Cyber Week Savings at!

Author Archives: Dan Forte

John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers and Rob Paparozzi and the Ed Palermo Big Band

Back to ’67 Blues
Back to '67 Blues

Unreleased club recordings of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers from 1967, featuring lead guitarist Peter Green? This is, indeed, a major find. Tasked with replacing “God” (as Eric Clapton was proclaimed in graffiti around London), Green quickly let everyone know there was a new Les Paul picker in town, (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

George Van Eps and Marty Grosz Meets the Fat Babies

Once In Awhile and Diga Diga Doo
Great Acoustic Jazz

Marty Grosz is surely one of the last of a breed – a jazz guitarist who plays strictly rhythm and (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Neil Barnes, Ron Thompson, and others and Bettye LaVette

Hyde & Seek and Worthy
This Blues Has Soul

Blues harpist Neil Barnes is one of the greater San Francisco area’s best-kept secrets. His 2007 CD, This Was Then, Now, is a compilation of a 45 and an EP he released in the ’80s, along with some previously unreleased live material. For having (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

R.J. & the Del Guapos

Rockin! With R.J. & the Del Guapos

Guitarist/vocalist R.J. Ronquillo’s quartet utilizes three-fourths of the Panamericans, with him taking the place of Joao Erbetta. You can’t do much better than saxophonist Ron Dziubla, bassist Rob Douglas, and drummer Pete Curry – and they didn’t even have to leave their (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

George Harrison

The Apple Years, 1968-'75
A Wilbury's Early Works

As the Beatles came to an end, George Harrison moved from the back seat to the catbird seat. In the Scorsese documentary, Living In The Material World, Phil Spector recalls Harrison offhandedly mentioning that he had a few ditties he’d written, after which he brought Spector (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Big Apple Blues and Smokin’ Joe Kubek and Bnois King

Energy and Fat Man’s Shine Parlor
Blues A-Plenty

Considering that its first-cousin, jazz, is predominantly an instrumental form, it’s surprising that there are so few instrumental blues albums. In terms of guitar, of course, Freddie King excelled most successfully, but that was more than a half-century ago. In recent years, Ronnie Earl (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Captain Beefheart

Sun Zoom Spark: 1970 to 1972
Ahead of His – or Anyone’s – Time

“Lick My Decals Off, Baby,” “Woe-Is-Uh-Me-Bop,” “My Head Is My Only House Unless It Rains.” That’s right – we’re talking about Don Van Vliet, a.k.a. Captain Beefheart, and his Magic Band. Beefheart and co. emerged from the Southern California desert in the mid ’60s. Their first full-fledged (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Sergio Diab


Brazil and the guitar have a long, prolific relationship with each other, from the classical compositions of Villa-Lobos to Laurindo Almeida’s mix of classical and jazz to the bossa nova of Antonio Carlos Jobim and Joao Gilberto. Two standouts carrying the torch today are Joao Erbetta (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Markus James

Head For the Hills

James is Virginia-born but has spent time in Northern California and West Africa. His work with three Malian musicians resulted in the documentary film Timbuktoubab. He points out the too-similar-to-be-coincidence similarity between the black fife and drum bands in Northern Mississippi’s hill country and West Africa. The (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble

The Complete Epic Recordings Collection
The Good, The Bad, and The Troubling

One of the greatest blues guitarists of any era, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s recorded output with his band, Double Trouble, consisted of only five albums (four studio, one live) during his lifetime. And though he hit the scene like the self-described hurricane in his adaptation of (more…)

Posted in Music | Leave a comment