Get this crazy baby off my head!


The Vincent Hayes Project

The Vincent Hayes Project - Reclamation - 2010 - North 61 Records

“It is rare for an artist to display such maturity on a debut release, but this album certainly marks the beginning of Hayes’s career, because I can’t imagine an artist with such creative compositions, strong voice and guitar skills could get lost in the crowd. Anyone who loves great guitar work should own this CD, as it is apparent to me that it is indeed the best debut of 2010.” © Twoj Blues, Poland

“Reclamation is a thoroughly modern blues album, but not a stale blues-rock album. The results speak for themselves: Alves and Hugley form an air-tight unit that backs Hayes with a loose, funky groove, and Hayes proves to be a dexterous axe man whose charisma and love for the music shine strong throughout the disc.” © Living Blues Magazine October 2010

“Full of energy from start to finish! The guitar tone is delicious!” © Recoil Magazine

Great bass leads, hot percussion, and zealous organ. Had me holding my breath. Absolutely amazing work." © Peter "Blewzzman" Lauro, Mary 4 Music

“(there is) a realism to the band that you soon learn applies to everything that they do. The lyrics aren't forced, and neither is the playing. The music is natural.” © Fulltime Blues

You wouldn't believe it by simply looking at him, but baby-faced Blues guitarist Vincent Hayes is a 20-year veteran of the music industry. It's when you listen to Hayes and his band, The Vincent Hayes Project, that you realize how seasoned he is behind the mic, the guitar, and the pen. Michigan's The Vincent Hayes Project - made up of Hayes on guitar and lead vocals, David "The Butcher" Alves on bass, and Donnie Hugley on drums and percussion - made it to the semi-finals of the International Blues Challenge in both 2006 and 2007. Since then, they've become the hosts of the Sunday jam at Grand Haven, Michigan's Deelite, and produced their album Reclamation for North 61 Records. The album was produced by Glenn Brown on the Muscle Shoals Neve console, a device that owns it's own place in music history for being the board used in sessions by a who's-who of music royalty, including Eric Clapton, The Allman Brothers Band, and more. If it were for this simple fact alone, Reclamation would be worth checking out; but the music stands up, and that makes it all the better. The disc is filled with 70 minutes of all original music written by Hayes and captures a power trio at the height of their powers. Additional musicians enlisted for the Reclamation sessions include Christian VanAntwerpen on a variety of keyboards, including Hammond B3 and Wurlitzer. Steve "Doc" Yankee plays piano on the album. Things kick off with "Hit Me High, Hit Me Low," a swinging track with some terrific piano work right off the bat. The song kind of reminds me of a Texas Blues, which is interesting, because Hayes voice is similar, in my opinion, to Jimmie Vaughan. "Insecurities" starts with a thick groove from Alves and Hugley, before VanAntwerpen comes in, and finally, Hayes on guitar ahead of vocals. Hayes has said that he loves the old Blues, but having never lived those situations, he crafts songs that he has experienced in his life. It provides a realism to the band that you soon learn applies to everything that they do. The lyrics aren't forced, and neither is the playing. The music is natural. "I've Got A Right To Change My Mind" is the first of two songs on Reclamation that are right around the 10 minute mark in length, the other being "Sone Kind of Fool." They're both slow burners. "I've Got A Right To Change My Mind" features Yankee's piano adding that little something extra to the song. "Some Kind of Fool" sees VanAntwerpen back behind the keys on a variety of instruments, wonderfully adding depth to the haunted emotion of the song. The lengthy guitar solo from Vincent Hayes is impressive, here, as well! The song as a whole features some of my favorite guitar work by Hayes on the entire album. "Middle Man" is a great declaration song, laying it all on the line for the woman in the song. The tune is one of my personal faves on Reclamation and Vincent Hayes draws great tone out of his guitar on the track. Shout out to Donnie Hugley's drumming as the song hits its final minute or so. The playing throughout the entire disc is solid, but the way Hugley kills on the skins as "Middle Man" hits its climax is phenomenal. "Middle Man" is followed by "I Just Want To Get You High Tonight." This is the first track I featured from Reclamation on the radio show, and it left a big impression on some of the listeners, earning some almost instant feedback from a few members of the audience. The up-tempo number is pure fun, and if you're not six feet under ground, you'll want to hit the dance floor whenever it's played. "Thank You Baby" is a really cool number featuring the recurring line "I want to thank you for giving me the Blues." Right on, brother. That's followed by "Double Talk," which starts off with a great bass line from "The Butcher" before the rest of the band comes in. The tune would fit in amongst some of the great, original Rock 'N' Roll classics, like "Johnny B. Goode;" ironic considering Chuck Berry's signature tune was the first song Vincent Hayes learned to play. Hayes does his take on the conversational guitar bit, too; a trick that never gets old. The afore-mentioned "Some Kind of Fool" is next on Reclamation. That's followed by the more Rock-y "Halfway Out the Door." The aspect of The Vincent Hayes Project that I pick up on is that, while there is a certain element of Rock in their music, I don't want to classify them amongst the Blues-Rock genre. I feel like their music is far enough away from the Rock element that VHP can be called simply a quality Blues band, and it seems like Vincent Hayes has worked hard to create music that way out of respect and passion for the genre. Reclamation wraps up with the instrumental "Sticky Thigh Jive ahead of the slide filled "You Can Take Your Troubles," a great closing number that is filled with Elmore James style licks. Standout Tracks: "Middle Man," "I Just Want To Get You High Tonight," "Some Kind of Fool," and "Insecurities" - from & © Blues Music Review: The Vincent Hayes Project - Reclamation - North 61 Records 2010 © 2010-11 fulltimeblues.com - A division of Full-Time Productions © http://www.fulltimeblues.com/blues_music_review_091510.html

