Michael Hill Blues Mob
Black Gold and Goddesses Bold!
Label - JSP
New York, strangely, has never had a blues style the way that, say, Chicago has. The closest they come is in the CDs of band leader Michael Hill, who nails a pretty mean Buddy Guy lead jazz blues guitar over rock, funk, blues, Caribbean, African and R&B grooves.
Hill's earliest inspiration was Jimi Hendrix, but this music is more like a thoroughly up to date Marvin Gaye, or Curtis Mayfield. With guests including blues legend Hubert Sumlin and Living Color's Vernon Reid, there is an infectious groove throughout - fans of Robert Cray or Carlos Santana will identify with the rhythm - although the lyrics deal with some fairly deep political issues.
Like many blues albums, this one works best when the guitar does the talking, and Hill is an emotive player, with a mercurial lead and a gift for tone - screaming, whispering and soaring, sometimes within the same bar. The creativity on this disc is a powerful claim for a new New York blues.
Adult Contemporary Essentials