14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A superb record, here's to the next forty years!,
This review is from: Maestro (Audio CD)
This CD celebrates Taj's 40 years in the biz and mainly follows on from his 90s records like 'Phantom Blues', 'Senor Blues' and 'Dancing the blues' which were all very accessible with lots of uptempo R&B covers. I'd say this CD is even better than those records, a great mix of blues, R&B and world music offering great variety, good songs and wonderful playing. Apparently it's Taj's first new recording in five years and he certainly sounds really fresh and raring to go.
We get off to a great start with Slim Harpo's "Scratch my back" done Stax style courtesy of the Phantom Blues Band (Wot no harp?). They also finish off the record with a great version of the Willie Dixon/Captain Beefheart song "Diddy Wah Diddy". Jack Johnson appears as a guest on Taj's "Further On Down The Road" but doesn't add a great deal whereas Ben Harper and Ziggy Marley both fit in great with Taj on "Dust me down" and "Black Man Brown Man". Kora player Toumani Diabate and Angelique Kidjo guest on the exotic "Zanzibar" and then it's back to the blues with Taj singing and playing harp with Los Lobos on a swinging version of Big Joe Turner's "TV Mama". The New Orleans Social Club back Taj on Fats Domino's "Hello Josephine" (which appeared on the Fats tribute CD 'Goin' Home') but I particularly love their contribution to the funky "I Can Make You Happy", with Henry Butler and Ivan Neville's keyboards being outstanding. "Strong Man Holler" is a moody slow blues with Taj playing some nice harp and "Slow Drag", with Taj on banjo, sounds like an out-take from one of his early 70s records.
What a wonderful way to celebrate 40 years of making great music, I just hope we get to see him touring the record in the UK soon.