Thursday, May 22, 2008

CD Review/Mr. B & Bob Seeley- Back To Back

Boogie Woogie piano, called it barrelhouse, slide piano. Call it whatcha wanna is one of the dying art forms of African American music. All the great Willie 'The Lion' Smith, Little Brother Montgomery, Albert Ammons, Meade Lux Lewis, Pete Johnson and many, many others all purveyors of the form set the path.

In 1982 I had a chance to meet the legendary Little Brother Montgomery. We struck up a nice friendship under his death in 1985. I'd go out to the blues clubs to hear him play. Even visited him in his Hyde park apartment on occasion. He was always very gracious and would impart bit of his wide knowledge - about life. I will forever be indebted to him. And while I didn't get to know another great pianist in Blind John Davis I did see him play many time and attended his funeral. He and Little brother died the same year. What a one two punch!

At the same time I did get to know and hear one of their students in Erwin Helfer. what a pianist he is. And in that tradition comes Mr. B and Bob Seeley. Their co-lab, "Back to Back" (Megawave), is a delight from beginning to end. Well schooled are these two so we get an ample treat in the tried and true classics, 'St.Louis Blues', C.C. Rider, 'After Hours' plus more and more. I won't get into their individual style, blah blah blah. This just stomp down blues and boogie with a vengeance. Thanks guys.

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