Ben’s Thursday Roadhouse Blues – 3 pm EST

The 1950’s were a magical time for the blues.  The electric guitar was taking the world by storm and blues artists were its vanguard.  It was also a time when the blues and rock & roll were virtually indistinguishable.  Today’s set celebrates the songs and sounds of the fifties as I play both brand new and classic upbeat roadhouse blues from that era on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com. Tune in at 3 pm EST!!

Below is the intended playlist.

ARTIST TITLE
Elmore James Blacksnake Blues
Arlen Roth White Lightning (ft Steve Cropper)
Peter Ward A Westerly Sunday Night (ft Sugar Ray Norcia)
Mark Wenner’s Blues Warriors King Bee
Peter Ward Train to Key Biscayne (ft Johnny Nicholas)
Howlin’ Wolf Back Door Man
Joe Bonamassa I Can’t Be Satisfied (Live)
Mary Lane Leave That Wine Alone
Harpdog Brown Thinkin’ and Drinkin’
Brandon Santini Drive You Off My Mind
Ronnie Earl And The Broadcasters It Takes Time
Elmore James Fine Line Mama
Crystal Shawanda Hound Dog
Mark Wenner’s Blues Warriors Hello Josephine
Buddy Guy Nine Below Zero
Brian Holden Smokin’ Hot
Peter Ward Coffee Song (ft Michelle Willson)
Big Joe Turner Shake, Rattle & Roll
Hound Dog Taylor Give Me Back My Wig
Chuck Berry House Of Blue Lights
Elvis Presley Ain’t That Loving You Baby
Omar Kent Dykes & Jimmie Vaughan Baby What You Want Me To Do/Bright Lights Big City
James Cotton Honest I Do
Luther Allison Parking Lot
The Derek Trucks Band Good Morning Little Schoolgirl
Joe Bonamassa Shake for Me (Live)
The Rides Talk to Me Baby
Sonny Boy Williamson Help Me
Eugene Hideaway Bridges I Can’t Stop Loving You Baby
Mark Wenner’s Blues Warriors Rock a While
Cyndi Lauper Crossroads (Feat. Johnny Lang)
Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin Sit Down, Baby
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Roadhouse Blues Bin for Mid April 2019

It’s spring time, well almost in New England, and here is what I am listening to as I await freakin’ warmer weather …..

Manx Marriner MainlineHell Bound for Heaven (2019)

Manx Marriner

Harry Manx is a blues original.  His primary musical instrument is the Mohan Veena,  often associated with classical music from India, which gives Harry’s music a surreal sound that is perfect for the blues. His partner for the album is Steve Marriner, a gifted harmonica and guitar player who also performs on the drums, organ, and bass.  Both have great voices and contribute songs for Hell Bound for Heaven, released by Stony Plain Records.

The recording has a mix of what I call roots blues and gospel tunes.  I particularly enjoyed their rendition of the legendary Charlie Patton’s Rattlesnake.  And the songs Hell Bound for Heaven, Nothing, and Everybody Knows will get a lot of spins on my personal stream (http://s1.nexuscast.com:8043) and during my upcoming sets on Blues Music Fan Radio.  Great tunes from a duo of Canadian artists!!!

Stony Plain Records 2019


Harpdog Brown – For Love & Money (2019)

Harpdog brown

To be officially released on April 26th, Harpdog Brown’s For Love & Money recording is a great throwback to the swing and jazzy feel of the blues in the late 1940’s.  If I didn’t know better I would swear this Canadian from British Columbia had grown up in New Orleans.  With a heavy emphasis on piano and horns on the album, Harpdog reminds me alot of the best of Dr. John….gravely voice, gritty lyrics, and fantastic musicianship.

I particularly enjoyed Thinkin’ and Drinkin’, Blue Light Boogie, Buzzard Luck, and Vicious Vodka.  An album best enjoyed with your woman and a martini and cigar in hand for sure!

Dog House Records 2019


Brandon Santini – The Longshot (2019)

Brandon Santini

Brandon Santini turns up the amplifier (and I’d say it’s about time!) on his new album, The Longshot.  An up and coming harmonica player and vocalist who has already been nominated for the BMA blues harmonica player of the year award (2014), his future is bright to say the least! I always have felt that Brandon, who I became aware of in 2012, had the ideal voice and harmonica skills to lay down some badass blues rock……and now he has.

