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BILLY BOY ARNOLD-THE BLUES SOUL OF BILLY BOY ARNOLD-“ARNOLD SHINES WITH ALLSTAR CAST”-CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

Billy Boy Arnold - Portrait

Genuine and as natural as butter on hot bread Billy Boy Arnold and Duke Robillard have created an album that plays itself.

It’s rare that you make a great album at any age (let alone at Arnold’s 79 years) that is so unforced.

From Robillard’s staccato riffing on You Give Me Nothing To Go One to Arnold’s swamp ready vocal on 99 Lbs, over to the swing horn charts on Don’t Set Me Free, Arnold and the All-Star band are in total command.

A good portion of the album consist of covers.

The nuances of Robillard’s and Arnold’s solos on B.B. King’s Worried Dream and Work Song vary from popular takes by Peter Green and Paul Butterfield.

And, that’s where the magic happens.

One listen to this version of Joe Tex’s Mother’s Prayer and you will know what southern soul is all about.

An entire night  filmed “live” dedicated to this album would be a dream.

But for now, you have it all here.

JOHN EMMS is a veteran music journalist, Sun Media contributor, and songwriter/vocalist with Canadian blues rockers THE SHAFTMEN

Check out their latest

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/the-worlds-gone-crazy/id673101570

JOHN’S online radio podcasts are free on Apple iTunes

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/superb-song-choices-john-emms/id376049866?mt=2

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