Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Blue Heart reviewed by Harmonica Joe Poluyanskis

Blue Heart
Too Slim And The Taildraggers
Underworld Records
11 tracks/49:26

Too Slim and the Taildraggers new CD, “Blue Heart”, features nine songs written by Timothy “Too Slim” Langford as well as two cover tunes. This recording was produced by Tom Hambridge who also takes on the duties of drummer, percussionist and background vocalist. Joining Too Slim and Hambridge on “Blue Heart” are Reese Wynans on B3 organ, Tommy MacDonald playing bass and Rob McNelley with electric guitar. Jimmy Hall also joins this group of fine musicians adding harmonica for   “Blue Heart” and  vocals on “Good To See You Smile Again”.  Langsford has been playing the blues since 1986 and has developed a strong bunch of international fans along the way. During this time he has also released at least 15 recordings. Besides being a very talented guitarist and singer, “Too Slim” writes strong blues lyrics that hit upon women, drugs, hard times, failed romance and all the topics that make the blues what they are.

The opening track on “Blue Heart” has a hard driving drum line by Tom Hambridge. This sets the theme for the rockin' blues tune featuring fiery blues riffs from Too Slim's guitar. This song almost has a ZZ Top flavor to it as “Too Slim” vocalizes the lyrics about women, whiskey and bad cocaine. This is a solid way to introduce us to Too Slim and the Taildraggers. “Blue Heart” takes us on the road to a real deal blues tune that features Jimmy Hall with his harmonica talent. Jimmy is given plenty of space to give us some outstanding harp soloing. This is good stuff. The steady drum line from Hambridge highlights Too Slim's vocals that tell of a women “with a heart of glass and knowing her part”. Take a long listen to Langsford's guitar tone and phrasing as he solos on this track. To me “Blue Heart” is the most outstanding tune on this CD.

“Good To See You Smile Again” has Jimmy Hall adding his vocals as Reese Wymans jumps in with his Hammond organ while Langsford interjects more of his guitar work on this tune. Again we are treated to a really solid blues song. “Blue Heart” is a strong blues rock CD which features plenty of  genuine blues making it a true blues recording. Tim Langford is an outstanding rockin' blues guitarist who also has the ability to play fine slide guitar as he lays down the blues.  Add his vocals and lyric writing to the fine group of musicians he surrounds himself with and you have to come up with a great recording. “Blue Heart” contains 11 well written and varied tunes that are worth the time to take a long listen to.

Reviewed by Harmonica Joe Poluyanskis

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