Get this crazy baby off my head!




Free - Free Live - 1971 - Island/A&M

Although Free made excellent studio records, Free "Live" is perhaps the best way to experience the band in all its glory. Led by singer-guitarist Paul Rodgers and lead guitarist Paul Kosoff, the band swings through nine songs with power, clarity, and a dose of funk. Of course, the hit single "All Right Now" is gleefully extended, much to the audience's and listener's delight. Superbly recorded by Andy Johns, this is one of the greatest live albums of the 1970s. © Matthew Greenwald, © 2007 All Media Guide, LLC. All Rights Reserved


"All Right Now" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 6:24
"I'm a Mover" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 3:46
"Be My Friend" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 5:56
"Fire and Water" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 3:56
"Ride on a Pony" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 4:30
"Mr. Big" (Fraser, Kirke, Kossoff, Rodgers) - 6:13
"The Hunter" (Cropper, Dunn, Jackson, Jones, Wells) - 5:29
"Get Where I Belong" (Fraser, Rodgers) - 4:19


"Walk in My Shadow" (Live Version)
"Trouble on Double Time"
"Mr. Big" (Live Version)
"All Right Now" (Live Version)
"Get Where I Belong" (Alternative Studio Version)

Album Info.

Tracks 1 - 8 constitute the original album, FREE LIVE! All of these original 8 tracks, except "All Right Now" & "Get Where I Belong", were recorded live at Fairfield Halls, Croydon in September 1970. Track 1, "All Right Now", was recorded live at Sunderland Locarno - Fillmore North in January 1970. Track 8, "Get Where I Belong", is an outtake from the March, 1971 "My Brother Jake" studio sessions. This song carries a gentle tone of wistful regret and a plea to "Help me to repay things I have done wrong." Tracks 9 - 14 are bonus tracks recorded from both the Sunderland & Croydon shows, while Track 15 is an alternative take of "Get Where I Belong" recorded at Island Studios on March 26, 1971.


Paul Rodgers - vocals
Paul Kossoff - guitar
Andy Fraser - bass
Simon Kirke - drums


Members include John "Rabbit" Bundrick (born in the United States; joined group, 1972), keyboards; Andy Fraser (born on August 7, 1952, in London, England; left group, 1972), bass; Simon Kirke (born on July 28, 1949, in Shrewsbury, England), drums; Paul Kossoff (born on September 14, 1950, in London, England; died on March 19, 1976, in New York, NY), guitar; Paul Rodgers (born on December 12, 1949, in Middleborough, England), vocals; Tetsu Yamauchi (born on October 21, 1947, in Fukuoka, Japan; joined group, 1972), bass.
Free is perhaps best remembered for the 1970 hit single and classic rock radio staple "All Right Now," which seamlessly blends the band's blues roots with an accessible pop and hard rock sensibility. The band was initially categorized among such bands of the British blues-rock genre of the late 1960s and early 1970s as Humble Pie, Fleetwood Mac, and Savoy Brown. Free, however, was celebrated by critics and the record-buying public for the tasteful and sinewy guitar work of Paul Kossoff and the emotionally charged vocals of Paul Rodgers. The group crested with the release of the 1970 album Fire and Water, which contained "All Right Now," but they were unable to sustain their creative spark or commercial viability due to Kossoff's consistent drug abuse. They first disbanded in 1971, but re-formed in 1972 to record the 1973 release Heartbreaker before disbanding permanently that same year.
Aside from their guaranteed position in the classic rock pantheon as the creators of one of the most popular singles of the 1970s, Free generally are considered the progenitors of a genre of commercially successful blues-rock, a genre that eventually included Bad Company, featuring Free's Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke, and Foreigner. These bands eschewed the harder metal sound of such bands as Led Zeppelin to focus instead on lyrics that appealed to both genders, sung in rough-hewn voices. The formula proved successful, as Free, Bad Company, and Foreigner--and to a lesser extent Frankie Miller's Full House, Sharks, and the Baker Gurvitz Army--all enjoyed packed concert venues and vast album sales.
Different Backgrounds
Free was originally a quartet comprising Rodgers, Kossoff, Kirke, and bassist Andy Fraser. Rodgers was the son of a dock worker in Middleborough, England. His father bought him a guitar when he was twelve, and he played in a succession of bands, including the Titans, the Intrepids, the Roadrunners, the Wildflowers, and Brown Sugar. Kirke was raised by a former merchant seaman and factory worker who moved his family to Clun, a small village in Shropshire. His public performing career began with him drumming along to records played at the local village hall by a bus driver who doubled as a disc jockey. Kirke played in the bands Maniac and Heatwave before relocating to London. Fraser's father was the offspring of a black slave and a Scottish plantation owner who lived in British Guyana. Fraser told Other writer Phil Sutcliffe that his father "had a massive chip on his shoulder," which prompted him to abandon his family when Fraser was six. His father's absence and his racial makeup caused Fraser to suffer his classmates' prejudiced epithets growing up in Roehampton, West London. He received piano lessons, but preferred playing guitar, which he tuned down to sound like a bass. By the time he was 13, Fraser was playing reggae, calypso, soul, and rhythm and blues music in London clubs.
In 1967 Fraser befriended Sappho Korner, the daughter of prominent London blues and jazz band leader Alexis Korner, who was to play a significant role in the formation of Free by introducing several members of the band to Fraser, including Paul Kossoff, as well as helping them secure prominent gigs and a recording contract. Kossoff was the son of British actor David Kossoff. The elder Kossoff encouraged his son's interest in music by introducing him to the music of Ray Charles and Big Bill Broonzy as well as taking him to a Tommy Steele concert when the younger Kossoff was eight. Kossoff abandoned nine years of classical training to play blues rock after seeing Eric Clapton perform with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in 1965.
In 1968 London's music scene was awash in psychedelic permutations of American blues music. Kossoff had joined the blues band Black Cat Bones, which caught the attention of Alexis Korner after witnessing the band lend studio support to American blues pianist Champion Jack Dupree. Kirke had seen Black Cat Bones' live performance with Dupree, and he convinced Kossoff to allow him an audition for the band's drum chair. Kirke replaced the band's drummer and accompanied the band on the Dupree sessions; the pianist reportedly complimented the drummer when he "growled, 'Hey, this guy can play!'" according to Sutcliffe.
Christened by Alexis Korner
Free was formed in 1968 after Kossoff heard Brown Sugar lead singer Paul Rodgers. Joined by Kossoff's bandmate Kirke on drums, the trio recruited sixteen-year-old bass player Andy Fraser from British blues legend John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, and they became a quartet. Alexis Korner recommended Fraser and also provided the group with the name Free. "We set up at lunch as separate people and by four in the afternoon we were a band," Rodgers told Sutcliffe. Based upon his experience in Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Fraser proclaimed himself the leader of Free, astutely booking concerts and negotiating contracts. After a brief period of songwriting and rehearsing, Free became the opening act for Korner's band. Korner told Sutcliffe: "I liked the fact that you had room to hear the sound round the note instead of just the note itself.... They understood space and they understood writing blues." Korner introduced the band to Island Records executive Chris Blackwell, who recommended that the all-teenaged band change its name to the Heavy Metal Kids. They refused, and Blackwell eventually conceded.
Rodgers and Fraser began writing songs together after the former took ill and was given a place to stay in the home of Fraser and his mother. The duo collaborated on the songs "I'll Be Creepin'," "Mourning Sad Morning," and "Fire and Water." "It came naturally," Fraser told Sutcliffe. "I think initially Paul was strongest on the lyrics. His songs were very vocal-based and I'd try to supplement that with some kind of arrangement. Mine started with arrangements, then we'd put a melody to it." Free released the album Tons of Sobs in 1968 and the follow-up, Free, in 1969. The first album was produced by Guy Stevens, whose eccentric approach to recording later benefited Mott the Hoople and the Clash. The latter album was produced by Island Records's Chris Blackwell and is considered more subdued and in line with Island labelmates Traffic. In fact, Blackwell enlisted Traffic flautist Chris Wood to play on the track "Mourning Sad Morning." Tensions within the band, however, threatened to destroy Free before the completion of the album. Kossoff resented that his creative ideas were given short shrift by the Fraser-Rodgers writing team, who were responsible for eight of the album's nine songs. As a result, Fraser and Rodgers contemplated forming another band, and Kossoff auditioned for the position eventually filled by Martin Barre in Jethro Tull.
Blackwell attempted to assuage the group members' differences and increase their exposure as the opening act for Blind Faith, which was the first group to earn the designation as a "supergroup": the band included former Cream guitar and drum virtuosos Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker, as well as Spencer Davis Group and Traffic multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and singer Steve Winwood, and Family bassist and violinist Rick Grech. Kossoff was encouraged by his idol Clapton, though the band's U.S. debut at Madison Square Garden was marred by a poor stage set-up that forced both Free and Blind Faith to play largely out of view of the audience. Returning to England, Free were listed twenty-fifth among the acts performing at the first Isle of Wight concert. They later toured as a support act to the Who, the Small Faces, and the Crazy World of Arthur Brown.
From Support Group to Headliners
Free's first two albums sold only 20,000 copies apiece and received little or no airplay despite critical appreciation. The group's next album, however, catapulted them to stardom, largely on the strength of what is undeniably one of the top rock songs of the classic rock era. Introduced by testosterone-driven power chords and the vocals of Rodgers, "All Right Now" captures the lust the song's protagonist feels for a physically attractive female stranger. This lust, however, remains at first unfulfilled, as the woman shrewdly recognizes his sexual motives. Refusing to be tricked by his disingenuous admission of love, the woman eventually seduces the protagonist into a mutually satisfying long-term relationship. The song's simple lyrics--a randy pickup boast reminiscent of the Beatles' "I Saw Her Standing There" joined to a chorus that consists only of the song's title--are perfectly complemented by the opening power chords and the restrained guitar work of Kossoff and piano playing of Fraser during the extended instrumental bridge. The band protested when Blackwell insisted that the five-minute album track be edited down to a single without the third verse and the guitar solo. When they conceded, the song single sold more than a million copies in the first month. Produced by Roy Thomas Baker, who later went on to produce Queen and the Cars, the "All Right Now"-enhanced album Fire and Water became enormously successful, eventually netting the band headline status at the second Isle of Wight festival. The group played a magnificent set in front of an audience of 200,000 people as part of a roster that included the Who, Jimi Hendrix, and the Doors.
The group capitalized on their success with the follow-up recording Highway. Rodgers, like Clapton before him, had become increasingly more influenced by the textures and blending of American music traditions evident in the recordings of the Band, and he brought his new sensibilities to the new songs he wrote for Free. He and Fraser stopped writing together as a team, evidence of mounting friction in the band. "Maybe we retired into ourselves," Fraser told Sutcliffe. "[Rodgers] ignored me, steamed straight ahead, started treating me like a sideman. There was no big row. It was silence. Paul Rodgers cut me off at the knees." Kossoff also was feeling the pressures of the band, telling an interviewer quoted by Sutcliffe: "In the studio, I felt a lot like a sound or a technique to be used to create a caricature--the guitar man rather than myself, a hired hand." Highway was unable to match Fire and Water in terms of commercial success, and the band lurched into 1971 with American, Japanese, and Australian tours. The group disbanded on May 9, 1971, with the song "My Brother Jake" in the U.K. top five. They released Free Live in June of 1971.
Time Off, a Reunion, and Drug Addiction
The remainder of 1971 was spent rehearsing and recording new projects. For Rodgers, it was a power trio named Peace. Fraser put together a trio called Toby. Although both trios recorded tracks, no albums were released. Kossoff, on the other hand, recorded an album with Kirke, Japanese bass player Tetsu Yamauchi, and Houston, Texas, keyboardist John "Rabbit" Bundrick. He also recorded a track later released on his Back Street Crawler solo album with Traffic drummer Jim Capaldi and singer Michael Gately. During this period, Kossoff also became addicted to the sedative Mandrax, which sometimes causes seizures and acute depression. Bundrick told Sutcliffe that the drugs negatively impacted Kossoff's guitar playing: "On Kossoff Kirke Tetsu Rabbit you can actually hear bits where he's losing it.... He lost that high vibrato, that was the first thing to go. You heard his timing go too. As a musician, you know when someone's playing changes it means their character is changing too."
Partially to help Kossoff overcome his drug addiction, the members of Free reunited in January of 1972. The band attempted to recapture their previous momentum. Due to Kossoff's addiction, however, they ultimately failed. The reunion album, Free at Last, featured reworkings of songs by Fraser's trio Toby and the song "Molten Gold" from Kossoff. They toured the United States supporting Fleetwood Mac and the Faces, but Kossoff's drug dependency--which by now also included heroin--forced them to cancel several dates. Fraser quit the band prior to a tour of Japan, and Kossoff proved that he was unfit to play. Rodgers and Kirke enlisted Bundrick and Tetsu, with Rodgers replacing Kossoff on guitar. Kossoff was back in the fold for a subsequent U.K. tour the following August.
The album Heartbreaker was recorded in 1972 and released in 1973. Much of Kossoff's work was re-recorded by Kirke, Rodgers, and Snuffy Walden, a Texan guitarist friend of Bundrick. When the album was released to positive reviews, fans and critics were surprised to see that Kossoff had been relegated to a listing as a session musician and not as a full-fledged band member. Although sources are not clear on the issue, Kossoff left the band either of his own accord or by request of the other members of Free prior to a tour of America. The band hired Osibisa guitarist Wendell Richardson to fill the vacancy left by Kossoff, but the magic was gone.
Moving On
The band dissolved after the American tour. Fraser formed the band Sharks with guitarist Chris Spedding and the vocalist Snips. The group had a modest U.K. hit with the song "World Park Junkies," which followed the template established by Free. Fraser was replaced by Busta Cherry Jones on the band's follow-up, Jab It in Your Eye. He subsequently attempted to form a band with Frankie Miller but abandoned the project due to the singer's drinking problem. He formed the commercially unsuccessful but artistically intriguing Andy Fraser Band before moving to California to write songs for such singers as Joe Cocker, Robert Palmer, Joan Jett, and Chaka Khan. Tetsu replaced Faces bass player Ronnie Lane. Kirke and Rodgers formed Bad Company with former Mott the Hoople guitarist Mick Ralphs and King Crimson bass player Boz Burrell. Overseen by Led Zeppelin manager Peter Grant and recorded on Zeppelin's Swan Song label, the band became one of the most successful acts of the 1970s. Kossoff released Back Street Crawler in 1973. The album includes one track featuring all four original members of Free, but overall it was largely dismissed. He formed the group Back Street Crawler with Bundrick and recorded two albums, The Band Plays On and Second Street. In 1976 Kossoff died in his sleep on an airplane en route to New York City. Back Street Crawler changed their name to Crawler, but they disbanded after Bundrick joined the Who.
The legacy of Free is a self-contained four-piece band of consummate musicianship and singing, extraordinary songwriting, and impeccable performances. Famed producer and keyboardist Al Kooper summed up the band for Sutcliffe: "They were perfectly matched, there was no weak link in the band and their albums displayed a focus, a single-mindedness, the likes of which there has never been in the history of groin music. And make no mistake about it: Free's grooves were definitely directed towards your private parts." © Bruce Walker, Copyright © 2007 Net Industries - All Rights Reserved


