Friday, June 21, 2013

Al Miller Chicago Blues Band, In Between Time

I don't suppose I'll tire of saying this, because it matters to me, but here I go again: the blues tradition in the best sense is alive and well in Chicago, mostly represented on a new series of Delmark albums. Here is another goodie--the Al Miller Chicago Blues Band and their In Between Time (Delmark 826). Al has a strong pedigree as associate of the great Michael Bloomfield and member of blues group the Words. In Between Time marked his return to the Chicago fold with several new recordings. This one came out originally in 2000. I missed it the first time around but I am surely glad I haven't the second.

This is the rocking urban blues tradition that goes way back and spans Buddy Guy, Paul Butterfield and the many glorious predecessors that encompass the path to soul. Miller's harp, guitar and vocals shine forth here and the band is an excellent one.

The songs are a good mix of a few classics and worthy originals. Al is vocally solid but it's the entire band ambiance that most moves you to shout and tap your feet. It's all there!

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