Get this crazy baby off my head!


Walter Trout & Friends

Walter Trout & Friends - Full Circle - 2006 - Ruf

In his mid-fifties at the time of this album's release in 2006, Walter Trout seemed to be in a reflective mood. His 2005 album was a collection of older, previously unreleased tracks from various stages in his extensive career. This follow-up finds him reconnecting with many artists he has worked with, laying down newly recorded originals. In fact, this is Trout's first studio recorded disc of fresh material since 2001's Go the Distance. As the Full Circle title implies, the guitarist rounds up some musicians/friends he has played with for a spontaneous set of performances. The liner notes explain that some of these tracks were unrehearsed first takes, and the heightened energy level throughout reflects that. Also impressive is that Trout was eye-to-eye with each artist, as opposed to projects where guests lay down solos at various times in different cities and never see each other. The disc kicks off in fine, heated form with John Mayall sharing vocals and guitar and adding harmonica to a fiery eight-minute slow blues workout "She Takes More Than She Gives." Trout restrains -- slightly -- his propensity to pummel more notes per minute than the next guy, infusing greater passion into his playing as evidenced by the swampy blues-rock of "Workin' Overtime," featuring Jeff Healey. Fellow fret shredders of his genre such as Bernard Allison, Coco Montoya, and especially Joe Bonamassa add predictable firepower with their contributions and seem to spur Trout to new heights. In this heavy company, it's refreshing to hear him shift into a jazzier mood with Junior Watson on "Slap Happy" and even go acoustic on "Firehouse Mama," where he trades hyperactive riffs with neighbor Eric Sardinas. Harp master/vocalist James Harman (who, with his burly face and long white beard looks more like Moses everyday) and organist Deacon Jones bring comparative subtlety to the proceedings and alter the groove to a less frenzied attack than when Trout is trading licks with his guitar buddies. Guitar Shorty, Little Feat drummer Richard Hayward, and noted DJ Larry Keene -- whose articulated fast talking can be compared to Trout's own style on guitar -- also appear, the latter for a spoken word title cut finale that could have been left on the cutting room floor. Deep blues fans will still probably shy away due to the album's guitar heavy appeal and Trout's tendency to overextend his furious solos. But for the blues-rocker who loves a rugged blast of electricity and barrages of notes played with no-frills intensity, this is arguably Trout's most listenable, impressive, and diverse album yet. © Hal Horowitz © 2013 Rovi Corp | All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/album/full-circle-mw0000411991

The brilliant Walter Trout plays dynamic fiery leads throughout the album, as well as a few lyrical and sensitive solos. Some of the artists playing with Walter include greats like Joe Bonamassa,John Mayall, Jeff Healey, Coco Montoya and Eric Sardinas. This is a dream album for aficionados of blues guitar, and is HR by A.O.O.F.C. Listen to Walter’s s/t 1998 album [All tracks @ 256 Kbps: File size = 130 Mb]


1 She Takes More Than She Gives - Walter Trout - feat. John Mayall 8:38
2 Workin' Overtime - Walter Trout - feat. Jeff Healey 5:48
3 Firehouse Mama - Eric Sardinas / Walter Trout - feat. Eric Sardinas 5:07
4 Who's Listenin' In - Walter Trout - feat. Coco Montoya 6:51
5 Slap Happy - Junior Watson - feat. Junior Watson 2:31
6 Wrapped Around Your Finger - Walter Trout - feat. Guitar Shorty 5:02
7 A Busy Man - James Harman - feat. James Harman 7:40
8 Highway Song - John Mayall / Walter Trout - feat. John Mayall 2:54
9 When Will It Ever Change - Luther Allison - feat. Bernard Allison 4:54
10 Can't Help Falling Apart - Walter Trout feat. Finis Tasby 4:00
11 After Hours - Erskine Hawkins - feat. Deacon Jones 6:48
12 Clouds on the Horizon - Joe Bonamassa / Walter Trout - feat. Coco Montoya 7:51
13 Full Circle - Walter Trout - feat. Larry Keene 2:29


Walter Trout - Electric & Acoustic Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals
Bernard Allison, Joe Bonamassa, Guitar Shorty, Coco Montoya - Guitar, Vocals
Jeff Healey, John Mayall - Guitar, Harmonica, Piano, Vocals
Eric Sardinas - Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
Junior Watson - Guitar
Alec Fraser, Rick Knapp - Bass
Rob Rio, Daniel Timms - Piano
Deacon Jones - Organ
Bill Bateman, Al Webster, Stephen Hodges, Richie Hayward - Drums
James Harman - Harmonica, Vocals
Finis Tasby – Vocals
DJ Larry Keene - Spoken Words