Neal Schon


Neal Schon - Piranha Blues - 1999 - Blues Bureau International

Neal Schon's career has spanned from his guitar work on recordings by Santana, Journey, HSAS, Schon/Hammer, Bad English and Hardline. Piranha Blues evokes memories of classic Blues/Rock superstars like Jeff Beck Group, Jimi Hendrix Experience, and Cream yet retains the strong Neal Schon signature sound which has made him a guitar legend. This is traditionally-based blues rock,highlighting both the legendary power of Schon's guitar playing and the smoothness and elegance he is famous for. Piranha Blues features contributions by Ross Valory, Prarie Prince, and Richard Ross, and is the blues album that Neal has talked about and wanted to record for a long time. Buy this album! You won't be disappointed. Also check out his brilliant album, " Late Nite ."


01 Whiskey, Women & Blues (3:34)
02 Gotta Get Back to You (6:32)
03 Lonesome Road (3:58)
04 Hole in My Pocket (5:21)
05 Walkin' Out the Door (5:22)
06 I'm in Love (5:07)
07 Love Trance (6:53)
08 Slow Down (5:06)
09 Play the Blues (2:55)
10 Girl Like You (5:07)
11 Hey, Hey, Babe (3:54)
12 Blues for Miles (4:55)


Neal Schon (guitars, lap steel guitar, mandolin);
Richard Martin Ross (vocals);
Ross Valory (bass guitar);
Prairie Prince (drums).


Neal Schon, the timeless guitarist who is the foundation of Journey, has had several excellent side projects: Just-if-I, Hardline, and several solo discs (all of which are worth checking out, by the way). On this latest solo effort, Schon goes in a different direction, putting out a Blues album.
In the liner notes, Neal tells us to "Crank this disc up LOUD!" Once you've heard the opening lick of the first track, you won't be able to do anything BUT crank it up! Schon's got his guitar fired up for this one, and the results are impressive. Throughout this disc, Neal proves (as if he needed to) that he can shred with the best of them, regardless of the musical genre.
The songs on this CD range from rough blues/rock tracks to straight Blues numbers that sound like they have heavy Albert Collins influences (track 9 - "Play the Blues"). All the tracks are original material - there are no covers on this disc. But the songwriting is strong enough that there was no need for the band to throw on a familiar track or two to keep people interested. If you like Blues even a tiny bit, I guarantee that you will find something here for you.
In addition to Schon's luscious axe-work, there is some great bass work by fellow Journey member Ross Valory, solid drumming by ex-Tubes skins-pounder Prarie Prince, and the growling vocals of Richard Martin Ross. Ross's voice is perfect for the material. He sounds like a young Jack Bruce with just the tiniest dash of Joe Cocker thrown in to crank the gravelly growl up a notch.
Here's a track-by-track look:
1. Whiskey, Women & Blues - This track reminds me of a song that Sammy Hagar might put out, only with a Blues edge. It's up-tempo, has an Arena-Rock hook to it, and should definitely get some radio play. This track really rips open the CD but it's probably the least "Bluesy" song on the disc. But it still kicks ass.
2. Gotta Get Back To You - The tempo is slowed, and the lyrics shift to the more familiar lament of most Blues songs. One thing that is not slowed, however, is Schon's soloing - Neal rips off some slick little runs in here, and the main solo absolutely shreds! Some of the best guitar work on the disc is in the last couple of minutes of this track. Excellent drumming on this track, too.
3. Lonesome Road - Whoa! Right back to the up-tempo Blues-Rock. Richard Martin Ross's vocals are perfect for this tune. He belts it out and gives this song a lot of guts. Schon's got a great little rhythm guitar hook in here - it's like a Blues/Arena Rock hybrid - and his soloing ensures that your jaw stays in contact with the floor.
4. Hole In My Pocket - I see a pattern developing here, as this track lays back into a standard Blues tempo, and a standard Blues lyrical pattern (lines repeated twice, followed by the "kicker line.") There's nothing really spectacular about this song. A lot of the guitar parts are things you've heard in countless other blues songs. But, it is the first song where Schon's soloing is a little more patient and thoughtful, eliciting that classic emotional response that good Blues guitar will get every time.
5. Walkin' Out the Door - Starts out with a hot little bass line, and some high-hat, with some subdued, soulful guitar notes. You'll think it's an instrumental piece at first (it sounds like sort of an "interlude"). But no, there's Ross, growling out the words. This is a sexy, steamy little number. It starts out soft, builds slowly, then bursts open as the guitar takes a more aggressive stance. Then it backs off for a teasing mini-solo which fades into the end of the track. This is one of my favorites on the disc.
6. I'm In Love - This song showcases the range of vocalist Ross. The guitar is backed off a bit, but Schon still manages some quick runs in the solos. Ross really carries this song, though, along with super work by Valory and Prince. A solid, enjoyable tune.
7. Love Trance - Slows it way down. Blues all the way on this one. Ross' vocals will tug at your heart, and whatever he doesn't get, Schon will with his axe. There's even a little Hammond B3 thrown in for good measure. Awesome.
8. Slow Down - The song isn't slowed down, it's about slowing down: "I gotta slow down. I'm moving way too fast. Slow down, baby. Tight skirts and a fast guitar. Sex on a telephone..." Some great lyrics, and good interplay between the guitar, the bass, and the drums. Hot and playful solos tie it all together. Cool track. Check out Prarie Prince's drumming near the end.
9. Play the Blues - As I said earlier, this sounds like an Albert Collins-style tune to me. (While you're buying this disc, pick up Collins' Cold Snap for fun. "Too Many Dirty Dishes" is a classic tune.) This is what it's all about, baby!
10. A Girl Like You - This features acoustic guitar (actually, I think it's a lap steel guitar) throughout, and it sounds great! Neal whips out the electric for the main solos, though, and for a rhythm part near the end. This is a great track. It's got that "down-home" sound to it.
11. Hey, Hey, Babe - Another song with a familiar Blues cadence to it. Some horns in here give it a Tower of Power sound. Schon wails on the solos. This is a fun tune that you will probably find playing in your head every now and then. Don't worry, you won't want to get it out of there.
12. Blues For Miles - An instrumental number, this is a soulful guitar journey. It closes out the disc well. It also features more phenomenal drumming from Prarie Prince.
Piranha Blues belongs in every Blues-guitar lover's collection. But even if you're not a big Blues fan, you owe it to yourself to take this disc for a spin, if only for Neal Schon's soloing. Enjoy! Reviewed by Shredfest Copyright 1999-2000 Kevin Ryan/The House of Shred. All rights reserved

BIO (Wikipedia)

Neal Schon (born Neal Joseph Schon, February 27, 1954 in Tinker Air Force Base near Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and later lived in San Mateo, California[, is an American guitarist best known for his work with the band Journey. The son of a Jazz saxophonist, Schon first picked up the guitar at the age of 10. A quick learner, he joined Santana as a teenage prodigy at the age of 15. He went to Aragon High School in San Mateo. Schon had famously been asked by Eric Clapton to join Derek and the Dominos, but since Santana called him first, he decided to join Santana for the album Santana III. Schon also played in Azteca before moving on in 1973 to form Journey, a group he continues to lead today. Schon's guitar style has been described as soulful, taking inspiration from 1960s-era soul singers such as Aretha Franklin and Gladys Knight, and blending it with blues runs similar to B. B. King and fast picked phrases in the vein of Al Di Meola. In addition to his five solo albums and 14 studio albums with Journey, his work also includes: a pair of albums with keyboardist Jan Hammer, short-term collaborations with Sammy Hagar (HSAS and Planet Us) and Paul Rodgers, stints with Bad English (a supergroup that featured Journey’s Jonathan Cain and Deen Castronovo and Jonathan Cain's former Babys bandmates John Waite and Ricky Phillips) and Hardline (which also featured Deen Castronovo). Even as Journey’s latest lineup plays to a still-faithful body of fans, Schon has immersed himself in side projects such as Piranha Blues (1999) and "Black Soup Cracker" a funk outfit that features former Prince associates Rosie Gaines and Michael Bland, and more recently Soul SirkUS with Jeff Scott Soto. Schon can also be heard on other albums including three tracks on Michael Bolton's The Hunger, with the Schon sound most recognizable on "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay". Schon's first guitar was an acoustic Stella, followed two years later by a Gibson ES-335 which was subsequently stolen and replaced with a '56 Les Paul Goldtop reissue that he used for many years. Schon currently endorses Gibson guitars, and has a limited edition signature Les Paul model entitled the "Neal Schon Signature Model Custom Les Paul", of which only 25 were made. He has previously employed Godin guitars on his 1995 solo album Beyond the Thunder, and more recently uses Paul Reed Smith guitars. In the late 1980s, Schon manufactured (through Jackson Guitars and later Larrivee) and played his own line of guitars. Simply named Schon, about 200 of the Jackson-produced models were made. A white Schon guitar can be clearly seen in the music video for the Journey song "Girl Can't Help It", as well as a gold version in the Journey videos for "I'll Be Alright Without You" and "Be Good to Yourself".


