Monday, September 19, 2011

The Mighty Mojo Prophets reviewed by Harmonica Joe

The Mighty Mojo Prophets
Rip Cat Records
Mighty Mojo Prophets
13 tracks/45:22

The Mighty Mojo Prophets is an excellent Southern California blues band. This CD “The Mighty Mojo Prophets” is their debut recording released by Rip Cat Records.  As soon as this CD is placed in a player you realize that you are in for a real blues experience. This band was formed in 2007 and played local clubs,  blues festivals and have even opened for Elvin Bishop. Tom “Big Son” Eliff, lead vocalist, and Mitch Dow, guitarist, are the base for the band. These two also the main song writing force for the recording. The rest of the band consist of bass player Scott Lambert, Johnny Minguez beating on the drums, while Alex “Lil” Woodson joins in with his harp. This mix of blues player’s presents their style of West Coast blues to us while maintaining a quality of “high-powered” old school blues. This whole group plays well together.

“Evil Sometimes” starts out with “Lil A” walking into the song with some ear grabbing harmonica. We are quickly aware of “Big Son” and his well tune blues vocals. This opening song is upbeat and lets us be aware that we are in for a musical treat. We should pay attention to Goodson’s harp solo on this tune. This is a good song to introduce us to The Mighty Mojo Prophets. That is a mouthful, maybe I will  say The MMP Band .

“Night Train”, treats us to some slow blues featuring Mitch Dow’s distinctive guitar playing. His guitar work on this tune is really some fine stuff. Also in the mix is the subtle distorted harp playing from “Lil A”. His harmonica solo here really is an earful of blues. This track, for me will be one of my top of the list tunes. “Friday Night Phone Call’, an upbeat West Coast, swing, jump type, tune featuring two guitar solos from guest player Junior Watson. These really highlight this song. Eliff and Dow’s lyrics tell us a tale of a phone call about a love gone band and over. This is what the blues is about.

“Mighty Mojo Prophets” has a big list of guest players adding a whole bunch of goodness to this recording. There are two fine harmonica players, Johnny Mastro and San Padro Slim and guitarist Junior Watson and Scott Abeyta. Also joining the band are Whiteboy James with vocals, Eddie Esudillo playing sax and Edo Guidotti playing the organ. This mix of musicians is one powerful addition to the CD! This is not a minus but The Mighty Mojo Prophets seems to be very capable of standing on its own. It is really hard to review this and point out the fine merits of the band with all of the other powerful artist involved.

“The Mighty Mojo Prophets” is one awesome recording! This band will move forward and become a force behind the blues scene in the future. This is a CD that I will highly recommend listening to.

Reviewed by Harmonica Joe

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