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CD Review
Debbie Bond
"What Goes Around Comes Around"
The Alabama Blues Project
by Leonard Watkins
After many, many years of performing , Debbie Bond has finally graced us with her first CD, "What Goes Around Comes Around". In today's blues world, the music is often dominated by electric guitarists who use vocals as a break between guitar solos. It's always a relief to hear a recording where the instruments accompany the vocals instead of the other way around. Another thing I like about this recording is that nine of the fourteen tracks were written by Debbie and Mike McCracken. If you ever had any doubts about the quality of musicians in Alabama, this CD will certainly erase those doubts. There's the horn section that sometimes provides a great "Memphis feel". Topper Price lends his harmonica talents to several tunes including the acoustic slide blues "High Rider Blues". There is a funky ZZ Hill tune, "You Were Wrong" and the musicians stay in their place behind the vocals until Debbie tells them "play the blues." Topper steps out with a short "Topper toned" solo. The next cut is my favorite- "The Richest One" a slow ballad written by Bill Carter. This is another great example of musicians accompanying the vocalist. Mike provides a sweet guitar solo, but never tries to dominate. This tune is definitely all Debbie Bond, and she knows how to sing a ballad. The title cut is a fine example of what this CD is all about, with a great horn section with a Memphis feel. It is an original and like the others, it has substance. It's not an empty song. There's a Magic Sam tune, "Look What You've Done", with Topper Price adding harmonica fills around Debbie's vocals. She seasons it with an occasional 'growl' in her voice and it adds an appealing roughness to the tune. "Can't Get Him Off My Mind" is a driving song with slide guitar from Mike and sparse piano fills from Andrew Lane. The tune really kicks as Mike stretches out with support from drummer, Mark Lanter (who is also credited with playing a trash pail) and bass player "Thumper" Gibson MC. We should always pull for and support the home team . I encourage everyone to grab this CD and show the support that the team of Debbie Bond and Mike McCracken deserves.

This review is copyright 1998 by Leonard Watkins, all rights reserved.

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