Scott Finch & Blues O' Delics


Scott Finch & Blues O' Delics - Live Groove! - 2001 - Akarma Records

Veteran neo-psych legend and Hendrix devotee Scott Finch is best known for his cult psych-rock trio Gypsy. Sorely overlooked Stateside, partly due to his relatively sparse recordings, Scott Finch has been a fixture on the Midwest club circuit since the late ’60s. Scott Finch & Blues-O-Delics recorded this triple LP live in Wisconsin and Italy. The great man, with bassist Peter Alt and drummer Dave Braun, perform a number of originals along with a handful of incredible covers by Hendrix, The Allman Bros., Muddy Waters, T-Bone Walker, Neil Young and Eric Clapton, without tripping up on the expected or paling in their shadow. There are many phenomenal tracks on this album featuring some mind blowing licks. Scott Finch is a Grade A musician and it's about time that the man got the recognition that his contemporaries do. This is a truly great recording and VHR by A.O.O.F.C. Check out Scott's Gods And Freaks album.


1.Scotts Boogie - Scott Finch
2.Haze of Mother Nature - Scott Finch
3.The Velvet Groove - Scott Finch
4.Changer - Scott Finch
5.Close to You - Scott Finch
6.Memory Pain - Percy Mayfield
7.Mass Hate - Scott Finch, Peter Alt
8.Dragnet - Scott Finch
9.I'am Still - Scott Finch
10.Fire - Jimi Hendrix
11.All Along the Watchtower - Bob Dylan
12.The Wind Cries Mary - Jimi Hendrix
13.Spanish Castle Magic - Jimi Hendrix
14.Spoonful - Willie Dixon
15.Hoochie Coochie Man - Willie Dixon
16.House of the Rising Sun - Josh White, Terry Holmes, Nicholas Diablo Ray
17.Southbound - Dickey Betts
18.Stormy Monday - T-Bone Walker
19.Louisina Blues - McKinley Morganfield
20.Tomorrow Never Knows - John Lennon, Paul McCartney
21.Born Under A Bad Sign - William Bell, Booker T. Jones
22.Down by the River - Neil Young
23.Groove King - Scott Finch
24.Jeffs Boogie - Jeff Beck, Chris Dreja, Keith Relf, Paul Samwell-Smith
25.Pie in the Sky - Scott Finch, Deirdre Fellner
26.Guitar Solo - Scott Finch
27.Voodoo Chile - Jimi Hendrix


Scott Finch Guitar, Vocals
Peter Alt Bass, Vocals, Harmonica
Dave Braun Drums, Vocals


What's the closest thing to Jimi Hendrix? Well, most people would say nobody, and I would tend to agree. If there is one artist that I have heard that plays the late great legend's music like he was born to is Scott Finch. He sounds so similar it's scary. In fact, it's like Scott moves over and let's Jimi take over when he plays the man's music. The music that the group plays that is original material will blow you away too. The last studio recording got you into a velvet groove; now this is the Live Groove baby, and man does it smoke!This dude Finch is like parts of Hendrix, Trower, and E.C. all wrapped tight into one body. His guitar doesn't gently weep mind you, it roars like a hungry lion. This is a two-disc set of live material recorded (2001) in the group's home state of Wisconsin, and in Italy, the home of the label that hosts the power trio, Akarma Records.Disc one is an exhilarating combination of originals that leads you into some classic Hendrix tunes that set you up for disc two, which starts off with the blues classic "Spoonful." The originals, like the leadoff track "Scott's Boogie" cranks; it's pure unadulterated rock n' roll with blues oozing out of the center. "Changer" is the most impressive track on disc one and their version of Jimi's "All Along The Watchtower" is mind boggling, to say the least; it gave me chills. I know that Finch can't be from Wisconsin, he has to be from another galaxy that we haven't discovered yet. Peter Alt on bass, harmonica, and lead vocals is remarkable, and Dave Braun manning the drum kit is a real tiger. I know my focus is mainly on Scott Finch, as it should be. I am sure Scott would say that he couldn't do it on his own. There are three individuals that make one great group, and that's what makes the final product so fantastic. They come together to make relentless and powerful music. Scott is humble and appreciative of any support he gets from his fans, and you can count me as one. He always gives me a thank you in the liner notes of his releases, and that is gratefully appreciated by this writer. Thanks for one hell of a ride again guys, I can't wait for the next trip.
© Keith "Muzikman" Hannaleck, February 2002, © 2002 ProgressiveWorld.net/Keith Hannaleck


The guitar hero behind a stream of releases on the Italian Comet label, Scott Finch first came to prominence as a member of Gypsy, a heavily Hendrix-influenced, Milwaukee-based band that emerged in the early '90s.Finch himself was the veteran of bands dating back to the early '60s. One early group was Bamboozle, another was simply named Finch, and as the beat-crazed days of the mid-'60s turned into the stoned, hazed days of 1967, Finch's reputation had reached the ears of the industry big boys. High as they were on the raga-rock rage that was seeping out of the American underground, the band was offered the chance to cut an entire album of the stuff. Incredibly, they turned it down. "If we do that," the bandmembers reasoned, "that's all we'll ever be remembered for."A decade later, Finch was less idealistic. Alongside drummer Gregg Slavik, he was a member of White Lie, a band which apparently spent its entire career living up to its name with a vengeance, leaping onto every musical bandwagon it encountered until it finally landed a record deal. The band's one eponymous album did nothing, however, and White Lie broke up. Finch moved on to the Hot Rods, gigging locally around Milwaukee until 1986 brought White Lie drummer Slavik back into the frame. With bassist Joe Steil completing the lineup, Gypsy debuted, again on a wholly local level, with a self-titled cassette which was recorded partially at Finch's own Velvet Sky studios, partially in concert. Much of this cassette was subsequently re-released on Finch's The Velvet Groove CD; a second tape, The Goddess, is featured on the Haze of Mother Nature compilation. Gigging tirelessly, recording ceaselessly, Gypsy uncaged a third album, People from the Darkside, then slammed together a self-compiled best-of for fans who'd missed out on the rest of the experience. Finally, however, the redundancy of bashing their heads against the walls of record company indifference became too apparent to ignore and Gypsy split in 1991. Finch promptly formed a new band, Illegal Smile, with his brother Tom and drummer Bo Conlin. It was one of several projects which would see him simply "trying to record anything that I thought was cool." None lasted long and in 1992, Finch set to work on a solo album, Pipedreams. In just six days, he completed 36 instrumentals, playing drums, bass, guitar, and keyboards himself -- 16 of them appeared on the finished (and again self-released) album. That project out of his system, he reunited once again with Slavik to form the Waltzing Tunas with bassist Mike Kashou and vocalist Peter Alt; when Kashou quit, to be replaced by Mike Haasch, the band changed its name to Bluehand. (Live cuts by both bands complete the Haze of Mother Nature compilation.) Finch hooked up with the Italian Comet label during the late '90s. Initial releases comprised the aforementioned anthologies; since that time, Finch has unleashed a wealth of additional material, including the live set Live Groove!, recorded with his latest band, the Blues-O-Delics, and an ambitious studio concept album (recorded with a re-formed Gypsy), Revelation. © Dave Thompson, All Music Guide


Helen Merrill


Helen Merrill - Helen Merrill Sings The Beatles - 1970 - Victor

In 1970, her album, "Sings Beatles", seemed like a very ambitious experiment. The repertoire and arrangements were, at that time, a departure from her standards. This album, back in the seventies, would probably have been branded pop-rock music. Listening to this album today, one can really appreciate the original interpretations she brings to the Beatle's music. Jazz vocalist Helen Merrill was renowned for her cool reserve and elegant style of swing and she sounds great in this superbly recorded live-in-the-studio session. This 1970 album was originally only released in Japan and pianist Masahiko Satoh adds a marvellous jazz-pop touch to the Lennon & McCartney classics. The psychedelic guitar really date stamps the time period. A top class record for fans of the Beatles, and Helen Merrill. This great and very hard to find album was rereleased on CD on JVC XRCD. This album is VHR by A.O.O.F.C. If you can find her 1954 album, " Helen Merrill with Clifford Brown, " give it a listen. It's a terrific jazz album, and is probably reissued on CD somewhere. Helen Merrill is not a very well known jazz vocalist, and her work deserves much more recognition. Check out her discography.


1. Let It Be
2. Lady Madonna
3. Because
4. The Word
5. Norwegian Wood
6. Here, There, and Everywhere
7. Golden Slumbers
8. And I Love Him
9. In My Life
10. Mother Nature's Son
11. If I Fell
12. I Want You

Recorded in Tokyo, 1970


Helen Merrill, Vocals
Masahiko Sato, Piano, Arranger
Yasuo Arakawa, Bass
Takeshi Inomata, Drums


Jazz vocalist Helen Merrill was known for cool reserve and elegant style of swing and she's in fine form here in a superbly recorded live-in-the-studio session. This 1970 album was originally only released in Japan and the repertoire and arrangements are a departure from her standards. Pianist Masahiko Satoh adds jazz-pop sensibilities to the Lennon & McCartney songbook with a bit of psychedelic guitar that marks the time period. A fascinating record for fans of the Fab Four and Helen Merrill alike.I Want You Copyright © 2007 musicdirect. All rights reserved
Helen Merrill's dark, smoky voice and rangy interpretive powers gave her the opportunity to shine with many types of material; for this 1970 date she leads a small Japanese group celebrating the Lennon/McCartney canon, in an experiment that's not merely successful but immensely pleasurable. The material focuses on two distinct Beatles periods (19651966 and 19681969), and Merrill studiously avoids many of the standards that older artists were then latching onto. ("Something," the consummate Beatles standard for nonrock vocalists, is conspicuously absent.) Instead, Merrill dwells on McCartney and Lennon as masters of lyrical, introspective songcraft, choosing for her tribute the drowsy, contemplative songs "Here, There and Everywhere," "And I Love Him," "Let It Be," "Golden Slumbers," "In My Life," and so forth. Most of the versions are stretched out by her small band, nearly always for good; only "The Word" sounds downright embarrassing in a brassy, jazzfunk arrangement. It's always Merrill's performances, though, that make this record a success. One of vocal music's finest freeform interpreters, she records versions neither rote nor experimental, ones that remember the originals but add much to their feel and harmonics (always an important quality when you face the prospect of covering 12 of the most memorized performances in recording history). Really, no other jazz vocalist could survive and thrive like this: recording abstract arrangements of a rock songbook in Tokyo in 1970 with a band whose easily dateable arrangements occasionally threaten their talent. She even finds subtle ways to succeed with the straightahead rocker "Lady Madonna." © John Bush, All Music Guide
Often compared to Billie Holiday, Helen Merrill is considered one of the top Jazz Vocalists of her time. She has recorded over 40+ albums in the last 40+ years including her hit album “What’s New”, considered by many in Japan as the best jazz album in the last 50 years. Helen Merrill “Sings the Beatles” is a dedication to the sound of the Beatles and was recorded in Japan and originally released in 1970. It was recorded live in the studio and arranged by Japanese pianist Masahiko Satoh. All the songs for this album were picked with the help of her son, Allan Merrill, writer of such Pop Hits as “I Love Rock & Roll” and “When the Night Comes”. Hear on this album such classic Beatles tunes as “Let it be”, “Lady Madonna”, and “Here There and Everywhere” with the warm sound that only XRCD24 can deliver! Re-live the glory days of the fab-four on this very special release by JVC. © 2006 Elusive Disc, Inc. All rights reserved


