The red-hot embers that smoldered on singer - guitarist Shawn Pittman's first two Cannonball Records releases burst into flames on his self-released CD "Full Circle". He emerges here as a fully formed Texas Blues man who, at the ripe old age of 27, leads some of the form's preeminent players with the aplomb of someone twice his age.
Backed by the legendary Double Trouble rhythm section, Pittman somewhat ironically stakes his claim to the ground consecrated by their Austin brethren The
Fabulous Thunderbirds. Sparse arrangements and concise solos keep the spotlight fixed on the groove in a manner reminiscent of Jimmie Vaughn, Kim Wilson and company's early Crhysalis recordings. From Rockabilly to slow blues, Pittman acquits himself as both a student and master of the highly influential sound that erupted out of Austin's late 70"s club scene.
Bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Chris Layton imbue all six tracks they appear on with the metronome-like precision and roaring passion that has informed their
work during and since the SRV heyday. They challenge Pittman right out of the gate on "New King in Town." allowing him to cut loose on both the fret board and vocally, turning up the heat to the point of spontaneous combustion. Latter, on "It's Your Turn,"
they contribute a subtle funk backing that push Pittman and organist Riley Osborne's sweet interplay into the realm of pure bliss.
Former Fab T-Bird bass player Preston Hubbard appears on two tracks recorded just one day after his first gig as a member of Pittman's band. The Thunderbird's legacy is acknowledged on Juke Boy Bonner's "Runnin' Shoes"(From "T-Bird Rhythm") and "I Smell Trouble," done in a vein similar to "Full Time Lover" from their first record.
On a first rate CD chock full of memorable material the standout track is without a doubt a rollicking rendition of Bob Dylan's "It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry." There's a merging of talent and material evident here that marks Pittman for
bigger things to come. Other highlights include the originals "One Thing on My Mind," with its majestically dirty guitar work and the roadhouse abandon of "Hell or High Water." Hopefully this recording will find the wide distribution it deserves and in the not so distant future Shawn Pittman's success will equal, if not surpass that of those whose footsteps he follows.
Shawn Pittman Music
1908 Fairlawn Suite B, Austin, Texas 78704
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