The Tornadoes are a five piece blues combo out of the State of Iowa. Having met at local blues jams, the band has been together since 1997, bringing over 100 combined years of experience onto the stage each evening. Band members include guitarists Bob Goffstein and Tim Hansen, Dan Berkowitz on bass, drummer Rich Patterson and Jim Rossen on harp and vocals. The Tornadoes repertoire includes classic electric blues, with songs by such artists as Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, Little Walter, Robert Cray, BB King, Little Charlie & the Nightcats, and the Fabulous Thunderbirds. They perform regularly at clubs throughout Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, and Des Moines. Their outdoor appearances include the Friday Night Concert Series in Iowa City, Music in the Park in Coralville, and the Des Moines Arts Festival. They have also in the Iowa Blues Challenge for a chance to perform at the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival in Davenport.
The Tornadoes debut CD, Blowin' Thru Town, is comprised of twelve cover tunes included some classics like "Flip, Flop and Fly," "Rock This House," and "Caldonia," along with some excellent songs that may not be as well known to the casual blues fan. These songs include "I Walk Alone" by David Hidalgo and Louie Perez from Los Lobos, Willie Dixon's "Too Many Cooks," "She's A Good Un" written by Otis Rush and "Feel So Bad" by Chuck Willis. A visit to the band's website (www.tornadoesblues.com) indicates that the songs on the CD are a representation of the variety of sounds to be heard at a Tornadoes show. Assuming this is true, The Tornadoes are definitely a band worth listening to on Blowin' Thru Town or at a live show.
The CD opens with a nice jump blues, "Flip, Flop and Fly," featuring the harp work of Jim Rossen. The third song on the disc, "I Walk Alone," is more of a blues rocker from Los Lobos and provides a stronger presence on guitar by Bob Goffstein and Tim Hansen. Jim Rossen's skills are placed front and center on the harp laden instrumental, "Rockin' Rossen," a clear variation on (you guessed it), "Rockin' Robin." "Full Time Lover" is one of the nicer slow blues tunes on the CD featuring some nice emotional guitar and vocals by Tim Hansen.
Lovers of Chicago blues will enjoy Otis Rush's "She's a Good 'Un" and the innuendo laden "Too Many Cooks" written by the immortal Willie Dixon. The Tornadoes turn out some nice sounds on these songs, providing a fine representation of the classic Chicago sound. My personal favorite on the CD is "Feel So Bad," a Chuck Willis tune that I could listen to again and again. This "long" version of the song allows for an excellent extended guitar break.
Blowin' Thru Town ends with another slow blues, this time "Rain" written by Rick Estrin of Little Charlie and the Nightcats. As a finale this song lets the guitarists play extended solos along with a nice chromatic harp solo fit into the mix. It's a great ending to an excellent debut CD from this Iowa blues combo.
To pick up a copy of Blowin' Thru Town, visit the previously mentioned website or check out one of their live shows in Cedar Rapids, Des Moines, Iowa City or other scheduled venues throughout the State.
Simply click on the CD cover at left to order this CD NOW!
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