Ronnie Earl and his band recorded “live in concert” during their European tour ’93. High-energy blues at its best. If you’ve seen him ‘live’ you know what I am talking about.
Especially for the lovers of straight blues guitar, this album will be more than a welcomed addition to their Ronnie Earl collection.
I always thought that he was best in a live situation, on stage, facing a supportive audience. We tried to capture that special feel, and the high energy of a Ronnie Earl performance.
A treat for all lovers of hard-drivin’ guitar blues, performed by one of the greatest guitar players on planet earth.
Guitarist Ronnie Earl recorded the majority of the instrumental release I Feel Like Goin’ On live in the studio with no overdubbing. As one of the best contemporary blues guitarists around, Earl naturally shows off his prowess on these 11 cuts, with sturdy assistance from Dave Limina on piano/organ, Jimmy Mouradian on bass, Lorne Entress on drums, and special guest guitarist Jose Alvares. On the whole, I Feel Like Goin’ On is tight, passionate, and gritty, especially on the soul-blues of “Hey Jose,” “Blues for Otis Rush,” “Howlin’ for My Darlin’,” and “Travelin’ Heavy.” While the majority of the album is uptempo, Earl does slow down the pace on the beautiful ballad “Donna” and the traditional gospel-flavored “Mary Don’t You Weep,” featuring the only vocal appearance on the disc, by the Silver Leaf Gospel Singers.
Test of Time collects the highlights from Ronnie Earl’s six Black Top albums. The 18-song compilation showcases one of the finest blues guitarists of the ’80s, picking nearly all of his finest material, which happen to include duets with Robert Jr. Lockwood and Hubert Sumlin. The album is an excellent introduction to Earl, as well as his most consistently entertaining release.
This album represents a wonderful blending of blues and jazz, with superb musicianship and a great production. Mellow, moody, and moving, Earl is the star but he allows plenty of space for sax and keyboards to take center stage in turn. This is an album of instrumentals, and as the title suggests, it has a relaxed atmosphere that demands deep engagement with the listener. When I play this cd I just get drawn in and find myself grooving silently with it. I play guitar so I really love listening to Earl’s delicate touch, but this is not an album for muso’s where competence replaces emotion. In fact it is the exact opposite – being soulful and engaging. I find that everyone I play this album to has the same reaction — ‘what is that? – it’s beautiful’ -especially people who think they do not like jazz. As an earlier reviewer said, I also give this a gift to people – as Earl seems to have given us this music as a reminder of how special life can be, and it seems appropriate to pass this on. Earl has been though some tough times with addiction and this album represents a cleansing and a new found appreciation for life. If ever music could communicate such feelings, I think this album does. Treat yourself to a reminder of what music can do for us – this is special.
Language of the Soul is a wonderful change of pace for guitarist Ronnie Earl. The record is the first all-instrumental album Earl has recorded and, if anything, it’s even more successful than his full-fledged, band-oriented records. Working without vocals has given him the freedom to try all sorts of new things, whether it’s the jazzy interludes of “Indigo Burrell” or the gospel-flavored “I Am With You.” Earl’s compositions aren’t memorable in and of themselves (he wrote all but two of the cuts), yet they give him the opportunity to play freely. He comes up with some truly remarkable solo passages, offering definitive proof that he’s one of the best contemporary blues guitarists of the ’90s.