Walter Trout enjoys pockets of support in the United States, but he is a veritable rock and blues god in Europe, where he routinely headlines major tours and releases albums to great critical acclaim. A slashing, intense guitarist, his work echoes the experimental freedom of Jimi Hendrix, the jammy sting of Stevie Ray Vaughan, and the speedy phrasing of Eddie Van Halen. An impassioned singer who handles both hard rockers and slow blues, he is one of the last great purveyors of the sweat-stained art of rock showmanship.Born in Ocean City, New Jersey, on March 6, 1951, Trout inherited a love of music from his parents. "I was really lucky in that, even though my parents were not musicians, they were both incredible afficionados and lovers of music," he told Contemporary Musicians. "I heard it in the house all the time. There was anything playing from Duke Ellington to Count Basie to John Coltrane to Bill Monroe to Hank Williams to Ray Charles … you name it. I remember my father taking me to a black jazz club in Atlantic City when I was a little kid to see a pianist named Ahmad Jamaal…. My dad also took me to see Gary U.S. Bonds and Chuck Berry on a bill. My mom took me to see James Brown, Ray Charles, Harry Belafonte, Andy Williams, Lou Rawls. I also saw the Philadelphia orchestra on many occasions." Trout's first instrument of choice was the trumpet, which he began learning before he had turned ten. To encourage the boy, his mother, an English teacher who read poetry aloud to him, set up a special meeting with one of the youngster's idols. "When I was ten years old, my mom arranged somehow for me to spend an entire afternoon hanging out with Duke Ellington and his orchestra," recalled Trout. "I got to hang out with them in their dressing room. I was an aspiring trumpet player and I got to sit down and have guys like Cat Anderson, Johnny Hodges, and Paul Gonzales talk to me about jazz and music. Then Duke Ellington sat down on a couch with me and talked about the music business and what I could expect if I went into it. One of the things he told me was, 'Always keep your focus on being an artist and don't look for the glory. Try to have a career of longevity and not be a one-hit wonder. Concentrate on being the best that you can be on your instrument and think of it as an art and not show-business.' It was an amazing day." His parents' divorce marred the boy's seemingly idyllic situation, and young Walter was later emotionally scarred by the constant drunken turmoil created by his stepfather. As a result, he launched himself into music, switching over to guitar once his older brother, Ed Jr., tired of the one he owned. Overnight, Trout's musical interests changed. "That was the year that Dylan's first album came out. They had Hootenanny on televison. I got into the folk music thing and I was a big fan of the Chad Mitchell Trio." Many folk performers of the early 1960s included blues tunes in their repertoire, so the leap to that genre seemed natural for Trout, who recalled that his brother Ed continually encouraged his new areas of musical interest. "He brought home an album and said, 'Sit down and listen to this guy play the guitar.' It was the first Paul Butterfield album which featured Mike Bloomfield on guitar…. That changed my life. The trumpet went away and I knew what I wanted to do right then." Initially Trout performed solo, playing his first gigs in restaurants as an acoustic act. Egged on by the arrival of the Beatles and the 1960s rock-blues explosion, Trout played various spots in New Jersey, including the Steel Mill—which launched Bruce Springsteen—with a local aggregation called Wilmont Mews. A recording of the group from 1972 appeared on the Deep Trout compilation, and showed the youngster sounding quite polished. Hoping to make a name for himself, Trout moved to California in 1974 and began asking to sit in with other bands. Ironically, his first regular job didn't require his services as a guitarist. Sitting in with the Jive Bombers, a local country and bluegrass combo, he was told that they already had a guitarist, but needed a singer. After singing a couple of Hank Williams standards, he was hired as a regular vocalist, but was repeatedly told they didn't need another guitarist. With his first paycheck he bought a white Fender Stratocaster, and asked that he be allowed to play it on stage. Reluctantly, the other Jive Bombers acquiesced. Trout recalled with a chuckle: "I got up and played a song and they got all excited, 'You didn't tell us you could play like that!' That night I ended up as the lead guitarist. By the end of my tenure there, I eventually turned them from country bluegrass into a band that played Chuck Berry and early Stones. They ended up losing their regular gig because they went too rock 'n' roll." All the exposure did Trout some good. Soon he was playing clubs with various rock and soul bands, including J.E. Davis and the Boys. This led to some gigs playing behind established touring industry stars such as Bobby Hatfield of the Righteous Brothers, Joe Tex, Percy Mayfield, Big Mama Thornton, Pee Wee Crayton, and O.B. Wright. "Once I got my first sideman job," Trout proclaimed, "I was never without work." He backed up Big Mama Thornton, and John Lee Hooker, who was also on the bill, asked Trout to play a set with his band. Trout explained, "So, I got up and played and ended up in his band. Through playing with his