cool imprint is the epitome of cool. Toni Lynn has never been a Koko Taylor-style blues screamer, instead choosing to deliver her vocals in a smoother and jazzier style, and she has never sounded better. Producer Bobby Keyes sets Washington right into the heart of some fine musical arrangements, and the sound is blues at its best. "Good Things Come to Those Who Wait" opens the album with a soulful vocal, surrounded by layer upon layer of equally soulful horns. She delivers the lyrics with delicious cool. "You're Gonna Make Me Cry," which closes out this 12-song disc, combines elements of gospel and the blues for a soul-stirring performance that is sure to please. The uptempo "Allright, Okay, You Win" sets the house to rocking, and Washington stays right in the groove. While she is known for her laid-back style, she proves that she can hold her own when the rhythm kicks into high gear. The Stax-style soul of "Looking at the Future" allows the singer to stretch even further, and she proves once again that she can handle any style of blues song. It is, however, on songs like the jazzy blues ballad "We Don't See Eye to Eye" that Washington's star truly shines the brightest. © Michael B. Smith, allmusic.com

BIO

Boston-based blues singer Toni Lynn Washington recorded and released Blues at Midnight for the Tone-Cool subsidiary of Rounder Records in 1995. Washington is considered Boston's "queen of the blues,'' where she has a long and storied history on the club scene. Raised in a procession of gospel choirs in Southern Pines, North Carolina, Washington performed with classic R&B artists like Sam and Dave and Jackie Wilson throughout the South in her youth. Washington also made USO tours of the U.S. and Asia in the 1960s and recorded the Top 50 single "Dear Diary" for the New Orleans-based Conti label, then a subsidiary of Atlantic Records. After two decades off the road and out of the recording studio, Washington returned to performing in 1992 with a ten-piece band. On her debut for Tone-Cool, Blues at Midnight, Washington comes across best as an interpreter: she tackles B.B. King's "Ask Me No Questions," Jimmy Reed's "Ain't That Loving You Baby,'' and a tune popularized by Jimmy Rushing and the Basie Orchestra and T-Bone Walker, "Evening.'' It's My Turn Now followed in 1997, and in early 2000, Washington returned with Good Things. © Richard Skelly, allmusic.com



MORE ABOUT TONI LYNN WASHINGTON

Toni Lynn Washington's youth was spent in Southern Pines, North Carolina where she loved nothing better than a chance to sing with her school and church choirs. Her education in the language and lifestyle of music continued when her family moved to Boston, where she finished her formal education and went about building her career. Toni Lynn Washington first took the stage in Boston where, after sneaking past the door of as many clubs as she could (being underage at the time), she was soon wowing musicians and audiences all over the city. Toni Lynn Washington had, of course, been doing this for quite some time, until one fateful night, when she proceeded to bring the house down with her performance of Ruth Brown's "5, 10, 15 (Hours Of Your Love)". Marriage at 18, to a military man, soon found our heroine in New Orleans. Once settled, Toni Lynn Washington befriended, worked with and opened for such blues/soul legends as Jackie Wilson, Johnny Adams, Big Joe Turner, Sam and Dave and Bobby Blue Bland. Toni Lynn Washington worked regularly in clubs all over New Orleans and soon found herself traveling more and more. Her early recordings for Kon-Tiki produced the moderately successful single Dear Diary and a truly heartfelt version of the ballad Satisfaction. A military transfer brought her young family to a still-segregated Pensacola, Florida. Toni Lynn Washington managed to find a few regional bookings, and she actually fronted a 35 piece, Military Band. A few moves and a few groups later, Toni Lynn Washington found herself in Hollywood. Almost immediately upon her arrival, she became the sole female in a Fifth Dimension-esque group called Sound 70. Travel with this band took her all over the country and world, and even led to television appearances. The breakup of Sound 70, a move to the East Coast and a short stint with some ex-Raelettes solidified her disenchantment. Toni Lynn Washington moved back to Boston in the early 80's and got a office job so that she could provide for her family. She sat in with a number of local artists, including jazz vocalist Eula Lawrence. During this period, Toni Lynn Washington performed at virtually every music room in Boston. Toni Lynn Washington soon gained the opportunity to sing the blues she so loved, as front woman of Boston Baked Blues. This provided her introduction to blues audiences all over the Northeast. After a few successful years with BBB, Toni Lynn Washington made the break, with no ill will, from Boston Baked Blues, and with the help of BBB band mate Bruce Bears as her musical director and keyboardist, she formed her own band. Signed to Richard Rosenblatt's Tone-Cool Records, she has begun to see some reward for her efforts. She's been nominated for two W.C. Handy Awards, had her music used in feature film soundtracks, and appeared on National Public Radio in the company of Etta James and John Lee Hooker. Toni Lynn Washington has recorded radio performances has been a featured artist at a number of prestigious festivals. In 1999, she won the Boston Blues Festival's Lifetime Achievement Award. © www.smokestacklightnin.com

3 comments:

A.O.O.F.C said...

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shellg said...

Thanks so much!

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,shellg. You're v.welcome, & thanks