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Rick Taylor - Lucky Room

Volunteer Records

11 tracks

I have to apologize to Rick Taylor. He doesn’t know that I need to, but I do. The first time I listened to this CD I was stuck in horrible traffic driving into Chicago. I think it took me over an hour and half to get downtown from O’Hare airport. I was in such a foul mood that after about a minute of each song I was hitting the button for the next track and after 11 minutes I was done, unimpressed. I think that if BB King and Buddy Guy had been sitting in my back seat jamming that day I would have snapped at them and told them to hold it down. The CD got put away for a couple of weeks, resurfaced, got properly listened to several times and it now elicits my apology.

Rick Taylor hails from North of the border, and this Ontario native can play the guitar! He spent 23 years in Vancouver until 2007 when he returned home and released a CD that he’d worked on for ten years that mixed many styles of music. In his new release he returns to his blues roots. Playing solo guitar, both acoustic and electric, he shows us his finger picking skills over these 11 tracks. His vocals are equally authentic and solid, a mix of bourbon and gravel; the accompanying notes hearken his style as being delivered on the torn paper cone radio speaker of a 1927 Buick. For Midwest and West Coast fans that are familiar with Hawkeye Herman, Rick is a veteran bluesman of a very similar style. Taylor also fills in on harp while Henshall “Washboard” Fats does some percussive work on washboards, suitcases, bean cans and drums.

The songs here vary from Big Bill Broonzy’s “By Myself” to Joe Williams’ “Baby Please Don’t Go”, an outstanding homage of the Mississippi Delta through early Chicago blues. Taylors fine finger picking will please guitar fans as he winds his way through a mix of traditional acoustic and electric blues. Leroy Carr’s “Six Cold Feet of Ground” gets a stirring electric slide cover and Elmore James’ “I See My Baby” is an acoustic romp over the fret board with Fats backing him nicely. “Blind Fiddler” is a rootsy John Brim cover with a haunting melody and delivery. The electric stuff is great, but one can tell this guy really is in his prime with the acoustic tracks.

Rick Taylor is consummate bluesman with a solid and exciting CD here. Roots music fans will thoroughly enjoy his guitar and vocal work on these 11 well-chosen tracks that showcase his excellent skill on the guitar and gutsy vocals..

Reviewer Steve Jones is secretary of the Crossroads Blues Society in Rockford. IL.  

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