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Profile for G. E. Harrison > Reviews

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Reviews Written by
G. E. Harrison (Cheltenham, UK)
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

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UK MADE BLACK DELUXE ADJUSTABLE GENUINE LEATHER DELUXE UKE UKULELE / MANDOLIN STRAP
UK MADE BLACK DELUXE ADJUSTABLE GENUINE LEATHER DELUXE UKE UKULELE / MANDOLIN STRAP
Offered by 1to1music
Price: £15.45

4.0 out of 5 stars Old style leather ukulele/mandolin strap, 20 July 2016
This is a very well-made, reasonably-priced attractive looking old-style real leather strap which is just the right length for ukuleles and mandolins etc (although it is adjustable). One end fits around the instruments neck underneath the strings, while the other end attaches to a strap holder but take note this end is a double thickness of leather which may make it unsuitable for some combination strap buttons/jack sockets.

I got my Leathercraft strap from the Southern Ukulele Store for only £12.00 including free postage.


Salter Aquatronic Electronic Platform Scale, White
Salter Aquatronic Electronic Platform Scale, White
Price: £11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Compact and neat digital scales, 15 July 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
My current analogue scales are as big as a large dinner plate with a large plastic bowl on top so they are a pain to store away in our very small kitchen, I was therefore really pleased to get these amazingly small and neat digital scales. Being digital they will measure solids in both metric and imperial and also liquids in mililitres or fluid ounces and you can also use the 'zero' button to add other ingredients into the same bowl to get a total weight.

They work on a CR2032 3v lithium cell battery (included) and are incredibly light and compact - a joy if you have a small kitchen. They do seem a bit flimsy but mine are working fine so far.


Rough & Easy
Rough & Easy
Offered by Music-Shop
Price: £11.44

5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended German blues, 15 July 2016
This review is from: Rough & Easy (Audio CD)
The Delta Boys are from Germany and are Gerd Gorke on vocals, and harmonica and Michael van Merwyk on vocals and guitar both have been playing for many years and it shows, Gerd's harp playing is fabulous and Michael is no slouch either, his band Blue Soul won second prize at the prestigious International Blues Challenge - the highest placing by a European band in the history of this competition. The album is a nice mix of original songs and blues standards like Percy Mayfield's "Memory Pain" and Tampa Red's "Play with your Poodle" and also a nice mix of traditional country blues and duo versions of band songs like Bo Diddley's "You Can't Judge a Book". There are also some quite jazzy songs - "When You're Smiling" and "Glory of Love" - with Gerd playing chromatic harp, as well as lovely readings of Mose Allison's "Your Mind is on Vacation" and the old gospel song "I'll Fly Away", with nice slide guitar from Michael. This is an excellent record and as a harmonica player myself I'd love to be playing similar songs in my various groups.


Somebody From Somewhere
Somebody From Somewhere
Price: £9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars From Boston to Nashville…, 15 July 2016
This review is from: Somebody From Somewhere (Audio CD)
Apparently Steven Tyler has said recently “Country music is the new rock ’n’ roll, it’s not just about porches, dogs and kicking your boots up - it’s about being real.” Which could be his justification for releasing this solo ‘country’ album recorded in Nashville with producers including Tyler himself, T Bone Burnett, Dann Huff, longtime collaborator Marti Frederiksen and the Cadillac Three’s Jaren Johnston. However, the first single from the album “Red, White & You” doesn’t sound like country to me, it sounds like overblown Aerosmith-style stadium rock, which come to think of it is exactly what much of mega-selling modern country by Garth Brooks, George Strait, Kenny Chesney etc. sounds like.

