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Quintus McCormick Blues Band "Put It On Me!"
I will be the first to admit that mainly R&B albums are not my favorite ones, but I will also be the first to admit that there are some albums out there simply captivate and mezmerize you regardless of what genre or sub genre of music they are. The
Quintus McCormick Blues Band's newest release "Put it On Me!", was such an album for me.
"Put it On Me!" comes hot off the heels of his 2009 studio debut release "Hey Jodie!", which garnered acclaimed reviews, such as, "...best studio debut of 2009 and one of the best soul-blues albums of the past decade." - Blues Revue. "McCormick possesses a rich, soulful voice and an incredible versatility on guitar. At one moment he's laying down an edgy blues-rock intro, and the next he's shifting into funk mode with confidence and swagger." - Living Blues. Of course managing to top a great debut album is often a rarity but, with "Put it On Me!", the Quintus McCormick Blues Band may of just done that, and in aces.
As a sideman, Quintus McCormick toured with many of the greats including "James Cotton, Otis Clay, A.C. Reed, and Lefty Dizz to name a few." With acclaim and accolades coming his way for his immense talent as a Guitarist, Vocalist, and Songwriter, it was only a matter of time he struck out and formed his own band, especially after being encouraged to do so by Blues Legends Buddy Guy and James Cotton. Having searched out the best Chicago musicians he could find, the Quintus McCormick Blues Band was created and has since thrilled audiences at numerous famed venues, which have included, "Kingston Mines, Buddy Guy’s Legends, Blues on Halsted, House of Blues, and Blue Chicago ."
Playing off his amazing songwriting skills, "Put it On Me!", offers up 14 new originals interlaced beautifully with Funk, Soul, R&B, Straight Up Harmonica Driven Blues, and beyond. Joining Quintus McCormick for this album is John Chorney (Keyboards), Vic Jackson (Bass), and Jeremiah Johnson (Drums). Special Guests on "Put It On Me!", included the great Billy Branch playing Harmonica on 3 Tracks and the always in demand The Chicago Horns playing on 5 Tracks, and featured Kenny Anderson (Trumpet/Horn Arrangements), Hank Ford (Tenor Sax), Jerry DiMuzio (Baritone Sax), and Steve Barry (Trombone). Adding to his already long list of talents, Quintus McCormick also co-produced "Put it On Me!" with Steve Wagner, whom recorded, mixed, and mastered this album.
As I previously said, Quintus McCormick is an immense talent as a Guitarist, Vocalist, and Songwriter and all those talents were certainly showcased on "Put it On Me!" to perfection. His talent as a Guitarist hits us right off the bat with the opening Track "You Just Using Me" and is again brought to the forefront throughout this Album, especially on Tracks 3, 5, and 8 ("How Quick We Forget", "I Got It Babe", and "Don't Know What To Do"). Quintus McCormick's talent as a singer is certainly not at question throughout this album, but I found it shined the brightest with the slower songs and really hit the mark on Track 13, "Lady Blue". Quintus McCormick's songwriting, especially for the styles he has chosen for "Put it On Me!", is quite frankly, second to none.
Beyond Quintus McCormick's and his bands amazing performances on "Put it On Me!", we also get the added treat of Billy Branch's super Harmonica playing on 3 Tracks, of which my favorite was Track 8 "Don't Know What To Do" and the always great The Chicago Horns peppering their magic on nearly a half dozen gems of which Track 3 "How Quick We Forget" was my favorite featuring them.
With "Put it On Me!", the Quintus McCormick Blues Band has seemed to easily elevate their styles of music to a whole new level, of which some reviewers have said, harkens back to the good and truer style of R&B that has had a hard time being properly interpreted in these more modern times. "Put it On Me!" is certainly in a more interesting league of it's own.
As mentioned earlier, R&B style albums are not my first choice to listen to, but the Quintus McCormick Blues Band and "Put it On Me!", really opened up my eyes as to how great it can be to listen to when a group of really good artists get together and do it right.
For it styles, I must say that it really deserves my High Recommendation. A very entertaining Album courtesy of a great group of exceptional artists.
Review by John Vermilyea (Blues Underground Network)
1. You Just Using Me (3:55)
2. Talk Baby (4:25)
3. How Quick We Forget (5:48)
4. Same Old Feeling (4:29)
5. I Got It Babe (3:22)
6. The Blues Has Been Good To Me (4:38)
7. Loveland (4:34)
8. Don't Know What To Do (4:24)
9. Change (5:36)
10. Put It On Me! (3:52)
11. Sadie (4:13)
12. Say Lover (3:59)
13. Lady Blue (5:41)
14. Hallelujah (4:59)
Listen To Samples Here...