He is backed on this outing by a solid group of musicians; Timo Arthur and Jed Potts on guitars, one of my favorite keyboard players John Ginty, Chuck Combs on bass, and Reid Muchow on drums.  Ginty, Santini, and Ben Elliot produced the album.

I loved Somebody’s Gotta Go, Back to You, Beggin’ Baby, Going Home, and Drive You Off My Mind.  All of them are now in rotation for my DJ sets.

I certainly think this album deserves early consideration as a nominee for Blues Rock album of 2019!  Keep crankin out dem roadhouse blues Brian!!!

American Showplace Music (2019)


Mark Wenner’s Blues Warriors (2018)

Mark Wenner

A side project for long time Nighthawk Mark Wenner, this album is a refreshing celebration of tunes by Muddy Water, B.B. King, Sonny Boy Williamson, Fats Domino, Big Joe Turner, Elmore James, and Slim Harpo.  Mark is a gifted singer and harmonica player and his brilliance carries this upbeat bluzin’ album.  Fellow Nighthawk, Mark Stutso joins him on drums, along with talented guitarist Zach Sweeney, singer and guitarist Clarence “The Bluesman” Turner, and features the double bass of Steve Wolf.

I loved every cut on this CD including King Bee, Trust My Baby, Rock A While, Hello Josephine, (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear, It’s My Own Fault,  and Dust My Broom. The album includes a really nice cover of a relatively unknown tune by Muddy Waters Diamonds at Your Feet that I have worked into my blues sets al ot over the years and the only original song, written by Mark, is an instrumental tribute to the legendary Jimmy Reed entitled Just Like Jimmy.

If you want to spend some time listening to straight up rockin’ blues from the fifties, you can’t do better than downloading and listening to this album!

Ellersoul Records 2018


 

All on board for a train ride with Peter Ward

It’s time to board the Train to Key Biscayne with Peter Ward!  Maybe you are wearin’ a fedora, perhaps a fine Stetson, and you have brought along your best cigars, a stash of your favorite liquor, and your lovely lady dressed in her best finery. Some folks have brought their kids and others have grandchildren in tow.  All are excited to hear Peter’s new album and there is a cheerful camaraderie as the journey begins.

On the train to help entertain you are some of Peter’s friends.  Luther Johnson, longtime sideman for Muddy Waters, is there. A host of New England’s blues luminaries are there too: Ronnie Earl, Sugar Ray Norcia, Mudcat Ward (Peter’s brother), Anthony Geraci, Neil Gouvin, and Michelle Willson.  Some fellow musicians catch a ride also; Jiri Nedoma, Bob Berry, George Dellomo, Hank Walther, Aaron Gratzmiller, and Keith Asack.  Even a friend, Johnny Nicholas, who relocated to Texas, has come back to town to catch the train rollin’ out of Boston.  And there is the original art work that Peter did for the album cover hanging in a place of honor in the dining car.

peter ward_train to key biscayne

As the train makes its leisurely way south, Peter and his friends entertain you with a wonderful mix of New England based blues, western swing, and an enticing slice of R&B. Leading off is Luther Johnson singing The Luther Johnson Thing; a song Peter wrote to commemorate Luther’s life and contribution to the electric blues and who better to sing it than the man himself.

Next up is Sugar Ray Norcia to sing and swing the blues with A Westerly Sunday night. He follows it up with a fantastic R&B tune that harkens back to golden Saturday nights in the fifties and sixites….When You Are Mine. (All the songs on the album were written by Peter and the mental images he creates with the lyrics and music are magical.) Sugar Ray finishes up with a nostalgic swing tune, As Long As I Have a Chance.

Michelle “Evil Mama” Willson then takes the stage as the train rocks to and fro headed ever south. It’s gettin’ warmer…folks are sheddin those New England weather clothes and breakin out the jeans, t-shirts, and tank tops…baseball caps and sunglasses proliferate among the guests. Michelle rocks the blues with the Coffee Song and then sings an inspiring rock ballad, I Saw Your House, that has a great Bruce Springsteen feel to it.

