Ain't Like It Used to Be

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Duffy
Following much in the same groove as their 1998 debut, Phat Blues Music, Kelly Bell Band offered up Ain't Like It Used to Be in early 2001. Again combining chunky funk riffs with blues, rock, and classic soul, Bell and company easily defend their status as champions of East Coast college party rock. This time out, the grooves are even tighter, the melodies richer, and the production much more professional. But again as before, instead of searching for his own personal path through all the many influences he has absorbed, Bell instead tries to touch as many bases as possible. Almost every track on Phat Blues has a counterpart on Ain't Like It Used to Be, be it soulful ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Duffy
Following much in the same groove as their 1998 debut, Phat Blues Music, Kelly Bell Band offered up Ain't Like It Used to Be in early 2001. Again combining chunky funk riffs with blues, rock, and classic soul, Bell and company easily defend their status as champions of East Coast college party rock. This time out, the grooves are even tighter, the melodies richer, and the production much more professional. But again as before, instead of searching for his own personal path through all the many influences he has absorbed, Bell instead tries to touch as many bases as possible. Almost every track on Phat Blues has a counterpart on Ain't Like It Used to Be, be it soulful acoustic blues, jumping swing, even a lame spoken word comedy bit. Special guests are in plentiful number to help Bell and company, including Big Jesse Yawn, Victor Williams, Ron Holloway, Mark Wenner, Jimi HaHa, and the horn section of Bell's nearest live competitors, the All Mighty Senators. But while these guests lend credibility and variety to the album's 15 tunes, Bell does make noticeable steps in his musical development. Two songs in particular, the driving funk of "Workin' Me" and the more concise R&B structure of "Mama's Chasing the Dragon," show levels of harmonic layering that show Bell may in fact be finding new and original ways to write and perform. The album's last proper track, "Take Me Away," is a fruitful blending of Bell's bluesy baritone and a chamber music arrangement complete with operatic vocals. These three tunes are nearly enough to give hope that Bell may in fact be outgrowing, hopefully, the well-trod ground of the past.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/27/2001
  • Label: Fowl Records
  • UPC: 663491002221
  • Catalog Number: 22

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Pain (Intro) - Kelly Bell Band (2:00)
  2. 2 Thinking About Tomorrow - Kelly Bell Band (4:59)
  3. 3 Must've Bumped Your Head - Kelly Bell Band (1:49)
  4. 4 ...Ain't Like It Used to Be! - Kelly Bell Band (4:32)
  5. 5 Talkin' in Your Sleep - Kelly Bell Band (3:49)
  6. 6 Early in the Morning - Kelly Bell Band (3:45)
  7. 7 Stay - Kelly Bell Band (3:40)
  8. 8 She Done Moved - Kelly Bell Band (4:34)
  9. 9 Workin' Me - Kelly Bell Band (5:02)
  10. 10 Missing You - Kelly Bell Band (0:40)
  11. 11 Lock Me Up - Kelly Bell Band (4:13)
  12. 12 Lost My Baby for the Blues - Kelly Bell Band (4:20)
  13. 13 Message from the White Horse (1:35)
  14. 14 Goodnight for the Blues - Kelly Bell Band (5:16)
  15. 15 Mama's Chasing the Dragon - Kelly Bell Band (4:21)
  16. 16 Take Me Away - Kelly Bell Band (4:02)
  17. 17 Thinking About Tomorrow - Kelly Bell Band (3:44)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Kelly Bell Primary Artist
Mark Wenner Harmonica
Bobby Parker Guitar
Kim Hall Background Vocals
Ron Holloway Saxophone
Marilyn Robinson Background Vocals
Victor Williams Percussion, Conga
Gene Jones Background Vocals
Jesse Yawn Vocals
Larry Melton Upright Bass
Craig Considine Horn
Tia Johnson Background Vocals
John Partridge Horn
Natalie Carter Background Vocals
Kevin Kadish Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Steve Wright Arranger, Producer, String Arrangements, Sound Design
Joe Gastwirt Mastering
Kelly Bell Producer
Randy Miller Artwork
Rennie Grant Arranger, String Arrangements
Joe Goldsborough Package Adaptation
Mike McAree Engineer, Sound Design
Brett Sharbaugh Producer
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