The opener “My Own Worst Enemy” has all the Nashville elements – mandolin, fiddle and squeezebox – but again it’s really an Aerosmith-style rock ballad, as are “Only Heaven” and “Love is Your Name” - again a bit of fiddle and dobro but with a big sound and heavy harmonies, although "I Make My Own Sunshine", with its ukulele and banjo, is pure cornball pop pap. The title track “We're All Somebody from Somewhere” is Tyler’s celebration of multi-cultural America (written with Jaren Johnston) and reminded me a bit of Robert Plant and the Sensational Shape Shifters, as did “Hold On (Won’t Let Go)” and “The Good the Bad the Ugly and Me”, all hardly country but more blues-based rock. “It Ain’t Easy” and “Sweet Louisiana” are both a bit more acoustic and country and for me work fine – certainly better than the ‘country’ version of the old Aerosmith song “Janie’s Got a Gun”.

Although some will slag off Steven for this country cash-in there are precedents - one of Aerosmith’s biggest influences were the Rolling Stones and they have repeatedly dabbled with country music. At the end of the day I think that many Aerosmith fans will find plenty to like here with Tyler hardly altering his delivery and stance, all that’s missing is the blues bite of Perry’s guitar, although to be fair there is still lots of screaming lead guitar featured on the album alongside the county twang.

Tyler is apparently out of favour with his Aerosmith bandmates after their 2016 tour had to be cancelled so that Tyler can promote this album with a tour with the Loving Mary Band (as featured on the album’s country soul rejig of “Piece of My Heart”). Next year will reportedly be the farewell tour by Aerosmith!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 15, 2016 12:14 PM BST


Loud Hailer
Loud Hailer
Price: £9.99

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beck ‘n’ Bones, 15 July 2016
This review is from: Loud Hailer (Audio CD)
On this album Jeff collaborates with singer/guitarist Rosie Bones and guitar player Carmen Vandenberg from the group Bones (“Girls Can’t Play Guitars”) and together with songs highlighting social issues (hence “Loud Hailer”) this has really given the music a different vibe from recent Beck albums, albeit still with the virtuoso guitar playing that you’d expect. The sophistication and expertise of Jeff’s guitar playing contrasts with Rosie’s punky vocals and a raw, basic rock sound reminiscent of the White Stripes or the Black Keys.

There are plenty of Beck’s trademark guitar licks throughout the album but the test is if you like it dished up in this modern setting and with these in-your-face punk vocals. Personally I think that it works great and that it’s good to see Jeff, now in his 70s, doing something different and a bit more contemporary however, if you liked his jazz fusion noodling this may not be your cup of tea. As well as the girls the band also includes bassist Giovanni Pallotti and drummer Davide Sollazzi, with production being handled by Beck and Filippo Cimatti. At this stage I’d probably go with the old skool “Shame” as my favourite track.


Scotch Super Glue Liquid in a Precision Applicator (SGAD-874) - 4g
Scotch Super Glue Liquid in a Precision Applicator (SGAD-874) - 4g

4.0 out of 5 stars Precision dispenser for Super Glue, 13 July 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Super Glue is a very useful product for glueing a variety of materials - looking back now I can recall several things that I've repaired with super glue that I had forgotten had ever broken. However, I can also remember a disasterous occasion when I managed to stick all my fingers together around the super glue tube when trying to glue a fitting inside an electric cooker and other times when the tube wouldn't dispense glue and then spewed out way too much. This new super glue dispenser comes with buttons on the side of the bottle which allows you to accurately judge the amount of glue released - literally one small drop at a time. I've used it to repair some trim on my ukulele to good effect, it dried quickly and the small piece of plastic has stayed in place and there is no excess of glue visible.

This is a great improvement over previous super glue containers but it does seem a rather over-elaborate engineering solution that may also come with its own problems further down the line. However, at the moment I am quite impressed and after use I wiped the nozzle the tissue before replacing the cap (as suggested) and hopefully next time I use the super glue it will still be working.


Nivea Sun Protect and Sensitive Sun Spray High SPF 50, 200ml
Nivea Sun Protect and Sensitive Sun Spray High SPF 50, 200ml
Price: £6.38

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent high factor sun cream from trusted brand, 7 July 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Nivea is obviously one of the trusted brands to provide great products for skin care at reasonable prices. This sun cream is factor 50 offering high protection, plus UVA and UVB protection and it is unscented and also water resistant. Its suitable for sensitive skin and contains aloe vera and leaves your skin feeling soft and moisturised rather than greasy. However, the bottle that I was supplied with was not the one illustrated with the spray top and the 'sculpted' sides - still an excellent high factor sun cream though.