Helen Merrill's long history in jazz began with her first album on the Mercury Emarcy label arranged and produced by Quincy Jones in 1954 up to her latest CD album released in early 2000. In between were more then 50 Jazz albums and countless concerts, club dates, festivals and other jazz activities.
Ms. Merrill was born in New York City on July 21, 1929. Her parents were Croatian immigrants and her most recent recording is titled “Jelena Ana Milcetic, AKA Helen Merrill” tracing her musical experience. She started her career at the 845 club in the Bronx wile still in high school. The promoter at the club was noted for his ability to spot young future stars. Among these appearing with Helen at the time were Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Oscar Pettiford, and numerous others. The name on the marquee was Helen Milcetic, her name which she later changed to Merrill.
Ms. Merrill entered the world of music just as the big band era was ending and the much more challenging field of working with small groups had begun. During these formative years she worked with Earl Hines, Charles Mingus, Thad Jones, Clifford Brown, Gil Evans, Charlie Byrd, Marian McPartland, Al Haig, Jim Hall, Elvin Jones, Ron Carter, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, and literally hundreds of other musicians.
Although she has made a large number of jazz albums and knows her way around recording studios in the United States, Japan and Europe, Ms. Merrill's recording career began in a non-commercial atmosphere in the now famous Rudy Van Gelder studio in New Jersey. She was accompanied by Jimmy Rainey, Don Elliot and Red Mitchell. The result was a single that eventually led to a contract with Mercury. Without much fanfare, Mercury released a jazz album titled simply “Helen Merrill”
It was an instant success and has remained so to this day, more then 45 years later. The album, including one of the most acclaimed versions of the song, “What's new?” has been reissued and repackaged scores of times on various labels around the world. Readers of the Japanese magazine FM radio voted the recording the best jazz album of the past 50 years.
Mercury quickly signed Ms.Merrill to a new contract calling for four additional jazz albums. That first album featured Jimmy Jones, piano; Clifford Brown, trumpet; Milt Hinton, bass; Oscar Pettiford, cello and bass; Barry Galbraith, guitar; and others. The songs were “Whets New?” “Don't explain” “Born to Be Blue” “You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To” “Falling In Love With Love” “Lilac Wine” and “Spring Will Be A Little Late This Year”
She recorded “Helen Merrill with Strings” for Mercury in 1955, “Dream of You” in 1956, “Merrill at Midnight” in 1957 and “Nearness of You” also in 1957.
Helen Merrill lived for a number of years in Europe and recorded jazz albums in Italy, France and Norway and did frequent concerts. She made a number of trips to Japan for concerts and recorded for Japan Victor. She eventually moved to Tokyo in 1967. She returned to New York in 1972 where she now lives, making annual concert tours in Japan and Europe.
Ms. Merrill recorded two Jazz albums in New York which have had exceptional success throughout the jazz world. They were “The Feeling is Mutual” and “A Shade of Difference” with arrangements by Dick Katz, featuring Thad Jones, flugelhorn; Hubert Laws, flute; Jim Hall, guitar; Ron Carter and Richard Davis, bass; Elvin Jones, drums; Garry Bartz, saxophone. Ms. Merrill sings “A Lady Must Live” “My Funny Valentine” “Lonely Woman” “Where Do You Go?” and other jazz numbers
Both Albums have recently been reissued in the CD format by Polygram on the Verve Label
PolyGram also has reissued a boxed set of CDs of the first Mercury albums under the title “The Complete Helen Merrill on Mercury” As a footnote to history, the late Leonard Feather, jazz historian and music critic for the Los Angeles Times, said in his book “The Book Of Jazz, From Then 'Till Now” (Dell), in discussing the gradual hiring of white musicians in black bands and hiring of blacks in previously all white orchestras, “...the most stubborn barrier of all. Involving implicit defiance of the mongrelization taboo against which southern politicians had inveighed in the race for white votes, fell in 1952 when Helen Merrill, unmistakably blonde, sang for three month's with Earl Hines Sextet...”
In that same book, Feather wrote: “Srah Vaughans impact was a prelude to a succession of borderline pop-jazz vocalists. Nat King Cole, a jazz singer by any yardstick when he recorded with his own accompaniment in the early 1940s, was strictly a pop singer with faint tracers of jazz when he died in 1965. In a similar fringe zone are Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme, Barbra Streisand, and dozens others who have been mildly influenced by real jazz singers, There is a significant common denominator; these artists, though beyond reproach as performers, have little or no deep feeling for the blues.
“A few have shown real jazz qualities; Peggy Lee and Helen Merrill, for example, both have warmth of timbre, an acute sense of phrasing and a soulful quality that give their best work a beauty comparable with Billie Holidays
Ms.Merrill has recorded more then 40 albums. Authorized profile editor(s) for Helen Merrill: © Michael Ricci , © 2007 All About Jazz

Root 70


Root 70 - Heaps Dub - 2006 - Nonplace

If you think that electronic music and jazz music are separate entities, and can't be combined, then listen to this brilliant and enjoyable album. A hugely impressive recording, and VHR by A.O.O.F.C. Check out Nublu Sessions, by Wax Poetic, for similar music.


01. Get Things Straight 5:00
02. Designer Groove 5:00
03. Five Star Group Travel 5:00
04. Destination Unknown 5:00
05. Revivitator (Tongs of Love) / Black Sifichi 5:00
06. Escape the Night 5:00
07. Life Is Worth... 5:00
08. It Ain't Rocket Science 5:00
09. Bosco's Disposable Driver 5:00
10. Nightbeat 5:00


Nils Wogram - Trombone
Jochen Rueckert - Drums
Matt Penman - Melodica, Double Bass
Burnt Friedman - Synthesizer, Keyboards, Dubs
Joseph Suchy - Electric Guitar
Ernesto Artunez - Percussion
Hayden Chisholm - Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Saxophone, Melodica
Black Sifichi - voice on Revivitator


Wolfgang Stach - Engineer
Burnt Friedman - Arranger, Producer
Raschad Becker - Mastering
Hayden Chisholm - Arranger, Producer


The creative quadrangle of Nils Wogram, Jochen Rueckert, Matt Penman and Hayden Chisholm, Root 70 are a jazz quartet whose loose-limbed style has seen them taming trad-jazz, reggae, dub, latin jazz and tender acoustica to produce a sound that is instantly recognizable and utterly irresistible. In a move that could easily have been interpreted as aurally political, Root 70 have taken the music of Flanger and Burnt Friedman & The Nu Dub Players and soused them clean of any electronic detritus to expose an organic heart beneath the more digitally motivated aspects of Friedman's work. Whilst this has never manifested itself as bleeps and beats, Friedman nonetheless used a silicon scalpel to retool his work to make it sound more natural - a policy Root 70 have extended by "re-naturalising" the selected pieces on offer. Comprising four dub tunes, four latin-jazz songs as well as a spoken word collage and a silky smooth jazz track, 'Heaps Dub' is idiosyncratic to the last -with each piece lasting exactly five minutes and managing to pack more freewheeling instrumentation into those 300 seconds than many similar outfits manage over an entire album. Intricate, clever and (most importantly!) fun, 'Heaps Dub' is the sound of musicians in love with their craft. Root down! © www.boomkat.com
On first tone, you’d think this was the Youngblood Brass Band. But the Root 70 jazz quartet’s sound grows much larger on Heaps Dub, an almost entirely acoustic cover album, reprising largely electronic tunes by Burnt Friedman, his Nu Dub Players and his Flanger and Atom Heart artistic alter egos. All songs have been rearranged for saxophone, double bass, drums—and, crucially, the trombone, which puts a particular spark into the music. Root 70 is a tightknit outfit, playing a sometimes dubby, sometimes upbeat punchy jazz with a drive and energy stronger than that on the original Friedman recordings. The Cinematic Orchestra and French trumpetist Erik Truffaz spring to mind as sonically kindred artists, particularly on the punchy jazz shuffle of “Five Star Group Travel”. Heaps Dub is excellent translation of electronic music into jazz—giving beautiful credit to the respectful kinship and eternal play between the two genres. © Nicolai Hartvig, © 1999-2007 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved
The internationally highly acclaimed Jazz Quartet ROOT 70 (Nils Wogram, Jochen Rueckert, Matt Penman and Hayden Chisholm) play favourite songs from Flanger and Burnt Friedman & The Nu Dub Players. Most original titles come from Nonplace releases 2000-2004. The predominantly programmed and electronically conceived pieces experience the finest acoustic makeover possible. The two days recording session took place in Cologne, October 2005. All songs were arranged for trombone, saxophone, drums and double bass by Hayden Chisholm and have finally been dubbed by Burnt Friedman. The musical spectrum on "Heaps Dub" ranges from jazz, reggae dub, latin jazz, odd grooves and crosses the named genres.

These days, it's all about reconstruction. Well, actually it's always been about that. Only that in this day and age, with all those electronic devices surrounding us, there's so many more possibilities to re-arrange, re-play, re-mix and re-cycle. But while most musical reconstruction today is depending on electronic means, "Heaps Dub" presents a slightly different approach. Burnt Friedman's various projects - that often cross the borders of the most traditional jazz while being produced in Friedman's own genuine electronic style - experience an acoustic makeover on this album.

The ten tracks assembled on "Heaps Dub" all come from the diverse albums Friedman has released with the projects Flanger - together with Atom (aka Senor Coconut) - The Nu Dub Players and also solo recordings released on his Nonplace label between 2000-2004. This selection was chosen by Hayden Chisholm, long-time collaborator of Friedman in the various live outfits with which the two tour the world together.

Chisholm is also part of the acclaimed jazz band Root 70 who have now come to play the once electronically conceived brain children of Friedman in a somewhat classic jazz quartet style - acoustic, from the page, and live.

"Heaps Dub" therefore presents the reconstruction of the reconstruction: Friedman in his original programmed work has always tried to come as close as it gets to the authenticity of natural instruments and the spirit of a band playing - to question the very principle of "natural". Root 70 on this album have "re-naturalized" the programmed works of Friedman - not necessarily to question the very principle of "programmed", but to show that these works are true songs in their own right, as well as musical favourites, no matter what the overall circumstances might be.

