A Shot of Love in a Time of Need/Autobiographical Notes

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All Music Guide - J. Allen
Singer/pianist Willie Murphy is the kind of artist for whom the term "cult hero" was invented. His career began with a bang back in 1969, when he partnered with guitarist "Spider" John Koerner to make the head-turning psychedelic Americana album Running, Jumping, Standing Still for Elektra. With his group Willie & the Bumble Bee he backed Bonnie Raitt and became a blues-rockin' journeyman. With 40 years of hard roads behind him, Murphy sounds as energized as ever on this double album. Not merely a double-length release, this package is really two separate albums, each with their own title, cover, and agenda. Up front is A Shot of Love in a Time of Need, a collection of ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - J. Allen
Singer/pianist Willie Murphy is the kind of artist for whom the term "cult hero" was invented. His career began with a bang back in 1969, when he partnered with guitarist "Spider" John Koerner to make the head-turning psychedelic Americana album Running, Jumping, Standing Still for Elektra. With his group Willie & the Bumble Bee he backed Bonnie Raitt and became a blues-rockin' journeyman. With 40 years of hard roads behind him, Murphy sounds as energized as ever on this double album. Not merely a double-length release, this package is really two separate albums, each with their own title, cover, and agenda. Up front is A Shot of Love in a Time of Need, a collection of funky, R&B-based tunes, including both covers and Murphy's own songs. On the flipside -- literally -- is Autobiographical Notes, a collection of tunes Murphy's had kicking around for a while but couldn't find a home for until now, mostly because of the varied styles they encompass. Murphy comes out with all guns blazing on the first disc, unleashing a visceral piano style that seems to get in between the cracks in the keyboard, and a gritty, soul-slathered vocal delivery that's perhaps best triangulated somewhere in the middle of Leon Russell, Jim Dickinson, and Dr. John. He's capable of bringing life even to an overdone tune like " Land of 1000 Dances," and his original tunes stand up alongside the R&B classics he covers. The second disc is a hodge-podge of honky-tonk, folk-rock ballads, soul, and Band-esque roots rock, plus a bluesy cover of Fred Neil's "The Dolphins" thrown in for good measure. If Autobiographical Notes isn't as consistent as its funkier partner, that's part of its eccentric, ragtag charm; whatever mode it finds Murphy in, it portrays him accurately as a true American original doing his thing out there in the margins of the music biz, where a man can really get his mojo working.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/10/2009
  • Label: Red House
  • UPC: 033651022527
  • Catalog Number: 225

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Willie Murphy Primary Artist, Bass, Guitar, Piano, Keyboards, Vocals, Background Vocals
Willie Nelson Bass, Guitar, Piano, Drums, Vocals
Prudence Johnson Background Vocals
Jim Anton Bass
Voyle Harris Trumpet
Maurice Jacox Baritone Saxophone
Gordon Knudtson Drums
Dan Lund Guitar
Lucia Newell Background Vocals
Bob Rockwell Tenor Saxophone
Howard Merriweather Drums
Scott Snyder Trumpet
Max Ray Baritone Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Suzanne Warmanen Vocal Harmony
Michael Velasquez Drums
Marbue Williams Bass
Hall Sanders Tenor Saxophone
Irv Williams Tenor Saxophone
Merlin Brunkow Tenor Saxophone
José James Alto Saxophone
Maurice Jacox Baritone Saxophone
Michael Velasquez Drums
Max Ray Baritone Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Technical Credits
Fred Neil Composer
Quinton Claunch Composer
Willie Murphy Composer, Producer, Engineer
Allen Toussaint Composer
Hy Weiss Composer
Greg Reierson Mastering
Raoul J. Cita Composer
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