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Published monthly since 1986

Author Archives: Dan Forte

Bob Dylan

Another Self Portrait (19691971): The Bootleg Series, Vol. 10

Recharging their batteries, staving off writer’s block, getting back to their roots – countless musicians have an album of covers in their catalogs. Hardly controversial, unless it’s Bob Dylan. When he released 1970’s Self Portrait, fans and especially critics concentrated more on why he made the move, instead of how well he pulled it off. […]

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Barrence Whitfield and the Savages

Dig Thy Savage Soul

There are rock reunions, and then there are rock reunions. Some shine (the Zombies, the Rascals), others tarnish (Police, the post-Morrison, Densmore-less Doors). But blink and you might have missed one of the most important reunions, at least in terms of roots rock – that of Barrence Whitfield and the Savages. With guitarist Peter Greenberg […]

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Arlo Guthrie, Jerry Jeff Walker, and others

Caffe Lena

When one thinks of the Folk Boom of the late ’50s and early ’60s, the place that first comes to mind is New York City. Sure, Los Angeles had the Ash Grove, Chicago the Gate of Horn, but New York had Gerde’s Folk City, the Gaslight, Night Owl Café, the Bitter End, and of course […]

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Jim Colegrove & the New Rough Riders of the Dirty Age

3 Quarter Dime

Jim Colegrove’s talent is as big as his résumé is long. His session work includes albums by Todd Rundgren, John Hall, Bobby Charles, the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, and even Allen Ginsberg. Most of that was on bass (also his instrument as member of Ian & Sylvia’s legendary Great Speckled Bird), but his first instrument was […]

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Tim O’Brien and Darrell Scott

Memories and Moments

Playing seemingly anything with strings (including piano strings), the cumulative session credits of O’Brien and Scott include Suzy Boggus, Steve Earle, Trisha Yearwood, Mark Knopfler, Joan Baez, the Chieftains, and countless others. The fifty-somethings’ songs have been recorded by the Dixie Chicks, Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, and others, with Scott’s classic “You’ll Never Leave Harlan […]

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Ric Lee’s Natural Born Swingers

Put A Record On

This band doesn’t just hearken back to the late ’60s British blues movement; it includes two seminal figures from that period, in Ten Years After drummer Ric Lee and pianist Bob Hall, an original member of Savoy Brown and the Groundhogs. In fact, the CD shares its Stax-tinged title song with that of Tramp, a […]

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The Surf Dawgs, 3 Balls of Fire, Steinar Karlsen

Unleashed Somewhere on the Deep Blue Pacifi Hanens Dod

One of the nice things about the surf revival, which started rumbling at the end of the ’70s and shifted into high after Pulp Fiction hit the silver screen in ’94, is that players who’d undergone various stylistic shifts returned to their reverb roots – witness Blue Cheer’s Leigh Stephens and his new Rocket Down […]

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Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor

The Colonel & The Govenor

Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor The Colonel & The Governor Jazz has a long tradition of guitar duets, from the “Blue Guitars” of Eddie Lang and Lonnie Johnson to Dick McDonough and Carl Kress (as well as Kress and George Barnes), Billy Bean and John Pisano, Herb Ellis and Joe Pass, Ralph Towner and John […]

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Various Artists

The Kustom Kings
Swept-Wing Records

It’s not unusual to see compilations defined by region or style; this one focuses on players who share the same brand of guitar: Hallmark. The Hallmark company was launched in 1966 by Joe Hall, an ex-employee of Mosrite Guitars in Bakersfield, California. Setting up shop in nearby Arvin, he enlisted another Mosrite builder, Bill Gruggett. […]

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Country Joe and the Fish

Electric Music For the Mind and Body

Country Joe and The Fish were one of the most original, eclectic, and just plain good San Francisco bands of the mid to late ’60s. Joe McDonald, in particular, wrote songs that were complex but accessible; David Cohen doubled on guitar and Farfisa organ; and if the Airplane’s Jorma Kaukonen was the “best” lead guitarist […]

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