Everyone is excited to see one of the all time great blues guitarist, Ronnie Earl, take to the stage to play with Peter and they launch into a rousing Chicago blues tune, Blues Elixir (Ronnie’s Here).  Peter follows up with a beautiful instrumental entitled Supposedly that features some awesome harmonica and piano playing by Hank Walther.

Then Peter and the core band of Mudcat Ward (bass), Neil Gouvin (drums), and the great keyboard player Anthony Geraci lay down some upbeat blues with Something Always Slows Me Down.

Finally as the heat rises and the palmettos come into view through the windows, Johnny Nicholas goes front and center with more rocking blues as he belts out Change (Ain’t Never For the Good). Johnny started out in Rhode Island, played in California, then Chicago, and did a stint with Asleep at the Wheel before settling in Texas. But he has always maintained his ties to his musician friends in New England. To close out the journey he also sings the title cut, an incredible fusion of the blues and western swing.

Peter-Ward-Photo-1-by-Tom-Hazeltine

Photo by Tim Hazeltine

On his second solo musical foray, Peter Ward has simply outdone himself!  The album is well produced and performed; it is entertainment at its finest. They say you can tell a person by the company they keep.  And I would be thrilled to be part of this company of musicians and friends on a Train Ride to Key Biscayne anytime!


Peter Ward – Train Ride to Key Biscayne   (Gandy Dancer Records 2019)

A Roadhouse Quickie for Tuesday, April 16th!

It’s a busy day for me today, but I still have time for a one hour Roadhouse Quickie at 12 Noon EST on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com! Join me for new tunes by Mary Lane, Arlen Roth, Harpdog Brown, the Manx Marriner Mainline, and Big Joe & the Dynaflows!

Below is the intended playlist.

ARTIST TITLE
Arlen Roth Tuff Tele
John Latini Pull Me Up
Genevieve Chadwick One Time Thing
Manx Marriner Mainline Everybody Knows
Harpdog Brown Blue Light Boogie
Mary Lane Blues Give Me A Feeling
Big Jay McNeely & Dana Gillespie Give Me Your Best Shot
Arlen Roth I Can Fix It (ft Jack Pearson)
Big Joe and the Dynaflows Driving Wheel
Slackjaw Don’t Give Me No Jive
Ghalia and Mamas Boys Have You Seen My Woman
RJ & The Houndogs Give Me One Reason
Arlen Roth Joe’s Blues (ft Joe Bonamassa)

Telecastin’ the night away on Arlen Roth’s Tele Masters

Released in the early 1950’s, the Fender Telecaster was the first commercially successful solid body guitar and has been used by blues, rock, and country bands ever since because of its distinctive tone (and relatively cheap price!). Famous artists like Buck Owens, Albert Collins, and Muddy Waters played the Telecaster in the fifties and Keith Richards and Jimmy Page have used it in an exquisite manner since the 1960’s.  On his new album, Tele Masters, Arlen Roth displays his own love and mastery of the Telecaster with a stellar set of 16 tunes.

Arlen Roth_buick and telecaster

Over the years, Arlen has performed with Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Levon Helm, Ry Cooder, Johnny Winter, Rick Vito, and Sonny Landreth (click here for a great live performance by them of Blues Attack ) to name just a few.  He has been voted one of the 100 Most Influential Guitarists of All Time by Vintage Guitars magazine….and my bet is that many of you have never heard his music!  Well, I hope we can change that after a listen to this inspiring new album.

The list of artists that contributed to this effort is impressive.  The most notable to regular readers of my blog is Joe BonamassaJoe’s Blues is Bonamassa’s tribute to the legendary Albert Collins and is a must have for collectors of Joe’s tunes. Also contributing on the recording are Steve Cropper (yeah THAT Steve Cropper), Vince Gill, Brad Paisley, Jack Pearson, Albert Lee, Jerry Donahue, Johnny Hiland, Bill Kirchen, Brent Mason, Will Ray, Red Volkaert, Cindy Cashdollar, Billy Panda, Bryan Sutton, Tommy MacDonald, and Steve Wariner.  The drummer on the album and its producer is one of my favorite people, Grammy Award winner Tom Hambridge who plays with Buddy Guy.  Tom’s production of the songs brings out the best in Arlen and showcases the distinctive attributes of the Telecaster in a way that is engaging and entertaining.  The album is primarily instrumental but features several songs with vocals that I really loved.

