Veteran blues fans will recognize his name and rejoice over the return of this unsung guitar hero. For the uninitiated, Bill Dahl's elaborate and well-researched liner notes provide a detailed history. Jody Williams was a staple on Chess recordings from the early 50s through the mid-60s. He played spiraling guitar on Howlin' Wolf, Billy Boy Arnold and Bo Diddley classics. By the late 60s Jody had become disillusioned with the music business and quit. He spent the next 3 decades working as a repair technician. Now, thanks to the risk-taking of Evidence's Jerry Gordon, Williams returns on his first recording since 1966. Jody's fingers are nimble throughout 13 all-original tracks. Harlan Terson (bass) and Kenny Smith (drums) join forces with contemporary guitar stars who were all influenced by Williams.
Legions of fans are familiar with Otis Rush's "All Your Love". This 55 minute disc kicks off with "Lucky Lou" - the inspiration behind the Rush hit. Jody's instrumental features a stylistic bridge and minor key. Tinsley Ellis guests as, per Jody, he has the song down better than most of today's guitarists. "Come Over To My House" reunites Williams with Billy Boy Arnold who plays articulate harp on the traditional track. Jody plays short, laser-sharp, exquisite notes on "Lifelong Lover". The production work of blues aficionado Dick Shurman and the use of HDCD results in a vinyl sounding disc. For proof, simply listen to "You May". It was derived from Memphis Slim's "Mother Earth" and features a well known riff. Two generations of blues musicians combine for a rugged instrumental called "Moanin' For Molasses". Here, Williams and Sean Costello exchange licks like mentor and pupil. Ronnie Baker Brooks plays cranking, glass shattering guitar on "I'm Coming Back In Again" while Arnold handles vocals. Not surprisingly, Billy Boy and Jody share similar soft voices but Arnold's is smoother. Rusty Zinn appears on "Jive Spot". It's a jumping instrumental swinging with the boogie woogie piano of Allen Batts.
This somewhat 'retro' disc is a tribute to the rich history that brought the blues to where they are today. This does not mean that Jody is living in the past. Far from it. In fact, the younger fellas that appear on the disc play in adulation of Williams and he motivates them to set the pyrotechnics aside and play in a traditional vein. Jody Williams has prevailed through trials and tribulations to cut the comeback record of the year.
For further information, contact: Evidence Music Inc., 1110 E. Hector Street, Suite 392, Conshohocken, PA 19428 USA Tel: (610) 832-0844 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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