Wednesday, May 6, 2015

CD Review: Bluesman Otis Taylor Revisits "Hey Joe" On His Latest Solo Album

American blues musician Otis Taylor released his 14th solo album on May 5th entitled "Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat." It is the first album to be released on his own label, Trance Blues Festival. The album also features guest guitarists Warren Haynes, Langhorne Slim and String Cheese Incident's Bill Nershi.
The new ten song release features two different versions of the song "Hey Joe," made famous by Jimi Hendrix and three versions of the Taylor-penned "Sunday Morning." The album begins with the combination of Otis Taylor, Warren Haynes and Taylor Scott's bluesy guitars on the blues classic "Hey Joe" as the song's subject is about looking for redemption. Taylor's vocals are spot on to capture the feelings of the lyrics. He settles into a more experimental territory on the first delivery of "Sunday Morning" as Anne Harris' violin introduces you to this instrumental piece. The slow heartfelt ballad of "Red Meat" has an authentic feel along with Taylor's vocal delivery. The second delivery of "Hey Joe" includes a subtle marching rhythm that delivers a different feel to the song. While the first version deals with the guilt of murder, the second one gives more of a finality of "paying for what you've done" as Langhorne Slim's vocals plays the roll of the killer perfectly. The second reprise of "Sunday Morning" is a quick two-minutes, which leads into the horn-lead, slow build up of "Cold At Midnight." The album closes with the third version of "Sunday Morning," which has a more energetic feel in this final instrumental guitar piece.
The whole album deals with "decisions and their consequences" as Otis Taylor sets the stage perfectly for right tones and feelings of these songs. To find out more about his latest album "Hey Joe Opus/Red Meat," please visit

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