Live At The Stanhope House is the latest release by Atlanta's own Roger "Hurricane" Wilson. After trying to juggle his time between teaching guitar and performing between 1973-1987, Wilson finally gave in to the call of the stage. He now spends most of his time on the road, performing 250-300 live dates annually. In his "spare" time, Wilson hosts a radio show on KALA-FM radio in Atlanta.
Live At The Stanhope House was recorded on November 4, 2000 at Hew Jersey's premier blues club. The CD offers 72 minutes of live music, comprised of originals and interpretations of some classic blues numbers written by Robert Johnson, Elmore James, Jimmy Reed, Buddy Guy and a host of other marquee blues names. Live At the Stanhope House is Roger "Hurricane" Wilson's fourth release and his second live recording. On the CD, Wilson is supported by the rhythm section of Ed Stilles on bass and drummer Dave Moore.
The CD opens on an up beat with Roy Buchanan's classic, "Short Fuse," nicely interpreted by Wilson. This is followed by another classic from Jimmy Reed and one of my favorites, "You Don't Have To Go." On "You Don't Have to Go," Wilson works into a groove, giving a nice touch to an old standard.
Two of my favorite songs on the CD also happen to be the two longest. First, Wilson demonstrates some mad talent on slide guitar on his "Slide Sequence," a medley of three slide classics; "Dust My Broom" (Elmore James/Robert Johnson), "World of Contradictions" (Johnny Winter), followed by another from Elmore James, "Shake Your Money Maker." Wilson's slide work on these three songs is exceptional and full of energy. I also found Wilson's version of James Peterson's "Don't Let The Devil Ride" to be very well done and full of tasty guitar licks.
The three originals on the CD are interesting and varied. "Cap'n Harry's Blue Marlin Bar" is a lively tune that reflects on the good times to be had a Cap'n Harry's. "Back Porch Blues" is an instrumental that is fill of excellent guitar that at times reminded me of the legendary Lonnie Mack. The final song on the CD, "It Don't Get No Better Than This," comes from Wilson's last studio recording, The Business of the Blues, and offers an up tempo finish with more blazing guitar. Wilson' vocals are not always as strong as one might like, but this is more than made up for by his extensive and exceptional guitar.
Live At The Stanhope House is a perfect CD for anyone who loves guitar-laden blues and needs a full fix of hot licks on one CD. To pick up a copy of Live At The Stanhope House, visit Roger "Hurricane" Wilson's website at www.trci.com/hurricane and confront the storm!
The Stanhope House
This review is copyright © 2001 by Dave "Doc" Piltz, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.
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