Arlen Roth_TeleMaster album

Jack Pearson, a notable musician and singer who played with the Allman Brothers Band and also toured with Gregg Allman, is featured on vocals and guitar on two awesome blues cuts: I Can Fix It (where he and Arlen do a great job of trading guitar licks) and on an inspiring version of Key to the Highway.  The fabulous Steve Cropper contributes vocals and guitar licks on the bluesy White Lightning.  All three cuts will get significant airplay during my upcoming sets on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com.

But what truly underpins this album is the guitar artistry of Arlen Roth. He recorded his first album in 1978 and now, fifteen albums later, we hear his guitar playing at its very best.  Besides the blues tunes, he romps through a haunting rendition of Ghost Riders in the Sky, a lovely cover of Tennessee Waltz with his daughter, Lexie Roth, on vocals, cranks it up on Rumble, and then lays down the case for why the Telecaster is such a great guitar on the badass instrumental, Tuff Tele.

This album is worth spending an evening with as I have done.  Get yourself a drink, a smoke, or whatever relaxes you and telecast the night away with Arlen Roth and friends.


2019 Aquinnah Records

Tuesday Roadhouse Blues Nooner

Join us on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com for Ben Vee’s Tuesday Roadhouse Blues Nooner featuring tunes by Joe Bonamassa, Widow Blue, Beth Hart, John Hiatt, Gary Moore, Genevieve Chadwick, Ally Venable, Joanne Shaw Taylor, and many more!!  It starts at 12 Noon EST….be there!!!

Below is the intended playlist.

ARTIST TITLE
Gerry Joe Weise B Flat Jazzy
The Kentucky Headhunters Boones Farm Boogie
Willie Nelson Heartbreak Hotel (With Leon Russell)
Melissa Etheridge The Shadow of a Black Crow
Alvin Lee My Baby’s Come Back To Me
Willie May You Know I’m Lying
Widow Blue Slow Blues and a Shot of Gin
Ally Venable Running After You
Mean Gene Kelton Texas Honey
Genevieve Chadwick Yes You Did
Glen Hansard Roll On Slow
John Hiatt Over The Hill
Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa Miss Lady
Joanne Shaw Taylor I’ve Been Loving You Too Long
Sonny Landreth Bound By The Blues
Tom Hambridge Little Things (ft Sonny Landreth)
Tiffany Pollack & Eric Johanson Diamonds On The Crown
Tab Benoit Cherry Tree Blues
Lisa Mann Hard Times, Bad Decisions
Karen Lovely Never Felt No Blues
Long John And The Killer Blues Collective Cold Blood Blues
Janis Joplin One Good Man
Paul Personne & Lost In Paris Blues Band I Don’t Need No Doctor
Joe Bonamassa Midnight Blues (Live)
Gary Moore If You Be My Baby

Ben’s Roadhouse Nooner on BMFR (April 2, 2019)

Got some badass roadhouse blues today (April 2, 2019) at High Noon EST on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com!  Grab yer lunch, maybe a late breakfast, or your dinner if you are in Europe…heck…grab a friend too…and listen to dah blues!

Below is the intended playlist.

ARTIST TITLE
Romi Mayes Bee Sting
Mark Selby Don’t You Throw That Mojo On Me
Guy Tortora Live Fast
Mary Bridget Davies Trick The Devil
John Latini My Town’s Got a River and a Train
Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite The Bottle Wins Again
JD McPherson North Side Gal
Eugene Hideaway Bridges V8 Ford
Joakim Tinderholt & His Band Poor Side Of Town
Jason Buie Suits Me to a Tee
Eric Street Band I’m A Blues Man
Rocky Jackson & The Igniters Back to the Crossroads
Tiffany Pollack & Eric Johanson Blues In My Blood
Tedeschi Trucks Band When Will I Begin
TOMMY CASTRO Leaving Trunk (Live)
Joey Gilmore Meet Me in the Bottom
Mary Jo Curry Steppin’
Robert Fetzer Band On My Knees
Nick Schnebelen Crazy All By Myself
Riff Riders Rumors
Mark Nomad They Call Me Nomad
Hokie Joint Chain Me
Nikki Hill Holler out Loud
JD Simo Mind Trouble
Rob Orlemans & Half Past Midnight Into the Spirit