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Monthly Archives: September 2005

Jodi Head Guitar Straps

Stand out in a crowd

For over 15 years, artist and designer Jodi Head has been producing high-quality hand- beaded products, including guitar straps, and her client list reads like the guest list to the Grammys. Head’s beaded straps, ranging in price from $400 to $1,000, are used by top musicians like B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Richie Sambora, Les Paul, […]

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Danny Gatton

Finishing the Business

For most musicians, the road to success is like skipping stones: often arbitrary and elusive, just as the prize beckons within reach. However, when the subject being scrutinized avoids the fray by choice, the quest only grows ever more fascinating to outsiders. Guitarist Danny Gatton gave that impression while being interviewed for a ca. […]

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Steve Howe

More Midnight Musings

Our first interview with Howe was recorded in the middle of the night, while Howe was in a studio with guitarist Martin Taylor (both talks appeared in the September ’96 issue), recording an album that featured instruments in the Scott Chinery Collection. This time around, our one-on-one was in-person following a Yes concert. The band […]

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Bill Thomas – Ain’t Halfsteppin’


Don’t know where Bill came from, but I hope he sticks around. A short bio I received with the disc indicates he’s been around playing since the ’70s, mostly as a sideman who’s backed up all sorts of folks. And bands he’s played in have opened for all the usual suspects. With this record, hopefully […]

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Johnny Cash – Ride This Train


In 1986, after 28 years and (literally) hundreds of albums worth of material with the label, Columbia Records dropped Johnny Cash. Seems American institutions weren’t selling that year. Not surprisingly, the artistic side of the music community was justifiably outraged. But in typical fashion, Cash moved on, eventually returning to his roots and finding a […]

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Sleepy John Estes – Newport Blues


Culled from a recently unearthed set of tapes originally recorded at the Newport Folk Festival in 1964, Sleepy John is obviously comfortable sharing the spotlight with Yank Rachell and Hammie Nixon. This representation is a wonderfully diverse body of work and is refreshing to hear in this era of buzzsaw soundalike guitar-based “bluz” bands. Granted, […]

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Larry Carlton – Deep Into It


I first listened to this disc in my car and thought it was nice, but nothing special. Well, the next listen was in the house, with my full attention, and while it’s what we’ve come to expect from Larry, I did indeed find it special. The cuts here, for the most part, are as soulful […]

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Frank Vignola – Blues for a Gypsy


Frank Vignola needs no introduction to most American fans of Django Reinhardt. He has released several albums of swing influenced in part by the Gypsy guitarist and formed Hot Club USA to release the CD Django Lives in 1999. This new CD is subtitled Gypsy Jazz Guitar Solos, and features Vignola alone with his Favino […]

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Lil’ Ed and Blues Imperials – Heads Up!


I will warn you. If rompin’, stompin’, guitar-driven blues isn’t your deal, do not buy this CD. Lil’ Ed Williams and the boys have been doing this for awhile now, but the intensity level doesn’t drop. Ed forms this tight unit, playing most of the solos, sometimes with a slide, and with some great vocals […]

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Mississippi John Hurt – Live


It still surprises me, but every once in a while I run into a neophyte who thinks the blues (all blues) is, by definition, depressing – as if there’s but one emotion conveyed and received in the entire genre. I tell those people (because they obviously never have) to listen to Mississippi John Hurt. The […]

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