The title says it all. It's definitely a four star CD led Fat Danny Bennett. He and the band take you on an unparalleled blues adventure. It's blues as it ought to be with every song telling a story. Bennett's musical prowess reminds one of Jimmy Reed. He does it all write, sing and play various instruments. This is Bennett's blues and no one else's.
"Another Day" track two is blues in its truest sense. It tells a story of a man falling apart. Even with the creature comforts (money in the bank) one can still feel unfulfilled. Doyle "Dr." Smith's keyboards pull you in. He's true to the old-fashioned, down in the swamp blues sound of the masters. Song has that rocking, loping Reed-like gait. It is a song about a man depressed. "Happiness is just a memory." Anyone who's been depressed
can relate. You know those days when they all blend together and nothing makes any stand out. We've all had them. Some get over it quickly while others are led to the "nut house." The rich organ sound of Smith shows his deep Mississippi roots. His chitlin' circuit playing has really paid off.
"$7 boogie" is funny while telling about a man with only seven dollars in his pocket. "Seven dollars ain't going to feed us very long," is the lament of his wife. But he's "a blues man" and nothing will change that. Always was and always will be. It's a song of conviction. Bennett takes you on a vivid trip with his lyrics and great licks. Just when things seem to be lost he gets a gig and now he's a "fifty-seven dollar man." This song teases yet there's a real message in it. With only seven dollars "even my dog is getting worried."
The title track dispels the myth one has to live in the South; or be black to understand the blues. Bennett lets all in on a secret: blues is a feeling that life creates. "It don't matter where you come from or who you are. When the blues gets a hold of you, you can't go very far." Blues is about what happens to you. And it will come no matter your station in life. Though born in California his roots are deep south and it shows in this
song. Arkansas was the homeland of his parents and going to California they took their "country ways with them." Powerful song.
"Pissin' in the Wind" is the story of a man without a job and of course no friends. It's a 2001 version of "God Bless the Child That's Got His Own." He takes you on a long walk where you remember the lessons our parents tried to teach. "Ain't got no job. Can't find no friends," is always the case. Bennett strokes you on this one. You feel the pain and know it's true. It's a funny yet powerful and instructive song.
This is a dynamic, electric collection. It is destined to be a future blues classic. One will look back on this like and Elmore James or Jimmy Reed collection and say wow he really understood the blues. With Fat Danny Bennett on vocals, guitar and harp you get a throwback to the days Jimmy Reed. The music is his in all ways since he writes the lyrics and music to make his songs work. When you add to the mix Smith's keyboards;
Big Mike Rincon's bass and Mike Burnes smooth yet intense drums you get a blues mix worthy of hours of listening. If their power comes through on this CD imagine them live. Though I originally said I'd give this CD a four star rating I now revise that assessment. It's really too, too good to rate. Listen and be overwhelmed by "The Power of the Blues."
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