of the many benefits of living in Southern California is the
abundance of Blues artists that reside here.
With our fabulous weather and many nightclubs, it
gives them the opportunity to obtain steady work while they
are not on the road. Etta
James, The Mighty Flyers, Walter Trout and Kid Ramos are
just a few of the contemporary Blues stars that call
Southern Cal their home.
Additionally, we are blessed with a wide variety of
Blues artists that are just that one big break away
from making The Big Time.
We are fortunate that on any given night of the week,
we can be entertained by the likes of
Lynwood Slim, Robert Lukas, Freddie Brooks, Mark Hummel,
B.B. Chung King and the Buddha Heads and the list goes on
and on. Miss Jill
falls into this category, and her new CD, Pet
My Kitty, is proof of her
status in this highly competitive arena.
If you get the chance to see Jill at one of her
shows, make sure you find an opportunity to meet her (buying
her CD is a good start). But watch out, because shes a
lot to handle! With
her long blonde hair and gregarious personality, she wears
her heart on one sleeve and her opinions on the other.
Make sure you shake the right hand or, as Sonny Boy
once said: Dont start her talkin, cause she might
tell you everything she knows.
Trust me, this vixen knows a
been at this for most of her young life, and it is obvious
that shes done her homework.
She is very generous with praise for her mentors,
which is just, because Jill must have learned early to take
the things that she
likes and shape them into a style that is all her own.
This, folks, is not plagiarism, it is the way it is
done. From Robert
Johnson to the Rolling Stones, it is the evolution of The
Pet My Kitty
can be described as a fun
songs are all original, written entirely by Miss Sharpe,
with the exception of the lyrics on I
Wish You Knew, written by
Michael Malone. Miss
Sharpe plays all the guitars and sings all the vocals, with
the exception of backing vocals by Amie Seymour.
Fred Kaplan accompanies her on piano, Scott Lambert
on upright bass, Smiley Long on 6 string bass and Eric Starr
on drums. Mark
Jackson plays the harp and Larry Saxman plays the sax.
Of the thirteen tracks on this recording, one of my
favorites is Drunk
a rocking number in the classic Texas roadhouse tradition,
but flavored with a little West Coast Swing.
The keyboards are excellent, both piano and organ,
which makes this a great number to show off your moves on
the dance floor.
I Got My Eye On You,
begins with girlish chatter, then dives into a smooth blues
boogie that swings with its suggestive lyrics and steady
rhythm guitar. She
blends her aggressive lead guitar with her solid rhythm like
a seasoned veteran.
Red Hot Mama
is another example of Jill combining Texas Blues with a
little swing. (I
love to drag out my 64-octave chromonica and play along with
this one!) Jills
vocal really shines and the piano solo again adds some happy
boogie to the clean guitar riffs.
I dont have the space to review every song on this
CD, but I promise you that, if you enjoy Blues that makes
you want to get up and shake what the good Lord gave ya, you
cant go wrong with this CD.
Be sure to catch Jill Sharpe and her band and have
some fun. Dont
forget to pick up her CD while youre havin a ball and
be sure to tell her Benny sent you. Just dont make the
mistake I did and wear a T-shirt promoting a certain
abrasive, goateed harp player who also lives in SoCaland
who, by the way, is just as opinionated as Miss Sharpe!
Visit Jill Sharpe at her