"Heaps Dub" comes full cycle with the final production, editing and overdubs that Burnt Friedman did after Hayden Chisholm, Nils Wogram, Matt Penman and Jochen Rueckert had recorded their versions of his diverse songs. There are four dub tunes and four latin-jazz songs as well as a spoken word collage and a smooth jazz track on this CD. Connecting them is the general length of five minutes per track - and the unmistakable timeless quality of Friedman's songwriting. And songwriting is, as we all should know by now, just another form of reconstruction. © 2004-2007 Dot Publishing. All rights reserved
"If you've been wondering about the state of young, contemporary European jazz talent recently, look no further - and enjoy!" © British Jazz Journal

"This music is brilliantly executed, bursting with wit. Root 70 illustrates how traditions can be both respected and resoundingly transgressed." © John Kennedy in JAZZ

"Wogram plays with pinpoint accuracy and rapid-fire linear invention. Hayden Chisholm plays alto with a Cool-School lightness ...combine this with his uncanny ability to elicit shkuhachi-like tones and you have one of the most offbeat, personal saxophone styles I've heard in a while." © Coda

"Wogram is one of the most technically advanced trombonists of any genre. When he lets loose his super-human abilities are something to marvel at, as the trombonist lashes out with a speed and facility rarely seen on the instrument." © Allmusic
...to me the magic is in the subtle changes, the interplay between voices, the explosions of timbre -it's by far the most MUSICAL thing i've heard this year. © Philip Sherburne

Heaps Dub can be dauntingly characterized as a ten-track ‘reconstruction of reconstruction,' or more simply as the sound of acoustic jazz outfit Root 70 (Nils Wogram, Jochen Rueckert, Matt Penman and Hayden Chisholm) doing live versions of Nonplace material by Burnt Friedman & The Nu Dub Players and Flanger (Friedman and Atom Heart). Though Friedman's original tracks were digitally sculpted, the degree to which they approximate organic group performances free of technological manipulation reveals deft sleight-of-hand. In this Baudrillardian hall-of-mirrors, Root 70's live treatment makes the catalogue sound even more natural, with the Cologne-based group confidently navigating scenic routes through dub, traditional jazz, and Latin jazz in Chisholm's rich trombone, saxophone, clarinet, drums, and double bass arrangements.
Given Chisholm's live and recording tenure with Friedman, it doesn't surprise that accomplished dub tunes like “Life Is Worth” equal Friedman's originals in quality and spirit. Root 70's attention to detail is evident throughout—the sinuous clarinet lines of “Destination Unknown” and the lush trombone-bass clarinet weave in “Escape The Night” representative examples. Breaking the instrumental flow, “Revivitator” drops a noirish spoken word setting into the album's middle while “Nightbeat” closes the set in similarly ponderous fashion. Ever the provocateur, Friedman didn't leave the material wholly untouched but configured each track to a five-minute length in the final mix—not that any of it sounds any less organic for being so. If anything, the strength of his compositions comes forth all the more strongly in Root 70's wholly simpatico renderings. © www.textura.org

BIOS ( © 2004-2007 Dot Publishing. All rights reserved )

Hayden Chisholm is a saxophonist and composer well known for his work with the artist Rebecca Horn. Originating from New Zealand, he studied in Germany and India and has since performed all over the world. His compositions have been recorded by BBC and WDR radio and as an instrumentalist he has released several albums. He currently plays with Burnt Friedman & Jaki Liebezeit and Pluramon as well as creating the music for several of Rebecca Horn's recent installations, several of which are touring the world. In 2005 his installation "Moonmirror" was featured in St Paul´s Cathedral in London.
Although only 30, he has spent 8 years of his life on the road giving concerts and is currently preparing a book about his musical travels. he currently lives and works in Berlin and Cologne.

Nils Wogram - trombone
Though barely in his 30's Nils Wogram has been a prolific and acclaimed performer for more than a decade. He has been recognized internationally as the new master on his instrument. Based on classical training, he aims at playing the jazz trombone with the fluency and flexibility of a saxophone while developing an individual concept of composing and ensemble playing. A multi-prize winner, he was awarded the 1996 International Frank Rosolino Memorial Scholarship for Jazz Trombone (USA), a composition award from the 1997 Inter-national Julius Hemphill Competition (USA), the 1998 SWR Jazz Award and many others. Wogram was a classical soloist for Krahnenbaum Company, performed as a leader at the ENJA 25th Anniversary Festival in New York and recorded and toured with his own quartet as well as with other successful acts. Wogram's CDs received highest ratings.

Matt Penman - double bass
Matt Penman is a busy musician, he plays double bass on about 50 records, plays live with the San Francisco Jazz Collective under the direction of Joshua Redman and with Madeleine Peyroux. He also played with are Kurt Rosenwinkel, Kenny Werner, Nneena Freelon, Chris Cheek, Seamus Blake, Peter Bernstein, Guillermo Klein, Wolfgang Muthspiel. Matt created the record ³The Unquiet² on Fresh Sound and once realized that he likes garlic salt more than regular salt, but this wasn¹t always the case. Originating from New Zealand and Matt now lives in New York City.

Jochen Rueckert- drums
Jochen Rueckert was born in 1975 near Koeln, Germany and started playing drums at age 6. In 1995 he moved to Brooklyn, NY where he lives now. He has been playing and recording with a variety of bands including Marc Copland trio, Nils Wogram quartet ,Marc Turner band, Chris Cheek, Kurt Rosenwinkel, John Abercrombie, Sam Yahel, Pat Metheny etc.. Jochen has been touring all over north and south America, eastern and western Europe, Asia and Australia. He is also known for his non-jazz work with New York punk-rock bands "Tennis" and "Bonnie Lundy" and electronic work with Marcus Schmickler and Nublu bands, most mentionable "Wax Poetic". He also plays bass in the NYC rockband "Worldclass" and programs, remixes and produces music for various artists in the electro/pop/hip hop sector.

Stan Webb's Chicken Shack


Stan Webb's Chicken Shack - Poor Boy: In Concert 1973 & 1981 [LIVE] - 2000 - Indigo UK

15 excellent live tracks from the great British blues rock group. Taken from Stan Webb's personal tapes, the tracks were recorded in 1973 at Brunel University on Oct 26th and in 1981 at The Bridge House, Canning Town, London. A great testimony to this brilliant blues artist. This post is at 128 Kbps, so please make allowances. Check out the great Chicken Shack albums, “40 Blue Fingers Freshly Packed And Ready To Go” and “O.K. Ken.”


1. Everyday I Have the Blues
2. Thrill Is Gone
3. Going Down
4. You Take Me Down
5. Webb's Boogie
6. You're Mean
7. Poor Boy
8. Webb's Guitar Boogie Shuffle
9. Tuttie Fruttie
10. Tell Me
11. Why I Sing the Blues
12. Back Door Man
13. Poor Boy
14. Shake Your Moneymaker
15. Hideaway


Stan Webb Guitar, Vocals
Tony Ashton Keyboards
Paul Butler Guitar, Vocals
Rob Hull Bass
Ric Lee Drums
Alan Powell Drums
Dave Wilkinson Keyboards
Alan Scott Bass


In 1968 Chicken Shack were a major signing to MIKE VERNON’S now legendary BLUE HORIZON label. Led by the mercurial Stan Webb on guitar and vocals, Chicken Shack were a band brimming full of talent, far outweighing the bands, groups and solo performers purveying the BLUES – a musical tradition in many forms, taken from the ‘Folk Roots Of Black America’. Probably the bands most well known member was CHRISTINE PERFECT (later McVie) who went on at a later date to even greater fame and fortune with FLEETWOOD MAC. The late sixties were a prolific time for Chicken Shack with their first two albums “40 Blue Fingers Freshly Packed And Ready To Go” and “O.K. Ken” storming into the U.K. top twenty, whilst the singles “When The Train Comes Back” and “Tears In The Wind” also scored heavily in the charts. Stan’s blistering guitar style matched with a huge stage presence have made Chicken Shack a firm favourite of rock and blues fans everywhere. Since those heady days of the late sixties a further fifteen albums have been released together with numerous compilations proving that Stan, really is “The Man”.Throughout a distinguished career Stan Webb has played and recorded with the very best, including, STEVIE WONDER, HOWLING WOLF, TAJ MAHAL, PETER GREEN and CANNED HEAT, whom he joined on guitar for a U.K, tour following the departure of the bands guitarist. As the ‘60’s have given way to the ‘70’s; ‘80’s and ‘90’s, Stan Webb and Chicken Shack show no sign of slowing down, continually touring the U.K. and Europe to packed houses and rave reviews. In 1997 Stan received the BLUE HEART AWARD for services to blues in Germany, in 1996 that went to BB KING, a glowing testament to Stan Webb and his ongoing love of playing the blues. 2006 saw Stan embarked on an extension UK tour with John Mayall. “Stan The Man” shows no sign of slowing down.

Gabor Szabo


Gabor Szabo - Dreams - 1968 - Skye

This is no an ordinary Jazz album. Through the seven pieces here, the guitar is naturally at the forefront, yet the backing group is anything but secondary. Here, Gabor Szabo's guitar genius, set to magnificent arrangements by Gary McFarland pairs his outstanding quintet (featuring Jimmy Stewart) with Gary McFarland's subtle string and horn arrangements in a collection of originals, pop covers, and classical reinterpretations. This is one of the most sophisticated albums Szabo ever cut, and the result is a sort of accessible third-stream music. The album has a slow-building style that steps off of his Impulse years with a deeper, broader vision of music. Szabo has many fine moments, and provides nice spaces for the beautiful guitar solos of Jimmy Stewart.by Douglas Payne. The warm tones and Eastern influences of 'Dreams' makes this one of Gabor Szabo's best albums.


a. Galatea's Guitar (Gabor Szabo) - 5:33
b. Half the Day is the Night (Gary McFarland) - 4:23
c. Song of Injured Love (DeFalla) - 4:05
d. The Fortune Teller (Gabor Szabo/Louis Kabok) - 4:28
e. Fire Dance (DeFalla) - 5:39
f. The Lady in the Moon (Gabor Szabo) - 5:13
g. Ferris Wheel (Donovan) - 5:27


Los Angeles, California: August 6, 7 & 9, 1968
Gabor Szabo, Jim (Jimmy) Stewart (g); Louis Kabok (b); Jim Keltner (d); Hal Gordon (perc);

New York City: August 22, 1968
Tony Miranda, Ray Alonge, Brooks Tillotson (fhr); Gary McFarland (p,arr); Julius Schacter (vln); George Ricci (cello).


