Johnny Drummer – Bad Attitude
This is the 4th cd by Johnny Drummer, featuring well crafted tunes, full of funk, soul, blues, love, lust, biting humor and tales of the common man. He is a master storyteller, who creates blues tales which touch every listener no matter their mood.
This new release – Johnny Drummer’s 4th on Earwig Music, features all original tunes by Johnny with a funky Chicago band with horns. Johnny’s tunes touch many aspects of relationships and range from low down slow blues, including “Ain’t No Secret in a Small Town and “Bad Attitude”, to uptempo funky dance tunes “One Size Fit All”, “Don’t Call Me Trash” and “Is It Love Or Is It Lust”, mellow ballads “Make You Happy”, and blues shuffles “Another Rooster Is Pecking My Hen” and “Sure Sign of the Blues”. Johnny’s characters often find themselves in unusual situations, such as “U-Turn on a One Way Street” “Bit Her in the Butt” and “Star 69″. One thing’s for sure, Johnny is a master of the groove with a knack for songs featuring surprising and unusual twists and turns of relationships.
1. Is It Love or Is It Lust - 4:20 2. Another Rooster Is Pecking My Hen - 4:14 3. Bit Her in the Butt - 4:25 4. Bad Attitude - 5:08 5. Make You Happy - 5:00 6. One Size Fit All - 5:40 7. Sure Sign of the Blues - 4:59 8. Don't Call Me Trash - 4:17 9. Ain't No Secret in a Small Town - 5:20 10. U-Turn on a One Way Street - 5:10 11. Better Than Good - 4:46 12. My Woman My Money My Whiskey - 5:10 13. Star 69 - 4:41
Johnny Drummer ( vocals, harmonica on 2,710,12, organ 7,8,9) , Kenny Hampton (bass guitar) , Anthony Palmer (lead guitar) , Sir Walter Scott (rhythm guitar) , Jeremiah Thomas (drums on 1,2,3,7,9,10,12,13) , Terrence Williams (drums on 4,5,6,8,11) , Ronnie Hicks (keyboards) , Rodney 'Hotrod' Brown (saxophone) , Kenny Anderson (trumpet)
1. www.lahoradelblues.com - 2014.09.29
Johnny Drummer es un habitual de los circuitos del blues de Chicago, especialmente los del south y west side. Tanto él como su grupo son muy apreciados por los aficionados al género, ya que en todas sus actuaciones despiden una energía y un dramatismo de muy alto nivel y convicción. Johnny es compositor, cantante, teclista, armonicista y un líder de gran profesionalidad y carisma. En éste “Bad Attitude” le acompañan una línea de músicos de primera fila en el actual blues de Chicago, como son Kenny Hampton bajo, Anthony Palmer como guitarra solista, Sir Walter Scott guitarra, los baterías Jeremiah Thomas y Terrence Williams, Ronnie Hicks teclados eléctricos, Rodney ‘Hotrod’ Brown saxos tenor, alto y barítono y Kenny Anderson trompeta. En este cuarto álbum para el sello Earwig, Johnny Drummer y sus músicos demuestran su pleno dominio y conocimiento del blues de Chicago de la vieja escuela, así como el soul contemporáneo y el ‘West Side funky blues’ y lo hacen desde una perspectiva, cruda, enérgica y muy convincente. MUY BUENO.
Johnny Drummer is a habitual musician of Chicago blues circuits, especially along the South and West Side. Both he and his group are really appreciated by blues fans, because all their shows are full of a dramatic energy that always convinces the most reluctant people. Johnny is a high professional composer, singer, keyboard and harmonica player. He also leads the band with an amazing charisma. In "Bad Attitude" he is backed by a first class actual Chicago blues musicians line-up, such as Kenny Hampton on bass, Anthony Palmer as a lead guitar, Sir Walter Scott on guitar, drummers Jeremiah Thomas and Terrence Williams, Ronnie Hicks on electric keyboards, Rodney 'Hotrod' Brown tenor, alto and baritone sax and Kenny Anderson trumpet. In this fourth album recorded for Earwig, Johnny Drummer and his musicians show their full knowledge of old school Chicago blues, together with contemporary soul and West Side funky blues, and they do on a raw, energetic and very convincing way. GREAT.
Thessex Johns chose an interesting stage name in Johnny Drummer as drums is one of the instruments he does not play! However, with some 50 years in the business he does lead a big band, writes all the material, sings, plays harp and organ – not a bad list of accomplishments. This is Johnny’s fourth Earwig CD and it features a fine array of Chicago sidemen: Anthony Palmer on lead guitar, Sir Walter Scott on rhythm guitar, Kenny Hampton on bass, Jeremiah Thomas and Terrence Williams on drums, Ronnie Hicks on keys, Rodney ‘Hot Rod’ Brown on sax and Kenny Anderson on trumpet.
The overall sound is funky, urban blues with lyrics which could cause offence if the listener was particularly sensitive. However, most blues fans are quite at home with tales of infidelity, lust and sexual boasting, so will feel right at home here! An example of each of the above will give a flavour of the material. “Star 69” is the dialling code to retrieve the previously dialled phone number. Here Johnny decides to use the code having overheard his lady on the phone, only to discover that she is planning to cheat on him! Johnny reminds her to clear the line in future as the horns push the melody along and Anthony takes a fine solo. Opening track “Is It Love Or Is It Lust?” gives us a clear message about Johnny’s thinking about this lady – he simply cannot decide whether he’s in love or just overtaken by desire. The music here is funky, the horns accentuating the core riff and ‘Hotrod’ taking a short but effective solo on tenor. When it comes to sexual boasting “One Size Fit All” is classic stuff: short or tall, petite or full figure, Johnny has “what you need”.
Elsewhere Johnny shows a good sense of humour on the comic “Bit Her In The Butt” in which an unfortunate young lady struggles to get past a dog to enter a store, with the inevitable consequence of the song title! Taking a ‘standard’ blues analogy, “Another Rooster Is Pecking My Hen” also demonstrates some bawdy humour and the title track introduces us to a girl who sleeps “with a straight razor under your pillow”. Johnny is also fiercely protective of the things he holds most dear, as he explains in “My Woman, My Money, My Whiskey”. He can also be more serious though, as on “Make You Happy”, a ballad with some hints of reggae in the rhythm guitar work, in which he states “I’m gonna be good to you, give you the best time you’ve ever had”. In the slow blues “Ain’t No Secret In A Small Town” Johnny’s words warn of the wagging tongues if you put a foot off the right path and in “Don’t Call Me Trash” (possibly the standout track on the album) he sings of the people who don’t have a lot of money or fall into financial problems: “I may not have cash to stash, because I live in a trailer, don’t call me trash”.
With the horns doing a superb job on most of the tracks here this is a solid CD, well recorded and produced, which gives us a flavour of what Johnny’s regular shows in Chicago must be like – an entertaining evening of blues with a sense of humour.
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