- Oct 5, 2009
- Reaction score
- I live in Buffalo, NY
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Omar Kent ***** & Jimmie Vaughan – On the Jimmy Reed Highway
Record Label: Ruf
Review by Bucky
The history of the blues started shortly after June 12th 1982 for me as I was stocking the shelves with the many brands & flavors of yogurt at a local super market. I had been discovering the blues through the channels of the Stones, Yardbirds, Johnny Winter, Alvin Lee, & Eric Clapton but I really had no idea what the blues were all about. On that date in ’82 I had seen an amazing show from Eric Clapton but it wasn’t for a few days later that everything would hit home about the blues. While stocking the shelves I was telling a co-worker about the Clapton show & a few minutes later a customer that looked like a cross between Frank Zappa & Captain Beefheart approached me (& not to ask about the yogurts that were on sale). He overheard me talking about the show & asked how it was. As I was praising Clapton he kind of blew off the Clapton talk & asked about the opening band…the Fabulous Thunderbirds. I told him I thought they were pretty cool but the only song I recognized was “The Crawl” & that was because I had Johnny Winter’s version. He talked about the blues & a few days later he was back in the store. That day he handed me a cassette with the song titles & artists scribbled on the index card & he asked if I had a cassette player in the car,which I had. He then told me to get some ****, take any girl for a ride, play this tape & guaranteed that this will get you laid. The tape was unreal it had tunes by Muddy Waters, Jimmie Rodgers, Albert Collins, Albert King, Freddie King, Robert Johnson, & Jimmy Reed. I loved it all but the Jimmy Reed stuff really stood out as most of the rhythms reminded me of early Stones tunes such as “Spider & the Fly”. I was now hooked & was buying albums by all of the aforementioned along with stuff by Little Walter, Lightning Hopkins, & Slim Harpo.
The spirit of Jimmy Reed is now back with us channeled through Omar Kent ***** & Jimmy Vaughan (Fabulous Thunderbirds) with help from Lou Ann Barton, Kim Wilson, Delbert McClinton, James Cotton, & Gary Clark Junior. This CD, ’On Jimmy Reed’s Highway’ not only is a great tribute but it also brings new life to these blues classics. *****’ raspy Howling Wolf/Dr.John vocals are complemented nicely on three songs by the roadhouse blues style vocals by Lou Ann Barton. The two blues artists perform incredible duets on “Jimmy Reed Highway”(one of 2 original compositions by ***** & Steve Callif on the album),“Good Lover”(featuring some great blues howls by Omar), & “Caress Me Baby”(which features James Cotton blowing some incredible harp). Jimmy Vaughan’s guitar playing is great throughout the entire CD & Fabulous Thunderbird harp player, Kim Wilson shows off his talent on a few tracks as well.One of my favorite Reed compositions “Hush Hush” features another great duet; this time country blues rocker Delbert McClinton lends his vocals to the mix with Omar as the two cut a killer version of the blues hit from 1960. Austin guitarist Gary Clark rocks the house with his guitar playing on “Baby What’s Wrong”. The strongest track on the CD in my opinion is the 5 minute 10 second medley of “Baby What You Want Me to Do/Bright Lights Big City” where Omar & the band really let it roll. This CD is definitely a must for any fan of blues who want to hear old blues the way they should be played.