b: March 8, 1936, d: February 26, 1982. Gabor Szabo was one of the most original guitarists to emerge in the 1960s; mixing his Hungarian folk music heritage with a deep love of jazz and crafting a distinctive, largely self-taught sound. Inspired by a Roy Rogers cowboy movie, Szabo began playing guitar when he was 14 and often played in dinner clubs and covert jam sessions while still living in Budapest. He escaped from his country at age 20 on the eve of the anti-Communist uprising and eventually made his way to America, settling with his family in California. He attended Berklee College (1958-60) and in 1961 joined Chico Hamilton’s innovative quintet featuring Charles Lloyd. Urged by Hamilton, Szabo crafted a most distinctive sound; agile on intricate, nearly-free runs as he was able to sound inspired during melodic passages. Szabo left the Hamilton group in 1965 to leave his mark on the pop-jazz of the Gary McFarland quintet and the energy music of Charles Lloyd’s fiery and underrated quartet featuring Ron Carter and Tony Williams. Szabo initiated a solo career in 1966, recording the exceptional album, SPELLBINDER, which yielded many inspired moments and "Gypsy Queen," the song the rock group, Santana, turned into a huge hit in 1970. Szabo formed an innovative quintet (1967-69) featuring the brilliant, classically-trained guitarist Jimmy Stewart and recorded many notable albums during the late 1960s. The emergence of rock music (especially George Harrison, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix) found Szabo successfully experimenting with feedback and less successfully (but innovative at the time) with more commercially-oriented forms of jazz. During the 1970s, Szabo regularly performed along the West Coast; hypnotizing audiences with his enchanting, spellbinding style. But from 1970, he was locked into a commercial groove – even though records like MIZRAB occasionally revealed the success of his jazz, pop, Gypsy, Indian and Asian fusions. Szabo had revisited his homeland several times during the 1970s, finding opportunities to perform brilliantly with native talents. He was hospitalized during his final visit and died in 1982 – just short of his 46th birthday and five years after his final American album was released. © www.dougpayne.com

Tom Tom Club


Tom Tom Club - Dark Sneak Love Action - 1992 - Sire

Tina Weymouth and Chris Frantz of Talking Heads fame gather together with friends and produce another episode in the Tom Tom Club saga -- the sort of thing you'd get if you straightened Talking Heads out and hit the dance floor, except moreso. The result is an intelligent album you can dance to and be amused by, though it's not daffy -- just full of humor. The cover of "You Sexy Thing" was one surprise here; the bagpipes on "Daddy Come Home" were even better. © Steven McDonald, All Music Guide, © 2007 All Media Guide, LLC

This is more than dance music. Underneath the surface are advanced polyrhythmic funky urban rhythms. A great album from the underrated Tom Tom Club. Check out thir great albums, " The Good the Bad and the Funky. ", & " Live At The Clubhouse. "


1.Love Wave (5:13)
2.Sunshine And Ecstasy (5:09)
3.You Sexy Thing (3:46)
4.Who Wants An Ugly Girl? (4:54)
5.Say I Am (4:54)
6.Irresistible Party Dip (5:11)
7.Dark Sneak Love Action (4:21)
8.Innocent Sex Kiss (4:00)
9.Dogs In The Trash (4:28)
10.My Mama Told Me (4:33)
11.As The Disco Ball Turns (5:48)
12.Daddy Come Home (5:27)


Bass, Vocals - Tina Weymouth
Drums, Percussion, Vocals - Chris Frantz
Guitar, Vocals - Mark Roule
Producer - B. Martin* , C. Frantz* , M. Roule* , T. Weymouth*
Programmed By [Computer], Percussion, Keyboards, Accordion, Vocals - Bruce Martin
Vocals - Lani Weymouth , Victoria Clamp

Tom Tom Club


Tom Tom Club - Live At The Clubhouse 2003 - iMusic

U.S. group formed at the start of the '80's by Tina Weymouth and Chris Frantz of Talking Heads. Other members of the group were Steve Scales, Alex Weir, Tyrone Downie and Tina's sisters Loric, Lani and Laura. Their first-ever live album was recorded on October 14, 2001 at Cock Island, Connecticut. The album set contains a complete show including all Tom Tom Club hits and a handful of funky covers, including HotChocolate's 'You Sexy Thing' and Al Green's 'Take me to the River'. An extremely talented band, way ahead of their time. Tina Weymouth once said " When Talking Heads started, we called ourselves Thinking Man's Dance Music. " This is an exceptional live CD.



Suboceana (Boom Boom Chi Boom Boom)
Time to Bounce
Punk Lolita
Soul Fire
Who Feelin' It
Happiness Can't Buy Money
She's Dangerous
The Man With the 4-Way Hips


Genius of Love
Band Introduction
You Sexy Thing
Holy Water
Wordy Rappinghood
As Above so Below
96 Tears
Take me to the River


Tina Weymouth: Bass Guitar & Vocals
Chris Frantz: Drum Kit & Vocals
Steve Scales: Congas, Timbales, Cowbelles & Vocals
Abdou M'Boup: Talking Dum
Victoria Clamp: Vocals & Percussion
Bruce Martin: Keyboards, Timbales, Agogo Belss & Vocals
Robby Aceto: Guitar & Vocals
Mystic Bowie: Vocals & Percussion
Featuring The Deep Banana Blackout Horns:
Rob Somerville: Tenor Sax
Hope Clayburn: Alto Sax
Bryan Smith: Trombone

Tom Tom Club


Tom Tom Club - Close to the Bone - 1983 - Sire

Great album from the vastly underrated Tom Tom Club. Great polyrhythmic experiments, with an urban electronic touch, and dreamy dub reggae vibes. Although it wasn't such a commerial success as it's predecessor "Tom Tom Club", the album is a favorite among fans.


"Pleasure of Love" - 6:33
"On the Line Again" - 4:56
"This is a Foxy World" - 3:39
"Bamboo Town" - 3:56
"The Man With the 4-Way Hips" - 5:48
"Measure Up" - 5:05
"Never Took a Penny" - 3:33
"Atsababy! (Life is Great)" - 4:02


Wally Badaro, Tyrone Downie, Chris Frantz, Roddy Frantz, Rupert Hine, Raymond Jones, Steve Scales, Steven Stanley, Alex Weir and sisters Lani, Laura & Tina Weymouth.

BIO (Wikipedia)

The Tom Tom Club are a New Wave band set up in 1980 by Tina Weymouth and Chris Frantz, also members of Talking Heads. Although originally established as a side project, the Tom Tom Club enjoyed early success with hits such as "Genius of Love" and "Wordy Rappinghood", which were taken from their self-titled first album which was released on Sire in the US and Island Records elsewhere in 1981. "Genius of Love" has been sampled or reinterpreted by many artists, including rapper Redman, Funkdoobiest and Mariah Carey in her hit single "Fantasy". "It's Nasty" (1982) by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five was one of the early rap versions of the song - however, the sample was re-recorded by a live band, as was common practice at the time. Another version, "Genius Rap" (1981), by Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde was the first version. Early pressings of their first album featured short versions of "Genius of Love" and "Wordy Rappinghood" but to capitalise on the club success of these songs, Island reissued the album with the full 12" versions in 1982. A new single "Under the Boardwalk", which was the group's second and final UK hit, replaced another song "Booming and Zooming". The following year, the group released a follow-up, Close to the Bone, which was similar in style to their first album but didn't fare as well despite songs such as Pleasure of Love and The Man With The Four Way Hips. Despite this disappointment, The Tom Tom Club appeared in the Talking Heads concert film, Stop Making Sense in 1984. There was then a four-year gap until the band's next album, the first version of Boom Boom Chi Boom Boom. By this stage, the band's deal with Island had expired and Boom Boom Chi Boom Boom was released outside the US on Fontana. The album saw the group adopt a more conventional rock song with a harder edged sound and a hint of menace in the lyrics of some songs. The group's line-up was also solidified along more conventional commercial lines. Whereas the previous two albums had been recorded by a loose collective of a dozen musicians, the Tom Tom Club was now reduced to the trio of Weymouth, Frantz and Weymouth's sister Laura Weymouth. There were, however, a number of prominent guest musicians on the record including Lou Reed and Talking Heads frontman David Byrne on a cover of Reed's "Femme Fatale". The fourth member of Talking Heads Jerry Harrison also featured on some tracks. As with Close to the Bone, the album wasn't a commercial success although Suboceana got some radio play. The album was the first Tom Tom Club album to be issued on CD and the Japanese CD version featured an added bonus track, the b-side Devil, Does Your Dog Bite? which was also featured on the soundtrack "Married to the Mob." "Suboceana" was also remixed for dance clubs by house-music pioneer Marshall Jefferson. The following year, in a bid to recapture the attention of the US market, the group and Sire decided to issue a radically altered version of the album in the US. The US version of Boom Boom Chi Boom Boom replaced four songs with four others, one of which I Confess was a total overhaul of the original album's Mighty Teardrop. The running order of the rest of the album was shuffled while the artwork was revamped. However, the changes had little effect on the album's US commercial success, which was minimal. The group's later albums have also met with little success.

John Verity Band


John Verity Band - Say Why - 2007 - VaVoom

As far back as 1969, John Verity was supporting act to legendary artists, Jimi Hendrix, Mountain, Canned Heat & Janis Joplin, stateside. He has played with Ringo Starr, Russ Ballard, Colin Blunstone, Mike Rutherford (of Genesis), Keith Emerson, Greg Lake, Zombies, & Michael Schenker, worldwide. He played with the great Argent from 1973 to 1976. He has impeccable credentials as a producer, guitarist, and singer. This great electric power blues album demonstrates John Verity's great talent. All original material , no-frills production, and guaranteed to get your feet stomping! Has anybody any info on his album, 'John Verity Band', released on ABC/Probe in 1972.


01. BB King
02. Prove Your Love
03. This Old Dog
04. You Are The One
05. Say Why
06. Down The Road
07. Walkin' The Blues
08. Too Hot To Hug


John Verity. (Vocal and guitar).
Robert Henrit. (Drums)
Mark Griffiths. (Bass)
Gary Moberley (Keyboard)
Jeff Dakin (blues harp on 'The One')

BIO (Wikipedia)

John Verity, was born on 3rd July 1949 in Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. He was notably a member of the 1970s band Argent from 1973 to 1976. When Argent split up he formed Phoenix with Bob Henrit and Jim Rodford from Argent. The band recorded three albums with CBS Records and toured Europe before disbanding amicably. Jim Rodford joined the Kinks, John and Bob joined Charlie, to record an album with RCA Records. John produced the Phoenix albums and Charlie album as well as the first Saxon album. During the early 1980s John worked with Brian Connolly (former vocalist with Sweet) in an attempt to launch him as a solo artist. A single, "Hypnotised" was released on Carrere Records in 1982 produced by John and written by Joe Lynn Turner of Rainbow fame. John was part of Connolly's backing band Encore when they supported Pat Benatar at the beginning of 1983. The line up of this band formed the basis of Verity's own band, imaginatively entitled Verity which went on release several albums including "Interrupted Journey". He can be frequently seen playing with his band at many venues in and around Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire. He now also has many acoustic gigs as a duo with either Max Milligan or Mark Griffiths as well as with the band: the usual line up features Bob Henrit on drums and Mark Griffiths on bass (Shadows, Al Stewart among many other bands). John also has European gigs lined up for 2007 and will be playing at the Colne Blues Festival in Summer.

Sherri Roberts


Sherri Roberts - The Sky Could Send You - 2006 - Pacific Coast Jazz

A stylish set of laid-back, jazz vocalizing from the Native Georgian cum San Franciscan. The album includes a couple of Caribbean calypso influenced tunes, some Rodgers and Hart tunes, and a slinky Latin tune by Antonio Carlos Jobim. Sherri Roberts has a perfectly balanced voice, well suited to the hot and spicy Caribbean influences on this album. The album features some great saxophoe playing from the great Phil Woods. This is an outstanding jazz vocal recording. Check out her 1998 album, " Dreamsville."


