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Author Archives: Neal Gardner

Paul Oscher – Down In the Delta

If you’re not a cognoscente of the blues you’ve probably never heard of Paul Oscher. I’m not surprised. I was only familiar with him after hearing his name mentioned by a musician. Oscher is a harmonica and guitar player who played with Muddy Waters in the late ’60s to 1971. Blues credentials don’t get any better than that. Since the ... Read More »

The Stanley Brothers-Earliest Recordings: Complete Rich-R-Tone 78s

Rounder has released 14 songs recorded by the Stanley Brothers for the Rich-R-Tone label in the late ’40s and early ’50s. These recordings capture the group before they were recorded by a major label. Included along with the CD is a 22-page booklet with photos and biographical information which will tell you much more than I can about Carter and ... Read More »

Marcia Ball – Live! Down the Road

Marcia Ball delivers her first ever live album Live! Down the Road this week on the Alligator label. Accompanied by bass, guitar, B-3, tenor and baritone saxes, and trumpet, Marcia plays her Louisiana/New Orleans/Texas-tinged brand of hard-pounding piano before a live audience in Chico, CA. Recorded in 2004, this is her third album for Alligator. Previous release were: Presumed Innocent ... Read More »

Little Charlie and the Nightcats-Nine Lives

Following Timothy Leary’s precept, “You can be anyone this time around,” Little Charlie and the Nightcats singer Rick Estrin has chosen to be a harp-playing hipster. He does a very good job. To my ears he sounds like a cross between Frank Zappa and Leon Redbone. Accompanied by Little Charlie Baty on guitar, Estrin (along with J. Hansen on drums, ... Read More »

Lisa Marie Presley appearing on Oprah Monday and Tuesday.

Lisa Marie Presley will be appearing on Oprah, today (Monday the 28th) and tomorrow. Good Morning America and Larry King will also feature her on Tuesday the 29th. She will be on Letterman April 1st and Ellen April 5th. Jimmy Kimmel will also be graced by her presence on April 6th. A&E’s Biography will profile Presley on April 8th. The ... Read More »

The Pat Travers Band-Boom Boom-Live At the Diamond 1990

I confess to being aware of Pat Travers from his hit “Boom, Boom” just like everybody else. This DVD reveals more of his talent in a hard rock, fusion vein. I hear a lot of different styles from Travers and second guitar Jerry Riggs. To put a label on some of the sounds, I hear some Robin Trower, Jeff Beck, ... Read More »

The Magic Sun-a film by Phill Niblock featuring Sun Ra & His Solar Arkestra

Oh the ’60s were weird, I’ll tell you what. This film from 1966 by Phill Niblock is not actually a film of Sun Ra. Well it is and it isn’t. The film was shot in a negative process and with extreme close-ups which make identification of any one object difficult. It’s what they used to call an underground film. The ... Read More »

The Spencer Davis Group-Gimme Some Lovin’-Live 1966

The Spencer Davis Group’s appearance on Finnish TV in 1966 is featured on this B&W DVD along with a German documentary on the group from 1967. The 1966 appearance features the fabulous Stevie (as he was known then) Winwood along with bass player brother Muff, Spencer Davis, and Peter York on drums. Winwood was only about 18 years old at ... Read More »

J.B. Hutto-Stompin’ At Mother Blues

The notes on the back of this CD mention that all of the 19 cuts are unissued except for two. Once I put this CD on I found out why. The is undoubtedly one of the worst blues CDs I’ve ever heard. Almost every song has an instrument out of tune, whether it’s J.B. Hutto’s guitar, the other guitar, or ... Read More »

A Thing That Works

Neal Gardner has time for the Spartus Sonic alarm clock Read More »