Housse SEYDEL
Housse SEYDEL
Offered by JPVetGo
Price: £43.08

2.0 out of 5 stars Excellent case - ridiculous price, 6 July 2016
This review is from: Housse SEYDEL (Electronics)
I normally carry/store my harmonicas (and microphones) in a hard case but sometimes I don't need to take the full compliment (about 30 harps & 3 mikes) and so I've been looking at soft cases for around 10 harps or so. This soft fabric case by Seydel (made in Thailand) is well-made and holds 14 harps in elastic loops and zips up around the edge. However, I purchased my case from Eagle Music for only £14 and I notice that it is also available on eBay for £17 including postage - so this price is a real rip off. Excellent, good value case - ridiculous price on Amazon.


After Hours: The Country Blues Sessions
After Hours: The Country Blues Sessions
Price: £7.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Harping on it..., 5 July 2016
Paul Lamb learned his craft by studying and analysing the playing of Sonny Terry, probably the greatest of the country blues harmonica players, and from those beginnings he also mastered the styles of the electric Chicago players. On this record he goes back to those country (ish) blues sounds with informal sessions recorded at Trench Studios in London and produced by Paula Riordan, with support from his duo partner Chad Strenz on vocals and guitar, Ryan Lamb on lead guitar, Rod Demick on bass and Dino Roccia on drums. The material is a mixture of old songs like "Down by the Riverside" (pure Sonny and Brownie) and Junior Parker's "Mystery Train" and also original songs written by Paul and his son Ricky such as "She's Fine Like Summer Wine" and "Coming Down From Newcastle". One of my favourites is a lovely gentle instrumental version of the old Duke Ellington song "Don't Get Around Much Anymore"

Paul isn't trying to recreate the pre-war sounds and many of the tracks do have a modern twist, including electrics, while still keeping a nice traditional blues vibe. There is also a great relaxed, loose feel which for me only enhances tracks like "Back Door/Mule to Tide" where Paul's acoustic harmonica playing (and singing) are wonderful - raw and spontaneous like the great blues players of the past and reminding me not just of Sonny Terry but also Sonny Boy Williamson. It's not all backward looking though - the more electric "Preaching. the Blues" (from the outskirts of Chicago) morphs into "Jammin' With the Preacher" where Paul plays chromatic harp over some sampled blues recordings, including the voice of blues singer Son House - a la Little Axe or Moby and as Paul himself did on the track "Whoopin'". This is a nice relaxed informal record and you won't hear better blues harmonica playing anywhere in Britain.


north south LP
north south LP

2.0 out of 5 stars Only for the most fanatic Butterfield completists..., 2 July 2016
This review is from: north south LP (Vinyl)
I'd never heard of this album before, not sure if it was issued in Britain at the time of its release (in 1980), the title suggests that it is a companion piece to Butterfield's 2nd album "East West" - believe me it isn't. The first two tracks "I Get Excited" and "Get Some Fun in Your Life" are bad 'disco' rather than blues although the first track does have a bit of harp. "Catch a Train" isn't too bad, again with a little harp, and "Bread and Butterfield" is a slow piano-led instrumental ballad with some strange, muted stuttering harp and then strings (yes strings!) come in. We then get more plodding disco before the final track, a slow 12-bar blues with guess what - yip more strings but hardly any harmonica.

Paul Butterfield was THE most important white artist in the 60s American blues revival and also a huge figure on the general underground scene in the 60s and 70s. He was a wonderful harmonica player and a great bandleader and its very sad to hear this record from towards the end of his career when I presume that he was in a either a bad physical or metal state, or possibly both. He certainly sounds dispirited and his harp playing never really takes off and what was he thinking of with those crap disco songs? This album is totally dispensable except for only the most fanatic of Butterfield completists.


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