1. You’re Looking At Me
Bobby Troup
2. Jamaica Farewell
Irving Burgie
3. Before
Harvie S / Sherri Roberts
4. Let Me
Baden Powell/Norman Gimbell
5. Tell Me My Name
Roger Kellaway/Gene Lees
6. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress
Jimmy Webb
7. Return To Paradise
Dimitri Tiomkin/Ned Washington
8. You’re Nearer
Richard Rodgers/Lorenz Hart
9. Do It The Hard Way
Richard Rodgers/Lorenz Hart; Vocalese:Chet Baker/Sherri Roberts
10. Slow Hot Wind
Henry Mancini/Norman Gimbel
11. Far From New York
Larry Baskett

12. Por Toda Minha Vida [For All My Life]
Antonio Carlos Jobim/Vinicius de Moraes


Sherri Roberts (vocals),
John Hart (guitar),
David Udolf (piano),
Pablo Vergara (piano trk #4),
Harvie S (bass),
Vince Cherico (drums),
Phil Woods ( saxophone),
Lew Soloff (trumpet),
Tim Collins (vibraphone),
Daniel Sadownick (percussion),
Renato Thoms (percussion),
Skyler Jett, Daria, Sherri Roberts (background vocals on trk #2).


When you listen to Sherri's thoughtful way with a vocal line, or her vibrant sense of swing, or her effortless embodiment of a song's emotion, it's hard not to notice the extent of her affection for her songs.
Sherri Roberts was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and received a B.A. in theatre from Antioch College in Ohio. It was there she was first introduced to jazz studies - its history and repertoire - as well as early Renaissance choral music and the 20th Century avant garde. Upon relocating to San Francisco, she became involved in both theatre performance and management, while never abandoning her love of singing and her growing interest in jazz. At a transitional point in her life, she recognized that exploring the rich emotional life of a character through story could be done far more economically in a four minute song than a two hour play; that a well written song is like a miniature play, distilled down to it’s musical essence; and that singing, like acting, offers the means to externalize the deeper internal self. She walked away from the theatre and onto the bandstand and never looked back.
Drawing from this diverse training and experience, Ms. Roberts blurs the line between cabaret and jazz singing. She performs the tunes of Broadway and Tin Pan Alley in modern jazz settings, while her great affinity for Brazilian music and the lyricized compositions of contemporary artists such as Dave Brubeck, Marian McPartland and Bill Evans keeps her song choices personal and exciting. She takes her innate feeling for melody and rhythm and mates it with an attraction for less-known and wrongly-neglected songs.
Ms. Roberts’ interpretation of this repertoire draws inspiration from the Vo-Cool jazz era. Her velvet voice, laidback phrasing, impeccable diction, and subtle understated delivery have invited favorable comparisons to June Christy, Chet Baker and Helen Merrill. Yet her pillowy sound and intimate approach are all her own. The Sky Could Send You, her latest recording is produced and arranged by bassist Harvie S with special guests, legendary saxophonist Phil Woods and trumpet virtuoso Lew Soloff. “Sweet, sensitive, and sassy” is how Jesse “Chuy” Varela of the Bay Area’s KCSM FM describes Sherri’s vocals on this outing.“ Sky”, to be released in February of 2006 on the Blue House Recordings/Pacific Coast Jazz labels, marks Sherri’s third collaboration with Harvie S (formerly Harvie Swartz) following their critically acclaimed recordings on the Brownstone label: Twilight World (1996) and Dreamsville (1998). . Twilight World, was called “an impressively warm and lyrical debut” by the San Francisco Bay Guardian.
Dreamsville followed, garnering even greater critical response . JazzTimes said “Everything works here. Encore Ms. Roberts.” Cadence Magazine effused “Her voice is beautifully expressive and rhythmically fluent. And the intelligence behind each lyric interpretation is manifest.” And the Los Angeles Times called Roberts “A superior bop and standards vocalist (who) puts plenty of feeling and swing into her music.” Dreamsville, distributed internationally, also received significant radio airplay on over 100 jazz stations throughout North America. It charted on the prestigious Gavin Report where it remained for a full seven weeks.
Sherri has recorded or performed with Harvie S, Mark Soskin, Danny Gottlieb, Chris Potter, Eric Friedlander, Kieth Underwood, Joe Le Barbera, John Hart, Vince Cherico, and many top Bay Area musicians.
Ms. Roberts is a true scho lar of popular music with a deep appreciation for its heritage and freely sites such diverse influences as Ella Fitzgerald, Carol Sloane, Irene Kral, Chet Baker and Shirley Horn. She was priveleged to study with jazz master Sheila Jordan and also with the late Jeri Southern, as well as with Mark Murphy, Jovino Santos Neto, and Dr. Billy Taylor.
She performs regularly in the Bay Area and has toured to major jazz venues both in the states and abroad. © 2007 All About Jazz


“This recording elevates Sherri Roberts to another level within the jazz vocalist galaxy of stars. Her evocative expressions and poetic lyricism envelop the listener in a warm cocoon of sound that you’re sure to enjoy.”
© Paula Edelstein, All About Jazz

“...A picture of relaxed professionalism. Roberts swings so warmly and gently that the listener’s tender side will reach out to her...this is clearly a stunner.”
Richard Bourcier, Jazz Review.com
“She’s a breath of fresh air...pure and unaffected.”
© Kirk Silsbee, Jazz Critic’s Choice, Los Angeles City Beat

“A welcome return to recording after seven years for Sherri Roberts.”
© Scott Yanow, All Music Guide

“Ms. Roberts’ voice is expressive, distinctive and stylish... It’s got that great West Coast sound...Perfect for a lazy Saturday afternoon.
Keep an eye out for this one. It’s a keeper.”
(rating: Three and one-half microphones out of four)
Doug Boyton, Girl Singers.org
“Stylistically, Roberts bears a significant resemblance to gin ‘n’ satin seductress Julie London. But where London’s voice was distant as a winter moon, Roberts’ is all dappled sunshine...shimmering delicacy...Enchanting.”
Christopher Loudon, JazzTimes “Tender...inviting...sultry...A romantic and warm addition to any moonlight rendezvous.”
Karl Stober, E Jazz News.com
“Interpreting from the heart with genuine expression, ... Roberts proves that vocal jazz still holds surprises without letting go of tradition... Her program signals that vocal jazz
has not yet stalled on it’s long and creative journey.”
Jim Santella, L.A. Jazz Scene
“Phil Woods adds his surging alto to Sherri’s ardently incisive reading of the Rodgers and Hart love psalm, You're Nearer, and together they generate as much heat as light.”
© Alan Bargebuhr, Cadence Magazine

“The Sky Could Send You demonstrates the synergy two empathetic artists (vocalist Roberts and producer/bassist Harvie S) can share when the stars are in line.
This is a wonderful vocal outing.”
© C. Michael Bailey, AllAboutJazz.com

“Roberts’ solid technique and spirited élan make a naturally gifted voice into a true work of art...This is a singer who has mastered the form, and her new album is a joy to listen to.”
Jim Trageser, Turbula.net “A chance to hear singing perfectly integrated with instrumentation...
This release tracks well from start to finish, has the potential to be a classic,
and should create a buzz amongst jazz listeners.”
© Chris Walker, California Tour and Travel

“I get more CDs by singers than you can shake a stick at... I’ve come to the conclusion after listening to so many over the years, that unless a singer's voice touches you, and puts its hand in your hand, you’re not really going to want to listen to that voice for very long. Sherri Roberts has a voice that does touch me.
I hope her voice will touch you, too.”
© Katie Malloch, Host, Jazz Beat, CBC Radio (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)

Ginger Baker Trio


Ginger Baker Trio - Going Back Home - 1994 - Atlantic (USA)

Give Ginger Baker this: He sure knows how to choose his sidemen. In fact, there is a certain pleasant symmetry to his recording career between the mid-'60s and the mid-'90s. It is a career bookended by power trios, first with his partnership with fellow virtuosos Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce in Cream, and then, almost 30 years later and well after most would have written him off as a relic from a bygone era, this trio with Charlie Haden and Bill Frisell. More surprising even than this unlikely partnership is the fact that the album actually works. Most memorable are the Baker-penned compositions, which sport melodies that seem to have more in common with British or Arabic folk music than bebop. As a jazz drummer, Baker is surprisingly convincing on most of the material. The timbre of his drums, unusual for a jazz album, adds a pleasing earthiness to the proceedings, and intersects well with Haden's rich bass. Everything Frisell touches turns to gold, and this album is no exception. Here he is at his quirky, impressionistic best, tossing off Monk quotations as effortlessly as he sculpts darkly ambient textures. Despite these fine achievements, Going Back Home is not perfect. On some of the material, Baker's heavy rock hand shows a bit too much, as on "Straight, No Chaser." The results are charming in their own way, but one wishes that Baker could ease up on the "Sunshine of Your Love" tom-tom fills once in a while. Also, the closer, "East Timor," features an annoying voiceover by Baker that ends the record on an off note. However, the "rockisms" work more often than they don't, and even when they don't, the groove never suffers, and the trio members always sound like they're having fun. By turns hauntingly melancholy and fearlessly experimental, this record is sure to please Frisell and Haden fans, and likely to pleasantly surprise those who enjoy Baker's work with Cream. © Daniel Gioffre, All Music Guide

Inducted into Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame for work with Cream, 1993, Ginger Baker has received several gold and platinum records with Cream and Blind Faith. Check out " Fresh Cream ", 1968, " Blind Faith ", Atco, 1969, " Air Force, " Atco, 1970, & " Baker-Gurvitz Army ", Janus, 1975. This album is just another example of the great Ginger Baker's talents. A marvellous jazz blues album.


1. Rambler
2. I Lu Kron
3. Straight No Chaser
4. Ramblin'
5. Ginger Blues
6. Ain Temouchant
7. When We Go
8. In The Moment
9. Spiritual
10. East Timor


Ginger Baker (drums, spoken vocals);
Bill Frisell (electric guitar);
Charlie Haden (acoustic bass).

All music written by members of the Ginger Baker Trio except "Straight No Chaser" (Thelonious Monk) and "Ramblin'" (Ornette Coleman).
Recorded at Ocean Way Studio A, Hollywood, California, from March 2-5, 1994. Includes liner notes by Chip Stern.


