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|John Mayall||Primary Artist, Guitar, Harmonica, Piano, Keyboards, Vocals|
|Billy Mitchell||Tenor Saxophone|
|Freddy Robinson||Guitar, Vocals|
|Larry Taylor||Bass, Bass Guitar|
|Ron Selico||Percussion, Drums|
|John Mayall||Composer, Producer|
Posted February 7, 2013
Posted October 1, 2010
John Mayall and the Allman Brothers quite possibly were the two most important blues/rock performers who kept the genre afloat during the onslaught of art and glamor rock in 1971-1973. The release of this cd has been long overdue as I virtually wore down the grooves of my lp, which has continually stood the test of time. Sounding as fresh now as it's initial 1971 release, Mayall joined forces with jazz stalwarts Blue Mitchell and Clifford Solomon to effectively fuse the successful elements of his Bluesbreakers style with the smooth be bop of the aforementioned jazzers. Guitarist Freddy Robinson is the real anchor here,a fuse master with perhaps the cleanest, most tasteful style I heard during this time,possessing a rich, silky r&B tone with crystal clear speed to match. His high ptich sound,reminded me of a bluesier George Benson. I loved the jam on Good Time Boogie where everybody gets to stretch out without self indulgence. Prior to the beginning of the song, Mayall stifles the beckoning for "Room to Move" with a declaration"That's All Way in the Past- What did you come here for, to hear an old record or something?" While he would betray the declaration in years to come this was proper and fitting given the circumstances of the tour. Mayall doesn't neglect his hardcore blues fans as demonstrated on the opening cut,Country Road, providing a dose of the harmonica playing,lazy blues boogie of which he became famous. The only clinker is Exercise in C Major which lacks urgency. Change your Ways, another great tune, belts out of the box with some great opening bars from trumpeter Mitchell who has played with various jazz greats. Mayall then takes it out from here, admonishing his fictional lady character in no uncertain tunes in classic style to "change her ways". I had seen this band perform the material live while promoting the release of the record at the old Academy of Music in NY and retain fond memories of both the building and the show. For the rest of you that hadn't had this opportunity, and consider yourselves Mayall fans, it's a must own and quite frankly one of his best. This cd represents a different facet of jazz/rock fusion, retaining a down to earth blues element which was later neglected whether intentionally or not by Miles, Corea, Johnny Mac, Hancock, and the likes. Though I usually forsake the star system when rating music, but since required, I will slide and extra half in to make it 4 and 1/2.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 5, 2010
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