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Monthly Archives: July 2002

Sacred Steel Convention (various artists) – Train Don’t Leave Me

 

When Arhoolie Records’ Chris Strachwitz stumbled onto Mance Lipscomb, the amazing 65-year-old Texas bluesman and songster who had never recorded, in 1960, it was a bit like an anthropologist coming across a saber-toothed tiger or a woolly mammoth. We knew they existed once, but no one had seen one in a while. But when the […]

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RainSong WS 1000

No wood in sight, but your ears won't know it
 

RainSong is a Hawaii-based company (in the process of moving to the mainland) that has been building its unique graphite/epoxy instruments since 1995, and earning a huge reputation for its instruments’ tone, appearance, durability, and quality. The company’s WS 1000, one of its best-selling models, is a single-cutaway dreadnought/jumbo body made of woven graphite using […]

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Kenny Burrell and the Jazz Heritage All-Stars – Live At the Blue Note

 

It’s almost ridiculous how many great jazz guitar albums this label puts out. And here is more. The Burrell CD features the legend in a live setting with the likes of Sir Roland Hanna on piano, Jerome Richardson on sax, and many others too numerous to mention. It’s a fine album from start to finish. […]

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Jimmy Olander

From Banjo to B-bender
 

The double-bender guitar and Jimmy Olander go hand-in-hand. The innovative guitarist of Diamond Rio fame is a converted banjo player who is now mastering a whole new double-bending style that is as much a part of Diamond Rio’s sound as its award-winning vocals. He has performed on other projects; he exchanges licks with Steve Wariner […]

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Keith Whitley – Sad Songs and Waltzes

 

The late Keith Whitley, who died at age 33 of acute alcohol poi-soning, was an example of why it isn’t always a good idea to try to live your lyrics if you’re country music singer. He started as a child, singing on the radio by age nine, and at 15 he was touring with Ralph […]

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J.J. Cale – The Very Best of J.J. Cale

 

Most folks probably know J.J. Cale best by the covers recorded of his songs, from Eric Clapton’s versions of Cale’s “Cocaine” and “After Midnight” to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Call Me the Breeze.” That’s a shame, because Cale is one of hell of a guitarist and songwriter and musician in his own right. I’d even hazard to […]

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Vintage Dobros

A Guide
 

When John Dopyera stormed out of the National shop in January 1929, his resignation stemmed from more than a spur-of-the-moment tantrum. For months, the inventor of the resonator guitar spent his evenings and weekends working with his brother, Rudy, on a secret project – a single-cone guitar they believed superior to the National Triolian. They […]

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Vintage Dobros

A Guide
 

When John Dopyera stormed out of the National shop in January 1929, his resignation stemmed from more than a spur-of-the-moment tantrum. For months, the inventor of the resonator guitar spent his evenings and weekends working with his brother, Rudy, on a secret project – a single-cone guitar they believed superior to the National Triolian. They […]

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Jerry Miller

One Guitar Man
 

Jerry Miller was part of one of the most unique rock groups of the 1960s, the West Coast’s own Moby Grape. The band’s first album delivered a staggering array of brilliantly crafted songs driven by harmonies from heaven and a three-guitar lineup dangerous in its energy and innovation – Miller on first guitar, the melodious […]

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Kid Bangham and Amyl Justin – Pressure Cooker

 

Here’s a very cool guitar-based blues record that gets ya jumpin’ from the first cut, the straight-ahead blues/rock of “Close to the Danger Zone.” Bangham is a versatile and interesting guitarist who has spent time with the likes of the Fabulous Thunderbirds. For sheer in-your-face shuffle playing, there’s “Face Down In the Blues.” Justin’s vocals […]

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