Ginger Baker of Cream fame gathers together with virtuoso bassist Charlie Haden and guitarist Bill Frisell to produce a jazz album that should appeal to fans of both rock and jazz. Baker's drumming is as good as ever on this album, and accompanied by Haden and Frisell, the trio takes on eight of their own compositions supplemented by Thelonious Monk's "Straight No Chaser" and Ornette Coleman's "Ramblin.'"
Among the most appealing songs are Haden's compositions, in particular "Ginger Blues" has a catchy melody, making it stand out from the rest of the tracks. Haden really seems at home composing jazz for the trio. "East Timor," a track by Baker is hauntingly powerful, mainly because of his spoken narrative lamenting the destruction of this country with the support of outside governments. On "Straight No Chaser," Frisell's guitar admirably performs the piano and sax parts while Haden makes it in there for a solo himself. One might ask why we need yet another version of "Straight No Chaser," while others say that you can never get enough of a good thing. This version is definitely a good thing. Baker's "I Lu Kron" and "Ain Temouchant" have a touch of a Middle Eastern sound. They sound like classic rock at times, but more in the way of mellow jam mode rather than blistering heat. "In the Moment" bends music almost to the breaking point, doesn't quite shatter it--outstanding work by Haden!
This is a solid album that may give some folks a fresh look at Ginger Baker and introduce others to first-rate bassist and jazz composer Charlie Haden. I recommend it to those Cream fans who want to see Baker in a different light and those jazz fans who like Haden but thought that perhaps his recent offering, Now is the Hour, was a bit overly lush at times. This album presents an uncluttered performance by a trio of skillful musicians. This review was written 17 February 1997. © 1997, Leslie Carl Seiler. All rights reserved. http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/lcseiler/baker.htm

For legendary drummer Ginger Baker and his master collaborators (acoustic bassist Charlie Haden and electric guitarist Bill Frisell), music is an open door. Animated by the spirit of jazz improvisation, GOING BACK HOME is an historic super-session, a dancing celebration of diversity--an innovative hybrid of jazz, blues, country, rock and ethnic sources. GOING BACK HOME captures the rich melodic dynamics of Baker's drums and the gut string nuances of Haden's bass--because the rhythm is recorded out front, and bears the weight of each improvisation. So on the guitarist's "Rambler" and "When We Go," Frisell is free to float weightlessly above their throbbing backbeats, evoking facets of Tex-Mex blues, New Orleans second lines, and Hawaiian dances. And if Haden's poignant hymn "Spiritual" and Monk's bluesy "Straight No Chaser" betray a pronounced country air, well, even Ornette Coleman's "Ramblin" comes off like a Hendrixian hoedown. Baker's brief, thundering solo on Haden's tumultuous "In The Moment" is a nod to the spirit of Big Sid Catlett, yet he plays with airy, nuanced delicacy on "Ginger Blues." But most surprising is the quality of Ginger's writing. "Ain Temouchant" is all Arabic mystery, while his chanting theme on "I Lu Kron" inspires a rousing Coltraneish catharsis in only 2:39. But it's Baker's "East Timor," with its Afrocentric rhythm figures, dramatic spoken narrative and wild psychedelic blues jam (shades of Clapton and Cream), that hints at the drummer's true potential as arranger. Which makes GOING BACK HOME one of the great musical surprises of 1994. © 1996 - 2007 CD Universe, www.cduniverse.com/search/xx/music/pid/1097424/a/Going+Back+Home.htm

A rock musician unites with two jazz-oriented players, and the result is a work so deliciously free of fusion that it practically signals a new era of crossgenre interaction. Drummer Ginger Baker, guitarist Bill Frisell and acoustic bassist Charlie Haden make instrumental music that draws on a mutual love of the swing of jazz, the sonic effusiveness of rock and the lyricism of the blues. There's no pretense here: Baker isn't a jazzman, and Frisell and Haden aren't rockers. They find common ground on a bedrock of American vernacular music – rather than in the world music that Baker has explored in the past.
The success of Going Back Home lies in the attention paid to composition and arranging – details that supersede improvisational grandstanding. The tunes are downright catchy, among them Baker's easeful blues songs "Ain Temouchant" and "I Lu Kron," Haden's gospel-soaked "Spiritual" and Frisell's lovely anthem "Rambler." The trio also takes on two durable jazz standards, offering a respectful stab at Thelonious Monk's "Straight No Chaser" and transforming Ornette Coleman's Southwestern-tinged "Ramblin'" into a glorious, jostling romp.
The three men are uniquely suited to one another: Frisell, the so-called guitar nonhero, his eccentric phrasing conveying mood rather than ego; Haden, a lyrical player whose every measured note speaks of deeply felt passion; and Baker, with his loose, swinging cross-rhythms. The united-mind groove of the Baker-Haden rhythm section frees Frisell to contribute the most spirited playing of his recorded career. On "East Timor" (the only piece that specifically invokes Cream with its use of the vamp from "We're Going Wrong" and Baker's time-warp recitation à la "Pressed Rat and Warthog"), Frisell's playing takes on a slamming, near-ecstatic vigor.
Going Back Home signals Baker's evolution from a rock footnote to a vital musician. More than a quarter century after Cream called it a day, Baker has delivered his masterwork. (RS 693), © STEVE FUTTERMAN, (Posted: Oct 20, 1994), © 2007 Rolling Stone


Born Peter Baker, August 19, 1939, in Lewisham, England; son of a bricklayer; married twice (divorced); children: Ginette, Leda, Kofi (son). Addresses: Home--Colorado. Record company--Atlantic Records, 75 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10019.
Ginger Baker found his way into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame by playing the drums with a degree of proficiency and expression matched by few others. He first gained fame in the late 1960s with Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce as Cream, a now-legendary band that infused blues and jazz into rock and roll, producing an original and deeply textured sound. In its two-year existence, the English trio sold over 15 million records and played to adoring crowds and critical acclaim. Baker had much to do with the band's success--and likewise much to do with the band's demise.
Baker began as an aspiring jazzman and found himself a rock demigod. His brisk, purely businesslike approach caused him problems with his fellow musicians, and drug dependency cast a dark shadow over his career and his relationships. But since the late 1980s, the 50-year-old-plus father of three has straightened out his personal life, rekindled his interest in jazz, and enjoyed several successful solo and ensemble projects.
Born the son of a bricklayer, Baker dreamed as a youth of athletic rather than musical greatness. At the age of 15, he was a champion cyclist, winning a club title and courting aspirations of further success. But music eventually captured his attention. His first instrument, the trumpet, was soon replaced by a pair of drumsticks. Early on, Baker hoped to become a jazz drummer, playing on London's traditional jazz scene in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Baker's after-school hours were spent jamming with noted jazz musicians Acker Bilk and Terry Lightfoot, as well as sitting in with several others. The bebop sound was his early focus. "When I was at school, I was listening to Max Roach, Philly Joe Jones, Art Blakely, Elvin Jones. Then I was in a trad jazz band, and they wanted me to play the Baby Dodds parts, so they gave me all these records to listen to. That was a complete revolution to me, 'cause all of a sudden you can see where Max and these guys came from. That had an enormous effect, which still comes out," Baker told Musician.
Baker's early experience with bebop and traditional jazz honed his technique and helped him acquire an impeccable sense of rhythm. His energetic phrasing makes him more than a timekeeper, giving him more creative impact than many drummers--jazz or otherwise. He told Down Beat, "When Philly Joe Jones heard me play in London, he came up to me and said, 'Man, you really tell a story when you play.' That's the biggest compliment I've ever had, because I loved Philly Joe Jones. Playing drums is the same as playing a horn. You're saying something musically."
After several stints drumming with London jazz outfits, Baker joined Alexis Korner's Blues Inc. The offer was extended following the departure of Charlie Watts, who left to join Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Bill Wyman, and Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones in 1962. With Blues Inc., Baker played with bassist Jack Bruce. The two eventually joined the Graham Bond Trio and then merged with Clapton to form Cream.
Baker's experience with jazz and R&B brought Cream to unknown levels of musicianship and technical ability in the rock world. Baker and Bruce provided an intricate, blues-oriented rhythm for Clapton's guitar work. Of Clapton, Baker commented in Musician, "Man he used to just go for it. Incredible things were happening, time-wise. The first time we got together, we played for hours and hours. No two gigs were ever the same." Though the band formed in 1966 with immediate success, tension between members would force their split-up just two years later.
Baker developed a fondness for heroin early in his career, and this mounting addiction expedited Cream's end. "I was an evil person back then.... I was a junkie and didn't know fear," Baker told People. Jack Bruce and lyricist Pete Brown wrote most of Cream's material, while, much to Baker's chagrin, Clapton was generally regarded as the band's frontman. "What really riles me is that most people thought that Cream was Eric Clapton's band. Not only do I not get much financial reward for the whole thing, I don't get any credit from either of the other two, which is really why I don't speak to them very much," he noted in Down Beat.
Clapton and Baker remained together for another project, Blind Faith. Together with Steve Winwood (guitar, vocals, and keyboards) and Rick Grech (bass), Blind Faith formed in 1969, debuting before 100,000 fans in London's Hyde Park. A huge-selling album prompted European and American tours. Dissension in the band and Baker's growing substance abuse problems caused a split that same year, though not before the group scored two hits in the States, "Can't Find My Way Home" and "Presence of the Lord." Concerning the demise of Blind Faith, Baker explained to People, "I got messed up with drugs again and had a long holiday to get straight. When I got back to England, Steve told me Eric had run off to form Derek and the Dominos."
After Blind Faith, Baker formed Ginger Baker's Air Force, a big band complete with horns, percussion, and a few woodwinds. The jazz-rock ensemble recorded two albums with various lineups and limited success. Notably, the band showcased Baker's growing interest in African music; he even invited African percussionists to join them for guest performances. Ginger Baker's Air Force disbanded when acclaim and interest waned. In the wake of his musical setbacks, the drummer once again struggled with his addiction to heroin and his ongoing business troubles.
Chief among Baker's financial downturns was a recording studio he financed near Lagos, Nigeria, the first professional recording studio in West Africa. Baker moved to Nigeria and opened the studio after visiting Africa with Air Force percussionist Remi Kabaka. The venture turned sour, and Baker returned to England, though not before Paul McCartney recorded his hit album Band on the Run there in 1973.
Back on British soil, Baker joined up with the Gurvitz brothers, Paul and Adrian, to form Baker-Gurvitz Army. The group put out two jazz-rock records before disbanding. Though Baker worked on several projects with other musicians, including Atomic Roosters, Hawkwind, and Ginger Baker's Nutters, results were generally discouraging.
A downward spiraling career and personal misfortunes sent Baker deeper into heroin addiction. Tax troubles with the English government combined with drug use sent him to Italy in 1982 to recuperate. After settling in a small village in southern Italy, Baker worked on an olive farm and rarely played the drums. Music became less important while he shook his heroin habit. "I had to get out," he told the Boston Globe of the London scene. "All the people I knew were junkies. If I had stayed I was going to wind up dead." Two years passed while Baker learned to live drug-free. His recovery was not easy--with as many as 29 relapses by his own count--but it was ultimately successful.
While in Africa, Baker picked up the sport of polo and has since been an avid practitioner. His love for the game was a significant factor in his decision to leave Italy, where polo was not a popular sport. After a brief stay in England, Baker left for the United States in the mid-1980s. His first stop was Los Angeles, where he operated a drum school and pursued music for the first time in nearly a decade. Since he had arrived on American shores without strong musical contacts, Baker's agent suggested he place an ad in the music section of a trade journal to meet other musicians. While Baker himself was wary of the plan, it proved a success. Baker returned to the studio and appeared on Album by Public Image Ltd. in 1985 at the insistence of producer Bill Laswell.
Baker rejoined forces with ex-Cream bassist Jack Bruce in 1989. Their jazz-rock collaboration was capped by an album and a tour. In addition to guest appearances with alternative acts such as Primal Scream, Baker brought new vigor to a career in jeopardy with solo efforts such as Horses and Trees and Middle Passage. Also at this time, Baker began to work with bassist Chris Goss and guitarist Googe under the name Masters of Reality. Going Back Home, a jazz record released in 1994 with Bill Frisell and Charlie Haden together as the Ginger Baker Trio, confirmed his mastery of the drums.
Baker's notoriety was cemented in 1993 with Cream's induction into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. The ceremony including a much-anticipated reunion with Clapton and Bruce to play "Sunshine of Your Love" and other legendary Cream songs, the first and only Cream reunion as of 1995. Baker has since relocated to Colorado, competing in polo matches whenever possible and tending his horses on a small farm outside of Denver.
Musically, Baker engaged in a project with Jack Bruce known as BBM (Baker, Bruce, and guitarist Gary Moore), while furthering his jazz interest with the Ginger Baker Trio. Free from drugs, he has become an in-demand musician, surprising his critics--many of whom predicted he would die an early death. With respected recordings deftly showcasing his jazz sensibilities, he reentered the spotlight in the early 1990s. © Rich Bowen, Copyright © 2007 Net Industries - All Rights Reserved