Although Tiven is known more for his writing songs for premiere blues artists of our time-Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Robert Cray and Troy Turner-Tiven's own band treads the fine line between blues and soul that tends to confound those anxious to categorize him.
With guests like Simon Kirke (Bad Company), Jim Carroll, Billy Squier, Peter Wolf, Billie Ray Martin and Sir Mack Rice, Tiven paints an even more diverse picture of his musical vision. And he even thanks Jerry Garcia for allowing him to use on the album a "Badmouth Logo"
that the Grateful Dead's deceased guitarist drew.
"Yes I Ram" also contains the following words hidden behind the CD: "This album contains no samples, loops, or digital instruments. All the music herein was performed by actual musicians in real time without click tracks." Van Morrison, who doesn't ordinarily let his unreleased material out for the public, gave the band a previously-unrecorded song from 1970 called "If You Rock Me."
Joining Tiven in the studio is longtime wife Sally (bass), Alan Merrill (lead vocals) and Todd Snare-no pun intended (drums and percussion).
This review is copyright © 1999 by Matt Alcott, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved.