Roll With the Punches

Roll With the Punches

Music CD - 2017
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Publisher: [Place of publication not identified] : Caroline International, [2017]
Characteristics: 1 audio disc : digital ; 4 3/4 in
Performers: Performed by Van Morrison; with acc.
Copyright Date: ©2017
UPC: 602557718515
Call Number: CD R&B/BLUES MORRISON

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t
thegrinch
Apr 06, 2019

This is a blues cd. Easy-listening. Good vocals. Some cover songs. Pretty good for an older performer..

g
garycornell
Dec 14, 2017

Van Morrison is a 72 year old musical genius. How he can continue to write music that we matters for over 50 years now, I just don't know. Look at the catalog of his albums. It appears that he has put out an album every year or two since he started. Few of his albums have been anything other than a pleasant surprise. Try to as I might to classify him as a rock musician and he puts down the sweetest blues you ever heard. I really appreciate that like so many others, he has not tried to record other peoples music. I can't think of a musician that I admire more than Van Morrison. A great KCLS patron review is just below mine and I urge you to read it!

c
caseybelle
Dec 04, 2017

A requirement, if one is over 70, return to one's Blues's roots. The Stones did such and Van has followed course. A well trod road has it's bumps and grinds yet shows where one was young.

g
greendevil
Nov 21, 2017

At 72, Morrison can still belt the blues with passion and swagger. The opening title track is an original that pays homage to Willie Dixon's "Hoochie Coochie Man" riff. He elaborates on the wrongs in life and love, but exhorts listeners to get up and move on without self-pity. He follows with the single "Transformation," a trademark Celtic R&B tune and the set's outlier; his vocal interaction with Beck's tasty slide guitar is irresistible. "I Can Tell," with Beck and Farlowe, is the first of two Bo Diddley tunes, and offers a fantastic lead-in to the medley of T-Bone Walker's "Stormy Monday" and Doc Pomus' "Lonely Avenue." Morrison has cut the former several times dating back to Them, while a version of the latter appeared on 1993's Too Long in Exile. Beck shines, unfurling his guitar wrangling with fire as Farlowe (who had a hit with "Stormy Monday in the early '60s) and Morrison exchange verses effortlessly, making these the singer's definitive versions. Fame vocally opens the original "Goin' to Chicago" with a jazzman's swing, accompanied only by double bass. Harmonica, electric guitar, and drums follow his organ on the second verse and Morrison enters on the third in a fingerpopping slow burn. Morrison first recorded "Bring It on Home to Me," for the live It's Too Late to Stop Now.... While that version was far more animated, this one offers the soulman's nuanced best as a vocal stylist and he sings the hell out of it. Beck's solo on the tune is his own watermark on the set. Morrison's "Ordinary People" is a stomping, textbook case in how to write classic-style blues in the 21st century. A stride piano is the engine for the growling read of Sister Rosetta Tharpe's gospel blues "How Far from God," and Morrison's passionate delivery makes every word believable. "Teardrops from My Eyes" was Ruth Brown's first number one hit; led by Fame, the band lays down swinging R&B, creating a solid backdrop for Morrison to wail. Little Walter's "Mean Old World" was once an oft-covered standard, and Morrison reminds us why by reviving its fiery spirit. A rowdy, raucous take on Bo Diddley's "Ride on Josephine" closes out this party on a proper note, with Morrison letting the backing chorus and the tune's trademark boogie riff guide him. On Roll with the Punches, Morrison revisits his roots without nostalgia or overt reverence. For him, these songs are as vital and important to him as his own songs. The spontaneity on this set is more akin to a live record than a studio effort, making it a most welcome entry in his catalog.

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