band, I get heard by some members of Canned Heat and they say, 'We have a tour of Australia and Henry [Vestine] is drinking too much, would you do the tour?' I did the tour and ended up with a four-year gig." Trout injected some much-needed life into Canned Heat, whose days as an influential combo ended with the 1960s. In return he received some studio and overseas touring experience. This, however, exacerbated his drinking problem. "I drank to escape the pain of my youth and the pain I was feeling," he explained to Contemporary Musicians. "I was running from a lot of my past." Trout landed a gig opening for John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers, and ended up playing a set as second guitar to Mick Taylor. Mayall later added Trout to his group, but the thrill of recording and touring with Mayall was no match for Trout's hard-drinking ways. Finally, in 1987 a disgusted Carlos Santana, one of Trout's musical heroes, confronted the New Jersey guitarist about his constant inebriation and musical sloppiness. Ashamed, Trout finally quit drinking. Once sober, Trout's guitar technique improved dramatically and he began wondering if a solo career would be viable. One night in Denmark, Mayall was too sick to perform. Trout and fellow Bluesbreaker Coco Montoya filled in and brought the house down. Afterwards, a promoter offered Trout a chance to record and tour under his own name. By the end of his first solo tour, Trout was playing major venues to packed houses. Recording for the Provogue label, he even scored a hit, a single called "The Love That We Once Knew," which became a number one hit in Europe in 1990. It was re-recorded on Livin' Every Day in 1999. Overseas, Trout was a star who toured with Elton John and had a video on European MTV's power rotation. But American record labels still weren't buying. "I think that here in America, this type of music is taken for granted because it's everywhere and I think a lot of people in this country have even turned their back[s] on it," the performer declared. "It's just part of everyday life in America. In Europe it's not. They're still kind of in wonder when you come out and play it with the feel that Americans seem to have." Trout hoped to solve his greatest career conundrum—blues labels thought he was too rock, rock label thought he was too blues—by signing with Silvertone in 1994. However, the American independent label promoted poorly in the States and not at all in his European base. Fortunately, fellow Bluesbreakers guitarist Coco Montoya suggested he get together with producer Jim Gaines, who in turn got Trout onto the German Ruf label. A prolific songwriter with a knack for non-traditional lyrics, Trout has done his best work for Ruf, and his releases have sold well worldwide. In return Ruf has given the artist creative carte blanche. "[Ruf] has never once said anything about material," Trout stated. He added that the label has said, "'Here's a budget. It might not be a lot, but here's what I have. You make it work. You go make me a record. You do your job and I'll do mine.'"For the most part, Trout likes spontaneity in the studio and on stage. Many times songs are discussed rather than formally arranged or rehearsed. "Actually, it's the John Mayall thing of finding musicians that have chemistry, and then they play together naturally," said Trout. "A lot of that doesn't even have to be spoken, it's just felt among the four of you. It's definitely instinctual." Whether recording or playing a live gig, Trout still sings with every gutcheck emotion at his command. Asked if he finds that approach difficult to maintain, the singer responded: "You know what, it's not difficult to keep meaning it, because for me it's therapy." He described how his music has drawn on and then reflected his emotionally difficult and sometimes violent childhood, his parents' breakup and the problems with his alcoholic stepfather. "If you listen to a song of mine called 'Collingswood,' [from Relentless] it's in there. It took me thirty-five years to write that and when I wrote it, I had a nervous breakdown. So, the music and guitar became therapy for me. It became an outlet, a refuge, and a sanctuary." Today, Trout's personal life is far more serene than the memories he calls up for audiences night after night. Now managed by his wife and occasional co-writer, Marie Trout, and touring with his three sons—whose band occasionally opens for him—the singer-guitarist is more successful than ever. In 2006 he released Full Circle, a guest-star laden album that featured Trout in top form performing duets with the likes of Mayall, Montoya, Jeff Healey, Finis Tasby, Guitar Shorty, and Joe Bonamassa. It became his fastest selling album in the United States to date. He has even figured out a definitive response to blues purists who criticize his hard-rock leanings. On tour he sells T-shirts at the gigs: "I want everybody to know what they're in for so I don't have to hear about it," he explained. "So on the front [the shirt] reads: 'Walter Trout and the Radicals.' On the back of the shirt in big letters it says: 'Too many notes! Too loud!' (Laughter.) Sometimes a purist will come up and say, 'Man you played too many notes and you're too loud.' Then I'll hand him a shirt and say, 'I'm glad you understand what I'm trying to do.'" © http://www.answers.com/topic/walter-trout-1

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