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Buddy Guy: Born to Play Guitar

Born to Play Guitar
Buddy Guy: Born to Play Guitar
  • Music
  • Sonics
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Make no mistake: on his new album Buddy Guy gets some high-profile help, but the story is always Buddy Guy. While Billy Gibbons storms through “Wear You Out” with gruff authority and fiery six- string assaults, Guy’s swaggering vocal and searing ’57 Stratocaster sorties launch the workout into rarified air. Kim Wilson’s raucous harp work on Charles Brown’s strutting mean woman blues “Too Late” is but a memorable complement to Buddy’s unbridled (and good humored) blues shouting. On the string-enhanced Brook Benton-Dinah Washington chestnut “You’ve Got What It Takes,” Buddy steps up with a personable, swinging vocal of the sort we have rarely heard from him, carrying the day when Joss Stone’s mannered contribution can’t cut the mustard. Apparently B.B. King’s final words to Buddy were, “Keep the blues alive,” so Buddy and Van Morrison (with the formidable McCrary Sisters emoting soulfully in support) honor the late giant’s legacy with a soulful, stirring R&B-tinged ballad tribute, “Flesh and Bone (Dedicated to B.B. King).” Grammy-winning producer Tom Hambridge’s rich soundscape features hot vocals and guitars, all with depth and clarity, framing Buddy’s playing and his affecting singing—some of the finest he’s ever laid down—for maximum emotional impact. Awesome.  

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