A really good album of blues, funk, R&B, soul, and jazz from the Grand Haven, Michigan based Vincent Hayes Project. The band has a great rhythm section, terrific keyboard work from Christian VanAntwerpen and Steve Yankee, and superb guitar playing from Vincent Hayes who is also a first class lyricist. Vincent says, "We play from the soul and not from the head, and each one of us is an integral part of the creative process, both live and in the studio.” All the tracks are good. A few tunes worth mentioning are the Latin style "Middle Man" which has a Carlos Santana flavour. "Thank You Baby" has a great Booker T style groove. The instrumental "Sticky Thigh Jive" is a great laid back jazzy number, and "You Can Take Your Troubles" is a good Elmore James style slide-driven tune. Vincent Hayes is an excellent guitarist and vocalist and the band is equally impressive in support. Gary von Tersch of Big City Rhythm & Blues said "Inspired, persuasively pensive guitar work that might even cause Clapton to raise an eyebrow in appreciation. Two thumbs up". The album is HR by A.O.O.F.C. Look out for future releases from this band and buy the albums. Support real music [All tracks @ 192 Kbps: File size = 99.5 Mb]


1. Hit Me High, Hit Me Low 4:35
2. Insecurities 5:31
3. I've Got A Right To Change My Mind 9:43
4. Middle Man 5:50
5. I Just Want To Get You High Tonight 5:16
6. Thank You Baby 6:38
7. Double Talk 5:48
8. Some Kind of Fool 10:01
9. Halfway Out the Door 6:20
10. Sticky Thigh Jive 5:54
11. You Can Take Your Troubles 4:38

All songs composed by Vincent Hayes


Vincent Hayes - Guitar, Vocals
David "The Butcher" Alves - Bass
Donnie Hugley - Percussion
Christian VanAntwerpen - Fender Rhodes, Hammond C3, Wurlitzer, Clavinet
Steve "Doc" Yankee - Piano


Led by Vincent Hayes on vocals and guitar, and fueled by one of the tightest rhythm sections in modern blues, the Vincent Hayes Project has recently been receiving world wide critical acclaim for their debut CD release of original inspired blues titled, "Reclamation." Nominated by The Blues Foundation in Memphis, TN for a prestigious 2011 Blues Music Award for "Best New Artist Debut", as well as the recipient of three 2011 WYCE Jammie Awards (Best Album, Best Blues Album, Best Group), the West Michigan based ensemble released "Reclamation in the spring of 2010 on Hayes's own independent label North 61 Records. By late May the disc had been added to regular rotation on a growing list of over 200 radio stations in ten different countries, including the nationally syndicated program "Blues Deluxe." In June, Reclamation made its debut on the National Living Blues Top 25 Radio Chart, where it spent two consecutive months during the summer of 2010, and also made the national Roots Radio Chart where it remained on the chart for most of the summer. Finally, in September 2010 Reclamation debuted on "B.B. King's Bluesville" on Sirius/XM Radio Channel 74, fast becoming a favorite of legendary radio jock Pat St. John. In November the disc reached #4 as a "Pick to Click" on Blues Foundation President and Bluesville host Bill Wax's weekly "Rack of Blues" countdown. After being a favorite solo acoustic blues performer on the Michigan club and festival circuit for nearly a decade, Hayes formed The Vincent Hayes Project in early 2004 as a blues power trio. In 2006 and 2007 they competed as semi-finalists in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN, and in 2007 the band was asked to back counter-culture icon John Sinclair as his band of "Blues Scholars" on a leg of his summer tour. They have also opened for The Steve Miller Band, Ludicris, Joe Bonamassa, and more, and are a favorite on the festival and club circuits. Live, the band has a reputation as a high-energy unit, with an unstoppable rhythm section featuring David "The Butcher" Alves on bass guitar and Donnie Hugley on percussion. Driven by Hayes’s dynamic guitar work, and punctuated by the world class keyboard duo of Steve "Doc" Yankee , and Christian VanAntwerpen, the band's performances are dominated by powerful dynamics and lively showmanship inspired by the true greats. © http://www.vincenthayes.com/bio.html


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


p/w is aoofc

Anonymous said...

Nice post.
Thanks a million for this.

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

Thanks, Mr B. I'm glad you like the music. Keep in touch!...P